More than a decade now, there is one quaint place built from an idea that good food need not be expensive, and that there should be lush foliage and live music with the gastronomic pleasures being served. True enough, there is this small corner of Manila, snugly blooming in the middle of three busy streets, Bamboo Giant Malate, as versatile and resilient as its namesake.
With art at its heart, and music as its soul, Bamboo Giant is not just a restaurant with an extensive menu, and a roster of seasoned musicians dishing out well loved tunes as regulars and newcomers enjoy the camaraderie, savor the dishes, or just pass the night from a busy day with a brew or two. At thirteen years old, a milestone in itself, Bamboo Giant Malate has become an institution of sorts, a habit worth keeping or a new discovery that keeps them coming back for more. I’d love tell you all about it, but that would spoil the experience, rather, this is an open invitation for you to come and visit, sit down and talk,and let Bamboo Giant Malate speak in rhythms and beats.
The name is so appropriate, it sprouted siblings, each with it’s own character, but a common theme – Bamboo Grande, Patio Papa, Ka Boy Grill – and the youngest shoot to come up, Bamboo Intramuros, a somewhat refined version with a mass appeal, a bigger floor area, yet still rooted in the same fertile soil of art, good food, rhythm and booze, all in the name of fun, relaxation and good conversations. Bamboo Intramuros has taken the step toward growth as it celebrated its first year of existence, keeping that inherent trait but evolving its own uniqueness. Although I should inform you first hand, if you have to come, come early, as the place, like its older kin, seem to throb and buzz as the sun sets. People come back not as customers, but as family and friends, most of them want to enjoy a good meal before going home, others drink to celebrate, ease the day down, and then there are those who want to entertain their own guest, and with the nightly live music, who could argue?
As it gets dark, the place is ablaze with music.
And not just any kind of music, mind you. Not the videoke kind. No, the place is unapologetic when it comes to entertainment, but would give you choice musicians, veterans of the circuit, real artists who sing and play well loved tunes in their own stripped-down sets of classic rock, country, folk, transcending genres, not just pop, but would even perform songs you hardly ever hear on radio nowadays. Oh, they do love to rock once in a while. Actually, it’s what makes the nightly entertainment worth waiting for. I have seen and heard the lineup for a whole week and I could not be more pleased.
Bamboo Giant Malate and Bambu Intramuros are the same with its consumer friendly entrees and drinks. We also take pride in creating art out of discarded stuff people just throw away. Recycle, Reuse and Repurpose anything that could be turned into beautiful decors, light covers and whatever it is that could erstwhile be just another piece of junk littering the streets.
But don’t take my word for it. Do drop by sometime, if your itinerary has Manila in it, they would be delighted to to have you.
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