Top Picks from Grub Hub, the Newest Food Park in Quezon City

As much as I love sampling many kinds of food all at once, I'm not one that you could find hanging out with friends in a food park. Let's just say that the usual chaos ruins my appetite, and that my eternally hungry self always gets impatient to queue up and wait long for what? Two sticks of barbecue or a cone of ice cream, both of which I'm not even sure if worth the wait. That's why I would rather meet up with food buddies in a quiet restaurant where we could take our sweet time, rather than join the pandemonium and squeal over what everyone is currently posting on Instagram.

So when my friend JP (@chubbyperohappy) invited me to the newest food park in Quezon City called Grub Hub, I was a bit hesitant to go. Warning alarms buzzed off inside my head. Traffic, long lines, huge crowds, lack of seats, food that's not worth the travel (yes, I travel—I come from Bulacan) ... I have already painted a horrible picture in my head. But as I braved the traffic going to Congressional and the yellow entryway of the food park loomed into view, I caught a glimpse of how Grub Hub looks from inside, and all my cynical thoughts vanished.

photo credit: @chubbyperohappy
Like other food parks, Grub Hub evokes that hipster feel with its picture-perfect murals, fancy seats, artsy lighting, and tables guaranteed to make any food photo look good. But unlike other places where aesthetics seems to have been more valued over potential human traffic, Grub promises a fun AND comfortable dining experience with its 3 themed areas: Junkyard, an alfresco area near the entrance; Hippieyard, another outdoor area by the back where covered huts and a live band are set up; and Greenhouse, an air-conditioned room perfect for dining and drinking alike.

Grub Hub has 17 stalls, distributed in a 1,600-sqm. space which can accommodate around 350. As you enter, you will see the stalls lined up on two sides only (thankfully). To the left are hobbit holes featuring a smorgasbord of tasty food, from sinfully good chicharon bulaklak and varieties of lumpia to sushi, tacos, wings, and burgers. To the right, some Italian food and desserts that would lure lovers of sweets. Father ahead is the spacious Greenhouse, where you can order cocktails as well as iced teas. Near the back of the park is where most people head first—lined up alongside other stalls is Mang Larry’s, the famous isawan from UP Diliman!

Dining in food parks can be quite overwhelming especially if you want to try everything but you’re on a budget (or you’re alone and no one to share food with), so I’ve chosen to list down my top picks during my visit last weekend. Naturally, I haven’t tried all dishes from all 17 stalls—but believe me, I tried a lot.. hahaha. I need to go back so I can recommend more, but in the meantime, here are my current instant favorites at Grub Hub:

1 | Mang Larry’s

Don’t go to Grub Hub and make the mistake of not trying Mang Larry’s.  Even if you’re not a fan of isaw, your friends who are believers of this UP institution would surely force you to try and taste it. I myself usually just eat isaw manok (chicken intestines), but when I trust the vendor, I could eat isaw baboy (pork intestines), tenga (pig ears), and a whole lot of other street food as well.

2 | Brook’s

Helmed by a chef who used to work for Aubergine, Brook’s elevates comfort food to a different level. The guys here know what they’re doing—as evidenced by their Old Fashioned Cheese Burger and their addicting Beef Chimichanga, both of which use beef that’s so deliciously smoky.  Make sure you bring a friend because their servings are good for sharing.

3 | Noble Comida

If you came to Grub Hub not just to eat but also to drink, Noble Comida has good choices for pulutan. This stall serves Mexican food like tacos, quesadillas and nachos, but I highly recommend the tasty Pimientos Rellenos, red bell peppers stuffed with meat and vegetables. Order some San Miguel or Red Horse for that relaxing afternoon session!

4 | Yzzy Eats

If a dish called BFLC (stands for Bacon Fried Like Chicken) can’t convince you to drop by this stall, then I don’t know what could. Unlike the usual cured bacon served in restaurants, Yzzy Eats’ rendition is made of fresh pork belly seasoned with herbs and spices, lightly dredged, then fried like chicken. The end product actually looks like gigantic strips of chicken skin! The gravy is pretty addicting too.

5 | Wicked Kitchen

If you love desserts, you should definitely get your fix at Wicked Kitchen. Their signature items are named after the seven deadly sins, but here, it’s OK to give in to temptation and indulge. Try the Greed—their version of s’mores on a skillet—or the Lust, a milkshake topped with whipped cream, caramel popcorn, caramel drizzle, marshmallows, and everyone’s favorite: Iced Gem biscuits.

Those are my top picks, and if you trust my judgment (and taste in food, haha), you need to try these 5 stalls ASAP. The rest of the food we ate at Grub Hub were pretty good too, but I can’t go through the rest of them in detail so let me just enumerate their names as well as their specialties:

St. Mick’s – wings (try the Sriracha Honey and Salted Egg)
Joey’s Charcoal Grill – barbecue (lemon grass pork belly, anyone?)
Chica’s Chicharoniachicharon bulaklak, tokwa’t bulaklak
Café Fratello – pastas, frappes
Aji Sushi – rolls, katsu, teriyaki
Papa Beer – mostly fried food (calamares, crablets, fried greens)
Hokkian Kitchen Co. – Chinese food (haven’t tried)
Mrs. Lumpialumpia rolls, kebab (haven’t tried)
Sub Zero – gelato
Big Tummiez – waffle, ice cream, churros (haven’t tried)
Miggy Piggy - chicken, bacon, sandwiches (haven’t tried)

I need to plan my trip back to Grub Hub soon and if you have any recommendations or favorites, please let me know in the comments section!

PS: I know that Grub Hub will be wildly popular soon and people will flock to it the way they did to other food parks. It will be chaotic, and maybe the next time I go, there won’t be any seats. But to hell with chairs, I think I can manage to stand against a wall for a few minutes and enjoy live music while I dip my fourth stick of Mang Larry’s on spicy vinegar.

Grub Hub
47 Visayas Avenue cor. Congressional, Tandang Sora, Quezon City
Mon - Thu: 11:00AM - 11:00PM; Fri - Sat: 11:00AM - 2:00AM; Sun: 11:00AM - 12:00AM
Budget: PhP200 up

Do you like food parks? What do you think of Grub Hub?

If you like my posts and would love regular updates on travel photos, food finds, restaurant reviews, dance articles, and drunken tales, follow Pepe Samson on Facebook!

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