Saturday, May 5, 2007


4 out of 5 stars


I know I already wrote about M Café’s Brunch Buffet, but here’s another Sunday brunch you should be sure not to miss --- in Lumiere. Lumiere is both a gallery and a restaurant, very elegant and minimal with their style of architecture, and they carry this style into their food. Their set brunch menu is put into one simple equation: 1 brunch entrée + 1 drink + 1 dessert + coffee or tea = 715 PhP.

It may be pretty pricey, but the quality is evident in their dishes and service, and every single centavo is worth it. For example, their entrée garnishes are baked tomatoes sprinkled with thyme and olive oil, which is just as yummy to eat as the real food. The mimosas or orange juice taste freshly squeezed, and is probably made by them since you can even see the orange segments through the drinks. The pancake syrup is light and transparent, of the Grade A type that is often termed as “fancy.” The tea brand that they use is Twinning’s, always a safe bet. As for the service, your water glass is never left empty, each course is presented with perfect timing and the waiters are very attentive of a customer’s call.

Dsc00625Always wanting shortcuts and using the least amount of effort, I’ll quote heavily from the descriptions that they use for the brunch entrée. First, we have Eggs Benedict, described as freshly baked, home-made, fork split English muffins, served with a choice of Smoked Salmon, Smoked Ham, Spinach or Home made Corned Beef (no hollandaise) and poached eggs blanketed with a creamy Hollandaise Sauce. Next is the Oeufs Phillipe, a delicate balance of Baked Eggs, Fresh Cream, and your choice of Dulong, Talangka or Foie Gras baked to mouthwatering perfection. It is served with freshly baked, home-made fork split English Muffins. Third, we have the Quiche Royale, a traditional French Quiche beaten to an “unbearable lightness of being,” flavored with a choice of Australian Bacon or Arugula and Mushroom. Next, we have Ricotta Pancakes, described as hot off the griddle, fluffy Pancakes cooked with Ricotta Cheese, flavored with vanilla cream plus Basiled Scramble eggs. The fifth choice would be Truffled Eggs with Anchovy-Garlic Sauce, and the final one being Steak and Eggs (additional 25PhP). I joined the last two together because there was no description of either, where I can’t say much about the first because I’ve never ordered it in the times that I’ve eaten there.

Dsc00639For drinks, you have a choice of 1 Mimosa (Champagne with freshly squeezed orange juice), 1 Bloody Mary, 1 Orange Juice or 1 Soft Drink. The dessert of that day was Banana Crumble, and there’s either Coffee of Tea, with a choice of Green Tea, Chamomile, Earl Grey or Mint.

I got a Mimosa, as I always do when I eat here. It wasn’t so cold when they handed it over to me, but they were quick to accede to my request in chilling it a little more. While waiting for our entrees, the waiter put down two bowls --- one contained a salad with a Caesar dressing, the other contained deep fried potato croutons sprinkled with parsley. Both were so simple to make, with the salad merely containing lettuce and dressing, but it was still delicious and carried us through our wait.


For that day, I got the Oeufs Phillipe with Foie Gras, while soon-to-be-foodie Pao got Steak and Eggs. Before I start with how it tasted, I’d like to apologize for the pictures. We were so hungry that we forgot to take pictures of them before ravaging our meals. Anyway, the Ouefs Phillipe stood true to its description in the menu. The foie gras blended well with the baked egg, and since it was cooked this way, the entire thing was infused with the foie gras. The sauce may have been a little runny even with the addition of fresh cream, and the foie gras piece not as large as I expected, but the dish in its entirety was delicious. I think the reason why I thought the foie gras didn’t seem as big was because it was put as an entire chunk in the eggs. They didn’t dice it within the dish, which is usually what cheaper restaurants do to extend their expensive ingredients. Moreover, the muffin was the perfect sponge for the yummy sauce that I drizzled over it upon finishing the baked egg with foie gras.

The Steak and Eggs was also a good choice for a filling Sunday Brunch. The grilled steak tasted very rich, and it was probably marinated very well, where it carried two eggs on top. It was accompanied by a mustard-horseradish sauce that brought out the smokiness of the meat. And of course, we gobbled up everything, even its tomato garnish baked in thyme.

At this point, we were so full, but I really had fond memories of their ricotta pancakes, so I got a side order of it with an extra glass of mimosa (I also got this because I downed the first one without taking a good picture of it, haha!). For side orders, one may get English Bangers (pork sausage), Australian Bacon or Ricotta pancakes for 175 PhP, or English Muffins for 70 PhP. An additional soft drink or OJ will cost you 55 PhP, coffee or tea 85 PhP or an alcoholic drink for 170 PhP. They also have a kid’s menu, which is a half portion of any of the set menus for only 350 PhP.

Dsc00638The Ricotta Pancakes were just as good as I remembered them. It was really light and fluffy, and you could taste the delicate flavor of the ricotta blending well with the sweetness of the pancake and maple syrup. Pao described it tasting like bibingka, though I could see why because of its rich taste, even without having to put the slab of butter and syrup that came along with the dish.

We were so full that by the time the Banana Crumble arrived, I was only able to finish half, even if the dessert was just a handful. Not that it wasn’t good…I really just didn’t have any more room (which is a surprise because I eat a lot). It tasted like an apple pie crust, only that it was bananas, and they sprinkled heavy cream over the top to make it even more decadent. Good thing we had mint tea and coffee to wash all that sumptuous food down.

Lumiere is definitely worth a try, if only to experience what a true brunch is all about. And to cap off this review, I’d like to lift off what this restaurant has to say about their take of a Sunday Brunch (cos it’s wittily hilarious):
What’s Eat All About

“Few dishes rival eggs benedict in their ability to simultaneously cement friendships and arteries.”

There is no more apt description of what Sunday Brunch is all about. Eggs Benedict --- standard fare of those cooler than cool New York Sunday brunches --- is the perfect meeting of breakfast and lunch. Mixing elements of one and the other, Eggs Benedict originated in the 1900’s in New York’s lower Manhattan where a certain prominent gentleman, after a late night of socializing, rising too late to catch breakfast yet too early for lunch requested this culinary discovery. Since then, it has become the foundation of all good, upright, self-respecting Sunday brunches the word over.

This brings us to the Sunday Brunch story. Sunday Brunch is the soothing palliative to the morning after the night before, to end of the week-end blues, start of the work week angst, or simply, a dose of more cholesterol to dull the effects of a hangover. Floating in time, neither lunch nor dinner, Mimosas or Bloody Marys --- intrinsic to a brunch menu --- work well with the food to create a relaxed, intimate atmosphere that encourages “food for thought” conversations or non-conversations, catching up on that thick wad of Sunday Times or just plain hanging out with family or friends.

Now what better way to spend a Sunday?

Indeed! Couldn’t have said it better. Happy eating, everyone!

Caveat: Since it is near the British embassy, it can sometimes turn into Caucasian Land.

812 2976
A. Locsin building, Makati Avenue corner Ayala Avenue, Makati City (right beside the PLDT building,& across Greenbelt 4)
(no need to reserve, but it never hurts to do so)


Anonymous said...

i miss this resto terribly

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