“It’s crispy pata so soft you can cut it up with a popsicle stick,” a friend told me, and that was all I needed to haul my tush from the suburbs, aka Las Piñas, to Quezon City to check out Livestock and see if the rumors were true. It was a day I’d never forget – there was so much pork to be eaten that by the end of it I felt like I had to roll myself all the way back south.
Livestock is the brainchild of husband and wife team, Mic and Ching Uy who met in culinary school and transcended their passion for good food into their new restaurant concept. That, and with their family being in the livestock businesses, they have their perfect supplier!
Upon entering the premises I was very surprised at how many, umm, senior citizens, were sitting down enjoying their lunch. With this place being famous for its porcine creations, methinks they all must either have very good doctors or are getting bored of hobbling about and want to speed up the process. But as it turns out, Livestock also has dishes that are non-pork and bordering on healthy – but we’ll get to that later.
To be quite honest, I found the albeit creative, notion of Pig Wings (Php 440 for 5 pieces) to be absolutely horrific. I was kind of creeped out that the crispy bacon-wrapped chicken wings looked like they may have been plucked off of a baby pegasus or something, but that didn’t stop me from dipping it in buffalo sauce and going in my gob. This was hot and tangy, only being placated with the cool blue cheese dip.
They also serve Drunken Mussels (Php 330) at this joint. With this being a watering hole at night and all, I guess moules à la bière is a good option to have on the menu since it supposedly goes great with a cold one. The plump New Zealand mussels are steamed in beer and topped with fresh herbs and finely chopped shredded pork bits to infuse another layer of flavor.
Our ‘kind of’ healthy salad was the Livestock Caesar Salad (Php 230) – romaine lettuce tossed in a creamy coddled Caesar dressing topped with cherry tomatoes, crisped pork belly, croutons, and generous, thick shavings of Parmesan cheese. This is good with or without the pork belly, in my opinion. I found myself picking at the salad until there was none left.
The Pork Cheek Ragu (Php 375) to consist more of pork than ragu, but you won’t see me complaining! Generous portions, indeed! Although I have to say, I liked the tomato-base a lot and the pasta was al dente, but I found the pork cheeks to be dried out and almost gummy even.
I had no idea what this was at first. It kind of looked like chopped liver in cream sauce. It was kind of shaped like liver. It turned out to be a Mushroom Duxelle Fish Fillet (Php 290), a fresh fillet of Cream Dory covered in lemon butter caper sauce and topped with mushrooms.
This was better than it looked and the dory was nice and moist with the chopped mushrooms sucking up the flavor of the cream sauce. A squeeze of lemon gives the whole dish just enough acid to make the dish a bit more interesting. I ended up liking this odd-looking dish, but the presentation needs a little work as the dish doesn’t rise from the plate or stand out next to the other items we had on the table.
Livestock also makes their own pizzas, and their Adobo & Kesong Puti Pizza (Php 395) was a sample of just that. This was really good with the chewy pizza base, light kesong puti, and shredded adobo flakes. The arugula gave the dish a tinge of bitterness, coupled with the juicy cherry tomatoes and olive slices. I could probably finish one of these off in one sitting.
The Livestock Crackling Pork Belly (Php 290- 300g; Php 290- 500g; Php 895- 1kg) looked like a piece of edible artwork, I almost didn’t want to hack into it. Almost. Our server sliced up the beautiful pork roll for us. The savory, fatty, and moist boneless pork roast was stuffed with minced herbs. and releasing them from their porky prison and the aroma tickled out nostrils and teased our tastebuds.
The star of that afternoon’s lunch was definitely the Melt-In-Your-Mouth Crispy Pata (Php 590). Served with what looks like a doctor’s tongue depressor more than a popsicle stick, our server cut this up like a seasoned pro, using the tongue depressor like he would a knife. My friend was right – this was fall-off-the-bone tender, with the crackly skin letting out a big crunch. Yum, yum, yum. I wish the guys at Livestock would come up with an apple compote for the crispy pata.
For dessert, we had Salted Chocolate Fondue (Php 210) with fresh fruits and a dip made with hot melted chocolate seasoned with a touch of brandy and sea salt. A simple dessert that also makes for a nice palate cleanser after an afternoon of savory dishes.
If pork is what gives you the warm and fuzzies, you can never go wrong with Livestock’s Bacon Ice Cream Sandwich (Php 180) – rich and creamy caramel vanilla ice cream with bacon bits on top of crisp French toast. This had a nice mix of sweet and salty which is a definite hit with our Filipino tastebuds.
Overall, I had a splendid time. The food is terrific, although I don’t think I can visit as often as I’d like as its just way too far from where I currently reside. Also, I find it’s best to go there with a group of friends so you can try more of the food without having to pass out from high blood pressure and high cholesterol. They have a second floor that’s open for events as well as an outdoor area that’s popular with the nicotine crowd.
Livestock is located on 34 Sgt. Esguerra Avenue, Barangay South Triangle, Quezon City and open between 11am – 2am daily. For inquiries or to make a reservation, please call +63 2 332 0409.