Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Australian Grass-Fed Steak Served Here... (Part 2)


True treasures can be found in hard to find places. The True Grill, is definitely is Australia’s best-kept secret in Makati. Situated in the middle of Jupiter Streets, this Australian beef hub is the depot of most of the steak houses around the metro. Started as an Australian Beef meat shop (Melbourne Prime), The True Grill has grown to be one of the most sought after steak houses in the city which serves authentic Angus, Wagyu, Tazmanian and Mulwara beef direct from Melbourne, Australia. Owned and managed by the husband and wife Mr. and Mrs. Rhett Uruttia, The True Grill Café is one of the few restaurants that serve authentic Australian Grass-fed Beef which has the most nutritional values you can find in a beef.

As we waited for the first dishes to arrive, I took the privilege of having a chat to sir Rhett regarding the details of Grass-fed beef. I was amazed as how the cattle are being raised that requires wide open spaces of pure grass. In order to raise a full grown cattle, it needs to have a grazing area of at least one hectare of grass land. In effect, the cattle will develop well defined muscular structures which are far more flavorful and nutritious compared to enclose and grain fed cows, in which when butchered, the meat or muscles are marbled with fats.

Chef Chris Bautista, the resident chef of the Café introduced us to Pinnacle Rib Eye Steak. As expected, the meat was cooked in a medium rare level in order to taste the true flavor of the beef. The dish is served with side salad on vinaigrette and French fries. They have three choices of sauce; the usual steak sauce, honey mustard sauce and catchup. I didn’t know that there are still people who prefer catchup for their steak, and I guess it’s for the fries. All of their sauces are home-made including the honey mustard sauce which is my favorite.

In this photo, the chef made a cross section cut of the Ribeye so show the purest muscle of the meat without any blemish of fat marbled into it.

The next is the Melbourne Burger. It is serve with crispy potato chips and catchup ( for the chips). These are double burger patties with 75gms each patty making it 150gms or 1/3 pounder burger, much like the size of burger of Jollibee Champ. The dressing is composed of fresh lettuce, onions and special burger sauce which makes the burger so delicious.

Later, they served us the Philly Cheese Steak and Chili Con Carne. The cheeses steak is actually are fine strips of pure Black Angus Beef in a white bun with fresh lettuce, tomatoes, special cheese and True Grill’s signature sauce. The Chili Con Carne is cooked in Australian beans and tomato sauce. Even when cooked, you can still taste the true flavor of the beef.

Another unique attraction of the place is the art works which are beautifully mounted all over the resto. These artworks are just of the few of the collection of Mrs. Uruttia, which she kept over the years of travel. Some were bought from abroad but most are masterpieces of our local talents.


Our next stop is the Blackbird and it was my first time to eat here. Blackbird is located at the old Nielson Tower along Makati Avenue. As a short trivia, Nielson Tower is noted to be the oldest standing structure in Makati where it was used to be the air traffic control tower of the first air terminal in the Philippines. After the Second World War, the Ayala Corporation poured some resources to renovate the building and became a house of historical memorabilia and library. But last year the library was moved to the Ayala Museum and the building was turned into a restaurant which is now called Blackbird.

We arrived at Blackbird at around past lunch time and we were welcomed by Mr. Anthony Weymouth, Austrade’s Senior Trade Commissioner,  who gave us a quick tour of the place. After which, he led us to the main dining hall where we were served with some of Blackbird’s best-selling beef cuisine.

Our first dish was the Australian grass-fed Mulwara Beef Tenderloin Tataki with Roasted Rice, Shallot and lime Dressing. The Mulwara beef was slightly cooked (almost raw) and sliced very thin. One can know the quality of the beef if it can be eaten raw. This raw dish is something that every beef or steak lover should try. It is when you can actually get the real experience of an authentic Australian grass-fed beef. The flavor is so rich and it was complimented with the lime sauce that made the beef taste so great.

The second one is the Australian Grass-fed Mulwara Flatiron Steak with Kimchi, Green Onion and Ginger, Lettuce with Hot sauce. The Mulwara beef is cooked under a very hot iron plate, so you’ll taste the Smokey flavor and the rich flavor of the steak. The kimchi goes well with the meat as well as the green onion paste. Of course everything compliments well with steamy rice.

I took a shot of this girl “flat ironing” the white table sheets and wondered how does the chef prepare the Mulwara Flatiron steak. Hmmm….

THE BLACKBOARD by Chef Mitchel

After four restaurants in Makati, the group went to Ortigas area for our last food trail venue which is the Blackboard by Chef Michel. This restaurant is quite popular for its unique menu line up. Inside, there is a large blackboard mounted in the wall that features the menu for a particular season. After a season is done, the Chef will erase everything written and will feature another set of dishes. So, if you visited the place once and liked a particular dish, that one might not be around the next time, you visit them again. This concept is something that is quite unique for some, but quite frustrating for others who finds a favorite dish which is no longer in the menu.

Our travel from Makati to Ortigas took us longer than usual because of the traffic condition in EDSA, which is good in a way, because we needed that extra time to digest all the steak we’ve been eating the whole day. When we arrived the group was ready to take on another set of steaks prepared by the chef. The group was received by Luis, the restaurant manager of Casa Roces. He was newly assigned to manage the place while Chef Michel is on travel overseas.

For starters, we were served with white bread with pate and fruit juice. After which, we proceeded immediately to tackle the heart of the issue which are the steaks. The first one is the Free-Range Pure Black Angus Striploin. The beef is grilled in a medium-rare level, served with sautéd button mushrooms in red win and steamed sliced potato drizzled with parsley.

Before we proceeded with the next steak dish, sir Luis served us a breather to wash-off our palate from all the over-powering taste of steaks we’ve been eating the whole day. So we were served with Seared Salmon Fillet with Mango Salsa in Camote mash. This particular Blackboard’s best sellers and it was a good way to rest our taste buds.

And for our last steak dish in our MLA Food Trail is the Signature label Tasmanian Prime Ribeye. Now this steak certainly wraps the evening with Cracked Black Pepper, Confit Shallots sauted in red wine and Baker’s potato sauted in Café de Paris butter.

Of course, this special steak dinner would not be complete without the Red Wine which certainly culminates the evening.

Red Wine to wrap up the evening... Photo by

The five restaurants are just among the 35 others that serves Australian Grass-Fed Beef. The dishes were tailored menus that highlight the unique flavor of Australian Grass-Fed Beef which has been raised exclusively on pasture of Australia.

So if you are a steak lover like me and desires to experience the real taste of Australian Beef, just look for this poster in all of these participating restaurants: 100, A Steakhouse, Acacia Hotel, Arya, Blackbird, Capriccio, Casa Roces, Chef Jessie Rockwell Club, Chef Jessie Top of the Citi, Chesa Bianca, Cravings, Cyma, Epicurious, Illustrado, Kitchen 1B, Lucia Restorante, One Way, People’s Palace, Prime 101, Sala, Sala Bistro, The Blackboard, The Breakfast Table, The Tru Grill, The Urban Farm, and The Wholesome Table.

Again, there's more...

Part of your steak eating pleasure, the Meat and Livestock Australia MLA in Partnership with the Australian Embassy, Qantas Airline, Victoria, Australia Unlimited and True Aussie Beef has come up with an offering to lucky loyal guests of participating restaurants to win dinning privileges worth PhP5,000 or round trip tickets for two to Australia when you ordered Australian Grass-fed beef.
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