On Friday, Come For Cocktails

Lively libations to start your weekend right.

High up in the Oakwood Premier Joy~Nostalg Center is the OakRoom, a restaurant-bar that morphs into a place of chill every Friday evening. The scene of various themed buffets throughout the week, it’s the one at week’s end I like the most.

Called the Cocktail Creations Themed Buffet, a particular cocktail is paired with an accompanying buffet.Thus, beginning with the first Friday of the month and succeeding: mojitos and Creole cuisine, margaritas mix with Mexican, martinis exude cool class with Italian, Manhattans stay true to American, while mai tais go with Asian.

On the one Friday I’m here, I enjoy martini after martini with my good friend, O. The Italian buffet is spread out, small but sufficient. I’m especially enamored with the various breads and cheeses and the antipasti selection that includes risotto balls (arancini di riso) and grilled vegetables. Some of the mains can be passed over in favor of the exceptional and extra spicy aglio olio pasta that we ask the chef to cook for us.

Then we move on to the next station where a trio of martinis is on offer: dry, apple, and peach.

The OakRoom is modest in size compared to other hotel dining rooms but it offers a coziness absent in others. There are tables and chairs for upright eating and velvet couches for more laid-back schmoozing. It is in one of these at the back of the room that O and I inhabit, lording over a view of Ortigas and twinkling lights in the distance. It’s all terribly relaxing, and as the alcohol loosens our tongues and our bodies slacken, we feel the weekend settling in. Ahhh!

Because I can handle a dessert buffet plus one more dessert, I deviate and order something from the a la carte menu. It’s a ChocNut-Pili Cheesecake which is really very good. A graham cracker crust, not soggy and surprisingly crisp, is the base for a custard imbued with the peanutty candy, little bits of it are studded throughout, and a shower of crushed pili is its garnish. It’s very well done but don’t mix the accompanying spoon of fruit compote in. Save it to swallow whole either before or after this sweet repast.

Truth be told, I’m not crazy about the lounge singer that the OakRoom employs for their Friday night themed buffets. She can get loud and let’s just say that she doesn’t always hit those notes. Thank goodness for the brief sets and her lengthy breaks.


Cocktail Creations Themed Buffet
Every Friday at The OakRoom
P1371.55 (nett) inclusive of unlimited cocktails and buffet
Oakwood Premier Joy~Nostalg Center
17 ADB Avenue,
Ortigas Center, Pasig City
(02) 637 7888

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