Wabi-Sabi Noodle House & Vegetarian Grocery
The Collective (located at the back, right side corner)
7274 Malugay St., Brgy. San Antonio,
Makati City, Metro Manila
+63 918 962 2935
Wabi-Sabi on Facebook
Wabi-Sabi Noodle House was one of the vegetarian restaurants within Makati City, in metro Manila and also recommended by vegan Filipino food bloggers. I was in Manila for 10 days from Sept 18 – 28. The restaurant was located at the back, right side of The Collective which is a warehouse of shops, cafes and art galleries. My first impression of The Collective was an art community centre due to the wall graffiti. We went to Wabi-Sabi Noodle House twice. Keep in mind that the Wabi-Sabi Noodle House does not serve traditional Filipino cuisine if you are looking for that. It serves mostly vegetarian Chinese cuisine.
The older Filipino lady with short black hair that worked at Wabi-Sabi (photographed later in the post) believed in Taoism, a common religion in Taiwan. On my first visit, she asked where I came from, soon her face lit up due to the fact that I was a Taiwanese visitor. It was very rare to have a Taiwanese “vegan” to eat in a vegetarian restaurant in Manila. Such a lovely woman, we felt very welcome and comfortable at Wabi-Sabi Noodle House and it wasn’t even that busy in the mid afternoon (between 3-4pm). She ensured that our dishes were not made with egg and dairy. The restaurant is 100% vegetarian, and they can accommodate vegan dishes, usually without the use of eggs. Their menu & prices may change over time. Keep in the mind, these dishes were photographed from Sept 20 – 21, 2012. You never know if they may keep one of the dishes the same in the future.
A lovely Filipino lady who worked at Wabi-Sabi, is also a Taoist (a common religion in Taiwan).
This is the Collective House. It looked like a car garage warehouse at first.
That was what the Malugay Strett looked like.
Entrance of The Collective warehouse, an address signage I was amused by.
These are the hallways (at both ends) that you will walk toward Wabi-Sabi Noodle House.
Be warned, these photos were taken in the afternoon, with high ISO and without flash (I hate harsh photos). The restaurant was a bit low lit.
Here are vegan dishes I had at Wabi-Sabi Noodle House:
Steamed Buns (Regular Asado and Wheat Chay Pao) The wheat steamed bun with a bright green dot in the middle was only 5 PHP more than the regular steamed bun. The asado is like a sweet vegetarian barbecue filling (more of a char siu version) while the chay pao is a medley of sauteed vegetables in some savoury and sweet sauce.
Miso Ramen without boiled egg (110 PHP) I read some local blogs about their miso ramen dish and some commented about how it didn’t have much flavour. Fortunately I liked the miso ramen, usually it comes with a boiled egg and I did not request eggs in my dish. Most noodle soup dishes come with boiled eggs (I think). It was sort of like a Taiwanese ramen dish for me whereas it wasn’t not too greasy or filled with unnecessary spices. It is great for anyone who likes clear broth soups without too many things going on.
Fried Potstickers (50 PHP) It was a fairly average starter dish. I liked fried potstickers and enjoyed seeing that on the menu. Not many vegetarian restaurants or buffets in some countries (Thailand, Malaysia, or Taiwan) makes fried potstickers.
Harumaki (55 PHP) This is my first time to try harumaki (春巻き) which is a fried spring roll. It is a fried nori seaweed roll filled with banana blossom, soya meat, and bamboo. It tasted good with soy sauce and mustard.
Half of Bánh Mỳ Sandich (75 PHP) We had half bánh mỳ sandwich for the first time, then we went back the next day and had a whole sandwich (150 PHP), which wasn’t that appetizing for an individual. It is best to try half bánh mỳ and the other dishes, to taste the variety of them. I thought the first half sandwich tasted good, but the whole one has gotten soggy since it took longer to finish it. I could taste the pickled vegetables and the crispy soy barbecue meat in it. Very filling meal for sure!
This is what a whole bánh mỳ sandwich (150 PHP) looked like. We barely finished it. Definitely get a half next time!
Steamed Mushroom Shumai (55 PHP) I had vegan versions of shumai somewhere, probably in Australia. It’s nice to see that in Manila, too. The steamed mushroom shumai was a bit of letdown. It didn’t really bring a lot of flavour and I understand that it is hard to veganize a perfect shumai. I used to love shumai and dimsum goodies when I was a child.
Kuapao (65 PHP) This is also one of the common Taiwanese culinary delights. The filling was a glazed soy meat covered in sweet crushed peanuts and cilantro, and it tasted sweet (I felt like it needed more). I thought the Chinese steamed buns was a bit flat. A Taiwanese version is also known as “Guabao” (刮包) or Hamburger, which is usually made with a steamed white buns, sweet pork, pickled mustard, peanut powder, cilantro and coriander, sometimes with pork floss. It is amusing that the Filipinos called them “Kuapao.”
Shoyu Ramen (105 PHP) During my second time at Wabi-Sabi, I had to try one of their ramen noodles (of course without boiled eggs). The salty brown round pieces that floated in the ramen reminded me of the vegetarian Chicharrón that I tried in Mexico City, they are usually dry and very salty. They are also known as “Veggie Cracklings” at the restaurant. Wabi-Sabi Noodle House also serves vegetarian version of chicharon or pork cracklings as one of their starter dishes. It was amusing to see vegetarian chicharon in my ramen soup (a Mexican-Asian infusion). I really like the Wabi Sabi Noodle House’s noodle soup selections, that is probably why they named the restaurant, “Noodle House.”