Imagine my surprise when I got an invitation from Ganns to attend a special lunch buffet at Mario’s in Quezon City last December 2. Aside from us, bloggers and people from traditional media were also invited as Mario’s unveiled its Holiday Buffet Specials for the Christmas season.
Mario’s Quezon City
Wait. A food event? I’m invited? I’m not known to be a foodie, my blog is not a food blog, and I can’t tell chorizo from longganiza if my life depended on it. So what the heck was I invited for? 😛
Anyway it was free (but of course!) so off we went. And I’m glad we did because the event not only showcased the food tradition that is Mario’s, I also got to meet some wonderful people, bloggers and all.
First off, we were greeted by our ever gracious and hyper host, Mr. Ganns Deen. I don’t know if he already ate but he had the energy of a 3 year-old who just finished a mug of super sweet cocoa drink. The guy’s on hyper sugar high mode (sorry Ganns)! In a single sweep (of about 15 seconds) he managed to shake our hands, introduce other guests, have our picture taken by the Christmas tree and have a short introduction of some boxed goodies by the tree. Whew! Flash would have been jealous. 😛
Ganns, Toni, Bridget and Moi. Nice sweaters by the way. Teehee. (Photo courtesy of Toni)
We also got to meet Ganns’ lovely wife Cathy, Ms. Claire Agbayani (media consultant for Mario’s) and the miss prim-and-proper Toni (and cutie husband). Other bloggers present were Noemi (and family), Anton (and family), Dine (and husband), Ajay (and kids). Family event? 😀
Judging from the other families who came to Mario’s that day for their Sunday lunch, it can be said that indeed, this restaurant is best described as a place for families, an inviting place where people can come over and have a hearty meal, share good times and just enjoy each other’s company.
The over-all feel of the place is cozy, though not so quiet (my ears had a grand time with some toddlers shouting their lungs out). But hey what do you expect when hordes of families come-in to have a taste of their wonderful cooking?
Dining Area. Sorry my camerafone sucks bigtime.
So anyway, going back, what are we here for again? Oh the food!
So what’s does Mario’s have to offer?
Highlight of the special lunch buffet is the Cochinillo, or roasted suckling pig stuffed with special paella. Mmmm… tender, moist and succulent. However, I was a bit sad for the pig coz he’s kinda lonely in his display area.
Yummy (yet forlorn) Cochinillo
I also got to taste the melt-in-your-mouth goodness of turkey croquettes, and the delectable and creamy Oyster Rockefeller. I’m not a big fan of oysters but in this case, oysters galore!
Oyster Rockefeller and Turkey Croquettes. Yum.
I also went crazy upon seeing the beautiful sight of a chocolate fountain. Kung hindi lang nakakahiya, I would have stayed beside the fountain all day.
I’m really more of a dessert person so I truly enjoyed the choices, particularly the Amaretto and Deadly Walnut bar, and my new dessert favorite Canonigo. I drizzled some melted chocolate over it and there I was… dazed in dessert heaven.
My canonigo and pretzels with chocolate. Mouth-watering 😛
More photos of food! Sorry for the crappy shots. Believe me the food looks much much better in real life:
Paella, hot and ready for the taking.
Bottom L-R :Chicken with hoisin sauce, bean sprouts, Top L-R: a dish who’s name i forgot (sorry Mario’s!) fish fillet
Bridget busy taking pics of the buffet table.
Gann’s happily chatting about Marios and his partner Claire. Sorry forgot the name of the other girl (boinks)
Over-all it was a truly satisfying food experience. I am so glad I have met new people whom I would not have had the chance to meet if I did not have this blog in the first place.
So for those of you foodies out there, Mario’s is located at Tomas Morato cor. Scout Gandia Street, Quezon City. For reservations you may call 415-3887 or 372-0360, or e-mail email@example.com. They also have a branch (actually this one is the original branch) in Baguio. Mario’s Baguio is located along Session Road. They also accept inquiries and reservations through (074) 442-4241 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.