When you live in the south, particularly in Las Pinas City, weekends are a time where you should seriously consider staying indoors in lieu of spending the day (and money) out. Especially if you are not fortunate enough to have a car with a ‘Friendship Route’ sticker, or a simple commuter (like me).

Our little city is notorious for its snaking traffic jams, which makes spending the day out in the nearby malls a challenge.

However, one place worth making the trip and braving 2-3 intersections worth of 10-15 minute grid locks is Poquito Mas, located at the Westgate complex in Filinvest Corporate City in Alabang. First, there’s lots of parking space – you’ll waste no time finding a spot, and everything is just within reach – coffee at UCC and Cafe Breton, sweet delights at Go Nuts Donuts, burger havens at Brother’s Burger and Hot Shots, and steak heaven at Melo’s.

Poquito Mas serves ‘Splatino’ cuisine – an interesting mix of dishes with Spanish and Latino/Mexican influences. My beautiful one and I experienced this place first during our good friend Inna’s birthday celebration, and ever since, we have made sure that we come back to Poquito Mas from time to time.

Mexican Dumplings

For starters, you’ll want to try the Mexican Dumplings – marinated ground beef wrapped in small, thin tortillas deep fried to a crisp. This offering was one of the first to vanish at Inna’s birthday buffet and has been receiving a consistent thumbs up from us every trip after our first visit. Served with fresh salsa, the Mexican dumplings are a steal for 95 bucks at eight pieces. Though small in size, they’re gonna leave you wanting for more without much damage to your budget.

You also might want to try their Taco Soup – a tomato-based concoction served with tortilla chips on the side topped with grated cheese. Served piping hot, you may want to wait a while till it cools a bit before digging in. As it is, it’s a great way to start a hearty meal before digging in their main offerings.

Mushroom Lovers Pasta, half-eaten (was so hungry, my apologies)

If you love mushrooms and pasta, Mushroom Lovers Pasta will surely strike your taste buds with a very satisfying experience. An assortment of tasty mushrooms coated by a creamy, tasty cream-based sauce served with the usual slice of garlic buttered bread will surely tickle your fancy for a different pasta experience without the guilt that other tasty meat-based pastas offer.
Then there’s the Paella. I know it’s really bad to forget the name of a dish that you enjoyed but hey, I’m in that age (sorry, not the 40’s though) where one can forget the name, but remember the taste oh-so-well. The paella isn’t bad for the price, but it could use a little more flavor and a little bit more added to the serving to share around.

Poquito Mas also sells ‘baby’ cakes (not made from babies, thank God) – we tried the Choco Moist cake which strikingly resembles Cookie Monster chocolate cakes (nothing beats this chocolate cake, in my opinion, but that’s another post). At 60 pesos, it’s a bit steep but worth the try if you like a good, not-too-sweet chocolate cake.

A group of six will cost around 1,500 pesos to feed – two servings of dumplings, three servings of pasta, taco soup, clam chowder soup (wasn’t that good, not really worth a descriptive review), and drinks (costing around 50-65 pesos each), so it’s not bad for a light, healthy but tasty dinner made the ‘Splatino’ way.

Poquito Mas is at Westgate Center, Filinvest Corporate City, Commerce Avenue, Alabang, Muntinlupa City. Call them at 771-1334 / 771-1325

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