I have long been meaning to write something about a place I have so much reverence for. So many times I’ve formulated words in my mind to describe the place but I haven’t reached so much as the last sentence of the first paragraph to really have a kickstart in the grandiose way of introducing the place. Its ironic that in these waning hours between the waking and the dreaming (I downed 2 bottles of red wine and 1 of the apple wine, with my brother-in-law and nephew—his initiation to drinking, decided by his dad tonight) that I am able to write something about Wah Sun, the ultimate Chinese restaurant ever. Hehehe.
Wah Sun stands in Florentino Torres St., in Sta. Cruz, Manila, in the outskirts of Ongpin, the Chinese settlement in the Metro that began alongside the flowering of the Spanish era in Philippine history. Wah Sun itself is not really that old, well at least not as old as its sister company, Los Ambos Mundos, which claims to be the oldest Spanish restaurant in the Philippines that my friend shattershards pointed out during one of our pig-out sessions in said place. The place collects lotsa old write ups from newspapers, and one did a feature on Ambos Mundos stating its origins. i really don’t have complaints bout the place—it serves the best paella in town, but because I am a certified Chinese resto guy, Ambos Mundos goes a notch down in my ranking of the best restaurants in the Metro to Wah Sun, the ultimate place to be for Chinese foodies like me.
One of my first and fondest memories of going to Wah Sun was with my dad, when the whole—and I mean extended family (aunts, uncles, and cousins)—still have the means, and the energy of going to excursion/ field trips to the big city. Being the provincianos that we are, it really is an event for the whole extended family to shop in SM malls and have lunch in unheard-of restos that my dad gets to decide on, being the only Manileño in the group. It is only later that I learned from him that the place was also passed on to him by my grandpa who was the first Wah Sun die hard fan in the family; well at least, to my knowledge. Now that you’re salivating profusely, and enough introduction has been said (!), consider these :
Pata tim so soft and tender that the meat slides of with ease from the bone the moment you slice a piece of it with the cutting knife. And of course there’s the sauce: delectable mushroom and cabbage brown sauce, poured generously onto the meat; White sauce to match the green peas-quail egg-shrimp mixture, the name of which I forgot (because its in Chinese), but in every bit scrumptious that you’ll forget even your own name. then there’s the lechon-asado plate, a mixture of the two basic dishes livened up with pickled green mango slices on the side. Partner up any dish by ordering their chorizo-laden special fried rice; or try having a go with their crabmeat fried rice—fast becoming a favorite on our recent visits to the place. Still have to order (makes a mental note) their special pancit canton, but if memory serves me right, it’s the ham and liver sauce again that spells the difference. Thick and yummy.
Got your mouths drooling now for a taste of Chinese cooking? I sure did. Slurp, slurp!
You can reach Wah Sun restaurant by alighting from the D. Jose Station of the LRT, or by taking any of the Quiapo plying jeepneys and alighting at the Isetann Department Store. Cover a little bit of C.M. Recto and turn right to the street facing the old Roben Cinema on your left. Enjoy!
photo credits : http://celdrantours.blogspot.com/2006/03/carlos-recommends_30.html