Friday, March 9, 2012

Dampa sa Libis Food Review

 People looking for ambience may not find it here. Dampa sa Libis is actually a strip of carinderia-looking establishments all boasting of the fresh harvest from the sea. Who needs ambience though, when you have the unique experience of going to the market and ask someone to cook whatever meal or viand your heart desires? Yes, in this humble part of Libis, Security Blanket recently discovered why this place is a MUST visit for everyone.

Sure, the concept of Dampa (Al Fresco dining with an actual market) originated somewhere in Paranaque, but since it’s not practical to travel that far, other places had started their own versions but I guess nothing compares to Dampa sa Libis. Let me explain and justify my reasons: first, this is the only Dampa I’ve been to that has ample parking space that’s truly safe, not to mention it’s FREE PARKING. That only means, you and your family or friends could stay for as long as you want without the hassle of worrying about your car. If al fresco dining isn’t your thing, don’t worry; they also have function rooms (air-conditioned) for special occasions and huge groups. You could also rent a videoke (video karaoke) machine for only P500 where one could sing his hearts out for as many songs as he likes.

The menu says it all.
 Then, Dampa sa Libis also offers FREE Wi-Fi service to their customers, not every Dampa or al fresco restaurant has it. And nowadays, who wouldn’t want to stay connected with both virtual and personal friends as you put your Facebook and Twitter status or share a photo of the food you’ve just eaten, right? Your friends would surely drool at the sight of awesome food treats from Dampa sa Libis when you upload the pictures. And of course, what’s truly amazing was their market--it was truly spic and span. None of those foul odor one would find in other wet markets. But you can truly see that the market is well looked after. Another fascinating attraction in the area was the Tiangge or Kiosks that sells different wares: from clothes, toys, accessories and other trinkets. There’s something you’ll surely find for you.
Fresh crabs anyone?

A different kind of shell


Escargot and lots of them!

Assorted Fresh fish

More fish

Huge fish
Fresh Scallops

For our Chinese friends, frogs are also available.
Red snapper fish...or lapu-lapu...

Marinated meats are available

Sweet treats such as this lovely cake are on sale.

Mommies Goodies Mini Ensaymada cupcakes is perfect pasalubong.

Fresh Tiger prawns

Now let’s move on to the food tasting…Dampa sa Libis is a family or barkada friendly al fresco dining restaurant that specializes in seafood and other Filipino and Chinese dishes. But they also welcome other cuisines depending on customer’s request. Dampa sa Libis seemed like a winner among the noisy crowds happily chowing down their meals. There’s the usual seafood fare—scallops, stuffed and buttered garlic crabs, fresh tiger shrimps, a wide range of fish selection, clams, lobster, oyster, even native frogs for those looking for exotic ones—but when the waiter plunked down the plate of garlic buttered shrimp, it looked appetizing on its own so I immediately wolfed it down.
Buttered Garlic Shrimps
 That magic sauce had found its way through the natural umami flavor of the shrimp, and it was basking in a lovely yellow buttery glow and it tasted really phenomenal that I had totally forgotten my no-rice diet that I had since Christmas of 2011! Anyway, I figured I could always start my diet again…(Wish me luck!)

Singaporean Chili Crabs
 Hefty portion sizes of delightfully crunchy Shanghai rolls, soft and succulent meat inside that tasted pretty heavenly even without the aid of banana ketchup. The Pancit Bihon also held its own, despite the other sumptuous dishes (which were all wiped out) because it had a distinct sweet after taste. There was nothing that we didn’t finish off, (and I admit, I mostly did the eating part for which I am guilty.)
For meat lovers, they have USDA high grade Angus rib eye steak, especially marinated barbecue sticks, spareribs among many others.
Sweet tooth rejoice in this ref filled with sweets!


Sinigang (Sour broth) of Fresh Tuna

Pancit Bihon

Shanghai Rolls

Stuffed Grilled Squid tops my fave list!

For those with sweet tooth, there’s also something for all of you at Dampa sa Libis. You’ll be glad to find Mommies Goodies, a selection of pastry, cakes, biscuits and chocolates in one store. I had tried their brownies, and as a pastry chef, I know it’s truly fantastic! It had that chocolaty moisture inside yet it seems a bit dry on the outside but with chewy goodness and a bit crunchy with nuts as toppings. The brownie was really affordable at P20 per bar. They also had cakes like Black Forest, Heart-shaped chocolate cake, Chocolate oatmeal cookies; cassava cakes (a bit sweet for me, but it’s really soft and tasty, I’m sure you guys would love it!) and a whole lot more. As I was saying, since I know a little bit about baking and other stuff related to it, I could say that Mommies Goodies did not scrimp on their ingredients and amazingly they were sold at affordable prices!
Mommies Goodies Cassava Cake
 We spent a good three hours tasting all we could possibly sample. I decided to forego dinner that night, instead shared my cassava cake with my entire family. If you haven’t been to a Dampa or haven’t eaten a Dampa meal, you owe it to yourself to give these a try!
Ah, Dampa sa Libis, it would be a pleasure to see you again…I vow to bring my entire family next time so that they too could experience that great food + convivial atmosphere you’ve just shown me.
My leftover plate

The author at the Picture Wall/Photo Opp at Dampa Sa Libis.

Special thanks to my fellow blogger Mr. Dennison Uy, Mr Jorge Santos of Dampa sa Libis, and to Ms. Jennifer Macarilay.  

Dampa sa Libis is located at 107 E. Rodriguez Jr. Avenue (across Jollibee Greenmeadows Branch in C-5, just way past Eastwood City), Ugong Norte, Libis, Quezon City. For reservation, please call 395-5050

Disclaimer: I am not compensated for this blog post. Opinions expressed are 100% my own. 



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