Indeed, it’s traditional meets contemporary at Cabalen’s other brand called Mangan. The restaurant’s name which is the Pampango word for eat entices its guests with their unique and mouthwatering Kapampangan cuisine. If you want to experience Kapampangan flavors at its finest, Mangan is the perfect place. With its modern ambience and traditionally cooked meals, what more can you ask for?
Since the restaurant’s establishment in 2001, Mangan has opened branches in various locations in the Metro namely: Robinsons Place Ermita, Robinsons Galleria, SM Mall of Asia, and SM City North EDSA, The Annex.
One Sunday morning, my grandmother had a craving for Bulalo. Since we were already in SM City North EDSA, The Annex, we searched for a nice and clean restaurant that serves Bulalo and saw Mangan. Checking their huge metal like menu outside and reading the word Bulalo, Mangan was definitely it. I have passed by the restaurant many times but never was there an opportunity to dine. Finally, I was able to taste their food along with my family.
Mangan Restaurant offers a variety of delicious Kapampangan cuisine which makes it quite difficult to choose (because you want to taste them all). But since their menu is divided into Ispesyal Ning Bale, Sari-Saring Merienda, Sari-Saring Kakanin, Mga Pampalamig, Mapaling Sabo, Patingapun (served w/garlic rice, salted egg, diced tomato, burong mustasa and atchara), Ispesyal Na Handa (choose from mga gulay, mga karne, mula dagat and ensalada at buro) and Platter (serving good for 4-6 persons), it’s a lot easier choosing which ones you would like to try.
For this visit, we decided to have the following:
Inihaw na Liempo (P210)
Bulalong Baka w/ Mais (P380)
Bottomless Ice Tea
I’ve read reviews about Mangan after our first visit. They weren’t that good. However, those were reviews from way back. Fast forward to 2015, I can honestly say that the service at SM City North EDSA, The Annex was good.
As mentioned earlier, I was checking their menu before entering. There were two waiters who noticed me and they looked at each other signaling which one should go. Bottom line, the waiter who came to me assisted us throughout our lunch. The other waiter even entertained questions about the restaurant – the name and logo. My grandmother is from Pangasinan and we were debating if it’s Ilocano or Kapampangan. And we had our answers.
Moreover, we had a really great lunch at the restaurant. My grandmother, who rarely says that a food is delish, enjoyed hers as well. We love the Bulalo – the meat was tender and flavorful. Also, Mangan’s ice tea is one satisfying drink. Not only that, but the place has this homey vibe. It’s clean, well-lighted, and I love the displays all around the place.
The only problem is the space. It was quite crowded for me. When a family with 3 kids and a baby in a stroller came in, it was nightmare for me. I really do need my space especially when eating. One of the waiters suggested having the baby use the high chair and put the stroller outside. The father hesitated but eventually agreed when his wife convinced him. Unfortunately, the space is still not that big in that branch. If they can rearrange the seats and tables appropriately, it would be much appreciated.
Despite that, lunch was great. Two thumbs up for Mangan!