Review: Trying the new Chelsea Market Cafe in Podium

My sister and I weren’t able to take out mom for Mother’s Day so the next day, which happened to be holiday since it was National Elections, we decided to dine out. I wanted somewhere near because the election tired us out and I had to do the driving. I asked friends for suggestions and Jay Salazar reminded me that the Podium branch of Chelsea Market is already open. I love Chelsea in Serendra so I was decided to try the new branch which is nearer our place.

Design and Function

We arrived at around 6:30 PM so seating wasn’t hard although a lot of the tables were already taken. We were seated near the entrance and we could feel the humidity every time the door opened. I suggest that they install one of those air curtains so the heat from outside wouldn’t whoosh in and so that their A/C wouldn’t have to work doubly hard.

review

Bright but feels cramped

mirrors

Chelsea Podium is 2-storied. I believe it can accommodate more people than their Serendra branch. The design and the use of mirrors give the impression of open space but it feels cramped when you are there (the ground floor in particular). Chairs are back to back and you have to excuse yourself in order to get to the counter or the rest room. The lighting design is chic and makes the restaurant inviting. Decorations were okay but I prefer the ones in Serendra.

Rating: ★★★☆☆

Service

Service is slow but I think the staff are still undergoing training. The waiter forgot my request for water and napkins. The service needs a lot of improvement in my opinion.

Rating: ★★☆☆☆

Food

I got my usual iced tea and decided to try the pork belly. I think the pork belly is their new offering because I didn’t notice that dish before.

restaurant review

Pork Belly

I liked the Pork Belly at the first bite but the thick layer of fat became too overwhelming for me. Oil dripped when I bite the pork and plopped on the plate. The crispness of the pork skin wasn’t consistent either. Some parts were tough and hard to chew. I was very hungry though and ended up finishing the dish even if I felt like gagging afterwards.

Rating: ★½☆☆☆

This particular Chelsea experience was a let down. I was expecting great food and service like the one they provide in Serendra. However, I will give Chelsea Podium another try but not in the near future. I want to give them time to adjust to the new place.

Overall Rating: ★★☆☆☆

Chelsea Market Cafe
Ground Floor, Podium Mall
Ortigas Center

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