As a steak lover, I am not fond of eating Chinese cuisine. Perhaps it is because I seldom get satisfied and full. (No offense meant) However, when I do crave Chinese, it has always got to be in Gloria Maris, Hap Chan, Healthy Shabu-Shabu, Lugang, Shangri-La, my fave Tong Yang. But, there is this one restaurant that my family and I used to go to since I was in grade-school. It is actually not your typical Chinese restaurant. It is the cheapest yet mouthwatering! I got my money on this. This affordable Chinese restaurant is called the Wok Inn.
Since I was a kid, my family and I persistently go to Ayala. There has never been a month or most probably a week that we haven’t gone there. Up until now, we spend our weekends or sometimes most of our days in a week in Makati. Well, that’s another story. As a family who basically grew up and spent most of the time in that city, we have probably eaten at the most exquisite places in Makati. From Australian cuisines, to Korean, Italian and so much more. Together with my Dad and brother, we always opt to eat in restaurants that offers meat/steak. We hardly choose to eat at Chinese because whenever we spend our days with our Grandpa, we have no choice but to eat Chinese food. Until one day, passing by the famous Dusit Thani hotel, my Dad brought us to this place. It was in front of Glorietta, the Park Square 1, Wok Inn wasn’t that quite attractive for its location is small. But when you have entered the area, you’ll see how many batch of people are in line, waiting for their table. You see, it really is a go-to-place! We used to eat there once in a while until one day, Park Square was about to be reconstructed. Years have passed and we thought after Park Square’s reconstruction, the same restaurants would be in place again (like the cheapest yet cheesiest pizza, Magoos *raises my right arm and bows*) However, Ayala Center’s Park Square has now literally become a parking lot *sighs* And knowing that Wok Inn hasn’t upgraded its grandeur, we were upset to know that there is no other Wok Inn branch in Makati.
Years have passed without ingesting Wok Inn’s specialties, we found the last and sadly the only branch left in the country. While completing the yearly Visita Iglesia with my family, we found its branch. It is near the Malate Church (I know, it sucks right?) near the original Aristrocrat. Again, it’s not also that visible and attracting but at least it’s now spacious than the usual. The Malate Church is near the Manila Bay at the Roxas Boulevard. Just a few minutes away from the Hotel H20!
Remedios, Malate has once been known for being the food hub of Manila. Today, there are still a handful of restaurants around Malate that serve scrumptious food.
We have been coming back for this more than a year now and I am definitely not going to replace this over any other Chinese restaurant.
So, what’s so special about this Wok Inn?
(just so you know, I am convincing myself not to publish this post but I have to)
The place doesn’t offer a menu that’s why upon entering you’ll see their glass kitchen and you’ll have to point out what you’ll be ordering. However, if you’re one of the regulars, just sit back and the waiter will serve you.
Hmmm. I don’t know where to start, but every meal they offer is the best one you’ll ever taste! Mark. My. Words. So here’s two of the few we always order.
EVERYTHING MUST GO WITH RICE, trust me
Sliced whole squids filled in with spring onion leaves
Tastes sweet, added with a little bit of spice, and crunchy tentacles
Wok Inn’s signature dish- Sipa
It is called sipa, well obviously because it has the similar shape of the popular Filipino game/toy sipa.
It is somehow similar to a siomai but it tastes entirely different. Fried dimsum or sipa-a meat filling of minced turnips and minced carrots in a lumpia wrapper- with the right amount of sweetness.
I am not really a fan of condiments but sipa goes well with Wok Inn’s unidentifiable sauce (which I probably think is composed of soy sauce, vinegar and garlic)
An order consists of 6 sipas which is said to be already good for two pax but I, myself who is not also fond of sharing food, believes it’s only good for one.
One. For. Me. Because. I. Am. One. Selfish. Lady.
I recommend ordering an extra rice per person because it really does go well with rice
Ain’t it cheap?
Stuffed Squid: P200
Sipa: P100 (6 pieces)
Well, these are two of the few specialties Wok Inn has to offer.
To cut it short: ★/5
Location: ★★ A bit too hidden, better have your own car or ride a cab
Area: ★★★ Air conditioned, only enough guests can be catered
Food: ★★★★★ WELL?
Price: ★★★★★ It is the cheapest, I swear.
Service: ★★★★ No service charge, responsive servers too
Fried Spicy Pork Spare ribs
Yang Chow Fried Rice