Remember this 'Tree'-A A +A
Friday, November 2, 2012
BEFORE the advent of malls, there were only a few places for a light lunch or a heavy merienda in the city. One of these was Yum Yum Tree in Rustan’s along Mango Ave. It was a favorite meeting and eating place, especially for those with children in the nearby schools. When it lost its lease, Rustan’s, the grocery, moved to Banawa, but without YumYum Tree. Just recently, when this grocery was expanded and renovated, it put back Yum Yum Tree and all the favorites are back, plus some.
There’s all-day breakfast like cornsilog, longsilog, tapsilog, tosilog; appetizers including calamares, chicharon and shrimp okoy while the salad entrees include the all-time favorite chicken macaroni. For soups there are tinolang manok and sinigang na bangus sa miso. There’s still lumpia na sariwa, except this time it uses singkamas instead of ubod. New in the vegetable entrée is pinakbet with bagnet (bagnet is the Ilocano lechon kawali); you can also have a dry version, pinakbet rice.
The place has many choices in its menu, for a complete lunch or dinner. For meat and poultry, there are beef salpicao, beef steak Tagalog, breaded pork chop, kare-kare, lumpiang Shanghai, chicken fillet with mushroom sauce and beef kaldereta while its seafood offerings include camaron rebosado and grilled bangus belly. There are sizzlers, too, like hamburger steak and barbecue spareribs with Java rice.
As for noodles, it still has the classic pancit palabok and spaghetti with meat balls, still as delicious as in the old Yum Yum Tree. For merienda, there are several sandwiches including the classic clubhouse, chili cheese dog and, of course, there’s arroz caldo, this time with a twist: accompanied by a side dish of tokwa at baboy in a soy-vinegar dressing. Yum! Yum! This one is really great comfort food.
No meal is complete without dessert, and so Yum Yum Tree has mais con hielo, brownie a la mode, leche flan, sago’t gulaman and halo-halo special. The halo-halo is not quite like that of the old Yum Yum Tree because it does not include an ice cream scoop though, of course, one can always ask for a scoop of your favorite flavor ice cream added to the concoction.
Yum Yum Tree is located inside Rustan’s Banawa, at the opposite end of its entrance.
It’s a cozy, well-lighted place away from the grocery shopping traffic, but near enough to see who’s there, one of whom may just be a friend. Or one can just concentrate on the food, enjoy the arroz caldo, which is really great, the calamares, which are soft and chewy. The pancit palabok takes one back to a gentler-paced Cebu while the pinakbet rice is a welcome new taste treat.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on November 03, 2012.