I have been waiting a very long time for restaurants in the Philippines to start serving raclette on top of dishes. Pop-up stalls have appeared here and there, but finally, one no longer has to turn to Insider Food videos of raclette from London or New York—we now have our own, right here at home, sweet, South.
8 Parker Willis has just recently opened last May on the topmost floor of Madison Galeries in Alabang, and has been on soft opening since. A very homey and Southern Living-style interior welcomes you in, complete with vines crawling on a brick wall, wooden and turquoise furniture, flower centerpieces, a jazz playlist, and of course, a wall of family portraits.
EJ, owner of the café
These photographs are of none other than the family who propped up the café. The café is a product of a family of cooks, and a celebration of their beloved meals at home (many of which made it to the menu, which Chefs Gigi Almeda and Cho Marcelino also had a hand in crafting). With a desire to create a travel and home-inspired selection of dishes that taste like home, 8 Parker Willis was born.
Most establishments that serve raclette usually scrape it over potato wedges or sausages, the conventional way. While others usually serve only one scraping off the wheel, melted cheese lovers will be pleased to know that the raclette at 8 Parker Willis doesn’t come up short. It’s almost flowing off the plate.
Two scrapings of the cheese wheel on top of their lamb burger
Here, you can have your raclette served over heartier meals like salmon, a lamb burger, and rib eye. They even go so far as to offer an additional helping of raclette that can be poured atop any dish you order for P100.
Ribeye Raclette (P550)
The delicious and juicy strips of ribeye are served alongside a very generous heaping of raclette, so you can choose how much cheese you want to eat with it. In case you run out of ribeye before you finish your cheese, you’re free to eat it with the accompanying garlic bread, tomatoes, and greens.
Raclette Lamb Burger (P520)
Our favorite dish was this thick and tasty lamb burger, which tasted rich and savory alone, but even better when coupled with the sharp scraping of melted cheese it drowns in. This dish will definitely have you coming back to the café.
Salted Egg Fried Chicken and Pancakes (P350)
Of course, the restaurant has more to offer, cheese wheel aside. Following the salted egg craze, three wings lie atop three pancakes with maple syrup, both topped with coleslaw. The saltiness of the chicken pairs well with the maple syrup of the pancakes, resulting in a dish that tastes like your mother just whipped up a special meal for brunch.
8 Parker Willis’ Shepherd’s Pie (P550)
Under the mashed sweet potato is beef that tastes sort of like upscaled kaldereta (but in that case, their shepherd’s pie would be my new favorite kaldereta). Unique and new, there’s a reason why the shepherd’s pie name on the menu earns the prefix of the restaurant’s name.
Banana Chocolate Mousse (P120)
Matcha Lava Cake (P195)
They haven’t forgotten about dessert, either. (It might be kind of weird to ask for raclette as an add-on for these, but we won’t judge you if you do.) The banana chocolate mousse is rich and thick with the chocolate, with a hint of banana in the mousse itself. The matcha lava cake, on the other hand, is really fudgy and tastes strongly like real matcha for those who love it less sweet. The chocolate-shelled ice cream is a plus.
You pair your meals with their bottomless iced tea for P120 or you can order from their many coffee items. Fortunately, they serve coffee from the most beloved specialty coffee of the South, Magnum Opus.
8 Parker Willis
Madison Galeries, 398 Don Jesus Boulevard, Muntinlupa City
Open 10am-9pm from Monday to Thursday, and 10am-10pm from Friday to Sunday