A couple of Fridays ago, I had the pleasure of tasting my first fully Filipino meal at the wonderful family owned ‘Romulo’s Cafe’ in Kensington. This quaint, cosy and friendly restaurant is run by a husband and wife team with all recipes inspired by the wife’s mother. There is so much heart in this restaurant and that’s reflected not only in the welcoming atmosphere and lovely staff – but also in the delicious food.
The extensive menu appeared to be very meat and fish heavy upon first glance, however after talking to the owners we found that Filipino cooking is largely based around vegetables, with meat being an additional extra served every now and then. We were more than happy to let the kitchen take the lead with our menu for the evening and were surprised by a vast selection of varied, vegan plates.
We enjoyed an array of tasting plates starting with a grilled aubergine salad, nestled in tomato with a tamarind sauce and dwith bean sprouts. A light and flavoursome start to the meal.
We were then brought out the ‘Young Jackfruit and Coconut Stew’; this consisted of tropical jackfruit flesh, chilli, ginger stewed in coconut cream and drizzled with annatto oil and came served with sticky garlic rice. Warming, creamy and surprisingly meaty -although it’s non-meaty; this filling dish is a must try for any curry lovers.
My favourite plate of the evening was the Bao Buns-soft, fluffy, warm freshly baked buns served with a sizzling saucepan of mixed veggies, marinated in annatto, ginger, green chili, garlic, and lemongrass. This vegan alternative to their ‘sizzling chicken’ dish was absolutely incredible. So full of flavour – Romulo’s is worth a visit to try this beautiful dish alone!
Next we were brought a rice noodle stir fry, light and tasty with fresh and crunchy veg this was a pleasant contrast to the Bao Buns.
To conclude or savoury selection, we were brought a vegetable broth. This refreshing, light and delicate dish was a really lovely way to round off our dinner.
Romulo’s Cafe is a brilliant experience for anyone wanting to try out authentic Filipino cuisine. Their incredibly vast menu really has something for everyone to try and their knowledgeable and talented chefs can cater for any dietary requirements, whilst still packing a major punch of Filipino flavour. A wonderful way to spend an evening in a cosy friendly restaurant, with brilliant food and great company.