I recently went to a bar cafe and restaurant that has so much going on in it I remember it most for its interior than the food. Not sure if it’s a good or a bad thing. Filling Station can be found in the so-called Red District in Makati Ave. On why it’s called a gas station you have to go upstairs to find out.
First thing that I noticed is Elvis Presley, a life-size figure of him that is. But he’s not the only celebrity you can find here. At the end of the room, you will see another figure, this time a replica of 1950s sexy bombshell, Marilyn Monroe in her famous flying skirt pose. And that’s not the only Marilyn Monroe you can find here, there are also tons of pictures and posters of her covering the walls, especially in this small private room.
Then I noticed the vintage fuel pump machines that lined up the hall, and that’s the only time it made sense to me why it’s called Filling Station. This resto is owned by a former US Navy chief who stayed in the Philippines for good when the US Military Base left the country in 1992. Filling Station is dressed in the 1950s theme, pretty much how American diners looked during that period.
The fuel pump machines, Elvis, and Marilyn are just some of the many vintage artifacts that are on display here. There are old vinyl records, telephones, jukebox machines, and on TV they are playing 1950s movies. Even the ceiling wasn’t spared, in fact, there are some old bicycles hanging up there that I couldn’t help but worry a bit that they’d somehow come loose and fall off or something (thank god they are safely secured up there).
There are also pool tables that people can rent. Customers are mostly expats or foreign tourists.
My friends and I shared because the food here is pricey. For starters, we had the All Star Nachos; a deconstructed nachos as requested by my friend. Because it’s deconstructed, it saved the tortilla from being soggy. Eating it is a lot of work though because you have to keep preparing it every time you want a bite.
Their Sinatra’s Chicken Pesto (PHP398) pasta reminded me why I used to love pesto pasta. It’s not swimming in oil but remains flavorful and has generous chunks of chicken. It even comes with two pieces of garlic toast. A serving is good for 2.
The Calzone Pizza (428) wasn’t a hit. Though it’s not something I’d call bad, I wasn’t all crazy about it either.
Their Chocolate Milkshake (PHP280) now that’s something special. It was creamy, sweet but not intense, and one order can be shared by two people. I was very into it that I finished it in no time.
I was surprised by one of my friends with a Chocolate Trio cake because we went there five days after my birthday. The cake is thick, so dark it’s almost black, and the icing is so dense it’s almost like a soft candy. It was served to me by the crew and they were all singing me a happy birthday. I honestly didn’t see it so coming so I was both surprised and touched.
I have always loved themed restaurants because it’s nice when a resto or cafe offers something more apart from good food. And Filling Station in conclusion, was able to meet these two criteria. It helps that they also have quite an extensive menu so there’s always more reason to go back. And I’d definitely go back.
Filling Station Bar Cafe and Restaurant
5012 P. Burgos St., Makati Ave.