Reynaldo and Nell Garcia named their restaurant after a historic district in their hometown of Manila. Unlike the flavors popular in neighboring Asian countries, Filipino food isn't heavy on the hot and spicy. Foundations lie instead on sour and salt; peanut and coconut sauces are popular too. The Garcias' buffet brims with steaming noodles and colorful stir-fries, but you can also order a la carte: entrees include pancit (noodle-based dishes), rice dishes, and some seafood. Desserts are few and cheap; though it's a Filipino favorite, I found halo-halo, a mix of preserved tropical fruits, crushed ice, milk, and ice cream, cloying. Off-the-menu takeout can be found in a display case next to the front door: containers of various adobos share space with baggies of fried chicken skin, piles of fried bananas, and stacked trays of balut, a popular island snack that consists of a boiled duck egg with a surprise inside -- a half-incubated bird. The restaurant will also roast a whole pig with three days' notice.
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