Carinderia Ni Tandang Sora is a themed Filipino restaurant which specializes in serving authentic Filipino food. It’s making quite a reputation for itself, notching up two branches in a very short period of time; this one in Deira and another in Karama. Much of this success (and speed) can be attributed to experienced patron chef, Richelle Ortiz. This man’s been around the block, with culinary accolades including association with La Petite Maison and, the establishment of Filipino successful restaurants like Kabayan and McDavids.
The interior of the two-story restaurant is clean, well-kept and designed as something of a tribute to the working class ‘heroes’ of the Philippines working here in UAE. So, there are funky, revolutionary-style pictures and graphics all over the walls. The ground floor has a small open buffet for those who want to order dishes prepared on a regular basis, dishes-of-the-day, so to speak.
Behind the counter-buffet is their semi-open kitchen which was buzzy bee busy when I visited; by the look of things it’s probably always like that. Ventilation could be better as I picked up a little of the ‘soured’ smell you sometimes get in restaurants (or kitchens) which cook cuisines using vinegar…but it wasn’t enough to be offensive or off-putting.
There’s a small dining area upstairs, and the most interesting washroom I have seen in a while…it’s like a rain-forest.
I came in to satisfy a craving for Bulalo, and happily watched a group tuck into their Boodle Fight, a signature dish of Carinderia Ni Tandang Sora, while I waited for my food to arrive. The thick layer of oil on top of the humungous bowl they brought to my table assured me of its authenticity before I even tasted it. And yes, it was fantastic; without doubt one of the best I have had outside Manila…and almost as good as mine.
Service was friendly, attentive, and fast. So, if you are Filipino and haven’t yet been…what are you waiting for? If you are not Filipino but curious to try Filipino food, this is one of the best representations of authentic Filipino food available in Dubai and…well worth a detour.