Friday, January 30, 2009

Prince Albert, Makati

I have been wanting to eat here for quite some time, since I heard that this is a classic place for Steak Tartare. So I decided to have lunch to try it our. The restaurant was not full at all, including us there were only 3 other tables occupied, so we had all the attention of the waiters. Service was very good and everybody was very helpful/attentive to our needs.

For starters, I ordered a mixed Green Salad with Vinaigrette, but when I noticed the cart with the wooden bowl and all the condiments, I immediately changed my order to a classic Caesar Salad. I remember going to Marios in Makati Avenue and having this with my Dad once a month, so it was a treat watching how the prepare the salad from scratch in front of you (which by the way I think is how all places should serve the salad). Rudy, the waiter who was preparing the salad, has been doing this since 1979...I practically was not even born...hehe... ok I was a kid.

As he prepared the salad, I was getting more excited to see how there was another cart beside it where they were going to prepare my Steak Tartare. Anyway back to the salad. Once they were done emulsifying the egg yolk and all the other ingredients, they carefully put the Romaine lettuce and slowly mix it all together...it is served on a small plate with the traditional bacon bits, croutons and Parmesan Cheese. The salad was perfect, just the right coating of the dressing, bacon and croutons. It really makes a difference when the dressing is prepared on the spot.


For main, of course Steak Tartare. The beauty of this is not just the steak itself, but how they prepare it. Carefully prepared, its a whole ceremony from beginning to end. The egg yolk is slowly beaten by hand until emulsified with the other regular ingredients like anchovies, Gherkins, capers, mustard and Oil. The sauce/dressing, once done, has a pale brown color.




Once done, the meat (Tenderloin) is slowly pressed with a spoon and slowly mixed in. The spoon is used to 'press' the meat to avoid big lumps/pieces. Once all mixed in, the final touches are added in for final flavoring (salt, pepper and Tabasco). They even make you try the Steak, so you could tell them if here is enough Tabasco. Once you have finally 'approved' it, they proceed to plate it. It is served in a mound, with mixed greens with a light Vinaigrette and a basket of toasted bread (for me this is the best way to eat this dish, rather then some places that serve it with fries). The final ingredient is Paprika, which brings out even more the taste of the meat and other ingredients.



The taste was sublime. It reminded me of the Tartare I had in Robuchon in Macau. It had a very fine, creamy texture. You could Taste all the flavors of all ingredients without any of them being over powered by another. Served with toast, it was just fantastic. I'd say that this one is probably one of the better if not the best Tartare I've tried lately. I do like the one of Antonios but it doesn't have the creamy light tangy consistency this one had.



I did not have any space left for anything so I had a double espresso to end the meal. I completely enjoyed this meal, from the food to the service was all 5star.I plan to return here and make this a regular thing, since it's quite hard to find this kind of Tartare here....

17 comments:

Chinkee said...

I love the old world pageantry that table-side food preparation brings to a meal. Like you, I also remember those caesar salads at Mario's. It really does make a difference.

By the way, I used to cringe at the sight of steak tartare, but after I tried it at Antonio's (thanks to your site, of course) I will be "gaya-gaya" and try Prince Albert's next. Protein naman yon, diba? Its still diet food. Hahahaha!

Miguel said...

Yeah...preparig the food makes a difference...

I'm glad I was able to convert someone to liking Tartare - I was like that also - would have never corossed my mind to eat anything raw before - even Sashimi :)

Yup protein Galore - few carbs - and it not cooked so healthy hahaha - who am I kidding :)

Noel said...

Chinkee, be careful with going on an alarmingly frequent raw meat diet like Miguel. I noticed recently that he's getting paler, sleeps during the day, wakes up at night and his teeth appear sharper than normal.

N

Miguel said...

Noel - hahaha good one... I'm trying to limit my Tartare intake to once in a while only.... :)

Miguel said...

Chinkee - I heard that Antonios has awet aging process for the Tartare of 25 days before he serves it...thats why its probably so good :)

Ill try to find out more on how he does it :)

NELSON said...

Hi Miguel

What do you think is the best wine to pair with tartare of prince albert and antonio's?
Same wine or 2 different wine as both preparations do not have the same taste and texture?
I am tempted to try both and see if I will like them too.

Miguel said...

Hi Nelson,

As per the Tartare in Prince Albert - I did not drink wine when I had it.

As for the one in Antonios - Honestly I've had Tartare many times and I've always paired it with different wines.... I 've had it with a Pouilly Fume, Sauvignon Blanc and a Homenaje Rosado - and i enjoyed all the combinations.

I've also had it with Rioja and Bordeaux. I've heard that a Gewurtz or Riesling would go well with aged tartare so I'll try that the next time I go to Antonios :)

I think Noel would be the best to recommend what would be the best one to pair this dish.

Noel said...

I think Noel would be the best to recommend what would be the best one to pair this dish.

I haven't tried the tartare in either Prince Albert's or Antonio's, so I couldn't really say. Generally speaking, though, good, minerally, not overly oaked chardonnay based wine should do well. Think 1er cru Chablis or good Pouilly-Fuissé.

Winston said...

Wow, Miguel, this is a good read! What a bonus to have your well composed photos, too! Keep 'em coming, buddy!

Winston said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Miguel said...

Thanks Winston.. Glad you enjoyed.

Chinkee said...

"I noticed recently that he's getting paler, sleeps during the day, wakes up at night and his teeth appear sharper than normal."

Bwahahaha! Just read this... Ano ba, Noel! Don't you know being a vampire is "uso" now? All the kids want to be those vampires in "Twilight". Hehe.

Funny nga I've been on a steak rampage. Btw guys, the new Werdenberg-run steakhouse is opening next week.;-)

Chinkee said...

Hey Mig! Ah its wet-aged pala! Yup, it is pretty good... Looking for a good excuse nga to go to Tagaytay. Hehe. Leaving for HK next week though... should I do Morton's?

gourmandtales said...

nice pics..
prince albert is really one of the classics

Miguel said...

Yes but i still have to verify about the wet aging. I'll se if I can find out.

Hmm HK sarap...when I was there I ate in Nobu. Mortons I ate when I was in Macau - and I enjoyed both. Steak is great in Mortons and so is their Alaskan King Crabs....

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