Firing Up the Kitchen: Torch

8 months ago

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Pizza, sushi, and steak and then some at Torch. Fire up your appetite for cuisines from all over the world. Torch got it all for you.





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TORCH BEGAN WITH A VERY ECLECTIC MENU, THE RESULT OF OWNER MIKE CHUA’S TRAVELS AND CULINARY ADVENTURES. This wide collection of dishes includes American, Japanese, Filipino, and Mexican cuisines; the American recipes hail from cosmopolitan New York, hefty Midwest, and health-conscious California. Combined with the intense flavors of Filipino cuisine and the umami of Japanese cuisine, well, what resulted was a dizzying array of choices. According to marketing director Don Ingal, this was when they decided to streamline the menu.

These days, Torch’s menu presents three basic categories: pizza, sushi, and steak. Hungry gourmands can easily home in on one or more of these three, and discover the other items in the process.

The Cream Cheese Salmon Roll, for example, presents a hefty appetizer in the fusion cuisine style. Salmon and cream cheese rolled into sushi, breaded with panko, and finally deep-fried gives the diner several facets of umami, along with the topping of bonito flakes and the Japanese mayonnaise and unagi sauce served on the side.

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The Japanese fusion theme continues with a wholesome approach in the Grilled Chicken Quinoa Salad. The quinoa combines with grilled and cubed chicken, onions, bell peppers, and feta cheese, and is tossed in a sesame dressing. It comes across as a Japanese-by-way-of-California dish, as if designed for those watching their waistlines while satisfying their large appetites.

Diners craving pizza have much to choose from, both in the traditional Italian vein and the more adventurous territories of fusion. Curious palates can sample both, as Torch can serve up to two flavors per pizza. As the name suggests, the Gambas Pizza features large shrimps on a bed of mozzarella with slivers of green chilies and drizzled with chipotle garlic olive oil. True to its Italian roots, this pizza adds little else to the natural flavors of its ingredients. The Philly Cheesesteak Pizza, on the other hand, comes on strong with beef strips and Philly cheese and more mozzarella—it’s best eaten fresh from the oven, while the crust is still crispy.

Seafood lovers also have a range of dishes to choose from, beginning with the Sea Bass in Garlic Miso. Basted with butter, garlic, sake, and miso, the fish is cooked just right, staying firm on the plate while flaking at the touch of a fork. The menu also includes traditional favorites like fish & chips and deconstructed sushi like the spicy tuna tower.

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But among Torch’s bestsellers, the US Angus Tenderloin Salpicao Medallion comes first. Certified US angus beef is wrapped in bacon and is served on its own heated slab—steak lovers are advised to take it off the heat before the beef gets too well done. With a side of carrots and green beans and a choice of rice or mashed potato, this dish addresses that hankering for a substantial serving of meat with the sides prepared as simply as possible.

Torch likewise serves an all-day breakfast menu—they recommend the tocino fingers, truffled Eggs Benedict, and US Angus Beef tapa. For those looking for even more variety, the newly opened Greenbelt 5 branch includes a bar, which stays open until late on weekends. Curious foodies may take several visits to sample the menu—a challenge for those with an appetite and a sense of adventure.


Words by Paul Catiang

Photographed by Mike Cuevas of Studio 100


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