We’ve finally discovered a hack for when you want to eat something, but can’t decide what it is. For folks in the North like me, it can be done at High Ground Foodpark in Marilao, Bulacan. It allows the customers to take on an epicurean adventure where different tastes of the world converge.
High Ground is the same building—castle, if you may—that formerly housed Rock Castle, once a popular night time gimik spot in the municipality. Hence, it is only fitting that the idea of transforming it into a foodpark would adopt a theme that would later set the place apart from the usual foodie circuits; that is, a foodpark that occupies three floors of the building, all accessible only by stairs. It is literally a vertical version of the foodparks we know in Metro Manila.
It seems that the name ‘High Ground’ easily translates to the fact that the place is a three-storey building. According to Ms. Rushellie Trono, co-owner of the foodpark, it derived from the mantra of its staff to remain humble and to keep their feet on the ground despite the elevated space that they stand on. Sounds like a good piece of advice for everyone, right?
Let’s cut to the chase and see what they have in store. Surprisingly, there’s always something for every palate that even a “pihikan” would find it satisfying enough to come back for more. Currently, there are four carts and six stalls that sell food and refreshments. However, there are no two stalls that have the same fare. Ms. Trono explained that this is to prevent competition among the stalls, and to give emphasis on food diversity.
To give a better picture, there’s a stall named Kanto Prito for your streetfood fix; a Mexican specialty nook called El Paprika; a grilling station named Mr. Grilled; a literal “potato corner” called Fries and Dip; a Japanese cuisine spot named Maki Express; a chicken and pasta area called Gourmet Savory Chicken (GSC); a pastries and desserts booth named Santaio; a rice toppings section named Tabo; a shawarma cart named Shawarmarrific; and a refreshment bar called Duke’s.
You do get some cardio, though, from having to use the stairs to get to the different stalls. The management clarified that there is no space to build an escalator or an elevator, so they choose to keep it old school. Still, you’ll appreciate the convenience of fully-equipped comfort rooms, which you may not find in other foodparks. The dining space is also well-ventilated enough to dismiss the idea of recreating an airconditioned foodcourt.
Anyway, we had a feast. First, they served us mojos from Fries and Dip (Php99). They are the tastiest mojos we’ve had so far. They are seasoned with BBQ flavoring, unlike the ones we are used to.
Next came the standard streetfood starter pack from Kanto Prito: several pieces of kwek-kwek (Php20 for five pieces) and some tofu nuggets (Php4 a piece). Mind you, they’re not your usual kwek-kwek because they’re dipped in colored batter and fried to perfection—something that will look great on your feed. We all agree that the sauce they come with tastes awesome. The tofu nuggets, on the other hand, are a creative take on good ol’ tokwa: they’re breaded and crispy on the outside.
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