An addition to the line of clubs that keep popping up in the metro, Universe turns out to be not just for hardcore partying but also for culinary delights like you wouldn’t believe. When we think of the club scene, we don’t usually imagine their food to be as good as their DJs but there we were, noshing on Aracama’s cuisine and having an awesome time.
It’s called Universe Gastrolounge & Nightclub and it stands where Opus used to. The club floor is in the innermost part but right outside is the dining area where you can best appreciate the dishes of Universe.
The Black Bikini, Patatas Bravas, and Mixed Mushroom Dip are proper appetizers. The Black Bikini has black ham, cheese, and glorious truffle jam and we were given a pile of garlic toast sticks for dipping into the mushroom and cheese mixture but naturally, my favorite was the potatoes with crispy skins that you can dip in garlicky aioli and spicy chipotle tomato sauce.
Universe has it’s own eggs ben version, the creamy Monte Cristo Benedict but they also have meatier sandwich, the Patty Melt. I especially like the Chicken Cobb Salad with its blue cheese bits, creamy ranch dressing and crunchy iceberg lettuce. When it comes to salad, that’s all I really need.
A recent addition to the menu are the sushi rolls: the Electric Eel made of shrimp tempura, crab salad, and unagi, the Crunchy Caterpillar which nobody wanted to ruin because of its nice presentation, and my personal favorite, Futo Wacky made of tamago, oboro, unagi, kampyo, and crunchy tempura salad.
Their pizzas are small enough that I can eat a whole by myself. There’s the BBQ Chicken and the Bad Girl made of anchovies, red pepper flakes, and olives, and the Italian Sausage pizzeta.
I loved the Barbecued Angus Boneless Beef Riblets and the Cafe Rep’s Crispy Bagnet Pork Belly because of the ridiculously tender meat. And even though I’m not a huge fan of meatloaf, the Meatloaf with Gravy and Mash wasn’t too shabby either.
We got to try two of their pasta dishes: the Linguine Vongole and the BLT which stands for – wait for it – bacon, linguine, and truffle cream sauce. The truffle cream sauce is just a bonus. They already had me at bacon.
We were already deliriously full when they brought out the desserts. The Trailer Park Monte Cristo is a fancy name for deep-fried PB&J while you’ve got banana cupcake topped with vanilla ice cream for the Banana Foster Sundae. Heavenly.
It was insane! So much food, so little time. Universe Gastrolounge & Nightclub is a place of indulgence with all the truffle, the cheese, the cream, the dishes roasted, baked, and fried. Dining here is never a dull moment. If you ever wanna party, grab a few drinks but if that’s not your scene, Universe has plenty of yummy dishes to choose from.
2F Resorts World Manila
(+63 2) 917 550 8888
Gastrolounge: Mondays to Saturdays, 11:00am onwards
Nightclub: Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays
*All information as applicable as of January 2015.