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Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken, a Portuguese Restaurant in Kapitolyo, Pasig City

Tuesday, June 03, 2014
Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken is a Portuguese Restaurant that recently joined the ever growing line of restaurants and eateries in Kapitolyo, Pasig City. Specializing in Portuguese cuisine specifically piri piri chicken which recipe can be traced back from previous generations of the owner chef Joao Braquinho, Gostoso Piri-Piri Chicken Restaurant is a new addition to few Portuguese restaurants here in Manila.

Gostoso which means "delicious" in Portuguese is apropos in describing this delicious chicken dish which uses piri piri, more popularly known as bird's eye chili, for its marinade. 

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Chef Joao's Piri Piri Chicken is not really new in the market. He started as one of food purveyors in weekend food markets in Manila dishing out his take on traditional Portuguese food. People started getting acquainted with chef Joao's piri-piri chicken and even raved about it. Come 2014, chef Joao alongside other friends put up the very first branch of Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo.

Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken's charm lies on the unequivocal passion for further introducing Portuguese cuisine to Filipino palate. Heirloom recipe maybe slightly altered to suit to our liking, but still, it is deeply rooted from the culture it originates from. 

Photo Interior of Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo

Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken's branch in Kapitolyo possess an industrial look peppered with signage pertaining to the history on how Portuguese discover piri piri and how they fell in love with this red berry. tables are made of wood while the chairs are combination of wood and plastics. LCD monitors showing Gostoso's menu are affixed at the top part of the counter where customers may place their orders.

Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo, Interior Shot

The success of this well-loved piri piri chicken recipe also relies on the sauces, of which there are two kinds, that the chicken is meant to be eaten with. A poster about it is plastered on a wall serves as a guide on how to enjoy piri piri chicken with the sauce aptly tagged as "awesome sauce."

Awesome Sauce at Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo

The first sauce is called the mild piri piri sauce which color reminded of a crimson sunset. While it is made with mashed piri piri with olive oil, it does not have the spicy kick expected from a chili. Not a single thread of kick. The other one however boasts of the kind of spiciness level that could slap you in the face, the original piri piri sauce. The chili seeds which are very apparent in every spoonful must take credit to the downright spiciness that this sauce is known for. 

These two sauces are meant to be mixed based on the instruction on the poster. But if spicy food is not your thing, you may very well settle for the mild sauce and still enjoy the chicken. Trust me on this. It came as a surprise that I ended up liking the mild piri piri sauce too much, I could swim on it.

Piri Piri Sauce at Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo

Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken's menu is still on bare minimum having just opened February of this year. But these rather limited choices are meticulously developed and executed well that one may think there really isn't a need to overwhelm diners with extensive menu just to please them. I was told however that they are still coming up with handful of dishes soon to be added on their menu.

Gostoso Portuguese Restaurant in Kapitolyo Pasig

Their line of appetizers comprised of a soup, pie pockets, fries, and the best seller Coxinha (Php140). Similar to a potato croquette, Coxinha is a known Brazilian street snack filled with shredded chicken, minced bell pepper, and cream filling. Served with mild piri piri sauce, Conxinha has this downright savory flair to it with the taste of the bell pepper emerging to be victorious as the main flavor profile, but not overwhelmingly so. 

Coxinha Potato Balls at Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo

Main dishes at Gostoso which primarily comprised of three varieties ~ chicken, pork, and shrimp can be had ala carte or through their Gostoso platter offerings. The prices of the ala carte ranges from Php120 to Php500. Gostoso Platter on the other hand ranges from Php380 to Php995 depending on the variety and serving portions. Smart way to go, if one wishes to have a taste of everything is the platter. 

Gostos Piri Piri Chicken Platter

During our visit, we had the All Three Gostoso Platter (Php995). This platter is good for 3 to 4 persons and it includes:

Half Piri Piri Chicken

Slab of Pork
2 Shrimp Skewers
3 Olive Rice
3 Side Dishes

The photo below didn't do justice on how big the serving portion was, because to be honest, it was enormous.

All Three Gostoso Platter at Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo

The piri piri chicken at Gostoso is cooked two way; slow cooking and fast cooking. The chicken is slow roasted in an hour or so through a custom built machine resembling that of a meat smoker. After that, it is then grilled fast in an open-fire griller just to achieve a beautiful charred skin. This process is done in order for the flavor to penetrate every morsel of the chicken meat without drying it up in the process.

Prior to having my first taste of the piri piri chicken, I was half expecting to be overwhelmed with the explosive chili flavor I was led to believe that a piri piri chicken should have. Fortunately, this piri-piri chicken did not assault my senses violently. It does have that distinct taste of piri piri but I deem it tasted herbaceous and savory more than anything. The meat was moist and tender, while the skin was slightly crisp and flavorful. I figured it is already good on its own, but the addition of the piri piri sauce, albeit mild gave it a depth in flavor.

Gostoso Chicken Piri Piri

The piri piri chicken may be the star of the restaurant, but not to be missed is Porco Gostoso. This prime pork rib is also cook in the same manner as the chicken, only it is roasted for 4 hours in a traditional oven instead of the customized meat smoker. The slow cooking process made this slab of pork not just flavorful but tender as well. I am a big fan of pork dishes, this one is not an exception.

Porco Gostos at Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo

The Espeto De Gambas does not call for slow cooking process just like the usual grilled shrimp. It is grilled for couple of minutes on each side making it plump and juicy as it is. The piri piri sauce is a great addition to these skewers otherwise you will feel like you are just eating the usual shrimp, which is not to say that it wouldn't be enjoyable. Still, the sauce will elevate the experience several notch higher.

Espeto De Gambas at Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo

I deem this platter demonstrate a fine balance of protein and flavor which aims to send chef Joao's message across regarding the kind of flavor profile that a Portuguese cuisine is proud of.

Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo

To complete the All Three Gostoso Platter, we were served with 3 heaping bowl of Olive Rice and 3 Side dishes.

This I must say; I have high respect for restaurants which well execution of food does not just end on the mains but extends to the side dishes which more often than not, neglected and not given much attention to. Side dishes are meant to compliment the main dish. Sadly, I have been to restaurants which treats side dishes as mere decoration.

Gostoso earned my respect in that league.

Olive Rice and Side Dishes at Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo

The creamed spinach is nothing short of amazing. The ratio of spinach to cream strikes a fine balance. Although it is a traditional accompaniment to steak dish, it can also do wonders when eaten with other meat especially that of porco. The potato gratin on the other hand is a comforting dish which can be a meal in itself. The only wrong thing about it is that it is destined to be a side dish thus, a larger serving portion is nearly impossible unless you order more than one serving of it.

Creamed Spinach and Potato Gratin at Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo

The creamed corn can be easily passed off as your usual  whole kernel buttered corn at a glance since the cream usually settles at the bottom of the bowl. But once you dig in and incorporate the cream, it was a whole new experience. The Olive rice is good eaten as it is since the glaring flavor of olive is very apparent. Try mixing it with the mild piri piri sauce and you will be in for a different rice treat with can go perfectly well with any of the three main dish.

Creamed Corn and Olive Rice at Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo

We had a carafe of Gostoso de Tea (Php180) for our drinks which is Gostoso's own rendition of brewed chilled tea. I enjoyed it too much since it was nothing like the commercialized iced tea that most restaurants serve. Yet, as one of the quirky signage advised, "Do Not Chicken Out", if you are in for a Portuguese gastronomic experience, might as well pair your food with Super Bock Beer and Portuguese wines that Gostoso also carries in lieu of the local beers that majority of the restaurants in Kapitolyo offer.

Super Bock Beer and Portuguese Wines at Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo

There aren't many Portuguese restaurants here in Manila and having Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken joined the wonderful landscape of our restaurant scene is a welcome change. Their utmost respect to Portuguese cuisine is deeply rooted that only slight alteration was made just to suit the palate of the culture they are catering to. The same respect goes to the previous generations of chef Joao's family where the recipe of piri piri chicken originated from, hence, it is always made with love. And when it comes to serving food to people, love is always, always a good thing.

Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken in Kapitolyo, Pasig City Philippines

Gostoso Piri Piri Chicken
51B East Capitol Drive,
Kapitolyo, Pasig City.
Contact no.: 477-7330
Delivery: 212-1212
Facebook: /ilovegostoso
Twitter: @gostosopiripiri
Instagram: @gostosopiripiri

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