Van Gogh is Bipolar, Are You?

When somebody says to you, “I’m bipolar,” what would you say? I was taken aback the first time I heard it because I thought being bipolar meant the person likes both sexes. But I was mistaken. Bipolar, apparently, is a description of a person who has a Manic Depressive Illness — someone who feels very happy at one moment and then suddenly becomes depressed.

Jetro, the owner of the resto, is bipolar. The entire premise of Van Gogh is Bipolarย revolves around introducing mood-altering inspired dishes that trigger happy hormones in the body. The restaurant pays tribute to popular bipolar people by naming the food in honor of them. This is one of the interesting places to visit on the Foodie Street of Maginhawa in Sikatuna Village, Quezon City.

We celebrated my brother Rommel’s 34th birthday last January 5 in this resto. The experience was quite unique, especially our interaction with Jetro himself. The food is healthy, but I would not rave about the food except for the unique marketing strategy consistent with the bipolar theme. Here is the photo essay:

Van Gogh is Bipolar is actually Jetro’s house by day and becomes Jetro’s restaurant at night. The welcome sign on the door kindly asks visitors to remove their shoes before entering.

The place is quite small and can accommodate about 15 people inside. There are 5 separate tables, with each having its own unique charm.

This is Jetro, the owner. He also runs the kitchen with two helpers. Sometimes, his friends act as special servers for the night.

The resto operates on a self-service experience; hence, the house rules. You have to write down your own orders on pieces of paper and submit it to the kitchen. Take note that there is a waiting time of about 30 minutes before the food is served — unless you pre-order for a big group.

Jetro lives in a small room with a sign on the door that says: “Asylum, Do Not Enter.”

His darkroom is turned into a washroom. We were warned that some of the artworks or photos in the gallery were “For Adults Only.”

Since it was our first time there, Jetro explained the menu to us and how to order. We decided to go with all of his recommendations. ๐Ÿ™‚

Van Gogh is Bipolar MENU:
Van Gogh is Bipolar Concept | bipolar Appetizer and Pre-Ordered Dish | ย bipolar Salad, bipolar Hollywood | bipolar President’s Meal | bipolar PASTA Meals, bipolar Hypomanic Open Sandwiches, bipolar Oatsย | bipolar BLEND & CONCOCTION, hot or cold BLEND | Van Gogh’s Manic Episode Set Meals | Coffee House Blend, sinful BEVERAGES, and bipolar DESSERTS

Lemongrass or Mint with Wild Palawan Honey (P75).

A good way to start your mood-altering dinner. ๐Ÿ™‚

Axl Rose’s Egg Shot (P25 per single serving). Submerged in hot water for 5 minutes. Served in an egg shell. With honey mustard or black sauce.

“Egg is an excellent source of protein that gives that ‘extra kick’ you need, especially when eaten soft-boiled.”

I dare you to try this egg shot! ๐Ÿ™‚

Larry Flynt’s Cabbage Experience (Groupie: P415). Freshly boiled whole cabbage. Served with crispy fried small fish, salted egg and fresh kitchen ingredients. Comes with the special Van Gogh black sauce.

“Cabbage is known to beat depression, It contains vitamin C and folic acid. It is one of the vegetables that help release a high level of Serotonin in the brain. Serotonin maintains that ‘happy-state-of-feeling.'”

You have to wrap the ingredients inside the cabbage and dip it in a sweet black vinaigrette sauce. We loved this because of the combination of the ingredients. Plus, it’s healthy. Good for a group of 4 or more.

You can reserve this spot beside the Red Graffiti Wall…

or opt to stay in the sala area (where there are three small tables).

For a bigger group (5-6 people), reserve the main dining table. Call in advance and pre-order, if possible.

Godfather IIย (Single: P249, Groupie: P699). Combination of vegetable, spinach and whole wheat pasta sauteed in virgin olive oil, garlic and onions in Salmon – Basil – Sauce.

“A plate of wheat pasta can help you move out from depression. Garlic and onion are also known to relieve you from depression.”

The Salmon Belly was cooked well. The pasta was ordinary, a bit hard and served cold already.

President Clinton’s Meal (Single: P275, Groupie: P770). Van Gogh Rice with drilled Aussie Lamb Chop.

“Grass-eating animals are always a healthy source of protein, which makes you energetic minus the negative effects of chemically fed animals which alter your mood in a bad way.”

The Lamb Meat was a bit tough and cooked in an amateur way. The rice was awesome though because they served organic Black Mountain Rice — very healthy and one of the most expensive types of rice in the Philippines. It’s served with alamang bagoong also — yummy! ๐Ÿ™‚

To accompany or cap the meal, you can order tea by choosing your own tea pot and your ownย bipolar BLEND & CONCOCTION, hot or cold BLEND.

Joshua was so happy throughout the night. Perhaps this was the effect of the food in Van Gogh is Bipolar?

BTW, don’t forget to bring the soiled dishes to the kitchen window. For anything that you need (like water, tissue or any assistance), you just have to ring the bell.

For dessert, we decided to hop over to the Black Soup restaurant (of Cubao X fame) next door.

Mango Turon of Black Soup Cafe.

Yummy, but nothing special.

Black Soup Cafe & Art Space Menu | Front Page | Back Page

Mel Gibson’s Darkest Sinย (P125 single serving). A shot of vodka with melted dark chocolate, dried walnuts and almonds with wild honey.

“Dark Chocolate (high cacao content — the bitter, the better) is excellent for boosting brain function and eliminating depression while walnut is one of the richest sources to uplift your mood. Good for people experiencing depression.”

Back In Van Gogh, we tried this chocolate vodka shot for dessert. A great upper to end your dinner. ๐Ÿ™‚

Don’t forget to sign on the Red Graffiti Wall. Try to find Aidan’s signature when you’re there…

Remember to sign in their guest book as well…

For a party of 5 adults, we spent around P500 per head.

Thanks to Jetro for the awesome experience! Great job overall! ๐Ÿ™‚

Thanks to Mike for being a great special waiter for the night! ๐Ÿ™‚

Happy Birthday, Bro! ๐Ÿ™‚ (Ang tanda mo na, mag-asawa ka na daw sabi ni Momsy ๐Ÿ™‚ )

Black Soup is located on the left and Van Gogh is Bipolar is located on the right.

Black Soup Cafe + Artspace entrance.
Telephone: +632 435 2549

Van Gogh is Bipolar entrance up-close. Obviously, Van Gogh was the winner for that night.

The restaurant is open everyday except on Tuesdays. Operating hours are from 5pm to 12.30am. They are open for special events and parties during lunchtime.

To know you’re on the right track when going to Van Gogh is Bipolar, you should see Redbucks and Marky’s along Maginhawa Street.

The main landmark is the Blacksoup sign pointing to the apartment complex.

Van Gogh Is Bipolar
living art space. cafe.
154 Maginhawa St., Sikatuna Village
Landline: +632 394-0188
Mobile: +63929-1638592

Live an Awesome Life,ย 


Anton Diaz
Founder and Digital Publisherย

Mobile: +63917-LOVEOAP (5683627)ย 
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P.S. Thanks to Margaux Salcedo for the helpful write-up in Sunday Inquirer entitled, Food for Bipolar Diners. ๐Ÿ™‚

24 thoughts on “Van Gogh is Bipolar, Are You?

  1. the egg shot is mysterious. In Vismin, they have this drink called kinutil. hot chocolate, tuba (from coconut). most of the time taken with an egg.

  2. In my opinion, 500php per head is a bit expensive w/ the kind of service they have. Though, quirk wise, pwede na siguro i-try.

  3. This offers a different dining experience. The house/restaurant reminds me of Gayuma in Katipunan. But I hope you wrote about the food, if it’s delicious. I’m wary on spending my 500 pesos for a restaurant with only few recommendations.

  4. I wouldn't go here if just for the food. The problem is it is a
    one-man show, Jetro entertains and cook as well, so there's no focus.
    I would be better if Jetro hires a cook so that he could focus on the
    quality of the food. Anyway, the menu is simple. I would go here for
    the experience. The food is healthy at least.

  5. Hi, Anton!
    Dex and I were lucky to have tried this out last year when we had the place all to ourselves. : ) The lambchop was tender and delicious (Baka ninerbiyos when they saw it was your group ordering. Hahaha!). I ordered the day’s special called “Murderer’s Meal”, which was so, so delicious — It was a combination of different kinds of tasty noodles (squid ink, whole wheat, and pancit canton) mixed with a very malinamnam and subtly sweetened sauce. Was also very impressed with the fresh pomelo juice! Never tasted pomelo juice prepared that way. I hope he gets to bring these back on the menu!
    Most impressive of all was Jetro, how he’s so open about being bipolar and how he overcomes this condition. Did you get to read his story creatively (both visually and writing style-wise) on the wall near the entrance? Ang galing! His concept of food benefitting one’s disposition doesn’t just apply to bipolars, but to everyone since we all experience mood swings every now and then.

  6. Thanks Pam for the comment! On a weekday, full na siya palagi and
    you'll notice that the quality of food suffers if he does a lot of
    things. I'll try nga what you guys ordered next time we are around the
    Maginhawa Food St. area… Layo lang from where we live ๐Ÿ™

  7. I’m SO glad you came & enjoyed (some) of Van Gogh is bipolar! I helped Jetro with the artworks. I would like to say that the restaurant is by no means a “marketing” concept. Being bipolar (like other mental conditions) are VERY serious. Jetro was and is very sincere on the reason why he opened the little cafe + living artspace – he wants his place to be something of a positive aspect of being bipolar (which can be a VERY VERY disturbing condition). Cheers awesome Planet! – from robert alejandro

  8. I am very happy for Jethro. To be bi-polar is definitely daunting yet his story serve as an inspiration for others out there in the same boat.

  9. Last night, we only have 3 to choose from ๐Ÿ™ We were told that everything is in a state of changing… since we felt like we didn’t want to waste our effort in getting there. We continued with our ordering…and well, we were not disappointed naman. I don’t eat/like salmon or lamb or rice. But I have too many of ALL! Winner = Lamb!

  10. jetro’s brother and tita help with the cooking now so jetro is able to entertain guests better. the prices have gone up but for the unique experience they offer, i’d say its still worth it. and the servings, food presentation ad taste aren’t disappointing either. the ingredients too are now more organic, like for the mel gibson’s d.s., the vodka’s been replaced by jaegermeister so its sweeter. i much prefer it to the vodka ๐Ÿ˜‰

  11. Hi there, tried to call the number for reservations sad lang no answer lagi… Ayaw ko naman na sumugod don baka in the end uwi ako luhaan kasi walang place.. I really want to try it..

  12. anton! did you go na to jetro’s new place? hausbesetzer? ayos rin dun, although limited pa lang mga food choices. ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. Kinutil is very easy to prepare. Just have a jug of fresh tuba, add a bottle of orange soft drink, add two beaten eggs, mix some condensed milk (up to you how sweet you want it to be). blend and then enjoy your kinutil!

  14. It’s all there for you to read:
    Mango Turon of Black Soup Cafe.-Yummy, but nothing special.
    President Clinton’s Meal -The Lamb Meat was a bit tough and cooked in an amateur way.
    Godfather II- The pasta was ordinary, a bit hard and served cold already.
    I wouldn’t go here if just for the food
    you’ll notice that the quality of food suffers

  15. Oh wow. I should try this one. Was watching PHL360’s 1st episode and got curious. Must try. ๐Ÿ˜€ Thanks for the great entry on this one. Exciting! ๐Ÿ˜€

  16. I’m going here on March 30to celebrate our World Bipolar Day. I am a bipolar as well so looking forward for very healthy treat! I’ll be with my fellow Bipolars.
    We are proud of Jetro.

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