Looking for a Tapas Heaven when in Manila? Vyne is the Answer
Whether you are coming from a night-out of heavy drinking or simply looking to nibble on some chow when in Manila, the classy and chic Vyne should definitely be among the top places on your list. Featuring a near-endless menu of good-to-share bite-sized offerings, an impressive selection of mains, and an equally packed list of beverages, Vyne is the deal for both bar-crawlers and food-lovers alike.
Vyne – Tapas, Mains, and Drinks
Good food are often served within a good atmosphere, and that was the first thing I noticed at Vyne. High ceilings, well-spaced tables, and an outdoor section sums up “the BGC experience” – an exercise in the premium. However, atmospheres are a dime a dozen in this restaurant-packed area and what makes Vyne stand out is the variety and quality of tapas, or appetizers, that they have.
The seafood lover would want to try out the Thai Scallops, pictured below. The light flavors on the scallop is followed beautifully by the sweetness of the mango, and there was a good punch of spice at the end from the sambal mayo. Not for those who are sensitive to spiciness, in my opinion. Which means…
…the Mini Crab Cakes are good, to satisfy that seafood craving. The apple mayo gave a nice, light balance to the crab, and when eaten all at once, the avruga (a type of caviar) and the radish gave interesting flavor- and texture highlights.
Continuing the seafood theme, the Singapore Chili Crab Bun was a tad high on the spiciness meter, as far as the Pinoy taste bud goes. The crab was firm and crispy but admittedly, the bun wasn’t going to win awards (if buns did get awards).
Taking a page from the resounding success of ramen houses in Manila, the Pork Chasu Bun is an interesting take on the fatty pork slices usually found in the popular Japanese noodle dish. I found it very rich, and incredibly greasy since there was no broth to ‘cut’ the fat – taking into account that it also had sesame mayo.
One of my personal favorites was the Breaded Aji Tamago (ramen inspirations are not wanting among Vyne’s chefs, it seems). Great balance between the runny egg and salmon with little oiliness made it a very enjoyable, easy to eat dish. A must-order!
For your #foodporn post on Instagram, the Patatas Bravas fits the bill. The quail egg perched almost cheekily on the potato is almost begging to be shared as a picture. The flavor did not disappoint; mild, creamy, and has great texture.
Speaking of texture, I enjoyed the blend of the spicy firmness of a classic Filipino bar chow favorite, sisig, packed in a soft but crunchy fried empanada exterior. Not as oily as I expected, but if the Sisig Empanada had a little more sisig and a little less empanada, it would probably have been a load more enjoyable.
My least favorite tapas was the Korean Fried Chicken. The serving probably had enough oil to fry another dish, and I did not particularly enjoy the glazing. I was expecting it to be a riot of Korean spices, but it turned out quite mild. It might be something Korean food lovers would appreciate more but I didn’t, not really.
The most striking items on a menu in my opinion are the ones where there is interaction between the food and the foodie. The Shrimp Plate tried just that; the dip for the shrimp is in the head and must be squeezed out. Volume of dip varied slightly but the experience equated to the taste: curious but pretty good.
Truffle fries here are like truffle fries everywhere: truffle fries.
Another one I particularly liked was the Lamb Meatball Sliders. The pita was slightly too firm for me, but take nothing away from the flavorful, almost gamey flavors of the lamb meatball! Packs a punch on the palate, and very good with a glass of red.
(At this point, I was quite full and my taste buds were possibly overloaded already.)