New eats: Judy Ann Santos' Angrydobo is a huge hit

Leah C. Salterio

Posted at Aug 07 2019 07:11 AM

MANILA -- If you’re looking for a fine dining ambiance, Angrydobo, the newly opened restaurant of showbiz couple Judy Ann Santos and Ryan Agoncillo, is not the place to go to.

If you have a car and want to try out the restaurant, we can simply wish you good luck in finding a parking space.

If you do not wish to wait in line while ordering your food and eventually get a table, then go to another dining place and simply forget about Angrydobo.

Apparently, those are wrong decisions. In truth, you will be missing a lot of good food if you don’t try Angrydobo. Promise! 

Angrydobo is located along Taft Avenue in front of De La Salle University. Photo by author

Plastered on the ceiling are the words, Makakatikim ka sa akin! Photo by author

Warning written on the wall: LQ going on. Photo by author

Angrydobo Short Ribs. Photo by author

Angrydobo Classic Chicken Thigh. Photo by author

Angrydobo Tofu. Photo by author

Dark Chocolate Champsicle. Photo by author

Cream Cheese Flan. Photo by author

Chocnut Sans Rival. Photo by author

The place boasts of the adobo originally prepared by Santos when she and Agoncillo had a lovers’ quarrel in Los Angeles, 14 years ago. At that time, they were still very young lovers.

Interestingly, the story of that unforgettable quarrel was recalled by Agoncillo on the wall of Angrydobo and even on the menu, for every diner to know about.

One does not need to only look straight, to the sides or all around the four walls of Angrydobo upon entering the 35-seater restaurant. You also need to look up.

Plastered on the high, industrial ceiling are amusing quotes like “Makakatikim ka sa akin!” Or hugot lines like, “May toyo ka na naman!” Even the walls have ears. “LQ (lovers’ quarrel) going on,” wrote the writing on the wall.

The menu, of course, is a topic on its own. The hot bowl dishes are served in heart-shaped, wooden plates. The Angrydobo short ribs, tofu, classic pork belly or chicken thighs come with one’s choice of kangkong, gising gising or laing. Yummy!

The desserts, like the Dark Chocolate Champsicle, is actually Davao dark chocolate champorado in crunchy, dark, chocolate shell and tuyo powder. Meanwhile, the Cream Cheese Flan with deep-dried pinipig, comes with cute, heart-shaped plastic red spoons.

The Chocnut Sans Rival is served on a heart-shaped white paper. It is layers of choco peanut meringue, Chocnut butter cream and crumbled Chocnut.

For drinks, you can order Four Seasons, tamarind iced tea or the shakes (guyabano, watermelon, ripe mango or pineapple). Then, there’s the ever-reliable soda (no Coke Zero, though). 

The restaurant is self-service, so one has to fall in line and order from the counter. Then, the order is brought to your table by servers who are garbed in their black shirts with respective memes or hugot lines.

On peak days, like a Friday night dinner, waiting time can extend to as long as one hour. There are plastic benches lined up outside the restaurant on the left side before you enter. No worries, though. You will not wait under the sun or get drenched by the rain while placing your orders.

You can sit sown comfortably on the benches while looking at the menu and deciding on what to eat. The restaurant, that opened last May on the site of a former flower shop along Taft Avenue (across De La Salle University and near De La Salle-College of St. Benilde), was transformed into a neighborhood dining place.

On the weekday lunch hour we visited, award-winning director Jose Javier Reyes was one of the customers. He is apparently a regular face on Wednesdays in the restaurant, since he has classes at La Salle, where he teaches directing and filmmaking.

Reyes, however, didn’t have to wait in line just to eat. “That’s power,” he smilingly said. “Of knowing the owners,” he added, referring to Santos and Agoncillo, whom he directed in the blockbuster romantic-comedy, “Kasal, Kasali, Kasalo” (2006) and it’s highly successful sequel, “Sakal, Sakali, Saklolo” (2007). The films were shown even the two tied the knot.

Barely three months after its opening, Angrydobo undoubtedly remains a hit, that even non-Manila residents go all the way to Taft Avenue to have a taste of the much talked-about menu prepared by Santos.