Relik Tapas Bar and Lounge
February 28, 2012
It took me two visits to the newly opened bar in Fort Bonifaco before I finally wrote about Relik Tapas Bar and Lounge. In all honesty, I rarely go to bars. I always have this impression that bars are places where alcohol-drinking buddies hang out. I don’t drink alcohol and I usually just hang out with 1-2 friends at a time. It’s a good thing that I was invited to Relik Tapas Bar and Lounge’s Media launch. It changed my outlook on bars. I will now stop dismissing bars as I almost missed having a chance to take some super delicious and unique food in a bar like Relik Tapas Bar and Lounge.
As I entered Relik, I noticed how vintage it looked. I then realized that the name Relik actually came from the word, relic, which means ancient object. That pretty much explains why Relik Tapas Bar and Lounge has an old radio, typewriter, old DJ booth and some other really old stuff all over the restaurant.
In spite of the mismatching chairs and the combination of old objects from different origins, Relik Tapas Bar and Lounge looked so cozy and homey. The different artifacts blended perfectly with each other. I’m sure every single customer would feel so relaxed and at home when dining at Relik.
Relik is still new. However, they already caught the hearts of many. Relik Tapas Bar and Lounge has been booked for private functions, birthday parties, corporate functions and the like. And now that they are official launched, I’m sure more and more people will discover Relik. I, myself, will be going for lunch there tomorrow to try out their lunch sets. Apparently, Relik Tapas Bar and Lounge serves lunch sets too so I’ll try it out tomorrow. I’ll then write a separate post so you can have an idea too
For this writeup, I’ll be sharing the different menu items I tried out during my two visits to Relik. The first time I was there, I sat at the dining area and on my second visit, I dined inside the VIP area. Both experiences were great especially because the food was such a delight to feast upon.
During the media launch, Chef Benjo Tuason shared with us how he gave up his life in Melbourne, Australia just to be able to bring us Relik Tapas Bar and Lounge. One day, his friends called him up and shared their plans about opening Relik. Chef Tuason packed his bags, sold his properties in Australia and migrated back to the Philippines. I also heard that Chef Tuason is a hard worker. He goes to Relik early in the morning and leaves the bar at 4AM!!! Wow! Dedication in the truest sense!
The chef described their signature dishes as ‘modern tapas’. Relik serves Spanish food and also other comfort food which Chef Benjo Tuason said he cooked with a lot of love. Naks naman! I can see that the chef is a romantic!
- Roasted Pumpkin Soup (Php 150)
My seat mates were raving about the Roasted pumpkin soup with creme fraiche. I guess the creaminess and the flavor of the soup worked for them. I’m not much of a pumpkin lover but I finished the bowl served to me. It was a nice starter for a sumptuous meal.
- Tasting Board (Php 490)
Next up was Relik’s Tasting Board that consists of Boneless “Diego Martin”. Chorizo Pamplona “Casedemont”, Stuffed “Serpis” Spanish olives and Manchego 6 months “Artequeso”. It’s basically a selection of jamons, cured meats (imported from Spain!), olives, and Manchego cheeses (from Davao). Eat it with crostini and you got yourselves a divine appetizer. Yum!
- Baked Australian Brie (Php 530)
The Australian specialty, Baked Australian Brie, must be my favorite among all the Relik’s dishes I tried so far. You might not recognize what it is at first but upon tasting it, you would know that it’s Creamy Yarra Valley Brie wrapped in jamon serrano and lightly glazed with honey. The taste of the brie is truly divine! In fact, during my second visit, I was raving and introducing the dish to my seat mates. You must eat the brie with the salsa and the crostini for a good contrast.
- Gambas with a Kick (Php 290)
I super love gambas! However shrimps are cooked, I’ll definitely appreciate as shrimps is one of my two ultimate favorite food items! Relik made their gambas quite unique by cooking it with extra garlic, hot paprika and 2 kinds of chili. Another winner dish! I was totally sold with the dish!
- Quesadillas (Php 300)
If there’s one appetizer that you’ll see in every Relik customers’ table, it has got to be their quesadillas. You can choose to have either garlic shrimp, pulled pork and BBQ chicken as filling. The filling are put together with melted cheese and wrapped in triangular tortilla wraps. Sauces like guacamole and tomato salsa are served for dipping.
- Chorizig (Php 295)
We are all used to pork sisig. Some restaurants have made their own version of sisig by changing the ingredient to either chicken or fish. For Relik Tapas Bar and Lounge, they have chosen chorizo! This was unforgettable! I just love the crispiness of the chorizo and I appreciate that the chef chosen to cut it into bits.
- Mussels & Chorizo (Php 330)
New Zealand green mussels sautéed in garlic cream and Spanish chorizo. Truly enticing!
- Lengua Bourguignon (Php 510)
We might be enjoying Lengua in Relik Tapas Bar but we have to know the effort put into cooking this savory dish. The chef actually slow-cooked the cow’s tongue in red wine, demi-glace, mire poix and lardoons.
Every bite of the lengua was heavenly. It was tender, flavorful and so good! A delicious dish indeed!
- Relik’s Mixed Paella (Php 820)
Animetric’s husband who sat with us at the same table during my second visit was commending this dish. He kept saying that this was how Paella should be made. In fact, he couldn’t stop raving. I’m not a paella expert. For me, as long as the food is tasty, I’m already satisfied. Some people have fetish on some food and I knew then, after hearing the comments from my table mates, Relik was successful. I guess the chef knew his Paella recipe by heart. Relik’s mixed paella will pass as most foodies’ Spanish comfort dish.
You have to place your order a day in advance though. One order of mixed paella can serve 8-10 people.
- Benny’s Certified Angus Rib-eye (Php 1,150)
Mouth-watering is Relik’s rib-eye steak! It’s 300g honest to goodness Angus steak served with a burnt butter sauce. I had to ask for it to be cooked well-done as I’m afraid of anything red in the meat hahaha! I would suggest this dish be shared as the meat was too big for one person to finish. You don’t need any more sauce to go with it because it’s already tasty as it is. Even the fries are good! I love the extra rocksalt that is put in every potato wedge..
- Mother Ann’s Braised Ox-tail (Php 450)
“Slow braised Australian ox- tails served with pomme puree and buttered carrots”
Among the main dishes that I tried out, it’s the ox-tail that I couldn’t get over! I loved how the meat fell off when I tried to get a serving. The flavors were head-on! Guess what? It’s actually Chef Tuason’s mom’s recipe! Who would ever argue that mothers know best?
- Vanilla & Amaretto Panacotta (Php 160)
Perfect way to end any meal is to get a dessert. The one I tried out in Relik Tapas Bar is their Vanilla & Amaretto Panacotta. I love that the panacotta wasn’t too sweet and the texture was perfect! Even the berries that they used were real and not preserved! Each spoonful of the creamy panacotta was just divine!
This is definitely not the last thing you’ll hear from me about Relik Tapas and Bar as I’ll be having lunch there very soon. I’ve been curious about it since I visited the restaurant the first time. I tried their a la carte dishes on my visits so I’ll make sure that my next trip to Relik will be for their lunch offering. I’m excited!
Relik Tapas Bar and Lounge
Lunch: M-F, 11:30am to 2:30pm, Dinner & Cocktails: daily, 5:30pm onwards
2nd floor, Commercenter Building, 31st Ave cor. 4th St. Bonifacio Global City, 1200 Taguig, Philippines
+63-2-6248251 & +639175298333