After the extravagant spending and eating of the holidays, it’s back to work with as lean a meal allowance as possible. Can you get a good meal for, say, 50 pesos? Bogchinoypi was started to answer that question. And to find possible solutions like Poochini’s.
With a niche carved out of the Valero parking building, I expected higher prices than a jollijeep. They have seats after all. And bespoke at that – orange, with cut-out carrots like the one on their logo. Don’t expect to get your bum on any of them though, unless you come way before or well after the lunch rush hour. With only three sets of tables and its popularity because of the jollijeep prices, your best bet at lunchtime is take out.
Poochini’s set-up is carinderia-style. But rather than huge, stainless casseroles, they have food warmers. So lunch almost seems like a wedding buffet gone wild. Attendants stand behind the long table of warmers, while diners come up to the table and swarm around.
If there’s no free spot right in front of the table, stand behind someone and wait patiently. When he or she’s done, take his/her place and wait for an attendant to pay attention to you. Once one does, point out the viands you want and she’ll ladel them out for you. It’s chaos, but its organized. Typically Filipino, no?
The great thing about Poochini’s is that there’s lots to choose from. I’d say they easily have twice, even thrice the number of choices you’ll get at a Jollijeep. Just today, I counted 24 warmers of different viands on the table.
Plus, despite the jollijeep prices, their servings are more generous. And I guess because of the presentation, you’ll feel more confident about how sanitary your food is.
I usually come in for staples like their thick monggo (10 pesos), their very tasty, crunchy squid (30 pesos) or tokwa in black bean sauce (30 pesos). But officemates swear by their adobo (30 pesos), caldereta (30 pesos), pata tim (30 pesos) and sinigang (30 pesos). Biko lovers will be glad to know they always have a few slices on hand. Leche flan seems to frequently grace the table too.
They have a good range of choices for pork, beef, chicken and, important for me, veggies. Chances are, if you’re craving for a specific pinoy dish, they have it. And it’s bound to be truly satisfying too.
Poochini’s is along Valero st., along the line of Valero parking building shops like Bugong (another favorite!) and Mercury Drug. Open til 9pm, sometimes even later.
p.s. don’t forget to claim your free broth!