Out of all of the restaurants peddling organic and healthy fare, Earth Kitchen remains one of my personal favorites. They make sure that flavor is the focus, and that the food is better because it is organic, not in spite of it. Its location in White Plains is a rustic space, a homey, tiny restaurant that makes one feel at home. It feels far away to some, and therefore might not be as popular as restaurants of the same ilk which are in Makati or BGC, but it deserves all the attention. Thank goodness for Kitchen 56, Earth Kitchen’s branch in Jupiter St, Makati, which just opened in December. It’s much easier access to Earth Kitchen’s signature food.
Speaking to Chef David Hizon, he says that the menu was crafted with organic in mind, just because the produce is a beauty to work with. He and a friend sat down and chucked everything they loved to eat on the menu just to show those with a negative mindset about the label, that delicious, comforting dishes can be achieved with these ingredients. And rightly so: almost everything is made right in the kitchen, from all the handmade pasta, to the ice cream churned almost daily. The menu hardly varies from its predecessor, so all the favorites are present, and prove that healthy can be tasty, too.
Mushroom spring rolls are delightfully fresh, and the lack of the usual shrimp isn’t missed at all. The sauce is well-balanced, with a sour-salty finish that leaves you wanting more bites. Tacos were on the right side of umami, with the bulgogi sweet enough and the meat so tender. Even salads were far from boring, with a pomelo salad paired with an exciting nuoc cham. But save space for Kitchen 56’s pastas, all rolled out in house, so that all dishes turn out to be silky, al dente perfection. The paccheri is everyone’s favorite, but their squid ink pasta with tiny local baby scallops and aligue is one of those dishes you can’t stop thinking about for days. Homemade ice cream can cap off your meal, and the goat’s cheese with carabao milk is at both times tart and creamy.
What Earth Kitchen does best is all on display here at Kitchen 56. The space may not be as photogenic, but it has a ladies who brunch feel, and is much larger and can feed much more. You no longer have to make a long drive just to get delicious dishes that make you feel good after. Thank God for this healthy alternative in the CBD.