Thursday, July 16, 2015

Pampanga Eats: Matam-ih Restaurant in Clark

Something serendipitous happened last Sunday.  I was supposed to go to Manila to visit my Ninong and Ninang (our godparents in our wedding who are such a lovely and loving couple!) but guess what?! They were in Clark (which was a 30 minute drive from our home) for the weekend!  Talk about perfect timing!

So I was going to meet them in a restaurant which sounded like (because I wasn't sure, haha!) "Watami" (though there is really a Watami restaurant in Makati, haha) in Clark.  After a few turns and U-turns (and a Ninong who stood by the road to give me an easier time finding the place!)  I finally got to the place!  It sits on a lot by the main road of Clark (along M.A. Roxas Highway).  It is ironic how friends from Manila are the ones who told me about this place!  Wait, but I have an excuse!  I've been gone for a year and the place just opened last August 2014.  (Heehee)  

The name of the restaurant is. . . MATAM-IH!  And it serves Kapampangan food!  (But it does sound Japanese right?  Haha!)

Matam-ih means "delicious" in the Aeta (pronounced as Eye-ta) dialect.  The Aeta are an ethnic tribal minority group who live in Central Luzon.  The restaurant actually employs members of this tribe.  I've read in some articles online that one of the reasons why the owners (the Rodriguez family of Capas, Tarlac, led by Mayor Antonio Rodriguez Jr. and his son Antonio "Third" Rodriguez III) put up this restaurant was to give them source of livelihood.  A big population of this tribe can be found in Tarlac.  I love how the owners kept this ethnic group in mind as they conceptualized the restaurant. 

MATAM-IH is an open air restaurant with a pavilion-like structure. 

The restaurant also has air-conditioned rooms like the one pictured below which is good for 16 guests and requires a minimum consumption fee of Php 4,000.  The fee includes 3 hours use of the room. 

There is also a bigger one (good for 60 guests) with a minimum consumption fee of Php 10,000.

Our sumptuous lunch consists of . . . . 

Fried Hito with Mustasa and Buro (Fermented Rice with fish)

Inihaw na Liempo - loved this!
Wish it came with sawsawan (dipping sauce) made of vinegar and garlic, heehee

Begukan Babi (Pork Binagoongan) - 
It is also good, it has a nice balance of sweetness and saltiness

I am not sure if this is Pinakbet or just mixed vegetables, haha!  I like how the vegetables were cooked, they weren't mushy.

Adobong Pusit (Loved this! My top pick, reminds me of home)

We (meaning 6 adults! haha!) also had Sinigang and Laing (which was also good!).  I wasn't able to take a photo of the other food because we were busy catching up!

We also got a chance to talk to one of the owners.  She was so nice and pleasant and she even gave us free dessert!

By the way, I'm not saying everything is good because we had free dessert. . . but because we really enjoyed our lunch!  (Thank you again Ninong D and Ninang A for the nice lunch!)  

Manggang Atin Inangit
This dessert was delicious!  It is made up of sticky rice cooked in coconut milk, topped with vanilla ice cream, chunks of yellow mangoes and I forgot what the brown topping actually is.  I asked what it was.  But it is sweet, like caramelized brown sugar, I think.

When you dine in this place, you will also be serenaded (singing and chanting) by this group.  Kindly watch and give them some of your precious time and hope you spare some tip for them too.  It is not easy performing in front of a group! 

They ended their performance with funny pick-up lines for each of one of us in the group like this one:

Q: Ma'm, google ka ba?


A: Kasi lahat ng hinahanap ni Sir, nakita niya sa iyo!


I love this place because food and service is good!

When you are in Clark and you are craving for some local and Kapampangan food, please visit Matam-ih Restaurant and I hope you enjoy their food as much as we did.  

I know for sure, I'll be back before I leave for LA! 

MATAM-IH Restaurant
Lot 1-D, M.A. Roxas Highway, 
E. Jacinto St.,
Clark Freeport Zone

For more details, please visit their FB page.

1 comment:

Agnes Ycasiano said...

Very good blog on the resto, ana! Wish the owners will be able to read it.
As always, time was so short for all the things said and left is always so lovely to be with you.
Travel safe, and reunite with your loved one.
Don't miss us too much!

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