Who Needs Drama? | Planet Grapes Dinner

6:20:00 PM

I was blessed enough to be invited to try the new "soft opening" menu of Planet Grapes in its newest branch in Shangri-la Mall. I was also lucky enough to bring some of my closest friends to share in this new experience.

Now don't get me wrong, I love a good glass of wine. I don't, however, know much about it. I used to think that there was just white and red, dessert and sharp, cheap and good quality. I was happy that through this experience, my knowledge of wine has grown and I have learned to appreciate it even more.
The Place

With its beautiful interiors and gorgeous lighting, one would find this place very intimidating (I know I did) but with their catchy phrase "Wine without the drama" I couldn't help but be more at ease as I entered the restaurant.

The Wine

The first thing that caught my eye were the cute 'vending machine type' wine dispensers or as they refer to it, the Italian enomatic machines (sosyal noh??). This was the selling point for me because it allows customers to try their wines in Sip glasses, as well as Half and Full options.

Meaning, if you want a night wherein you can try 4 different kinds of wine without having to commit to a full glass for each, you can!

How it works is the most fun part. You're given a prepaid card (which is reloadable) and you place it into the machine (you can choose between the white and red wine machines) and then you tip your glass in the dispenser, and tap the screen for the wine you want (this is where you can choose between the sip glass, half glass or full glass) and it's that easy! So for those that have friends that love wine and trying out new kinds, this is the perfect gift!

Nico, Gaby, Mikko and I had a blast learning how to work the machines as well as try the different kinds of wine we were going to have with our meals.

We were also assigned Karen, one of the servers and wine experts over at Planet Grapes. She was not only super accommodating, but SUPER MEGA (as in WOW) knowledgeable of wine and all the different pairings you can have with it. She encouraged me that even if I was planning to have meat that night, I shouldn't limit myself to just having it with red wine. So I took the plunge and had white wine instead! #daredevilgrandma
The Food

The food... oh the glorious food... If you thought the WINE was the star of the show over at Planet Grapes, the food is definitely up there as well!

What I loved most about the menu was that even if it was smaller than other establishments, each dish sounded soooo comforting and delicious. It's brilliant how Planet Grapes was able to merge together really good, great quality wine (which most think only go with fancy dishes) with "street-comfort food" meals. They want to make their guests see, that you don't need some fancy steak or lobster with your wine. You can have something as simple as their Siu Mai or Balut while out friends or eve

What we Ordered
For starters with our wines, we had their Spicy Sisho Shrimp, Potato Chips with Truffle and Cheese Plate

The spicy Sisho Shrimp reminded me of the cheese stick type dish you get from most restaurants... BUT SO MUCH BETTER. Not only did it have a pretty big piece of shrimp inside, but it was spicy and refreshing all at the same time! It was definitely a good start to the night and is something I will be ordering again.

These potato chips with truffle... where do I even begin? Truffles and Potatoes. Crunch in every bite. Salty yet sweet. Overall, AN ANGEL IN THE MOUTH. I basically ate half of the tin (sorry Gab, Nics and Miks!)

This was the star of the show in the starters department, I gotta say. Planet Grapes takes the concept of a cheese plate on another level. With all these different types of cheese, warm freshly made bread and a cute little bowl of trail mix, this is indeed the best friend of any wine lover.

The Mains

For our mains Nics chose the Kitayama Rib-eye Steak with Adobo rice (as suggested by Karen- more on that later), Mikko and Gaby got one order each of the Grilled Trio Prawns with Fresh Mixed Salad and Mashed Potato (since they had given up meat for Lent- wrong timing guys!) and I went for something I normally never order- the Organic BBQ Pork Spare Ribs with adobo rice.

First of all, let me just say that the serving size of each dish went BEYOND my expectations. Each dish was not only presented beautifully, but was also very filling! When I asked Gaby and Mikko about the prawns they were very happy, stating that even if they had given meat up for lent, the dish made up for it all. And as for Nico's steak? Well, for a 6"4 athlete, he had a pretty filled up belly. He even gave me some of the steak to try (which is SUPER rare!)

Second, my spare ribs. Let's take a moment to soak in those pictures I just posted. Are you good? Ready? Okay. I don't normally EVER order ribs. I just don't. You can as anyone that knows me (even Nics was shocked that I ordered it) I really don't ever crave nor fancy a plate of ribs. But the organic pork BBQ ribs of Planet Grapes made me a CONVERT. They were perfectly smoked, it melted in my mouth, fell off of the bones and was generously coated in the rich, delicious BBQ sauce. I died and went to spare ribs heaven. It was THAT good! So for all those that are into the more "meaty" options with your wine- they've got you covered!

Of course dinner wouldn't be complete without a few desserts. Yeahp, dessertS. As per Karen's suggestion, we tried the Turon Trilogy and the Choco Collision. This was a good combination as we were able to sample both the fruity type of dessert they offered, as well as the most decadently chocolate dessert possible.

Being a natural sweet tooth, I was more excited to try the chocolate cake over the turon. But when they both arrived, I knew I was going to love them both equally. The Turon Trilogy came with the thickest langka sauce that tasted more like a caramel (I personally don't like langka so this was a great surprise!) and the Chocolate Collision was the most molten chocolate cake, topped with the perfect amount of vanilla ice cream. YUMMMM.

Rich Kids of Beverly Hills Pose! HAHA
Overall, we were beyond happy with the service, ambiance and food over at Planet Grapes. Not only have I learned not to be intimidated by wine and its pairings, but I've learned that drinking wine is really more of an experience- and it is an experience best shared with friends. Planet Grapes was able to teach me a whole lot more about wine as well as make it more relatable, as well as casual for us 20 somethings.

Wanna win P2,000 worth of GCs for a trip to Planet Grapes with your friends? Watch out for the contest mechanics on my Instagram tomorrow, March 13! :)

Don't forget to follow Planet Grapes for more updates and awesomeness!

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Thanks for reading my entry! I hope you enjoyed it. :)