Celebration at Racks: Why is it a Family Thing up to the Present

Racks is one of the favorite restaurants of my family. Frequent visits during my childhood years were among those happy memories that I surely recall up to this day. Reliving the good times, we often dine here regardless if there is a special occasion to celebrate or we just wanted to indulge in the goodness of quality steaks and side dishes.

For my dad’s birthday, we tried to skip buffets — which is a common family preference for celebrations. My sister and I intentionally wanted to have dinner at a nearby restaurant to avoid the hassle of braving the rush hour on a weekday so we limited our options in BGC. Knowing that Racks is unquestionably a popular option, we decided to settle here without further hesitations.

Ambiance and Service

The branch at the Fort Strip, BGC is quite small that reservations are a must if you are dining as a big group. The interiors looked plain that there is not much to say in describing the feels of the restaurant. It’s not well-dressed nor too lousy, that a low-key, casual dining aptly fits the vibe of the restaurant.

Despite the lack of colors and flashy motif, what impressed me is the quality of the service in Racks BGC. Waiters are attentive and welcoming, that you would not hesitate making follow-up orders and random requests. Despite the occasional delay, (which is perfectly understandable) the servers maintained their charming composure and efficiency in their service.

The Food

Good thing about Racks is that it has family platters. No need for that usual guesswork on what to order, as the family platter has the best sellers of Racks.

We had the Surf and Turf Family Platter (Php 2875) which consists of Full Rack Pork Ribs, Fish & Chips, Pasta Platter, 3 large side dishes of your choice and 2 pitchers of Coke.

Garlic Bread
Fish and Chips
Pork Ribs
Mashed Potato Macaroni Cheese
Broccoli and Cheese

The Carbonara was okay, it was gone in just a few minutes. My mom liked the garlic bread, it was soft and the buttery taste was good. I personally loved the Fish and Chips — it was coated well in a tasty and crispy breading and the tartar sauce complemented it well. My impressions of the steak quite failed this time, as some parts of the ribs were not too fork-tender like before. Good thing the sides such as Mashed Potato, Broccoli and Cheese and Macaroni and Cheese were appetizing to even bother about the steak’s flaw. Barbecue sauces will be your best buddies when devouring the steak.

Barbecue sauces

And this is one of my favorite onion rings —Racks’ Onion Brick for Php 295! We asked the servers to split it into two. It comes with two sauces, the spicy remoulade and barbecue. It’s the best I’ve tried, to be honest. I would never get tired of this. It was thinly sliced, spiced, lightly-breaded and deep fried to a crisp.

Onion Brick, Php 295

We also ordered 2 cups of Clam Chowder Soup at Php 185 each. It was thick and creamy, but too expensive for the price. It had big chunks of seafood and the taste was fine. It comes with garlic bread too.

Clam Chowder, Php 185

We also had an extra order of Half Southern Fried Chicken, Php 485 that comes with gravy, buttermilk biscuits, and honey. This Southern-style chicken was crispy and well-cooked. I had no qualms about the gravy as it perfectly matches the chicken.

Southern Fried Chicken, Php 475 Half/ Php 775 whole

The family platter, together with the extra orders and sides was amazingly befitting for around 10 people. We even had left-overs to take home. If you are clueless on what to order for a large group, then a family platter is a good suggestion. It has everything in it — delicious fish and chips, appetizers and steak to match the taste of everyone.

The Legacy Continues

With only a minor miss on the presentation of the steak, Racks still remains as a well-appreciated restaurant in the family. It still has the excellent food quality which is one of the reasons we are patronizing it until today.

I’d still carry on this tradition until I have my own family. I hope Racks will still exist in the years to come.

Family Gallery

Thankfully, the simple birthday of my Dad was a success. Cheers to more years! Side notes: Thanks to the staff for greeting my Dad with a complimentary cheesecake and birthday song from the crew! Means a lot to us. 🙂

The Fort Strip, 26th Street, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City
Phone Numbers: +6325196755/ +6325196751
Opening Hours: 7 am to 11 pm
Facebook: Racks
Instagram: racksphl

Reasons Why I love Cooking (And How Can you Learn it Too)

Cooking is my passion. I started to learn some basic recipes when I was around 10 years old, mostly by helping my parents in the kitchen. I was given little tasks such as peeling the veggies, slicing the ingredients and sometimes washing the dishes. I also enjoyed watching cooking shows on local TV, such as the Delmonte Kitchenomics cooking segment by Sandy Daza. Since my dad works as a cook abroad, his collection of cookbooks and recipe clippings became my fascination too. I found bliss looking at the gorgeous food photos, reading the unfamiliar words from different cuisines, and reading the procedures.

Self-service Chicken Mami

As I grew up, I gradually learned cooking different dishes from the simple to complex ones. I don’t consider myself an expert, but I know I truly enjoy it a lot. If there is one household skill I am proudly capable of, I know it is cooking! I get weary of doing the laundry or mopping the floor, but not cooking.

While others think of it as a dreadful chore that only fits those with culinary skills, I disagree. It is easy to learn and to love! I’ll be sharing with you the reasons why I love cooking and how you, eventually, can learn it too.

1. It can be a medium to express yourself. It is an art.

It’s an art because it can be done in several ways. The possibilities are endless. You can use your imagination and creativity, play with the ingredients and innovate. It’s also like creating a masterpiece. You can own it and no one can imitate the exact copy of it.

I like preparing my ingredients ahead. This one is for the Beef Caldereta.

2. It is a love language.

Cooking is one of my primary love languages. I show my love and affection to my loved ones by cooking their favorite dish or learning a recipe for them. It’s pure labor of love so to speak! All the tired arms and legs from prolonged standing are worth it once you see your loved ones satisfied with your cooking.

Recipe of Lemon Butter Garlic Shrimp Pasta and Chicken Tenders from Pinterest

3. It is a continuous learning process.

From time to time, you’d be surprised by the new things you’d learn. You improve yourself more by making mistakes the first time and correcting yourself the next time. It’s a never-ending process, but it’s fun and fulfilling!

Salted Egg Buttered Shrimps

4. It is an effective outlet.

After a tiring, stressful day at work, I find myself rummaging through food items in the grocery lane and thinking of a dish to cook. Then I forget about my problems. I enjoy the food later. It’s a good release of negative vibes!

My potato croquettes

5. It saves the expenses.

If you know how to cook a special dish, that can save you from those fancy trips at expensive restaurants. You can minimize eating out at fast food chains and rather eat the healthy food you prepared.

Pork Katsudon

6. It can give you extra income.

Need I say more? Big restaurants and catering services started from simple housewives in the kitchen who honed their craft and made it a business.

Learning How to Cook

Believe me, learning how to cook is easy. As long as you have the heart and willingness to learn, you can do it. Here are my basic tips:

1. Learn the basics. Start from the small things.

Study the basic skills first: chopping, sauteing, frying, boiling, etc. Then practice and practice. Everyone starts from scratch so don’t be too intimidated.

Achieving the Kaldereta recipe for the first time was like acing an exam!

2. Ask questions.

Seek help from experienced people you know such as your mom, close friend, grandma, neighbor, colleague or sister. Join forums and pitch in your comments in different social media.

3. Watch video tutorials and read recipes online. Get your own cookbook.

With the prevalence of technology today, there are so many ways to learn anything compared before. You can search recipe tutorials on Youtube, Instagram, Facebook, blog sites, Pinterest — practically any social media or internet platform! Before, my dad has to purchase his own cook books and cut recipe clippings from magazines. Now, it’s totally different and much easier! So, no excuses!

Grilled squid

If you have the passion and finances, why not pursue it in education and enroll yourself in any culinary course?

4. Change your perspective about it.

Everything starts from your willingness to learn. Be like a sponge — open your mind to absorb anything. Don’t think of it as a dreadful chore, or else you will easily get tired of it.

Christmas Paella: A family favorite during holidays

5. Practice. Practice. Practice.

Apply the theories you’ve learned by doing it. There’s no other way.

So there you have it. I hope it changes your mind, if you haven’t started to like cooking or afraid to try it. Soon, it can be rewarding for you and your loved ones.

Diamond in the Rough Blog Has Been Nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award!

Two years ago, I started a blog to document my food and travel adventures. It’s not only a platform to restore the memories in my adventures and look back at it later, it is an outlet for expressing myself through my passions. When I wanted to purge myself from the demands of the city life, I eat, go to a new place then write about it. I loved weaving stories about culture, food, and people through this blog, Diamond in the Rough.

Through blogging, I learned a lot not only about myself, but also other people. I’m motivated to honing further this craft especially knowing that I am able to inspire and help others by sharing them my experiences. I was surprised when a fellow blogger, Rae of Raescape messaged me about getting nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award. I haven’t met her personally yet but I always bump into her in our blogging group. Thanks Rae and I hope to meet you soon!

What is Sunshine Blogger Award?

The Sunshine Blogger Award is a blogger-recognized award! It’s given to bloggers by their fellow bloggers. Bloggers that are nominated for the Sunshine Blogging Award are nominated for their ability to inspire positivitycreativity, and joy in the blogging community! It’s flattering to know that other bloggers recognize your dedication for the craft, so thank you Rae!

What to do if I’m nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award?

If you are nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award, you just need to follow these four rules.
1. Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide them a link back to their blog on yours.
2. Answer the 11 questions the blogger asked you! Lastly, nominate 11 new bloggers and come up with a list of 11 questions for them to answer on their own blog!
3. Display the rules and the Sunshine Blogger Award Logo on your website.

Here are Rae’s questions for me:

1.   What do you prefer as a perfect getaway, the beach, the mountains or a foreign city? Wow. I love the three. The experiences vary in each getaway that it’s hard to compare. However, I’d go for the beach. Every time I’m in the beach basking in the sea, sunset, and sand, it’s like I’m more at peace with myself. I’m not a good swimmer, but I appreciate the breathtaking scenery of the ocean very much.


 2.What is the best food you tried while you were traveling? Authentic Thai food is simply the best. It’s an amazing concoction of fresh seafood and vegetables, spices and flavors, and beautiful presentation.


3. What is the most adventurous thing you did? Cliff diving in Guimaras and swimming my way inside the secret lagoon in El Nido, Palawan.


4. Where is your favorite escapade and why is it the best one yet? Share a picture as well. Batanes. It’s like a detached sanctuary where everything is beautiful and scenic. The people are also very kind, sincere, and honest. I was even teary-eyed when the plane was about to take-off from Basco, Batanes.

DSCF622843462884_675201252836570_5979288375243309056_n5. Who is your travel buddy? If you travel solo, tell me about a person you met which made an impact to you. My friends and Chris. I haven’t tried solo traveling — maybe one day! 

6. Where is your next destination? The land of milk tea.

7. What are your travel must-haves? Hiking sandals (versatile for strolling, swimming and hiking), mirrorless camera, waterproof bag, sunblock, and snorkeling gear, credit cards in case of emergency. 


8. What is your most memorable experience as a blogger? I can’t name a single one but it’s every time I meet new friends: be it locals, fellow bloggers, entrepreneurs. The perks and incentives are only secondary, but it’s the valuable lessons you gain after attending an event that make it so special.


9. What inspired you to start a blog? After a heartbreak, I was looking for an outlet to release my creativity, pent-up emotions, and rediscover my strengths. I was eager to rebuild myself again after losing it. I knew I love writing so I decided to combine it with my passion for food and travel.


10. What do you love about blogging? It’s when people come to you and say they’ve read your blog and liked it, it means you have an impact. Positive Influence is something you cannot trade money for. I also love meeting new people and making new friends in events and learning a thing or two from them. Free food and other incentives of course!


11. What are three random facts about you? I love potatoes. I look to cook. I love dogs.

My Questions for the Sunshine Award Nominees:

  1. What is your greatest fear that you were able to conquer?
  2. If you were a food, what it is and why?
  3. What do you enjoy most in traveling?
  4. If you are not in a good shape, what do you usually do and where do you go?
  5. Name three things you plan to do or have in the future.
  6. What do you consider most challenging in blogging?
  7. Is blogging more of hobby or a job for you? Why.
  8. Who do you consider most influential to you in life?
  9. Do you like to call yourself an influencer? Why yes or why not?
  10. As a blogger, what is your biggest responsibility?
  11. What is the most beautiful place you’ve been to?

My Nominees for the Sunshine Award

Hey you, if you are in this list, it means I read your blog and find your work inspiring. It means you have the talent and creativity that piqued my interest.

  1. Katherine Cortes of Tara Lets Anywhere
  2. Yedy Calaguas of Yedylicious
  3. Karla Obispo of Travel with Karla
  4. Erica Paoyuan of The Girl with the Muji Hat
  5. April Pagaling of Relax Lang Mom
  6. Karla Mallanao of Hungry Traveler Ph
  7. Bae Milanes of Manila Bae
  8. Ivan Jose of Ivan + Khris’ Travels
  9. Nicole San Miguel of Living Beyond Style
  10. Gel Jose of Jelly Beans in the City
  11. Katrina Tiong and Dave Remulla of Happy and Busy Travels

Looking forward to your answers! Thanks Raescape for choosing me for the Sunshine Blogger Award!

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