I’ve always been interested to visit this place. When the Philippines went gaga over KrispyKreme, this restaurant managed to sneak into the market and create a new craze: the cronuts. But that morning on June 5 was quite disappointing. While I was there for breakfast, I was also looking forward to finally getting a hand on that much-raved-about cronut. But it wasn’t available. So on to another delight.
This restaurant has a feel of subdued sophistication. It offers the right amount of glamor and warmth that keeps at bay the hustle and bustle of life in the metropolis. Given that it is in one of the country’s swankiest districts, it’s no surprise how being inside it transports you to to those chic organic bakeries that you often only watch on TLC. Not an interior decorator — but I think the decor was minimalist, quite fitting for what it was (coffee shop and bakery), and the arrangement of the tables was cozy enough to get a feel of “community” with those that are seated right behind, in front or beside you.
The moment you enter Wildflour, you find an assortment of breads to your right. Maybe the bakers were done for that hour that I missed the smell of breads cooking in the oven. It was still a treat for someone like me whose eyes grow big at the sight of breads and pastries. Everything was well-complemented with the warmth and charm of the waitresses who saw me to the table that I reserved (Yes, for the first time, I reserved a table in Manila.) for breakfast with a friend who works in the World Bank.
The branch of Wildflour that I visited was at the Netlima building along 25th street in the Bonifacio Global City. It was a strategic choice as that morning, I was in the area for a “high level” (credits to Moira E.) consultation at the World Bank (which office is hardly 5 minutes away by foot). The place wasn’t full at that time. I was told though that it’s usually hard to get a seat mid-morning. Most of those in the air-con area were foreigners or expats; those in the al fresco area were more the hippies smoking their lungs away. We were seated inside. Thankfully I was left with no choice but to look human in a suit. That at least made me convince the “probinsyano” in me that I blended in.
On to the menu…
Before heading off to Wildflour, I already did a research on its menu — price range to be exact. I needed to muster the strength to be there, to sit there, to go over the menu, and not end up ordering only a cup of coffee. It’s a pricey restaurant, and I better had enough to foot the bill.
Wildflour has a truly impressive line-up of dishes, from sandwiches to full meals. They also have an assortment of cold and warm drinks. There were many dishes, especially those that sounded “sosy”, that I didn’t know of. I had no clue what they were, except for some words from where I stitched up ideas of what they could be a main ingredient of. There were even some dishes that I could only pronounce up to the first word: “toast”, “bagel” — I gave up on the next.
I had “bagel lox” (See? Up to this time, I don’t know what that word means. I uttered the word “bagel” with confidence to the waitress but silently whispered the next…looowx? loxsy?). With my fascination with bagels developed when we stayed before in the house of my now-boss when we debated in Manila, I knew I couldn’t make a mistake with it. So that was my order. Smoke salmon was another of my all-time favorites, plus the irresistible cream cheese. It was made healthy by the arugula. My friend had “toast with ham, eggs and mushrooms”.
When our order arrived, I admit, I felt in love with my dish. The bagel had a shimmer that hinted at just enough crunch to its outer layer to lead me to a soft bite further down. The smoke salmon and arugula peeked out of the bagel cut into half, as if hands (not tongue!) waving and pulling me towards it. It was what I have been dreaming of eating: a good bagel burger.
My friend’s order was humongous! It looked like a huge slab of steak for the Flinstones adorned with an even slice of ham, two eggs cooked sunny side up, and some mushrooms. It was heaven — where good people forgetting to take their Lipitor would find themselves in after eating this giant toast. For some time, I regretted ordering bagel; my friend’s order dwarfed what I had. But while her food looked very delicious, I appeased myself that there was still another round of eating awaiting me during the meeting.
On the whole, the dining experience was superb. Our food did not only look good but they tasted great. This place is a must-try, especially for those who are into fusion cuisine or are addicted to breads. While pricey, it would be nice to have a bite or two of this place once in a while.
My advice: Prepare to shred around P700 per person (food+drink+service charge)
Gastronomic Richter Scale Rating: 9 of 10.