What: The Pork Adobo Silog Platter (Adobosilog)
Where: Meng’s Filipino Cuisine, 34091 Date Palm Drive, Suite B, Cathedral City
How much: $6.99
Why: It’s a delicious Filipino favorite.
Confession: I have a checkered history when it comes to Filipino restaurants.
A couple of decades ago, I visited a Filipino restaurant in Reno, Nev., for lunch. Various tasty-looking items sat on a steam table; all were unmarked, so I asked the woman behind the counter about some of them. She was fairly friendly until I pointed to a cooked fish of some sort and asked what it was.
She began waving her arms. “No, no! You white boy! That’s not for you!” she proclaimed.
Flash forward to a couple of weeks ago, when I was standing in a hole-in-the-wall Cathedral City Filipino restaurant much like that one in Reno. I admit I was skittish asking about the various items at the steam table—so instead, I ordered one of the “silog platters” depicted on the picture menu on the wall above the counter. (“Silog” is a classic Filipino combination of a meat, garlic rice and eggs.) My choice: The pork adobo.
Thankfully, the people at Meng’s Filipino Cuisine were much nicer than that frantic woman at the place in Reno way back when—and I was excited to dive in when the plate arrived.
The stewed pork was tender, both meaty and fatty (in a good way), and savory with just a hint of sweetness. It was great on its own, but it reached a whole different level when I mixed everything together on the plate. I finished every bit of it, and both my stomach and palate were satisfied. That’s pretty darned fantastic for just $6.99.
A word of warning: The place can be hard to find. Even though Meng’s (also called The Filipino Cuisine on the menu board) has now been around for two-plus years, there’s no sign up for the place yet (!); look for the corner restaurant next to Winchell’s with the Filipino flag in the window.
Trust me: Meng’s is worth finding. It’s the exact opposite of fancy (including plastic utensils and disposable plates)—but the food is delicious.