Last week, I celebrated my 51st Birthday! My birthday was on Wednesday, but on Tuesday, I was already considering, where should we go out for lunch on my birthday? Feyma and I have a ritual that we always go out to lunch together to celebrate either of our birthdays. This time it was my turn, so I got to choose the restaurant! In truth, when it is Feyma’s birthday, she usually let’s me choose the restaurant too, although I always urge her to do the choosing. 🙂
Because of this Davao Eats blog, I like to go out to new places that I have never tried as often as I can. I don’t want to keep going to the same place over and over again, that would leave me a lack of new places to write about on this site. As I racked my brain, I came up with a few restaurant ideas, and I even wrote about it on my MindanaoBob website. When I wrote that article, I thought we would go out to Paradise Island for lunch, but when Wednesday came around, it was a rainy day, and not a good day to take the boat ride over to Samal Island for lunch. So, finally it struck me. There is a place in SM Lanang Premier that just opened a couple of months ago, a place I have been wanting to try. Clawdaddy’s. Clawdaddy’s Great American Picnic. Yeah, that’s where I wanted to go for my birthday!
Feyma and I arrived at Clawdaddy’s about 12:30pm for lunch. Not many people in the place, perhaps because it was a rainy middle of the week day. I had heard good things about the food at Clawdaddy’s, and I hoped I would not be disappointed as I was when I went to Hog’s Breath Cafe recently, which is also in SM Lanang Premier. I also had high expectations when we went to Hog’s Breath, and was let down severely.
First thing when we walked in to Clawdaddy’s, I loved the ambiance of the place. Very comfortable, and cozy. I was handed a menu and started browsing it. I had an idea what I wanted, because I had done some online research by reading some blog reviews of the place before going, and they had some dishes that looked really good to me.
The waitress was hanging at our table waiting for our order. She was a bit distracting. Cute girl wearing short shorts, somehow I could not concentrate on the menu. 😉 Just kidding. We asked the waitress to give us 10 minutes or so to look over the menu, which she did. When she came back we were ready to order!
We ordered New England Clam Chowder in a bread bowl, the Shellfish Sampler plate, Baby Back Ribs and an All Shrimp Boiler bag. The All Shrimp Bag is basically a big plastic bag that they fill with seafood (shrimp in this case, they many choices), corn on the cob, potatoes and Andouille Sausage. This is all put in a bag with some spices (you even get to choose the flavor of the spices that you want) and then it is boiled. The bag is served to you complete, and you dig through to get what you want. My first reaction when we got the All Shrimp Bag (we ordered the smaller version which is good for 2 people) was that it didn’t have much seafood in it, and would leave us wanting more. But, as we ate, I realized that I was wrong, and the serving was generous and filling. We loved the Seafood Bag, and will most certainly be eating some of the other varieties in the future. Can’t wait to try one with Crabs next time!
I’m getting ahead of myself here, though. The first thing that was brought to the table was the New England Clam Chowder. You don’t find Clam Chowder served here very often, and I was really looking forward to it. I am a real lover of Clam Chowder, especially New England style. I didn’t realize it would be in a bread bowl, but that only makes it better in my opinion, so I was happy when the bread bowl was set in front of me. When I first took a bite of clam chowder… ouch! It was so hot! But, it sure was delicious! I let it cool a bit, and kept on eating. I was supposed to be sharing with Feyma (we each wanted to try it, but we ordered a lot so we thought we’d share), so I quickly realized that I was getting to the end of my share! The clam chowder is very good, and I recommend it highly.
Next, we were served the Shellfish plate. It was good too, although, for me the shellfish had too much cheese on them. But, Feyma liked them just fine, so I can’t fault Clawdaddy’s for that, the very cheesy shellfish seem to meet the approval of the Filipino palate, and that is who they are here to serve! Don’t take me wrong, I enjoyed them, but would have liked to get more of the taste of the shellfish.
The ribs. Oh, my, the ribs. When I went to Hog’s Breath Cafe a couple of weeks ago, I was so sorely disappointed by the baby back ribs, they were just terrible. When we were served the baby back ribs at Clawdaddy’s, they had some similarities to the ones I had at Hog’s Breath. They were much better than Hog’s Breath, but I did find them somewhat dry and overcooked. The flavor of the sauce was nice, though, and we ate them. I would rate them maybe a 6 out of 10. I would not order them again, but I will definitely be back to Clawdaddy’s, but will order the seafood dishes that they specialize in. The ribs were only a small glitch in an otherwise spectacular meal. One thing I will say is that the side dishes that came with the ribs were both spectacular! You get to choose your side dishes (two of them), we chose dirty rice (Feyma is a rice lover, after all) and mashed potatoes. I liked both, the mashed potatoes were among the best mashed potatoes that I’ve ever had. So, the ribs plate was not a total loss.
Overall, the food and the dining experience at Clawdaddy’s was excellent. The ribs were not 100%, but everything else about the meal was great. Will we be back? You bet! Can’t wait to go again! How are the prices? Well, they are not cheap, but are also a value, given that seafood is an expensive meal. In all, Feyma walked away full and satisfied, and our bill was about P1,600, or about $40. I don’t consider that bad for a quality lunch, good ambiance and a very enjoyable date with my wife! Thanks for the birthday lunch, babe!
Clawdaddy’s is located in SM Lanang Premier Mall in Davao City, and has other locations around the Philippines too. It is an American restaurant. Give them a try if you like Seafood!