When it comes to comfort food, burger, fries, mac and cheese and pizza are bound to come to mind. Now that it’s March, your idea of comfort could use a little update. There’s nothing more comforting than food you’ve been eating while growing up. To me, it’s Chinese food, which half of the world, if not more, also crave for.

To keep us fueled, last Tuesday, we were treated to a “thanksgiving lunch” by colleagues in one of the most famous Chinese restaurants in the country: David’s Tea House, SM Mall of Asia. Yay! This branch of David’s Tea House in MOA is relatively new, as the restaurant has moved from the front side (near Hypermarket) to the back side facing Seaside Boulevard.

Review of David’s Tea House (SM Mall of Asia, Pasay City)

Ambiance: ★★★★☆

With tall seats, high ceiling, huge chandeliers and spacious dining area that could fit about 70-80 people, David’s Tea House in MOA displays modern interior design with a cozy vibe. The place was quiet since we were the only customers there, even at the peak of lunch hour. It was like the room was reserved all for ourselves, yet it didn’t feel wrong but just provided us with an advantage: shorter waits. It might be an exact opposite story come dinnertime.

Service: ★★★★☆

Our orders arrived fast. The waiters refilled water and tea and fulfilled requests quickly, too. They were kind and polite, but what could add another star to this rating would be their smile. They all seemed so tense and serious. A pleasant smile would invoke a charming countenance and make customers feel more welcome. As long as they are doing their job well, that’s okay I guess.

Food: ★★★★☆

As an appetizer, the Nido with Quail Egg Soup (PHp 245) may be the most basic, almost tasteless soup that will surely cleanse your palette and soothe your stomach for the dishes to come. This soup was not the best version I came across, but still it was okay.

The kitchen of David’s Tea House produces a very fine plate of Yang Chow Fried Rice (PHp 195). Of all items on the menu, I think this is the one that’s most ordered. The perfectly cooked grain rice was mixed with bits of fried eggs, salty ham, small shrimps and green peas for that much needed dose of herbal brightness.

We also had Pineapple Fried Rice (PHp 255), which is similar to how the Yang Chow Fried Rice tastes but with added pineapples. This is another Chinese classic with a twist. I liked how the sweetness of pineapple merged with the fried rice’s flavor. The smell could instantly put everyone in a good mood.

For our vegetarian viand, Buddha’s Delight / Lo Han Chai (PHp 240) was served. Filled with mushrooms, bamboo shoots, carrots and young corn, David’s Tea House’s lo han chai was not enjoyable mainly because it didn’t have many ingredients that are typically present in the oriental dish.

I was silently hoping for glass noodles, wan yu (dried cloud ear fungus) and dried gluten balls. Like always, when dining out with friends, I notice that anything that seemed like a herbivore’s meal would always be the bridesmaid and never the bride. Truth be told, the vegetables were again overshadowed by the meat. Up next: chicken, beef and pork.

The Crispy Fried Chicken (PHp 250, half) was a hit on our table. The chicken skin’s crispiness was so addictive that one might want to put a ring on it! The white meat was lean and even without adding extra sauce or condiments, the taste was satisfactory.

Credits must go to the chef as the natural taste of ampalaya in Beef with Ampalaya (PHp 265) was pronounced without being too bitter. The bittergourd itself would have made the meal, but the soft and tender beef really sealed the deal here. Taking the entire saucy dish to new levels of deliciousness, the thin slices of beef did not give us a hard time to chew.

I had initial reservations about trying the Fried Spareribs with Salt and Pepper (PHp 240) because it’s pork. The last thing I wanted was to be punished by formations of red patches and acne only to discover later that eating it is not worth the investment. Anyhow, I took the knife and cut a piece of spareribs for a small bite. My say? The spareribs punched way way above its weight in flavor. It was savory, so even if I do have an acne now on my forehead, it’s well compensated.

Finally, we had the Fish Fillet with Beancurd (PHp 340), my favorite among all these food. Actually it was ordered just as an “insurance policy” (we had too many food already), which paid off. I loved that the skin of the beancurd and fish fillet was fried and still crispy outside despite that they were swimming in sauce.

In any way it’s cooked, the fish may not have the sex appeal of an oyster, but it’s got romance. And with a sip of David’s Tea House’s light jasmine tea, it’s true love. ♥

Price for Value: ★★★★☆

David’s Tea House is a restaurant that can boost your confidence in spending for authentic Chinese food specializing in the taste of Hong Kong. Portion sizes of food are good for sharing, making food prices here totally reasonable in my sunny corner of the universe. If you’re really on tight budget, simply getting the Yang Chow Fried Rice (their flagship) sans additional viand may be fine as a completely filling meal.

David’s Tea House in MOA accepts reservations for parties of all occasions. Book a party and avail of their free photo booth. Discover how and why their name became famously synonimous with hotpot table top cooking with their shabu shabu packages: PHp 780 for 2-3 people and PHp 1080 for 4-5 people.

11113-1114 G/F, Entertainment Mall, North Wing, SM Mall of Asia, Pasay City
For inquiries, contact (02) 556-0204
Date Published: 03/08/2014
16 / 20 stars

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Digital marketing strategist. Health and technology freak. Food and lifestyle blogger with a large appetite for food and travel.

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58 Responses

  1. Fernando Lachica

    Wow, lots of food to choose from…the glass noodles looks delicious. When I visited Mall of Asia, I used to eat at Tokyo, Tokyo. Next week, I’ll visit this David’s Tea House.

    Reply
  2. Prince

    Nice post! I’m practically salivating right now. And since you gave this place an average of 4/5, considering that you have an exquisite taste, I think it’s worth to try. I might try some of these dishes in David’s Tea House when I visit MOA. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  3. Debarpan

    Fried Rice is really my favourite,I just love it.This one looks great too and the place also looking awesome.

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Fried rice is my favorite, too, but not at this joint. I’ve tasted other better versions of the Yang Chow Fried Rice in restaurants here in my hometown – Chinatown, Manila. 🙂

      Reply
  4. Mindy

    I am not a fan of Chinese food but i do love fried rice and the yang chow fried rice looked very yum (not a good thing to see and read at almost 1 in the morning! My stomach’s growling now). Btw, are you allergic to pork or something? Just a bite and you already got acne from it?

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Haha yes, I am. I’m very sensitive when it comes to eating meat because we grew up as pescetarians and we were only served with vegetables and seafood at home.

      Reply
  5. Joren Mandayo

    That makes me hungry -_-,It looks delicious with its unique ingredients. I want to eat all of that specially “Beef With Ampalaya”.

    Reply
  6. Kathy Lacuna

    David’s is one of our favorite Chinese places. Food is really authentic Chinese plus prices are reasonable. Makes my mouth water just seeing your post. 🙂

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Well, it’s not the best Chinese restaurant you can find in Manila, but it does in a pinch, and I’ll admit it: I like gloppy Chinese food every once in a while, and Davdi’s does it pretty well.

      Reply
  7. Yamito Uytingco Calamba

    I’m always at the SM Mall of Asia but I haven’t tried this place. It’s my sister’s 20th birthday this month. Maybe we can celebrate it here. Do you know if they have promos for events like birthdays? 😀

    Reply
  8. jane

    that beancurd and mushroom dish looks very yummy! fried rice is a must in chinese foods! and we often have pineapple fried rice here in malaysia

    Reply
  9. JLo

    I Love Davids Tea House. Our favorite among others are : Beef Brocolli, Pata Tim, Salt and Pepper Pork. They are serving hot cola here right? I remember ordering the hot cola after a choir performance.

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Haha you don’t know why??? 😛 OK lah, the lo han chai was arguably a little boring and way too oily, but I loved the variations of texture and the light sweetness of the sweet corn. It wasn’t my favorite, granted, but it was a solid vegetarian option in the midst of so much meat.

      Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Tip: you can also get refreshing iced tea by requesting for a glass with ice and syrup. Pour the hot tea and voila! You’ve just made your own concoction without added cost. 😉

      Reply
  10. cococute

    I really love tea, but I have never been to any Tea House, I also like to taste different asian cuisines but I don’t get the chance to visit a place that offers that food. I hope to do it all this year and reading reviews like this will give me great ideas on which I will visit.

    Reply
  11. Jonas Labagala

    Buddha’s Delight looks so delicious! But I think, there are too many mushrooms. I dunno but does it really need to have lots of mushrooms? Vegetable dish should have a balance of ingredients for me to make the dish presentable and colorful.

    And it’s also a big deal for me that the waiters should at least wear a smile as they’re serving customers. It’s their job no matter how tiring the day is. 🙂

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      There really was way too many mushrooms. Don’t panic; it’s normal. Haha lo han chai seems to be different in every Chinese restaurant. This one’s just a bit off. Yeah, you’re right, the more colorful the dish is, the more appetizing and yummy it appears to be.

      Somehow attending to customers on a bad day is hard, but it’s part of the job.

      Reply
  12. Teresa Martinez

    Haven’t had the chance to sample the food at David’s Tea House but the food you featured here look very delicious, probably something I will order for myself and my family.

    Reply
  13. Michael Macalos

    Omg!! love the cozy and modern ambiance of this tea house!!. Will raid this on Friday with my friends haha naghahanap din kasi kami ng mga bagong place and restaurants around the metro :D.

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Ahh this is a nice catch. Why not wait until Saturday to go for a date with your friends in MOA? Then you’ll get to watch the pyromusical at night. 🙂

      Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Hehe there are other more interesting dishes to try in this restaurant. So while Lo Han Chai is a popular oriental dish, it’s no win against all the remaining items on the menu.

      Reply
  14. Dress your life.

    It looks like a good restaurant with yummy food! Although I also like my waiters to smile, don’t need sour faces during lunch 😀
    Naomi, x

    Reply
  15. Genzel

    I like that their pricing for their food is good. I can eat a lot without spending that much. I want to try the pineapple fried rice 😀

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      David’s Tea House has a lot of branches nationwide. Go to the one nearest you now – or maybe later at lunch time. Get these recommended dishes and you can thank me later. 😛

      Reply
  16. Tory Blum

    I’ve never had fried rice before, but I would love to try it out one day 🙂

    Reply
  17. Jien

    Kinda expensive to dine here at Davids but in terms of Chinese food for this price range, it’s better to dine here than dining at Savory (except Binondo branch where the Savory chicken is so delicious).

    Reply
    • Rochkirstin Santos

      Thanks for the tip. 🙂 I can’t identify the difference between the chicken cooked in the Savory Binondo branch versus chicken cooked in another branch though.

      Reply

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