The smell of freshly baked bread, for most people, is integral to visions of early morning and a hot breakfast. If one smells the fragrance of a hot loaf at sundown, one just might be in the vicinity of Baker Brothers, a tiny bakery at the front of the Cathouse Bar on Doña Carmen Street in Poblacion, Makati. Unlike other bakeries, Baker Brothers is open only from 5pm onwards, making it perfect for night owls, or those who simply do not want to be up at the crack of dawn just to fetch a fresh loaf or two.
We might have passed up on this place had it not been for a sign pointing us to artisan pizzas and freshly baked bread. As usual, where our curiosity leads, the stomach soon follows. It was just as well that when we got here after work on a weekday, it was not quite time for the dinner rush, thus allowing us to peruse the menu and consider our orders. All the pizza selections seemed enticing (especially the Ultimate pizza with Gorgonzola cheese and anchovies), but we eventually decided on the BB’s Calzone filled with cheese, ham and olives, as well as a steak and kidney pie.
Now our past experiences with calzones had involved middling portions either with a too thick crust, or overstuffed with cheese. This calzone at Baker Brothers was another story altogether: this was a 14 -inch pizza folded in half, served warm with a generous basil garnish. While Lee and I were still wondering how to tackle this delicious behemoth, our steak and kidney pie was brought out. At first glance, it appeared to be just like any other pot pie, comprised of flaky puff pastry. When we cut into it, we were treated to the unmistakable fragrance of gravy and spices, and meat so tender that it easily fell apart. Each bite was a combination of the hearty flavors of the steak and kidneys, as well as the more delicate hints of pepper in the gravy.
The only thing that was missing? A cold pint of beer to wash all of this down (but alas, we have eschewed alcoholic beverages a long time ago).
Despite the bare-bones dining area and occasional distractions from the TV on the porch, our dinner was enjoyable thanks to the good food and accommodating service. This is one place to consider for a meal before a night shift, or at the very beginning of a pub crawl throughout the labyrinth of Poblacion. If one’s bender doesn’t go all that well, then Bakers Brothers has a great selection of comfort foods to cap off the evening (or early morning).
The Food Score: 5/5: We’ve been converted to eating meat pies thanks to this place. The portions are delicious, ample, and yet not overpowering to more delicate palates.
Ambiance/Service Score: 3/5: The dining area is open to the street and rather noisy, thanks to the TV and the adjacent bars, so this may be off-putting to diners wanting a quiet evening. However the service is excellent, and the food is served in a timely fashion and still piping hot from the oven.
GERD Score: 3/5: As things are, the food here is meant to be shared because a single order is too large for a single person. And the presence of cheese on the pizzas can be a trigger for some people with heartburn. That said, as long as one shares the meal and minimizes the trigger intake, the meal here can still be enjoyable.
Epilepsy Score: 3.5/5: The pizza selections are friendly in the sense that one can pick ingredients for pizzas. As for the pies, there is always the caveat of not knowing the exact blend of ingredients and spices used, thus some diners may need to take precautions. Though the place is in cooperation with a bar, there are still fruit juices and water available for hydration.
Team Glasses Score: 3.5/5: This is not a place for healthy eating, or a glamorous night out. However this definitely a place to go for a hearty dish, or if one just ones something fresh out of the oven at late hours.