Somewhere along the road up to Tagaytay, series of attractive signboards of Rekados catch my attention each time I pass by the same road of Sta. Rosa and Silang, Cavite up to Tagaytay proper. The curious me kept on pushing myself to give it a try. For months, it was only an idea until it finally happened one afternoon in May.
How often do you go up to Tagaytay? Did you just drive your way during one of the holidays that passed? I’m sure if you passed Sta. Rosa, you noticed the sign Rekados like I did but wasn’t risky to give it a try. The location was in between the busy compound of Nuvali, Sta. Rosa and the favorite nearby destination, Tagaytay. After stopping by the office of O, we left early to take our early dinner all the way to the new Filipino-Spanish-Italian place along Silang Road, Rekados Cafe & Restaurant.
The car stopped and I rushed my way to this spot for a photo. Elegance of the facade was eye-catching, pleasing to enjoy the view while on a date with loved ones.

The Food:

Baked Eggplant (Php 185)
Rate: 4/5
Melted cheese to start our early dinner at Rekados. Whether you are vegetarian or non-vegetarian, Baked Eggplant is a tasty starter you won’t say ‘no’ to. Cheese was almost equivalent to the amount of eggplant, the generosity of cheese on top melting down the small claypot dish.
Paella Negra (Php 495)
Rate: 4/5

We couldn’t refuse Paella Negra to be included, it’s just too difficult to resist this Spanish favorite. A big bulk of melted butter in the middle that added extra flavor to the entire circular paella pan. Mostly red bell peppers and squid rings to decorate and give boost to the squid ink used for completing the sense of Paella Negra. Rekados have their own version, infusing both Filipino and Spanish flavors. Don’t expect authentic Spanish flavors from them.

Lengua (Solo/Php 285; Sharing/Php 395)
Rate: 5/5

I love the simplicity of their Lengua. You get that creamy texture of sauce with soft beef tongue ready to easily slice. It complements either a cup of plain white rice or black rice from our pan of Paella Negra. I had a hard time fixing the dish for photo purposes but despite this uninteresting photo, I have to say this is one of my recommendations from Rekados.

Bulalo Steak (Php 385)
Rate: 4/5
Be careful with the bone marrow of this Bulalo Steak. Careless mixing of this sizzling can lead your bone barrow to fall off with the gravy sauce. For those who grab the bone marrow before everyone else, it’s a disappointment grabbing the bone without the marrow. Topped with toasted garlic bits, the tender beef of this Bulalo Steak drives you to ask for more rice. I had more rice than my usual plate of rice at Rekados. (Mapapa-rice ka talaga!)
Pork Binagoongan (Php 285)
Rate: 4/5
Real bagoong, not just flavor that surrounds the pork belly swimming in the pool of bagoong. This means, you’d need another scoop of plain white rice to relish your rice with bagoong sauce. From my second spoon, that’s when I noticed a small pinch of spiciness caused by few pieces of chilli peppers.
Callos (Sharing/Php 415; Solo/Php 285)
Rate: 5/5
There’s no stopping for O and I when the taste of Callos landed our palates. It’s comparable to homemade callos cooked the traditional way by our abuelas (grandmas). The expected ingredients are present, beef tripes, chorizo, chickpeas and bell peppers. Extraordinary is not a term for this Callos as it shares the familiar flavor of what kids love about Callos.
Grilled Salmon (Php 285)
Rate: 3/5
A glass cup of plain rice, included in one order of Grilled Salmon. A mediocre plate dish that didn’t mesmerize me despite the presence of salmon (my love).
Prawns Ala Parillada (Php 345)
Rate: 4/5
Butter and lemon, a simple favorite we can simply cook even at home. For the conservative who prefers a gentle flavored dish without too much relish, Prawns Ala Parillada suits you. A fairly priced plate with 3 pieces of prawns and a cup of rice.
Seafood Aligue in Chicharon Pasta (Php 185)
Aligue isn’t new to hear for pasta dishes but the innovation here comes from the use of chicharon as another main ingredient to complete the whole plate of Seafood Aligue in Chicharon Pasta. The crunch of the deadly aligue-sauced pasta had me enjoying more twirls of this pasta. Interesting dish at a reasonable price.
Classic Ampaw Frappuccino (Php 95)
Rate: 5/5
Ampaw as the Custodio’s main business, Rekados create a milky frappuccino specially for their customers to get a glimpse of their very own product. Ampaw, or what you call puffed grains and rice puffs, is similar to ‘rice krispies’. Grains of rice sticked together to form a bar-shaped snack. The drink itself stays on the sweet side, which is better to drink after a savory dish rather.
Yema Frappuccino (Php 115)
Rate: 5/5
If you can tolerate a sweeter frappuccino, get the Yema Frappuccino instead. A summer cooler that fills you with that milky yema flavor we all love.

The Ambiance:

After a fun conversation with Ms. Mary Ann Custodio and her daughter Loven, I had to convince them to take a photo with me at this beautiful spot. (Ako lang yata hindi camera shy. Hehe) By the way, Loren, a culinary student at Enderun, was in-charge of designing the chic hipster interiors of the restaurant.
According to Mrs. Custodio, their property has been rented by couples for their intimate garden weddings and other occasions that prefer this elegant garden set-up.
The whole property wasn’t completed when I visited last May 2014. Based on our conversation, the family has wonderful plans to include Rekados as one of the attractions of tourists and Filipinos who frequent Tagaytay. Several activities in line to fill up the lot but right now, the place is under construction.
Wide parking space for guests.
You can’t leave without heading to the ‘pasalubong’ store Balai. The generous Ms. Custodio asked me to bring home a box of Buko Pie and their very own special Sylvanas for my family. Every Filipino feels the love with pasalubongs, am I right? 🙂 This is how I show my love for my family, surprising them with any ‘pasalubong’ from places I wish they were there with me as well.
Also part of Rekados compound is their milk store, also known as Gatas (milk) Station.

The Aftermath:

O and I didn’t let the evening pass without bringing surprise ‘pasalubong’ to his beloved factory workers. As you saw from our food photos earlier, there were about 9 dishes served, which isn’t normal for 2 persons to finish. Since our stomachs weren’t able to handle them all, we felt the urge to bring food to his factory workers right on time for their dinner. O and I saw from their faces of surprise. They never thought of their boss O going back to the factory just to share them food. Besides, these are not just ordinary food, but great food from Rekados.
One of the reasons why O and I became attracted to each other is the heart we have for God. In partnership, it’s not all about loving each other unconditionally but asking God to be part of the relationship and make it a love triangle with Him. As bible believing Christians, our heart’s desire is to make our story together an inspiration and draw people closer to Christ. Honestly, we aren’t sure how to do it properly. All we know is that there is a God who guides our path in this growing relationship with Him.
So why am I sharing a small part of my love story with O? Since it’s about O & I’s heart, we want to impart Christ’s love to these people. As a tandem, my part is to be his supportive partner in everything he does, aligned to our heart’s desire. Bringing food from Tagaytay to O’s factory is not our obligation nor O’s responsibility as the big boss. In a way, O wants to make these people feel that he cares for them no matter who they are. Through this simple gesture, it’s O & I’s little way to show that we appreciate their loyalty and service as workers. O, as the boss, also wants to show an illustration of grace without lecturing these people. His actions speak more than what he can say in this aspect.
Grace is kindness from God we don’t deserve. It is a gift from God we have to accept no matter how huge or how little our sins are.
For O and I, sharing is caring.
1 Peter 4:10 says, “Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.”
God has been so real and good to both of us.
More than a productive day, our hearts were screaming out loud because of the joy it felt after being able to make people smile.
Are your stomachs grumbling the middle of Sta. Rosa and Tagaytay? Stop by the new Rekados Cafe and Restaurant. Buffets are also available on Saturdays and Sundays.
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Pray, Eat and Love.
The Food Scout

Location: Sta. Rosa-Tagaytay Road, 4118 Silang, Cavite, Philippines

Operating Hours: 8:00am-10:00pm
Contact: (+63) 917-545-5421
E-mail: [email protected]
Instagram: @rekadosph
Budget: PHP300++

Food 9/10
Ambiance 9/10
Service 8/10
Cost 9/10
Overall 8.75/10