A hearty lunch at The Other Office

A hearty lunch at The Other Office

The Other Office at Villa Cordillera is known mostly as laid back waterhole for most of us, but it is also a place to actually enjoy food, not only liquor. The other office boasts cuisine adapted from the original Baguio Country Club menu, and boy were we in for a treat when we had a chance to taste not only their liquor, but also their delectable cuisine.

Out of the 10 dishes served for lunch at The Other Office *(which were all delicious by the way), we can’t help but rave about our own particular favorites, we have a total of three, although every dish is highly recommended, I guess, if you want to try their best, may we be of service!

On the top of our list is their Paella, punctuated with four seafood toppings; crab, prawns, mussels and squid, all cooked to perfection, it is apparently a tad more delicious if drizzled with olive oil apart from the usual lemon wedges, this gave the Paella an added fruity zest, and the serving size is good for a group, around four to five people, and compared to other Paella s we have tasted, this stays on top of our list.


Paella at The Other Office

Next on the list is the classic Nilagang Baka with a twist…. bihon noodles, this has been one of the main dishes that we ordered previously some months ago, and it never gets old, the beef was cooked long for 3 hours, and when you boil beef that long, you’re bound to have that real beefy flavor, and of course, tender beef with bone marrow floating in beefy broth with bihon noodles is filling enough by itself, not need for rice! This dish is meant to be shared by 2-4 people, be sure to catch the marrow part if you’re not worried about a stroke. (ha-ha)

Third favorite dish is their Kilawing Tanuige, and yes it was a hit, wiped clean in matter of minutes. Their version had just the right amount of sour, but if you prefer your Kilawin a little bit spicier and salty, this is not the Kilawin your looking for, this has a subtler “hot” kick, an unusual ingredient added was green pepper which gave a fresh crisp taste to this classic.


Kilawing Tanigue

And then, there are the costars of our top three! The Pinakbet leads the list, and who could have ever thought that Pakbet could be plated like this? It was also a favorite, fragrant and seasoned just right, we thought it could have more sauce (sarsa), but then again, it was indeed delicious.


Pinakbet topped with lechon kawali at The Other Office

The Fish and Chips are your perfect beer mates, the chips were really delicious as they are a bit thicker than the usual thinner potato chips you might be used too, fish used is cream dory, but both were crunchy perfection, not at all oily, and again seasoned just right, another favorite beer mate is their Nacho’s topped with melted cheese and tomato sauce, this is something you must order, because it is delicious and the serving is good for 3-5 people.


Fish and Chips

The ever present pancit canton is another favorite, the best thing about it is the serving, good for 2-3 people if you have a moderate appetite, otherwise this is a filling and satisfying dish for one with a guaranteed doggie bag for the folks at home, their pancit doesn’t taste like your typical pancit, it has a greener feel to it with the added veggies aside from the seafood toppings of squid pieces and shrimp, no red meat on this dish at all.


Pancit Canton

Fresh Corned Beef, we would say this dish is quite odd, mainly because it is not your typical canned good dish, but this surprisingly came out as another favorite, the beef was cooked in pink salt, and is best eaten with mustard and radish sauce, which comes with the dish, dipping it in the sauces actually makes a difference. I’m sure your wondering what fresh corned beef is? Well it’s for you to find out and maybe have your own gastronomic adventure with it.


Fresh Corned Beef with Pink Salt

Pizza lovers will definitely find villa cordillera’s version on the fruity side, it isn’t as savory as you think, but it does border on the sweet savory side, the tomato sauce is the sweet number in this dish, and of course veggie toppings (no meat) adds to the tartness. The pizza is definitely a filler, crust is tasty and slightly crunchy, this pizza is moderately seasoned, we thought it is up to you to add salt and pepper to taste.


The breaded pork comes with rice, the serving on this is quite big, you might want to order another cup of rice for this, it is another filling dish, very meaty, again moderately seasoned, the outer crust is crunchy and the meat on this is thick and a little bit heavy, you might want to exert more effort in slicing it up, yes it is that MEATY, a good meal to order if you are really hungry and craving for something heavy.

The Other Office at Villa Cordillera is located at Outlook Drive, Baguio City, Philippines, 2600. (074) 442 6036. They’re open from 6AM – 12 AM.

Photos courtesy of Shem Padua



Starting the day with breakfast at Villa Cordillera

Starting the day with breakfast at Villa Cordillera

Even for the most nocturnal of night owls, it’s worth it to get up in the morning and enjoy a hearty breakfast.  We were invited to try out The Other Office at Villa Cordillera’s breakfast buffet on a cool Sunday morning, and we happily obliged.

Villa Cordillera is an extension of Baguio Country Club.  Although it’s much smaller than the Club, you’ll find that same old Baguio charm in the architecture and the same high standard of service from the wait staff.dsc_1122_wm

We were seated, per request, away from the windows, and promptly brought coffee.  The buffet was spread over three areas: one for drinks, breads and rice options, one for fruits and vegetables, and one egg station manned by one of the The Other Office staff members.

Coffee is always good for warming up on a chilly Baguio morning.  You can also have a bowl of their potato soup with croutons.  We liked it because it was flavorful and filling.

Since breakfast is by definition about breaking your fast after a good night’s sleep, we filled up on protein.  Meat dishes can be paired with garlic rice.  If you like the garlic flavor in your garlic rice strong, theirs might not quite hit the spot for you.  It’s just a mild garlic rice, but it goes well with the meat selections.

As one does with any classic Filipino breakfast, The Other Office serves longganisa.  They are sliced in half and cooked quite well, giving them an interesting crunch.  However, of all the savory viands, our favorite was the bistek bangus.  It’s an interesting combination of flavors; the tangy sauce eliminates the need for soy or any other addition you’d usually make to bangus.


To balance the meal out a bit, we shared an omelet with the works.  Since the The Other Office staff takes care of your order at the egg station, you can have it any way you want.  We opted for an omelet stuffed with mushrooms, cheese, ham, onions, and some peppers.  We had it alongside the other dishes, but if you’re looking to eat light, you can make it a meal all on its own. If you’re in the mood for even healthier options, their stir-fried Baguio vegetables with tofu is a must-try.

Baguio Country Club is famous for many things, not the least among them stellar service and a fabulous bakery.  The breads and pastries at The Other Office’s buffet come fresh out of the BCC bakery.  We especially loved the cinnamon rolls – a happy ending to a great breakfast.


Photo by Shem Padua

All in all, The Other Office breakfast buffet is a good way to enjoy Baguio mornings away from the city center.  They offer comfortable, intimate indoor seating, as well as al fresco dining for days when the weather is especially nice.  Service is fast and friendly.  The buffet is best approached on an empty stomach and, of course, shared with friends.

The Other Office is located at Outlook Drive, Baguio City, Philippines. (074) 442 6036 They’re open from 6AM – 12 AM.

Breakfast buffet is available during weekends from 6AM – 10AM.