On first look, 26 St. Bistro may look like just a larger Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf branch in BGC, but in essence it’s really a full-service restaurant serving not just coffee and pastries but also soups, pasta, salads, and even steaks. I’ve been to 26th St. Bistro several times and so far, each experience has been a pleasant one. As much as I enjoy CBTL’s drinks, the meals and entrées served at 26 St. Bistro are equally appetizing. Let me go through my personal favorites:
26th St. Bistro Menu by Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf BGC
Shrimp & Pomelo Salad – Php 395.00
26th St. Bistro’s Shrimp & Pomelo salad is one of the few salads that I genuinely enjoy eating, and not just because I wanted to be healthy. It’s made up of a lovely mix of romaine lettuce, cilantro & mint leaves, tossed in coconut lime dressing, and topped with roasted peanuts and desiccated coconut. But what really makes this dish worthy of craving, are the generous amounts of poached shrimp and pomelo. I loved it so much, I wanted to ask for a second helping!
Parmesan Truffle Fries – Php 245.00
The truffle fries easily made it as one of my favorites during our visit. The price may be a bit overwhelming, but the earthy, slightly garlicky hints of truffle oil and Parmesan cheese make this starter worth the price. One order is good for sharing but personally, I can finish one all by myself!
French Onion Soup – Php 225.00
When it first came in, I thought that the French Onion Soup was baked mac or lasagna, given the thick layer of melted mozzarella at the top of the bowl. But dig deeper through the cheese and sourdough and you’ll be treated to a warm, classic onion soup. Just light enough to boost your appetite, but flavorful enough to keep you going!
Mac & Cheese – Php 335.00
I’m not a huge fan of cheesy food, but 26th St. Bistro’s Mac & Cheese made it to my short list of cheesy dishes I actually enjoyed. Maybe it’s because its creamy sauce is made of three kinds of cheeses – provolone, mozzarella & Parmesan? Or maybe it’s the tender yet firm fusilli pasta? Whatever it is, this Mac & Cheese is a good step towards making my palate more receptive to cheeses.
USDA Garlic Steak – Solo: 395.00; Sharing: 675.00
The carnivore in me drooled at the sight of 26th St. Bistro’s USDA Garlic Steak. The pan-roasted meat was tender, pinkish, and juicy – just like how I want my steak to be. It comes with corn, salad, and your choice of mashed potato or rice. I suggest that you go with the garlic rice because it’s really good, I even ate several spoonfuls without the steak haha.
After a few days, I just had to go back to try the other bestsellers in their menu. It’s a good thing that 26th St. Bistro is just a short walk away from where I work. We were greeted by the same courteous staff who happily brought us to our preferred seats. These are our orders the second time around:
Sardine & Garlic Spaghettini – Php 365.00
The moment I saw Spanish-style sardines in the menu, I knew I had to have the Sardine & Garlic Spaghettini. I love Spanish sardines, olive oil, and garlic – what more when you put them all together! It was pretty good, no wonder it’s one of the Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf favorites.
Angus Tapa – Php 395.00
I’ve heard that 26th St. Bistro also takes pride in their tapa, which is why even though I went there on a lunch time, I still ordered one of their breakfast dishes – the Angus Tapa. I was hoping that the garlic rice is the same as the one we had with the USDA Garlic Steak, but sadly this one tasted different. My disappointment though dissipated when I had a taste of the certified Angus beef tapa. The meat was flavorful and firm yet not chewy. Goes so well with the egg and baked pesto tomato.
26th St. Bistro by The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf® Net Lima is located at the corner of 26th St. and 5th Avenue and 26th St. Bistro by The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf® Shangri-La East can be found at the East Wing on the 5th Level, of the Shangri-La Plaza Mall.