Second in a series of reviews of the restaurants at Solaire. Waterside Restobar is reviewed here:
Finestra, located in the Solaire hotel Casino in Paranaque, is our new favorite fine dining spot for Italian food here in the Philippines, beating out our previous favorite Italian spot, Balducci over at The Shops at Serendra in Bonifacio Global City (BGC). And in our opinion, Finestra is also a clear winner over Prego Ristorante Italiano at City of Dreams.
The room at Finestra is open and airy, with a tasteful interior and diffuse lighting that makes for a romantic setting:
Finestra also has a bar area with a good-sized selection of wines:
As we sat down, we started with a bottle of Pellegrino, which was offered gratis:
After we placed our order we were also offered a gratis aperitif from the bar, which helped to put us in a good mood to enjoy our meal:
Our complimentary bread basket had a variety of different breads - a cheese bread, some ciabatta, some bread sticks, and a dark rye, which were served with dipping trays of olive oil, balsamic, and some pesto, along with another tiny appetizer on a separate tray:
For our appetizer, we selected the Calamari Fritti (900p), which were amazingly tender and not at all chewy like most of the calamari we eat. They were breaded in focaccia, and served with pine nuts, capers, red chili and heirloom tomatoes that had a deep flavor:
Next up, we ordered the Hand Crafted Margheritta Flat Bread (500p), which was made with tomato, basil, fresh mozzarella, and extra virgin olive oil. We only had a few pieces to save room for our mains, but the crust was perfect and the combination of flavors was just right:
With our mains, we enjoyed two glasses of Pinot Noir "Special Reserve", Gerard Bertrand, from the South of France (890p at 445p ea.):
For our first main, we selected the Fresh Handcrafted Penne Pasta with Seared Grade 'A' Yellowfin Tuna (980p), which was served with olives, chili, and wild oregano in a light tomato sauce. The tuna tasted fresh and was cooked to perfection so that it was still moist and flaked off easily onto our forks:
For our next main, we selected the Chicken Cacciatore (1,250p), which had the most amazing slow-cooked organic chicken, in a bed of tomatoes, caramelized onions, and baby vegetables, and came with a side of mashed potatoes. There were so many different flavors all complementing each other in this dish, it was very tasty:
For dessert, we went with our traditional Italian favorite, Tiramisu (250p), to which we added a glass of Bottega Gianduja (290p), which had a chocolate flavor. The Tiramisu was artfully plated with some biscotti and topped with chocolate shavings. And inside, the tiramisu had delectable chunks of cake that were infused with additional flavor:
After dessert, we were offered our choice of thin mints or chocolates from a case of various flavors. We wisely chose to split one of the thin mints, rather than risking me eating the entire thin mint by myself.
Our server Harold was friendly and knowledgeable about the menu, and made sure everything was right with our meal. We also met the floor manager Ashley, who made sure we enjoyed our experience.
Our total bill was 5,511 pesos, which included a 451 peso service charge:
The wine menu (just the by-the-glass section):
The main menu:
The dessert menu: