Main Street: Bringing The Soul of the Northwest to Manila
Tucked away in the sprawling neighborhood of McKinley Hill is a hole-in-the-wall dedicated to providing comfort food that is distinctly Pacific Northwest. Located at the The Tuscany, Main Street is a hip joint that provides the best of Canadian comfort cuisine in a relaxed environment.
At the helm of this hideout is Adam Tan who earned his culinary training in Vancouver for six years – the main backbone behind the concept of this restaurant. The dishes are mainly influenced by the food found in Vancouver and Seattle, the kind of grub that goes best after drinks, or as snacks well-put together for cold nights when you just want to curl up in your bed or couch and pop a movie in.
Black-and-white street photos of Main Street, an important district in Vancouver with an ironically small-town vibe, deck the place. On one side of the wall, there is an array of colorful action figures and a record player along with a collection of mostly rock records that give the joint its edgy ambiance. There are a few quirky portraits here and there, and a portion of the bar has been lined with Vancouver-themed plates and other memorabilia. The decor feels hip and young, reflecting the energy in the soul of its food.
The food is as indulgent as it gets, with lip-smackingly good fries served with dark beef gravy and bacon as one of its highlights, and items on the menu that just sound like they’re begging to be tried, like the Bacon Jam Grilled Cheese. Sold, yet? Take a look at the dishes we tried:
For those of you unfamiliar with poutine, it’s a dish from Quebec consisting of french fries, dark beef gravy sauce, and cheese curds. Main Street prides itself in serving authentic poutine, kicking it up a notch from other restaurants in the metro that serve their versions of a loaded fries combo. What makes this classic dish even more appealing is their generous use of mozzarella cheese. The fries are perfectly crisp, the gravy flavorful, and the stringy, creamy mozzarella cheese… there isn’t really much more that needs to be said.
Bacon Cheeseburger Poutine
We all love our cheeseburgers with fries, and this version cleverly mixes the two in a sinful yet oh-so-good love affair. Oh, and don’t underestimate the chunks of bacon in this dish. Main Street’s bacon is homemade, with thick cuts of pork belly instead of the usual thin ones we see in the grocery. The beef is well-seasoned, and the amount of cheese in this dish is just right– not too sparse, not too much that it drowns everything else.
Smoked Pulled Pork Poutine
This poutine dish will please meat lovers and those looking to pile on lots of flavor. The sauce is very savoury and the pulled pork is tender and generous. It’s the cheese that balances out the dish, complementing the barbecue sauce.
Another crowd favorite, this poutine serves up Main Street’s famed buttermilk fried chicken in bite-sized pieces. With mozzarella cheese curds and chicken gravy, you really can’t go wrong with this dish that has the restaurant’s bestsellers.
Pork Chop with Barbecue Sauce, Grilled Asparagus and Mashed Potatoes
The pork is thick yet surprisingly tender and juicy; the mashed potatoes have just the right texture to complement the dish; and the asparagus makes it all the more visually appealing, while providing a refreshing crunch to the dish.
Buttermilk Fried Chicken
This chicken may look simple in appearance, but it actually packs a great punch in flavor. The hero of Main Street, Adam shares that this is what saved the restaurant in its first stages. It has made it onto several lists as one of the best-tasting chicken dishes in Manila, and continues to be the restaurant’s runaway bestseller. This perfectly crispy chicken takes several hours to make, mainly because of its marinade. This is what gives the buttermilk fried chicken its trademark juiciness that its regulars love. We guarantee you’ll love it, too.
Mussels with Herb Beer Broth and Fries
It’s a pretty simple dish, but it should definitely your go-to choice when you want a dish with seafood in it. The beer broth is light and does not overpower the natural flavor of the mussels. Overall, the dish is fresh on the palate.
Main Street also serves homemade ice cream, another popular choice in the restaurant. Some of the flavors we tried and liked the most were: Butterbeer, Maple Bacon, and Lychee.
Of course, you can’t have Canada without having some sort of maple-inspired dish. This requirement comes in the form of the maple bacon ice cream. The combination might seem foreign to some, but it’s actually a delightful taste. The maple brings much of the sweetness in the ice cream, and the bacon provides an interesting texture to it.
Harry Potter fans will love the Butterbeer ice cream, which is buttery smooth and tastes like Butterfingers. The lychee is the most different one out of all the flavours that we tried, though. If you don’t want to go heavy and you’re looking for a palate cleanser, the lychee flavor resembles more of a sherbet than an ice cream.
Main Street also serves Canadian beers, making it a popular hangout after work.
Main Street can be found at the The Tuscany, along Upper McKinley Road, McKinley Hill.
Main Street Restaurant