Last week I was craving for some really strong Thai flavors after a recent not-so-satisfying Thai meal at MyThai. Since there are only a handful of Thai restos in Manila that I'm aware of, I headed to the one that always pops up in my head. Which also happens to be one of the hottest spots to be in and be seen, which I'm all for even if it means traveling to Greece just to eat by ZE sunset.
People Palace at Greenbelt 3
Home of the Floor to Ceiling windows perfect for people watching.
I'm a proponent of synthesizing tasteful ambiance with tasty cuisine, and People's Palace surpasses your expectations upon entering the restaurant. Well-designed and strategically lit, it reminds me of chic eateries in New York that let feed your senses before your palate. It was also fun to watch the other diners as they practiced the art of socializing while dining.
Case in point: long and sexy bar upon entering. The servers are impressively attentive and very social, reminding me of many occasions wherein I've tipped too generously because the service was surprisingly pleasant. It also dawned on me that anytime someone offers to seat me by the bar, I never say no.
Which leads me to ordering a cocktail or two while waiting for a table. I was excited to try their cocktails since I noticed the Bartender whipping up drinks like a pro, like he knew his liquor well. I ordered the White Sangria, which was cute with a heart shaped apple, had a citrus-y taste, and prepped my appetite for some good Thai flavors.
Their Chicken Wrapped in Pandan Leaves was a real treat. Six Origami folded Pandan leaves wrapped the chicken. It was so moist and brimming with flavor, I surprised myself by getting more than one piece, since this dish is Mr. S' staple (he's very loyalist when it comes to food), and because I was never a fan of Pandan Chicken. The only con was that I wished the portions of chicken were bigger, but 6 pieces was enough for the hungry man.
I had the Phad Thai and was in love with the presentation, the condiments surrounding the flat noodles, and the overall consistency of the dish. The noodles were moist and did not stick together, had a generous portion of chicken and shrimps, and was encircled by ground peanuts, chili flakes, lime, scallions, bean sprouts, and scrambled eggs, I love compartmentalized components because it allows you to customize the flavor profile to your personal taste.
Another condiment-laced dish was the Khapi Fried Rice with Sweet Pork and Garnishes. Basically, Bagoong (shrimp paste) fried rice, this generous portion was good for 2 and had the nice salty flavor that didn't overpower the other dishes. The sweet pork was like Tocino. Around it was some scrambled egg, green papaya, chili peppers, onions and some more pork. This dish is a meal in itself and one of the yummiest Bagoong Rice I've had in Manila.
Though my bro argues that Tabu has ZE BEST Bagoong Fried Rice. and overall Thai food His palate is as discriminating as mine so I believe him, but if I was to judge by the overall package of ambience, interiors, impeccable service and true Thai taste, hands down People's Palace wins. And sorry, Brazilian Models on a Tuesday don't get any brownie points for me :)
Make reservations in advance, especially on a weeknight.
Garden Side, Greenbelt 3
Ayala Center, Makati City Philippines
Reservations: +632 729 2888