Dinelli Gourmet at Le Monet: “Damn You, Eggs Benedict”
Dinelli’s Gourmet has long been a fixture at the Camp John Hay Filling Station (beside Strawberries and Ice Cream). I never really got around to visiting the place since I had so many other establishments on my list before it. When the Le Monet Hotel was being built, I saw through their big wide windows that they had a beautiful chandelier and big comfy looking peach colored chairs in their restaurant. I just had to bump it up my list just to experience it. So I scoured the net for their information when I heard that they were open for business. I found their details on Facebook and I made a reservation. Just a few minutes later, I got the confirmation and so breakfast buffet at Dinelli’s was on.
The day arrived. Le Monet had reserved us a table with a forest view. (Oh so lovely!) I wanted to get a seat under the nice chandelier but that didn’t really matter then. There is always a next time if Dinelli’s and Le Monet did right by me at this visit. =D For P455, Dinelli’s had much to offer. They had rice, varieties of viand, cereal, veggies and cheeses for salad, fresh fruits and more. The highlight of their breakfast offering was that more than your regular sunny side up and your omelet with all the stuffing from the egg station, they also offered eggs Benedict. (Cue Prince & Me scene with Paige Morgan storming the prince’s room (whom she didn’t know was a prince then) and his aide was making eggs Benedict on a hot plate there.)
Breakfast opens at 6 a.m. here. We arrived a little before 7 a.m. I was relieved to find that the dining area wasn’t packed yet. I know we had a reservation but I wanted to have the freedom to go around and snap a photo of this and that. Truly, the chandelier, the wavy one over the dining area was a wonder! (Ohhhhh, sparkly, beeeeeautiful colors, I’m being hypnotized.) The staff was quick with their smile and greet. (“,) When they got us seated at our table, they took our drink orders. They had iced tea, herb iced tea, coffee and hot tea.
We filled our plates with everything they had to offer and started eating. I was giddy with excitement to get my eggs Benedict and when it came, I was thoroughly impressed. It’s everything I imagined it to be; the cheerful golden hue of the hollandaise sauce, the nice and sturdy tower of the muffin, tomato, ham, and poached egg and an added plus, asparagus spears sticking out on the sides. After taking pictures of this beauty, I sliced into it and got myself a taste. The eggs were poached to perfection. Mixing the yolk up with the hollandaise sauce and everything else that came with the egg, you get a fantabulous burst of flavor.
I loved their salad selection too, in that they provided for various cheeses that you can mix into your choice of greens for a bit of saltiness. (Aw, the Swiss cheese wedge is sooooo cute!) They also served daing which was a sure hit with Beth and me. Of course, I got their potatoes and bacon, too. They also had roasted ham which I lovingly refer to as Christmas ham. It was a bit tough but it was okay. For bread, Dinelli’s doesn’t have as many choices to offer as Le Chef. They had simple French toast which was also okay. (But nothing really compares to my sister’s homemade French toast so I guess I’m biased there. *heeee)
Seeing that it was father’s day, attendants came around to our table to greet us. Though there was no father in our group that day, the staff really made us feel welcome and at home. The general manager came by our table too. In contrast to this quality of service, I noticed that they weren’t that quick to replenish the breakfast spread. When breakfast came into full swing at 8:30, there were not that many greens on the salad platters and some chafing dishes just had a few pieces of daing, chicken fillet, etc. Note to self (and to you): If you want to try everything they serve for breakfast here, make sure to rouse yourself early.
All in all, the breakfast buffet at Dinelli’s was a pleasant experience. I was sure to come back there again, if only to sit right under the chandelier so I could take more photos of it. (“,)
A month later I was back with my sister and my cousins who came visiting from Manila. My cousin and his wife are also food connoisseurs of sorts and because they live in Manila, they’ve experienced so much. I was eager to let them try the Dinelli’s eggs Benedict to see if it measures up in any way to the best eggs Benedict in Manila, eggs Benedict from Apartment 1B. Sadly, on this visit, the eggs Benedict failed me. It was the opposite of everything I saw and had the first time. It was a very small serving. (Hey, I don’t remember ordering mini eggs Benedict. =b) It was sort of collapsing on itself and worse, the hollandaise sauce was so pale, it didn’t look anything like eggs Benedict. From the look of the sauce alone, I ceded to Apartment 1B’s eggs Benedict. My cousin’s wife had one good thing to say about Dinelli’s eggs Benedict. They know how to poach an egg. (Congratulations, guys, you know how to poach an egg! *applause applause =b)
We came a bit late for breakfast then when I know I already made a mental note of coming early. But I chalked that first fluke of not replenishing the dishes as an isolated case. It’s not. Again, the salad platter wasn’t full and lush. Some chafing dishes had small proportions of food left in it and the others were empty. We had to ask the staff for some stuff that we saw was there a few minutes ago but wasn’t later. When we asked for yogurt, it seemed like the attendant went to get it from the kitchen. They had hot choco in this visit though. Oh goodie. (“,) I tried the herbed ice tea too, it was refreshing. And they still had the delicious daing.
Hhhmm, inconsistent service and inconsistent eggs Benedict. I didn’t see the general manager walking around that time so maybe this was a ‘when the cat’s away, the mouse will play’ situation. (The only consistent thing in this visit was the beeeeeeeautiful chandelier. *heeharhar And we got a seat closer to it, yey!) Anyway, we got what we came for; grub that will fuel us for a day of sightseeing a la tourist.
I will have to eat at Dinelli’s again. With one good experience and one not so good experience, I need a tie breaker. =))
Still, X marks Dinelli’s Gourmet for good food in Baguio (a hearty breakfast buffet spread IF you come early).
I wish you good luck in getting beautiful eggs Benedict in your visit. =D
Le Monet Hotel
Camp John Hay
Baguio City, Philippines
***”Damn You, Eggs Benedict” title from Two and A Half Men (season 6 episode 3). Thank you so much, Two and A Half guys! (“,)
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X Marks the Spot for Good Baguio Foods is a personal blog. Everything posted in this blog is PERSONAL OPINION DERIVED FROM PERSONAL EXPERIENCE and since TASTE can be pretty SUBJECTIVE, should NOT be taken as THE NORM or the LAW OF DINING around in the City of Pines.
Its (prosaic =b) contents are meant to help with the question “san tayo?”/where do we go? in relation to eating out in Baguio, to ENCOURAGE EXPLORING (eatsploring) and TRYING NEW THINGS offered in the City of Pines.
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