A few years ago, my brother took me to this steak place in Eastwood, it was called Hot Racks. I forgot what I had ordered but I remember clearly ordering a very sumptuous steak with its juices oozing out of every slice. Since then, I have encountered steaks every now and then and I have gotten very fond of having it when the occasion merits it. Last night, I was once again lucky enough to go out with Tricia and have a re-taste of Rap in Taft Avenue.
Rap: Steaks and Cakes, just beside SEx (Sinangag Express), is a casual restaurant for students looking to liven up their meals with something extra special. Their menu boasts of an all-day breakfast option, and on the obverse their steak/grilled food options. I have been to Rap's twice, the first time I tried out their T-bone steak and last night I had their porterhouse steak, both of which are the restaurant's bestsellers. But on the oft chance that you are feeling a little adventurous, there are others with equally fanciful names: fillet mignon, bordelaise marrow sauce, Angus rib eye. Salisbury steak; and some Filipino favorites like: liempo, salpicao and crispy pata.
The reason why I like ordering their steaks and nothing else is simply the chance to douse (and drown) my rice and vegetables in Rap's signature steak sauce and gravy. The steak sauce is an enhanced version of the classical Worcestershire sauce with a hint of the all-American favorite, A1 steak sauce. On the other hand, the restaurant's unlimited gravy was delicious, more butter than gravy, the sauce will not only add a little flavor to the meal but also shoot up your BP or cholesterol count. Creamy, thick and perfect with the signature sauce, I used the gravy to drown my garlic rice and vegetables, it helped to make the meal a little more interesting.
Going to Rap's twice, I have never been let down by their cooking, when I had the T-bone and Porterhouse in medium, it came to me in medium with barely any hint of red. I wasn't disappointed with the size of the steak as well, when the menu says large, the place makes sure you get a large sized steak. Oftentimes the problem with affordable or casual steak places are their steaks, oftentimes I have been duped with steaks having more fat than meat, or more bone than meat. But in this case, Rap's once again did not disappoint by serving a wonderfully cut porterhouse steak with small sizes of fat on the side and a piece of bone that did not get in the way of my dining experience. With or without the steak sauce and the gravy, my meal was already perfect. The steak was seasoned well, spiced and salted just the right way. The steak was cooked well, no tough or gamey parts that made it undesirable to eat.
Apart from the steak, no meal wouldn't be complete without something sweet, Tricia ordered a slice of their brazo de mercedes. Now I am not really a fan of this airy custard-like cake but the simple white and yellow colors were appealing. The meringue was light, soft and had a marshmallow-like texture to it, which was great since I don't think I could have handled something heavy for dessert. On the other hand, the custard was simple and not too sweet as I had thought it would, I was half waiting for the yema or at least the pastillas flavor to come in, but it never did. Nevertheless, the cake is a must-try, especially if you aren't particularly fond of walking to the Starbucks's across the street in Taft.
It may not be fancy or high class, it may not have the ambiance of a romantic restaurant, but Rap's does it job by offering affordable and delicious steaks for its visitors. It's a great place to unwind and just indulge or reward yourself with a quiet place to eat and relax.
Rap: Steaks and Cakes is located at 875 Dagonoy Street, just beside Sinangag Express in Taft Avenue. Manila.
My name is Alfonso your nerdy history teacher, bookworm and lover of all things cultural and exciting. You can find me in a weekend market, in a bookshop, or eating in Japanese restos during the weekends.