Years of watching shows like “Eat St.” and “Top Chef” have rendered me curious about Cajun cuisine. It looks like my type of food: meaty, homey, and with a nice kick of spice. I’ve never had the chance to try some, though, until recently when my sister and brother-in-law took me and our other sister to Murray’s New Orleans Bourbon Street Ribs, Steaks & Oysters.
The branch at BGC was dimly lit, a sure sign that it’s more of a watering hole, not a fun-for-the-family kind of place. The restaurant’s filled with decor that probably recalls the sights and sounds of the old Louisiana art and music scene (I’ve never been to New Orleans, so this observation is based on what I’ve seen on TV). Service is pretty good too.
After scanning the menu, we opted for a half slab of Baby Back Ribs, a Blackended Salmon Salad, Country Chicken Fillet, and Slow Braised Pulled Pork. But first, we had a plate of Mardi Gras Nachos to prep our stomachs for what’s to come.
The nachos were not really my thing. Aside from the usual salsa they’d tossed in some chunks of mango, which I thought was pretty interesting. I was hoping the sweetness of the mango would play well with the saltiness of the cheese, but unfortunately, the cheese tasted sweet too.
The salad was pretty good. The greens were fresh and crisp, and while I’m not normally a fan of salmon (especially when it’s raw, steamed, or boiled), blackening it made it delicious.
The pulled pork was great. It was very tender and nicely seasoned. The spice hits you in the back of the throat for a few seconds, but not so much that you can’t enjoy the flavor of the pork. It was served with some corn grits, which I didn’t really enjoy much.
The baby back ribs weren’t tender enough to fall off the bone, but it had good flavors. All it lacked was a bit more smokiness. It also came with some Cajun rice, which I didn’t like when I ate it on its own. It paired well with the ribs and the pulled pork though.
The chicken, crispy and seasoned well, was delicious. So was the sausage gravy it was slathered with.
For drinks, we ordered a pitcher of kiwi margarita, and a glass each of mango and kiwi shake. All three drinks were a disappointment. The margarita had so much alcohol, I wondered if they forgot to put kiwi in it. We asked for them to put less sweetener in the shakes and they complied. Unfortunately, it left the shakes tasteless, making me think the sugar was probably the only thing that gave it flavor in the first place.
The place wasn’t all bad. Oysters are said to be the restaurant’s specialty, and while I’m not particularly keen on them, grate a thick layer of cheese on them and I’m in. Maybe we’ll order these next time we pay a visit, and stick with beer or water to wash it down.
Overall rating: ★★★✭☆
Murray’s New Orleans Bourbon Street Ribs, Steaks & Oysters
Bonifacio Street, Building 5, BGC, Taguig City
Restaurant hours: 11AM-12MN; Happy hours: 2PM-7PM
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