Tuesday, August 9, 2016


There is a famous place at the corner of N.S. Amoranto (famously known as Retiro) and Dr. Alejos Sts. where the red and white walls are shabbily faded and the bright orange bowls are readily exposed for individuals near and far. It’s not the most glamorous of places to eat at—far from it, to be honest—but the thought of heritage wins every time.

The Original Pares Mami House or sometimes known by the oldies as “Pares Retiro” is an antique on its own. Famous for being cheap and true to its roots, the old restaurant is the place to be if you want to experience excellent Pares-- I finally went to the famous place after attending an event at Bonifacio High Street.

After driving for hours to reach the destination, I had to find a way to miraculously secure a parking spot. It’s here where the real Pares journey begins. My eyes glimmer with excitement as I finally see the old restaurant- and man! was it graciously packed with a lot of folks.

Forget getting a table, it’s a luxury to get one. What you do is wait behind the person sitting on a bar stool. The switch is fast and you have precious minutes to snug on the counter, to order, to inhale the famous Pares, to eat, to pay, and to leave. There is no room for long chit-chats here, not when there’s a hungry old lady looking at you with bloodshot eyes (which happened to me, by the way). It’s definitely a crazy busy place and it’s epic.

Service here is extremely fast and transactions are slick. It seems that the red-clad waiters have that keen clairvoyance on what you want. You'll have your steaming hot Pares in more or less five minutes. It's very much needed since the old restaurant is packed most of the time. 

Personally, I think one of the best things in life is budget-friendly food. Well enough, The Original Pares Mami House delivers smoothly in affordability and taste. For Php 85, you get to experience excellent straight-up Pares. 

I had the pleasure to try out the other affordable dishes of The Original Pares Mami House like Halo Ulam (a combination of beef cubes and isaw), Beef Mami, and Steamed Siomai-- which are all budget-friendly (just how I like it).

I’m not a food critic of some sorts nor am I gifted with a golden tongue, but I can say that the Beef Pares was extremely good. Better than what I expected. The rich brown sauce and the tender beef cubes mix well with the garlic rice (you can add a dash of chilli sauce for more excitement). It’s like years of storytelling came crashing down my taste buds ending with an encore aftertaste; as if the history pages of The Original Pares Mami House flipped as I utter the words “So the stories are true then”. 

Overall, The Original Pares Mami House is the place to be if you want affordable meals with extremely fast service and an essence of heritage in-between.

I’ll definitely be back.