[ Playa Calatagan #5] a Manos Greek Tavern Dinner

Ever since I’ve tasted Greek cuisine in Australia three years ago, I’ve been looking for an authentic greek cuisine in Manila. The first time, I saw Manos Greek Taverna with its inviting blue and white structure, I hesitated to try it out because of the fear of being disappointed with a Filipino-style Greek cuisine similar to Mati in Rockwell. I was waiting for raves about this place before I try it out. AJay’s first blogged Manos Greek Taverna in Nov 2005, and I recently read a poetic tribute by Dr. Honrado Palugod on his hellenic dining experience to this place that made me decide to check it out. On our way back from Playa Calatagan, we decided to have this as our last stop before finally heading back home. I’ve tried the best sellers in the house: Tzatziki, Hellenici Salata-Greek Salad, Mousaka, and the Baklava dessert which are indeed very good. On the contrary, the kebabs were ordinary.


I love this place because the food is healthy, ingredients are freshly made by the owner, and Manos is almost always there to entertain his guest — very hospitable fellow. Manos claims that everything is cooked in Greek virgin olive oil which comes from their olive plantations in the island of Crete 🙂

The Blue and White theme is consistent not only in the facade of the restaurant but also in the table settings. Although, it looks like a canteen atmosphere inside, I would give credit to Manos for putting in the effort to give his guests a greek ambiance by posting pictures of Crete and other greek designs.

Tzatziki (dip). With yogurt, garlic and olive oil. (P80) — What I love about this is that the bread is freshly made out of wheat partly, while the yogurt was fermented by Manos himself. This is a good starter dish but the Tzatziki is an acquired taste and you must me fond of mediterranean cuisine to love it.

Hellenici Salata-Greek (Summer) Salad (P120). with tomatoes, cucumber, onion, green pepper, olive oil, feta-cheese, black olives. This is excellent and my wife and I thinks that the greek olive oil made a lot of difference including the home-made feta cheese. It looks simple but it tastes great!

Mousaka (P180). With olive oil, eggplant, potatoes, zucchini, onion, minced meat, white wine, eggs, bechamel sauce, grated cheese. You’ll never go wrong with this as the main dish. It tasted like beef omelet with vegetables and potato but the ingredients blended very well to give you a unique taste that you’ll surely go back for more.

Baklava (P150). Antoniou Fillo Pastry, Roasted Hazelnut, Walnut Halves, Almond, butter, sugar cinnamon. A healthy dessert that you should not miss and very unique to Manos greek taverna.

If you need a more private dining experience, reserve this spot.

Manos Hellenic Greek Taverna
Along Tagaytay-Calamba Road (before reaching the rotonda), Bgy. San Jose, Tagaytay City
This is formerly where Sanctuario is located and you can immediately see its blue and white structure.
Reservations normally is not needed but here is the Cellphone # 0916-4298358


17 thoughts on “[ Playa Calatagan #5] a Manos Greek Tavern Dinner

  1. If the feta cheese is home made…baka naman they are getting it from a Pinoy goat…would that still make the food authentic?

  2. well Manos said that they get the milk’s goat from crete also and he ferments it here. Although, he is considering a pinoy goat though in the future, since there is a source in tagaytay.

  3. Hi anton!!! I finally checked out your blog and I have to say that I’m impressed! I’ve always been curious about that mano greek restaurant and now that you’ve tried it AND liked it, Joey and I will surely visit it (maybe next week when we go to playa). You photographed the food so well that my stomach has been grumbling while I’m typing this. Btw, thanks for the beautiful pictures that you sent us! Hi to Rachel and Aidan!
    your soon-to-be neighbor,

  4. From the deep of my heart thank you,you incourage me that much to keep
    on going my taverna.
    Efharisto poli
    Manos and family

  5. We ordered all the food items pictured above. Very good, indeed! And Manos was very accomodating, like you said. Authentic Greek food at very affordable prices. Thanks for this tip!

  6. I went there for lunch today. Yeah, Manos is cool. They hosted a party of about 15 people, but even though it was a Tuesday four other groups (including mine) came in.
    Yeah it really tastes like home cooking, unlike Cyma. (I haven’t tried Mati.)
    But the Baklava is not healthy! It’s a diabetic delight!
    Like Ajay, I also recommend the Greek Coffee.
    Also had: Saganaki, Greek Salad and Moussaka (as above), and Grilled Lamb. The Lamb had no sauce, just calamansi.

  7. great pics bro! i read this thread before going to tagaytay and went there to eat with my girlfrend since its also very near the place we stayed which was Country Suites ran by Discovery suites. Manos was F I N E! we had the Saganaki with some greek bread for appetizerm, Lamb shoulder and Mousaka for our main dish. there were some parts of the lamb shoulder that waere pretty chewy but i guess thats coz its the shoulder. (it was 10 times worse when i ate at CYMA greenbelt i had to spit out 50 percent of the lamb shank that was served coz i couldnt get it to break it down.)
    i also found a new indian/persian place a little past the bag of beans which is TAJ, good concept, its got a spa, accomodation (under construction) and a restaurant, it as also free wifi. but the food was terrible. the shawarma was dry and had a funny after taste and the goat Kebab was a bit raw. a good place to drink tho coz it was overlooking the taal lake, but not a good place to dine.

  8. mixx, i know TAJ. I think Anton posted a blog about this newly opened specialty resto. Try checking his archives. Anyway, I was able to dine and lounge there i think for four times already. when i read your review about their shawarma last monday i went there and ordered the chicken shawarma it has its different taste and not like that persian shawarma that we normaly eat. their shawarma is prepared the indian way so there is this twist of taste to it. you should try their biryanis, chicken jalfrezi, chicken tikka masala, shahi paneer, mango lassi, almond sharbat and the gulabjamun. The gulabjamun is best with their (Chai) or Indian Tea. Try to visit also during saturday nights they have a live acoustic band playing not indian though.

  9. I’ve been to Manos probably more than one year and a half ago and forgive me coz probably they have improved their menu already. But that was my first and last I visited the place because of a not so good experience. I can’t remember the exact dish I ordered but its like grilled chicken and its so ordinary (my mom’s version is better) and when I requested for a sauce, i was expecting something different but the waiter gave me a Jufran sauce. I don’t know if the Greek owner was there already to oversee but Im guessing he was not there because it was a disaster. I would love to try again because there are now good reviews and probably they have already improved. There is another alternative for us who are looking for something different though its far from One Destination, its Taj of Tagaytay. Good view of the lake and volcano and good food-they have upsized their servings since we last visited the place during the holy week. Order Mutton biryani-its good for 2-3 people already. Roti Chanai is best and their Shahi Paneer. The good thing is that we now have choices aside from your regular Bulalohan restaurants.

  10. Hi,
    im from tagaytay and some of the place that you’ve visited hindi ko pa napupuntahan..hahaha, taga tagaytay na ako pero di pa talaga ako umaalis ng house pag andun ako….dami ko pala pinapalagpas na oras pag nasa bahay ako…minsan lang ako umuwi tagaytay eh, in a year cguro mga 4x lang…buti nga now nakakauwi na ako ng mas madalas para mawala ung stress ko sa work…now i always look forward on going home cguro kahit mga once a month then i’ll try to vistit ung ibang mga places dito sa blog mo. I’ll try to make it a point na mag dine sa mga places dito everytime my fiancee visits me…
    i just love your informative blog……..
    now you have an avid reader here……

  11. Hey guys manos menu taste great, but its more of a greek-filipino fusion cuisine. You you are looking for real authentic greek cuisine, you should try Hellas Taverna at the Bellagio Square located at J. Bocobo, Malate beside the Manila Manor Hotel.

  12. just had dinner there last night. was very, very disappointed. cyma does a more competent job. the resto seemed dirty, the menu choices limited, and the taste/flavor doesn’t seem greek at all. this goes onto my list of to-skip places in tagaytay. what a shame.

  13. After reading this entry, i decided to try this greek tavern together with my friends. Your Blog entry really made it seem that it was really delicious. But when we tried it, sorry but it wasn’t. We were disappointed because we were expecting something great. Especially when we thought you had high standards when it comes to food. You have lovely photos but the food was not great, not really authentic. A thumbs down. But hope they can improve this.

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