I found a restaurant in the South that offers the ultimate edible pleasures. The place is called TUS’ Clay Pots & Skillets; TUS is from the Spanish word that means “yours,” while the food that they offer are served on cazuela, a Spanish cooking pot, used to prepare dishes in South America and ceramic skillets. TUS is owned by two young women, Maricar Sason and Chef Krsna Algenio who obviously know what they are doing. Because everything about TUS’, I love. So I do I love TUS’? Let me count the ways.
First, I love the interior. The two-storey building looks like a cottage in the woods with a trace of a modern flair. Upstairs there are two bookshelves furnished with some interesting selection. The distinctive pieces they used for decorations amused me to no end that I spent a considerable amount of time photographing the place. I was impressed with the interiors and it’s always a good start.
Second reason; the owners and staff are very warm. When I reached our table I noticed this miniature plant pot that showed their welcome greeting for our group. I was naturally touched, in a simple gesture they were able to make us feel important. The waiters are also patient and attentive, always willing to attend to our needs, even when the need was as simple as pouring the iced tea in a glass. I wasn’t trying to be snooty though, I really needed help with that drink, I’ll explain later.
Third reason, not only is the place beautiful, so is the food. You see, every food blogger’s dream is great food served in a way that is aesthetically pleasing. If you’ve been in the company of food bloggers you will know exactly what I mean.
We started with an appetizer, a modest-looking garlic bread that turned out to be anything but modest where the taste is concerned. That was my first clue that we’re bound to experience something awesome. The only thing that stopped me from eating the whole thing is my anticipation for the other food.
I was completely stuffed from our lunch at Butamaru earlier that day so I had to engage in some serious portion eating to accommodate TUS. It was a game of sweet anticipation, heightened by the fact that we couldn’t eat them right away because the food had to be photographed first for blogging purposes. And there was a bunch of us so I had to be real patient. My patience is of course greatly rewarded because every food on that table had me singing hallelujah.
The next appetizer is the Jalapeño Croquettes (PHP150), which I thought was French fries on the fat side (forgive my ignorance over food). Turns out it’s a breadcrumbed fried food roll, filled with mashed potato and jalapeño. At first glance, the fries look firm but when you take a bite, you’d find that it’s very soft and easy to eat.
The Spinach Dip (PHP220) was the biggest surprise because first of all, I hate spinach; there is something about the taste of this vegetable that offends my taste buds. Given that, I almost didn’t touch this appetizer; good thing I gave it a chance lest I would have missed its gooeylicious goodness. I’m not sure if it was the mozzarella cheese, but this appetizer completely changed my views about spinach, so if you too hate this veggie, I’m telling you to NEVER skip this. I swear this is worth a try.
Another food I’m not really a fan of is burrito; it is one of those weird foods that I tried and would never eat again. First of all, it has too many carbs, there’s the rice and there’s the tortilla wrapper, and there’s also beans; a perfect recipe for a session with the porcelain god. Even so, I wasn’t deterred especially when I heard that it’s called Wet Burrito (PHP 390), I wondered what the hell does it mean. It’s burrito rice with beef wrapped in a tortilla, slathered with tomato sauce, covered with mozzarella cheese and salsa, topped with sour cream and jalapenos. The medley of flavors worked in unison to deliver what I find to be the only burrito I could ever eat.
Then we were served pot pies, three of them; Chicken Ranch (PHP370), House Sausage (PHP390), and Margherita (PHP390). Admittedly, I was only able to take small bites of these pies because sadly, I was already feeling very full. Out of the three though, my favorite would be the Chicken Ranch. It’s worth noting that these pies yielded easily upon slicing and the filling is so generous that it bursts from the cut.
We were also served BLT Calzone (PHP460), a folded pizza stuffed with bacon, lettuce, tomatoes, mozzarella cheese served with aioli sauce. It was big, tasty, served in a rather unique manner with lettuce coming out of the mouth of the pie.
The only one I didn’t get to taste (and was dying to) because it was a personal order of another blogger, is the Pan-seared Salmon (PHP480). It is served on top of herbed rice with roasted garlic dressing and a slice of lemon.
Then came the steaks; Spicy Lemon Pesto (PHP 660) with corn and asparagus sidings, Cheese and Onions Steak (PHP 660) with potato wedges and asparagus, and Herbed Butter Steak (PHP 620) with asparagus and mashed potato. Ouf of the three, I was keen on Spicy Lemon Pesto because of the keyword, “spicy.” It was a joy to realize that the steaks are tender so you wouldn’t have to spend some time feeling like you’re cutting (or chewing) wood. I noticed that a fellow blogger kept reaching her fork to the mashed potato of Herbed Butter Steak. On her fifth time, notwithstanding the fact I couldn’t eat anymore, I tried it myself. I think I saw fireworks when the flavor exploded in my mouth. No wonder she kept going at it, the mashed potato is delicious!
For drinks, we had Pineapple Float (PHP445), topped with vanilla ice cream. The look itself should tell you why I required the assistance of a waiter to pour it in my glass. It comes with a wooden stirrer so the trick is, you should mix the vanilla ice cream to the drink first. The result is a drink so sweet, it’d probably give you diabetes. To the diabetics, this is no good for you okay, but to the sweet tooth you are in for a treat.
Now comes the dessert, yes, I still had room for it, albeit little. The Tiramisu (PHP220) cake is good for those who want a dessert that is a bit gentle on the sweet side. A few bloggers liked it, but the real winner is…
…the Half-Baked Cookie (PHP180) served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and drizzled with chocolate syrup. This dessert is unlike anything I’ve ever had before. It was so good, soft, and gooey, that I couldn’t stop myself from eating it. Seriously guys, you should try this when you happen to visit TUS. It’s so delicious it should be in anyone’s bucket list.
Normally, I’d tell you to not take my word for it but this time I am making an exception. TUS is amazing and you must take my word for it! It would serve that you know this firsthand. So if you are after a completely satisfying dining experience take a trip to Alabang, go to the Westgate Center, and find TUS’ Clay Pots & Skillets.
TUS‘ Clay Pots and Skillets
Westgate Center, Filinvest
Alabang, Muntinlupa City
Telephone Nos: 633 823-3178/0917 5680964
Business Hours: Monday – Thursday: 8:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m./5:00 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Friday: 8:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m./5:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.