Oct. 8, 2016
There are many good restaurants in Cabanatuan City, but since we were staying at Harvest Hotel for my birthday, I thought it most convenient to just have my birthday dinner there. Having the highest star rating among all hotels in Cabanatuan City, I was also quite curious about the food that the hotel offers at their restaurant called Cafe Ecija.
Cafe Ecija is located on the ground floor of Harvest Hotel, between the lobby and the pool.
Cafe Ecija is tastefully decorated, has soft, comfortable seats and is kept impeccably clean. On Saturdays and Sundays, Cafe Ecija offers family meal combos for as low as PHP 1,499. We ordered Menu 3 (PHP 2,999, good for 7-8 persons).
While waiting for Menu 3, we were served with complimentary bread and butter. The bread was soft and went well with the butter. Calmed my hungry tummy down while waiting for the rest of our meal to arrive.
HarvestFamBam Feast Menu 3 (PHP 2,999 good for 7-8 persons): Almondigas Soup, Beef Pochero, Pininyahang Manok, Crispy Pata/Patatim, Halabos na Hipon, Pinakbet Ilocano, Pancit Canton/Bihon, Steamed Rice, Fruit Platter
Rupert and my mom, who both prefer to have soup every time they eat, liked Cafe Ecija’s Almondigas Soup. I’m not a soup person. I thought it was just okay, maybe a bit bland.
Beef Pochero is one of Cafe Ecija’s specialties. And oh did I love it! The beef was so tender and tasty. I personally think the Beef Pochero was the best dish we had that night.
The Pininyahang Manok was just okay for me, though, this was the only dish that my picky Zuri ate. For that alone, I was thankful for this dish.
The Crispy Pata was the last to arrive (we were almost done eating actually) because it was the “star of the show” according to our waiter. I was not impressed by the Crispy Pata because the meat tasted a bit dry. I like my Crispy Pata meat juicy and my Crispy Pata skin extra crispy just like how my Dad does it! 🙂 I was also pretty full already when it arrived so there was no more “gutom” factor. I probably would have appreciated the Crispy Pata more had I eaten it when I was still hungry.
I did not realize it then but Menu 3 was supposed to include Halabos na Hipon (check the photo of the Menu above). But instead of Halabos na Hipon, we were served with Grilled Fish. Had I noticed that this dish was supposed to be shrimp not fish, I would have complained, because shrimp is Zuri’s favorite food. Anyway, the grilled fish tasted okay.
I loved Cafe Ecija’s Pinakbet Ilocano. Although I like pinakbet, I don’t usually cook it at home, so I really miss it. Cafe Ecija’s version, in my opinion, was done perfectly. (Hm, come to think of it, maybe I should have asked my Ilocano husband’s opinion.)
The Pancit Canton was also just okay.
Steamed rice, fresh watermelon and pineapple slices were also served.
Menu 3 is supposed to be good for 7-8 persons. We were 8 adults and 1 kid (my aunt later arrived to join us), but we still had leftover. I think Menu 3 can actually feed 9-10 persons.
Another plus point: the waiter assigned to us was alert and jolly. He took lots of photos for us, too. 🙂
I realize now as I’m writing this that I actually did not find most of the dishes to be exemplary. In fact, all except for the Beef Pochero and Bagnet Ilocano were just okay for me. But I know that I enjoyed my birthday dinner. Perhaps the Beef Pochero and the Pinakbet Ilocano really just stood out. But overall, I’d say I was satisfied enough with our meal that I’m actually thinking of coming back to Cafe Ecija when the next opportunity comes. Cafe Ecija also offers buffet dinner on Thursdays (PHP499) and Fridays (PHP 599). We’ll try this next time. 🙂
Cafe Ecija Menu
Harvest Hotel Location, Contact Numbers, Email Address and Website:
Thanks for reading! 🙂
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