Laughing Bird | Lincoln Square | Filipino | Restaurant
This location has been flagged as "Closed".
CLOSED. Top Chef alum Chrissy Camba's take on the food of the Philippines.

Our Review

Former Bar Pastoral chef and Top Cheftestant Chrissy Camba's menu is mostly Filipino, but she's also incorporated a little Japanese, Chinese, and Korean into her dishes, and she's bringing in the very earliest local produce and using it in ways that are sometimes a little unsettling. Take a burrata appetizer. The fragile, blobular cheese is teamed with a thick, sugary, caramelized-coconut jam and served with a few pieces of slightly sweetish pandesal ("salt bread") rolls—all of which makes sense. But then the ensemble is garnished with a pair of grilled green onions, whose char and pungency seem like pollutants on this otherwise sweet and creamy dish. Attempts to brighten or contrast deeply funky flavors and challenging textures with delicate spring produce yield similarly unnerving results. A bowl of gelatinous beef tendon mounted on white mashed potatoes is given much-needed texture by fried garlic and shallots, but the copious garnish of fresh spring peas and watercress seems completely out of step. Other dishes are less jarring but still problematic, showcasing an abundance of elements that inhibit the appreciation of the ones at center stage. A charred octopus dressed in dinuguan sauce (a thick blood stew filled with pig innards) is lost in the deep, livery intensity that also obviates the contribution of tender microgreens and crisp, fresh radishes. Camba's most successful integrative foray is a charcuterie plate that is a reminder of the great work she did at Vincent. Her best dishes, though, are those in which she goes all-in traditional Filipino, such as the pancit palabok, a generous heap of thick annatto-tinged rice noodles tossed with smoked mackerel, pork, shrimp, and boiled eggs. As for her chicken adobo, "the national dish of the Philippines," it's cooked tenderly in vinegar and soy and served with plain jasmine rice, lightly pickled green papaya, and a bottle of Co-op Hot Sauce banana ketchup, and it's easy to see why Filipinos pine for it. Read the full review >>

Mike Sula

Features: , , , , , , , , ,

Price: $$$
Payment Type: MasterCard, Visa, AmEx, Discover


Related Stories


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a review

Roll over stars and click to rate.



Become a Friend