I made sure Mr. Jones was on my list of restaurants to visit during a recent trip to Manila. Friends raved about their beef tapa, burgers, and milkshakes. They sang praises for the truffled mac n’cheese and challah french toast and I would drool every time someone posted a photo online. I knew I had to go.
Fortunately we had friends who were fanatics and knew the menu well. Unfortunately, we each only had one digestive system so we couldn’t order everything I wanted to try.
The evening began with a Banana Cream Pie Milkshake which reminded me of a liquified Magnolia Banana Pudding. Not too sweet and made with love. I was too eager to consume it that it didn’t live long enough for a photo, but there was more in Mr. Jones’ arsenal to cover.
The main reason I made sure to go to Mr. Jones was for their famous Tapa and Garlic overload, a fancy take on the Filipino breakfast tapsilog, a combination of air-dried beef, fried rice, and sunny-side eggs. Usually considered a budget meal, Mr. Jones’ take on it is 2-4 times more costly than its fast food counterpart, and not because of the restaurant’s venue and ambiance. Mr. Jones makes their tapa from Yakiniku cut US Ribcap Beef, and the result is the most generous serving of beef you’ll ever have on a breakfast plate, and could quite possibly be the most tender pieces of meat you’ll ever have in the Philippines. You get what you pay for.
Mr. Jones’ Green Salad’s entry on their menu says, “For our healthy friends” and it was good to have that option to assuage our guilt. I loved the freshness of the salad and how it was not drenched in dressing.
The Truffled Mac N’ Cheese, also a crowd favorite, arrives at your table wafting with truffle aromas. It’s perfectly seasoned and rich with meaty flavor which would make this dish suitable as a last meal on death row. Did I mention all plates are large enough to share? This is an American diner, after all.
Mr. Jones is the brainchild of Switzerland-trained Martin Wisniewski of Raintree Restaurants, and is apparently very popular with the expats in Manila because of their authentic American fare. I especially liked the decor of the restaurant, the red leather booth seats and the 70s diner feel. It reminded me of this dive diner my sister took me to as a child. It was in Ermita’s red light district, a place called Rosie’s Diner, where I had my first bowl of diner chili topped with cheese. I hope Mr. Jones is giving Filipinos that same feeling I had at Rosie’s, sighing in delight of comfort food.
G/L Greenbelt 5, Makati City
Tel. No. (02)501-3682 to 83