When In Manila, traces of Spanish culture will always be immutably ingrained within the city’s rich history. Take a trip back in time through a gastronomical experience with Casa Marcos.
Since 1945, this restobar has been serving Spanish favorites with a local twist. Upon entering their Burgos Circle branch, I was immediately taken in by the classy yet homey ambiance. Artistic memorabilia lined the walls, sealing in the Spanish semblance.
For starters, I had the Gambas (Php 285) and Almejas (Php 230) paired with their complimentary pandesal. The Gambas are Spanish garlic shrimps cooked in a distinct Casa Marcos style, while the Almejas are baked clams topped with melted cheese and crispy garlic bits. Both were old favorites and flavorful.
Casa Marcos‘ pandesal is a unique winner in my book. Cooked fresh using brick oven woodfire daily, their pandesal has a salty, crunchy texture yet is soft as a pillow on the inside. Their pandesal is so delicious, they put up a seperate store within the restaurant called Bread Bag Pandesal Bar, which alone is already worth a visit.
For my main course, I had the Tenderloin Steak ala Pobre (Php 495) and the famous Paella Valenciana (Php 745). The Steak ala Pobre is cooked in oil and garlic, while the Valenciana is a hearty rice meal with chorizo, seafood, and chicken cooked over a slow fire.
My verdict? The Tenderloin was delicious enough but it was the Paella Valenciana that completely blew me away. Having tried a variety of the same dish in different restaurants, Casa Marcos’ version stood out from the rest. The dish was hearty, the meat succulent, and the mixture of flavors simply delicious. Definitely my new go-to haven for Paella!
When In Manila, be sure to drop by Casa Marcos! Here’s a tip: it turns into a bar after sunset with pretty sweet happy hour deals. Trying their famous Sangria next. See you there!
Photography by: Mikee Galvez
Casa Marcos: Manila’s Best Paella