MESA, Filipino Moderne, Greenbelt 5

I would never trust a politician, especially if he/she set up a restaurant (even if it was promoted by Sharon Cuneta herself). That’s the reason why I’ve never been to Lamesa Grill, which opened in the SM Mall of Asia. Recently, though, the Lamesa Grill group (owned by Kiko Pangilinan and friends) opened the high-end Modern Filipino restaurant called MESA in Greenbelt 5.

I must humbly admit it is one of the best Filipino restaurants in Greenbelt in terms of price, ambiance, presentation of food and variety of Filipino dishes that we love (including suwahe, elephant clams and lechon). I wouldn’t say that it is Filipino fusion. It is more of Filipino dishes with authentic flavor, but they are given a different twist in the presentation. It would be best to eat here family-style, where you pass the dishes around since the serving sizes are good for 2-3 persons.

For a group of 3-5 persons, you can reserve the booth tables, which are the best seats in the house. The restaurant is a bit crowded, so better reserve in advance.

MESA, Greenbelt 5


Hito Flakes on Spoon (P180). Crispy pulled catfish with mango salad.

This was fun. Since this was a Greenbelt 5 restaurant, I was expecting they would only serve 4-5 pieces of Hito Flakes on Spoon but we got 10 instead. The flakes were topped with pickled mango and a dash of chili. Even if we removed the chili, the kids did not like this.

Seafood Bean Curd Wansoy Soup (P180). A flavorful broth of shrimp, mussels and squid, topped with cilantro.


The soup tasted clean and the seafood was fresh. The best part? It’s good for 4-5 persons at P180 only.


Aidan gets bored a lot so sometimes he likes to draw. While waiting for the food, he started folding the ends of the Mesa paper placemats and doodled for a few minutes.


He was proud to present his doodles with a self-made frame. 🙂


River Shrimp (Suwahe) on the rocks (Rikki’s Favorite) (P280).

This dish is cooked on the spot like steamed shrimp.

The shrimps are thrown onto a hot bed of rocks and covered for a few minutes. I like the idea of serving it on the rocks — but P50 for each small shrimp is a bit expensive.


Salpicao Ostrich (P280). Ostrich tenderloin, the salpicao way.


This is another favorite. Ostrich is healthier than beef but sometimes it has a different smell when cooked. Salpicao is particularly good when you are eating it with rice or while you are drinking.


The best part is you can pair this with the Pinakurat Vinegar that comes in sweetened and super spicy variants. We also love the sweet Garlic Chili Peanut Sauce that was served as a standard condiment on all of the tables.


Laing 2 Ways (P120). Taro leaves, pork, shrimp paste and coconut cream topped with adobo flakes, served original and crispy.


We always try to order vegetables when we eat out. Our comment here? They don’t know how to make the original laing but we like their crispy version.


Tinapa Rice (P150). Stir-fried rice tossed with smoked fish flakes and topped with tomatoes and red salted egg.


We ordered the Tinapa rice and a few cups of plain rice to complete the Filipino eating experience.


Mesa is highly recommended for family gatherings, especially with balikbayans. You can order their Crispchon served 2 ways – wrapped in pandan crepe and tossed in chili garlic. You can also order a whole lechon for P3,999, 1/2 lechon for P1,999, 1/4 lechon for P1,099 and 1/6th for P799.


Telephone: +632 728 0886


Lamesa Grill, Mall of Asia
Telephone: +632 556-0737


Telephone: +632 916-9047 to 48

Live an Awesome Life,



Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2009.

prof. blog:
mobile: +63917-LOVEOAP (5683627)







P.S. For dessert, we would often pass by Royce’ in GB5 to get a free taste of the Nama chocolates. Often, we end up buying one box. 🙂


33 thoughts on “MESA, Filipino Moderne, Greenbelt 5

  1. Anton, we ate there with my family last Sunday. It’s a really “good” value restaurant with tasty food, diverse selections, decent portions, modern ambience and helpful service staff. The tinapa springs rolls was a hit in our table. The check was just as high as a meal eaten at Max’s. Quite a wonderful suprise!

  2. “I would never trust a politician specially if they setup a restaurant even if it was promoted by Sharon Cuneta herself. So I’ve never really been to Lamesa Grill when it opened in Mall of Asia. Recently, the Lamesa Grill group owned by Kiko Pangilinan and friends opened the high-end Modern Filipino restaurant called MESA in Greenbelt 5.”
    It’s actually Rikki Dee who setup the Lamesa Grill group with some partners including Kiko Pangilinan..

  3. ….i disagree on this one….i trust her dearly & her husband bcoz sometimes politicians can be trapped-dragged into something NOT exactly TRUE to keep them busy-off the track for political divide like[remember my comments in PROUD TO BE FILIPINO FROM A FOREIGNER’S VIEW w/phils.flag too}economic-social sabotages will be always around politics so good healthy presentable restaurants are best way to communicate with public voters so it’s good way better than some of the american- u.s. govt.activities-outlet where we are all drag into foreign-civil wars lol….i prefer to be the bad guy sometimes if it meant BALANCES just like eating good meals but with so many restaurants to rejects-accepts so my children won’t fight over which ones here in america some militant u.s.politicians do not like americans who prefers-favors their old 2nd countries if non american born lol

  4. ….but believe it or not THE WORLD including philippines is in a much better human civilization than decades o hundred years ago philippines was never in it’s history as high tech economically scientific even socially advanced’so try not to be so cruel the lady pres. coz politics are way much cruel in the past i was there NO law enforcements were happy unbias o friendly looking AT ALL when they questioned arrests individuals i have never seen inmates ‘dancing’ as part of rehabilitations only electrecuted or shot i have never seen so many foodies-goodies-restaurants like these but this decade-century lol i strongly agree that food-water-built in homes or tents are still needed in some ‘extreme’ parts of the world including americas africa etc. etc.which will be the most challenging shifts job descriptions as future ‘senator’ o congresswoman plus united nations engagements ‘protocol’ sides when lady pres. gloria m. arroyo’s presidential term ends in-after 2010 president gm. arroyo can be even greater most ‘outstanding’ energetic ‘future’ lagislative member of the phils. govt.i believe she can make many ‘unexpected’ needed miracles for the new philippines in 2011 future new winning seat{lagislative branch}i heard many great things{totally new}never heard before WONDERS that will happened in food industries even restaurants high end activities thru her as a lagislator NOT as president lol!

  5. before my comment, let me commend your site. Feedblitz has been a constant source of our food escapades. being resident physicians, our two joys are sleep and good food. unfortunately, i have a bad review of not the food because we didn’t reach the eating part but about the restaurant’s staff.
    April 24, 2009 (Friday), me and 3 of my friends went to greenbelt 5 for dinner. we first went to Cyma, since we’ve been here before it was ok for us to wait even if we were waitlisted (we’re 6th) but i remembered you guys recommending Mesa. so we went there and talked to the somewhat clueless receptionist and reserved for
    4, non-smoking (there we’re two free tables outside, the place wasn’t packed at all…so i figured it’ll not be long). she said that we’re next on the couch (yey! the couch). *i took a peek on her list and saw we were indeed next in line*. i left her my number and walked around a bit. after 1 hour and a half of walking, we began to wonder. so we went back and talked to the same receptionist who was obviously ignoring us until i went up to her and asked about our seats, she answered, “table for?” * with a very big question mark on her face* as if it was the first time she saw our party. in short, she forgot all about us. * she had the i’ll-just-look-dumb-and-pray-i’ll-get-away-with-it-look*. so we took it up with the manager, who wasn’t even a bit apologetic. we asked him how long would it take for us to get a table, which he smugly answered, ” hindi kami nababakante e!” we walked away, stomachs literally grumbling and looked for another place to eat. it was really disappointing, it was the first time i was treated that way, i don’t usually complain about the staff but this was unforgivable. i think a restaurant staff who wrongly treats their potential customers should not be patronized.

  6. ….viewer above above-below my comments on philippines high end restaurant experience sounds more like of ‘unprofessionalism’ problems on the part of the restaurant’s management-emoloyees they couldnt even let their customers know they do not ‘appreciate’ text-call me back when table’s ready arrangements as part of ‘common courtesies-civilized manner-professionalism the arrogance smug is more of a ‘dismissal’abrupt way of saying we dont want you which is an extremely ’embarrassing’ filipino customs-traditions being revived by some when filipino colonizers treated the filipinos the same way as ‘bastards’ indios o dogs not allowed{american superiority back then}lol….unprofessionalism also means take responsibility by telling affront about any expectations we do these but we do not do these simple courtesy so both o walang aasa na may ganitong pangyayari kasi hindi naman lahat ng filipino mayayabang o bastos kasi signs{unprofessionalism} yan ng pagka mababang klase ng pagkatao at hindi civilizado ika nga kaya nga bumabagal ang success o advancement ng ibang maraming filipino sa pilipinas kasi matagal o mahirap nilang masakyan o maintindihan na everybody needs some good-positive na mga recipes to do good to become great wealthy advance o to become successful kasi it could also mean that ‘luck’ may be shorter lesser or may stop at all later lol

  7. Hi Anton. I’ve been visiting this blog for the longest time. I haven’t been to this resto but looks good. Anyway next time I’m in G5 I’ll look it up.
    I have a question, though. I’m planning for my parent’s 40+ anniv and I want them to have a romantic dinner, preferably QC but Makati will be fine, where the ambiance, food and price is great. (It has to be within reasonable budget since I’m sure they might lose their appetite if we spend too much for this occasion though they deserve it.) What do you recommend?

  8. Me and my family had dinner at Mesa last night. We were a group of 10 persons. I would say that their food is good and affordable but their servings are very little. So you tend to order 2 of the same dish so everyone can have a taste. Their dessert selection is very few and nothng so extraordinary. Service staff are good though.

  9. I’ve been looking for a place to hold our annual Christmas lunch with the family. Since my parents are both a big fan of Filipino dishes, this one seems interesting enough to try out. Nothing too pricey yet a little out of the ordinary… thanks for this! 🙂

  10. im quite young but ive been a foodie since birth i think..ate at mesa grill 2 months ago..and i was quite disappointed… the serving plates would occupy 2/3 of the table and for me there was nothing really special about the food.. i prefer the food at kanin club in sta rosa..a lot more affordable as well.. 🙂

  11. i loved the laing… as in sobrang sarap! i would have eaten the two bowls myself if not for my companions. as in ang sarap talaga. and the tinapa rolls too. delicious.

  12. hi anton, I am a foodie myself & I came across your blogs a lot of times already whenever I look for a new place to eat at. Anyway, me & 3 other officemates ate there lastnight after our ironman2 premier movienight at rockwell (great movie!).>back to the food.. I would say they have the most reasonable price in that strip. kare kare & braised beef are 2 of my faves, so I requested that we order them. their kare kare is just ok, nothing fancy nothing extra ordinary, the price is better than the others though. I was a bit disappointed with the braised beef. the sauce is runny & tasted like ‘raw’ vinegar mixed with soy sauce, sugar & sesame oil, this is something I would never order again from this resto. i liked their crispy fried tilapia with 4 sauces. pretty much the same concept but way much better than the tilapia with sambal sauce we ordered in Penang Hill(shangri-la,) price is way much reasonable too. another good thing is that you can have a beer or a cocktail drink after your meal. it was late night already so we easily got a couch spot which i liked because you can have your privacy while eating. I also noticed the fancy, bamboo-styled utensils. they are nice to look at, but they’re a bit heavy and since the handle is rounded & thin, it feels a bit awkward to eat with. Overall, I liked their concept & their price. I will definitely go back w/ my hubby & my baby. Btw anton, can you recommend the best Italian/American (fusion) resto (with a ‘reasonable’ price) around greenbelt or mandaluyong area? My hubby likes Italian food but I swore I’d never eat at Italianni’s again. Their food is just ok for me (though my hubby liked it) plus the price is too steep for me. Cibo is ok but I would appreciate it if you can suggest other good restos.

  13. hi anton, i visited manila a few weeks ago and had dinner with my friends at mesa. i loved their food, especially the stuffed giant squid. their prices are reasonable too. not to be too picky, but i think they could do better with their waitresses’ uniforms.
    i linked your write up to my post so my friends have can read a good review of the resto. i hope you don’t mind.
    thank you!

  14. Hi Anton! I’m a big foodie myself. I love your blog and I’ve been visiting OAP since you started 🙂 This is my first time to comment and I couldn’t help but share my Mesa experience. Just dined in Mesa awhile ago with my family. We waited for an hour, thinking that the wait might be worth it. We ordered the pork and chicken pochero which had an unpleasant and overwhelming patis taste. What’s worse is that the chicken was not fresh. We kept looking for the pata meat but all we saw were bones and knuckles. They sent the food back to the chef and he agreed to the poor quality of the meat. Truly disappointing considering that the food pictures looked so enticing and the waiting list was quite long. Even the table beside us complained that they couldn’t find oxtail in their kare-kare and that the pork used in their pork bbq wasn’t fresh at all. Fely J’s and Abe are miles better than mesa! They may be expensive, but they don’t compromise the premium quality and ingredients in every dish they serve. However, Mesa was kind enough to cancel the dish from our bill. I don’t think we’ll dine here anymore 🙁 The pusit was awfully chewy and the laing was plain and a far cry from the authentic laing. That’s all 🙂

  15. Good food nice place, but I Hope to improve your customer service, staff are not that friendly not accomodating, specially the HOST.

  16. Mesa is under Foodlink Group of companies which is the owner and operator of such brands like Kai, Krocodile, Kitchen, Mangan, Ebun, W Grill and Lamesa grill. It is the brain child of Rikki Dee who has been in the food industry for the past 30 years. Kiko Pangilinan is part of his so called “food Group” and came up with the idea one food trip night.

  17. does anyone know where i can buy the same silverware they use? its really unique and very filipino. thanks

  18. Dinner at Mesa, Tomas Morato last March 13, 2014
    To start with, we ordered Baked Scallops with Garlic Butter and Baby Squid in Olive Oil. The scallops meat were small so we were actually having mostly garlic butter. Midway through, I ordered Chicken Binakol for soup, for entrees were Giant Squid Stuffed with Meat and Vegetables and Hito Crispy Boneless with Mangga Salad. I requested that the soup be served first after which will be our entrees and the garlic rice. We still had around three pieces of scallops when the soup arrived. While the soup was being prepared, the rest of our orders arrived. I was disappointed because I wanted to savor each course at the proper temperature. My friend and I just looked at each other. I wanted the entrees returned to the kitchen but my friend stopped me , afraid of what they might do to our foods when they come back to serve. So we worked on our soup which was very good. The coconut juice was refreshing. By the time we got to our Giant Squid, it was already dry and tough. The Hito Boneless was good especially when you have a bite with the mangga salad.
    We had the rest taken ‘to go’ coz the ceiling of the restaurant was full of smoke from the kitchen. The exhaust fan couldn’t handle it. I got reminded of the movie Backdraft. The server also forgot the Kapeng Barako.
    Staff need more training. The restaurant needs cleaning. Definitely the exhaust fans need to be checked. Menus need to be wiped clean. I was handed a sticky one.
    Overall experience was poor.

  19. We just had our dinner at their new SM Ortigas (Ever) branch and I am pretty sure that we would never come back again. All the food we ordered are too sweet. They must have an endless supply of sugar. From the inihaw sampler to the tofu sisig. To the owners, seafood if fresh, should never be drizzled in barbeque sauce since its natural flavos taste better when grilled unless you are trying to cover something.

  20. we had a very unpleasant dining experience last night 04/12/19 ..a group of 6 people at Mesa Grill at MOA..we food are so tempting delicious..but the AC was super not good…it was so hot..we complained about the temp ..too hot..everyone including the waitresses were sweating….if they are using MOA central AC..not a good idea..on a very hot day and there are a lot of people in the Mall…the central ac cannot compensate…we saw Cabalen right next to Mesa..the resto is enclosed in glass with ceiling fans….we will be back at MOA but not in Mesa…in Cabalen…just because of the AC situation…btw they handed cardboatds..and please chamge your menu booklet so disgusting….too old…unsanitary na

  21. May ipis sa kare kare ng mesa megamall branch. Dpat may proper food handling kayo. Jusko kapag magreklamo ka dedma ang director nila na c mr. Mon. Even the deputy ek ek nila na c mr. Gerry dedma din. Anong klaseng employees meeon kau?

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