Back in July I was out for a walk in our neighborhood and I came across a restaurant that I had never seen before. At first, I wondered if it was new, or I had just overlooked it before. It became clear to me that it was a new place. Actually, upon further inspection, I realized that it was not only new… it had not even opened yet! It was called Bananera’s Kitchen, and my impression was that it was a BBQ place along the roadside, nothing fancy at all. I thought, though, that if they had good BBQ, since they were in the neighborhood, it might be convenient.
Didn’t think much about it after that, but in early September, I saw some stuff on Facebook where a few friends of mine had been to the place. When I saw the pictures of the place and the food, I quickly realized that my preliminary judgment of what the place was happened to be way off the mark. In the pictures, it looked to be a bit fancy!
Well, about a week ago, as lunch time was nearing, I asked me wife if she wanted to go out for lunch, and I told her about this place I had seen in our neighborhood, Bananera’s Kitchen. She quickly agreed.
One thing that I quickly learned about Bananera’s is that it is owned by the aunt of a friend of mine! The family has other restaurants too, and good ones, so that made me all the more curious about the place.
When we entered Bananera’s Kitchen, we were really impressed by the simplicity and the elegance of the place. Very nice, but not overstated. Comfortable and nice at the same time. In fact, it kind of reminded me of Claude’s back when it was in it’s smaller location across the street from where they are now. I liked it.
When we looked at the menu there were so many choices. Great food to choose from! Attending lunch were my wife, Feyma, my daughter, Jean, and myself. We decided to order several entrees and just share, so we could each taste a variety of what was on offer. Good choice too, because everything was so delicious.
What all did we order?
- Chicken & Pork Adobo
- Pork Schnitzel
- Pork BBQ (yes, they did have BBQ after all!)
- Kinilaw (a raw tuna dish for those who don’t know)
- French Fries
As I already said, everything was great! One thing that really impressed me was that all of the meat was so tender and juicy. It is pretty common in Filipino restaurants that a westerner (like me) will find the food dry and overcooked, but that was not the case at Bananera’s Kitchen.
In addition to great food, all of the staff members were very kind, polite and efficient too. We met the owner, Choly Robillo, and she was so very nice to us. Super friendly, and kind.
What were the downsides for Bananera’s?
There were only a couple of minor downsides. Firstly, I felt that the menu needed to be better organized. It was kind of all mixed up and you had to look through a lot of pages to find what all foods were being offered. Like I said, this was only a minor inconvenience. Secondly, but this is common at restaurants in the Philippines, things that were really appetizers were served after main courses, that sort of thing. For example, we had all of our food, and I had to ask for the French Fries, which really should have been served with everything else. This is common at restaurants here, though, so I sort of expect it. But, if it could be improved, it would move Bananera’s up a notch in my book.
Good Food, Reasonable Price
If you want good food at a reasonable price, though, I recommend Bananera’s Kitchen wholeheartedly. For our entire meal (as listed above, and including drinks too) it was less than P1,000. That’s a great price for such great food, and a lovely ambiance.
Bananera’s Kitchen is located in Juna Subdivision, at #10 Juna Avenue, which is just in front of the Lispher Inn. Tell them that MindanaoBob sent you!