Food

The Lure of Lemuria is Food, Lots of Wine, and Dedicated Service

At Lemuria, expect well-paired food and wine, as well as top-notch service.
IMAGE Lemuria Restaurant & Wine Bar
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In her book, The Secret Doctrine, 17th-century Russian theosophist Helena Blavatsky wrote of the lost continent of Lemuria: "Lemuria, which served as the cradle of the Third Root-Race, not only embraced a vast area in the Pacific and Indian Oceans, but extended in the shape of a horse-shoe past Madagascar, round South Africa (then a mere fragment in process of formation), through the Atlantic up to Norway."

In the same way, Blavatsky's legend has piqued the curiosities of generations of occult scientists and conspiracy theorists, Lemuria Gourmet Restaurant, an almost mythical establishment hidden in a heritage home in Quezon City’s Horseshoe Village, has been inspiring adventurous gourmands and wine enthusiasts for over 13 years.

LOST WORLD: Named after the fabled lost continent, Lemuria has been a below-the-radar wine-and-dine establishment in Quezon City’s residential district. Its new iteration on BGC’s McKinley Parkway, however, begs old and new patrons alike to rediscover
Photo by Lemuria Restaurant & Wine Bar.
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STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN: With hundreds of individual bottles to choose from, the main attraction at Lemuria is its wine choices, as the well-stocked cellar greets its diners upon entry however, begs old and new patrons alike to rediscover
Photo by Lemuria Restaurant & Wine Bar.

Now, its founders, Klaus and Kitt Schroeder, noted for bringing in fine continental wines in the country under the Brumms banner, are letting more people in on the restaurant's secret by partnering with the Center for Culinary Arts Manila.

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At Lemuria Restaurant and Wine Bar in Bonifacio Global City, the pairing of French-Mediterranean dishes with stellar cellar selections, an experience once reserved for discerning diners and the dutiful dating crowd, has been unveiled to a wider audience.

"I think Lemuria has always been known for quality produce, but what we want to [emphasize] is more of its wine culturejust really enjoying a meal with a lot of wine, a lot of good conversation, and food as a side," shares its new captain, Bea Trinidad as she reveals the restaurant’s centerpiece, the cellar at the bottom of the stairwell, stocked with French, Italian, and German wines.

The 29-year-old is the daughter of Badjie Trinidad, the illustrious owner of Cravings, CCA Manila’s parent company. In 1996, CCA Manila became the Philippines’ first culinary institution, and has since produced celebrity chefs such as JP Anglo, Peter Ison, and Tristan Encarnacion. Now, Lemuria becomes its premier test kitchen for vino-approved small plates and tasting menus.

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HIDDEN NOOK: Lemuria Restaurant and Wine Bar’s Fleur de Lys room is the perfect niche to enjoy a vino-inebriated full-course dinner with family, friends, or business associates.
Photo by Lemuria Restaurant & Wine Bar.

Its inaugural dinner, by Lemuria BGC resident chef, Katrina Torres, featured a six-course menu of soft-shell crab, Lemuria Signature Salad, Mushroom and Gruyere Soup, Fruits de Mer, Beef Bourguignon, and the delicate strawberry and mango-tinged Lemuria Cheesecake.

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"What we want is for people to get lost in the creativity of the food," Trinidad shares. "Expect a lot more of craziness on the plate, a lot more different flavors and ingredients that they are not used to. In some sense, here, you’re lost in a restaurant, and not in some big city like BGC."

Photo by Lemuria Restaurant & Wine Bar.
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Trinidad also underlines Lemuria’s strategy of complementing good food and good wine with exceptional service as a way to sharpen the skills of CCA Manila students. "For me, Lemuria is a playground for our students," she says while taking a sip of a particularly crisp and tart Riesling. "I think celebrity chefs are really everywhere right now in the private dining scene. But, for me, Lemuria is a place for students to practice real-world restaurant life, which is a lot of fun, a lot of work, and long hours."

This training is something she went through herself. Trinidad honed her hospitality skills in Melbourne, studying and then working in the Australian city for eight years. It was also here where she opened her first restaurant, Maya Tequila Bar, and worked as a maître d’.

"To me, [hospitality is] always exciting. It is just such an intense life. Every minute is counted, every course is counted, and every customer complaint is relevant," she says of her days working at the front of the house.

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Photo by Lemuria Restaurant & Wine Bar.

She wants to impart the value of hard work to the students and staff of Lemuria. Trinidad points out how the restaurant has no steward dedicated to cleaning, adding that everyone should know how to take care of the restaurant. More than this, she hopes that they will learn to respect the entire process. "The restaurant is all about cooking and serving wine properly, so it’s really about the respect for timing and the customer," she muses.

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For Trinidad, apart from good food and wine and excellent service, restaurants need to have a lot of soul. "Like any soul, you need to nurture it, and take care of it. A restaurant, for me, has a life of its own," she says.

Photo by Lemuria Restaurant & Wine Bar.
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Photo by Lemuria Restaurant & Wine Bar.

The Plaza at Arya Residences, McKinley Parkway, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig

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