We arrived in Pampanga a day early to attend the last day, Sunday, of the Philippine Hot Air Ballon Fest 2011. For lunch, my SIL picked Cottage Kitchen Café. She has dined there a few times before and really love it. The place is owned by Jim, a retired US serviceman who settled in the Philippines.
The serve these complimentary dinner bread rolls with main course order sets. The bread is hot and soft, perfect with a spread of the herbed butter.
Barbecued Spareribs Bites. I had already ordered a main course but was curious to try out their barbecue, which has won some trophies, so settled on this appetizer.I have to agree that the barbecue ribs were very delicious. I think this order costs more than P200, quite expensive for the serving size, better go for the full order.
Meatloaf. This is one dish my SIL swears by, calling it the best she’s ever had. She liked it so much that she even told the people at Red Crab in Manila that their version was so sub par they should go to Cottage Kitchen and try this dish out. I had a small taste of this and have to say that its really good meatloaf.
Ham hock with Pinto Beans. A big piece of cured ham with a side of slowly cooked beans. Irene’s choice since she loves ham a lot. This one is almost a whole leg piece whose tender meat had a smoky flavor.
These corn bread, instead of the dinner bread, were part of the ham hock set. Sadly I was not able to try this as it was immediately scooped up by Lauren and her cousin upon seeing the cute shape. They both love corn and they love the corn bread also. I think these could also be substituted for the dinner bread.
Pork Chop dinner. 2 large sized pork chops, pan fried, served with real french fries and assorted vegetables. This was an aunts order and commented that the meat was soft and the fries were tasty.
I chose Shrimp Jambalaya as my main dish. When I saw the signage proclaiming New Orleans style outside, I knew I had to order something Creole. This is a traditional dish in New Orleans, their version of paella, with lots of shrimps as well as slightly spicy sausage. The dish was a little spicy but not overly so that it would burn my tongue, it just got me eating spoon after spoon. Too bad I could not finish it and could also not take it out to eat again later.
I was so intrigued by the description given to the “Hush Puppy” dish, I had to order them. They were described as fried morsels of corn meal batter that cooks make to give to their dogs in outdoor fish fries to “hush the puppies”. Each piece was oblong shaped with a crunchy outer coating and soft inside, I could even taste pieces of corn kernels.Another notch on the ordering too much list. I only had 2 pieces of this, I know what a waste.
Cottage Kitchen Café is not brightly lit inside but it feels homey and warm. The place becomes a lively jazz bar at night so if you want to avoid that better come here during lunch time. The only complaint I had was with the pricing, some of the prices are really weird like the high price for the spareribs, which for about double that, you could get the something much more substantial with side dishes and bread to boot. Aside from that, I wouldn’t hesitate to come back for another meal but this time hold off on ordering too much.
Cottage Kitchen Café
582 Don Juico Avenue,
Clark View Road
Angeles City, Pamapanga
closed on Mondays