At home at Mäsüki

12 02 2011

Mäsüki's Special Chicken Mami

“MAMA, DYAN nyo kami dinadala ni Mommy (my maternal grandmother) noon.”  (Mama, that’s where you and Mommy used to bring us for lunch or dinner.)  Before Mama could even acknowledge that I was culling this recollection from memory and not blurting out a figment of my imagination, I immediately snapped a photo of the place.  All the time I was keeping my fingers crossed that the stabilizer of my Canon IXUS 860IS would work to my favor as the car swooshed past this old Manila landmark of my youth.

The Original SAVORY Restaurant

Seeing the original Savory restaurant again brought back happy memories.  If I had my way, we would’ve stopped right there.  But I thought, maybe some other day.  Besides, the day’s plan was to visit an equally historically significant restaurant – Mäsüki at 931 Benavidez Street in Binondo, Manila.

Mäsüki Signage


Quite obviously, Mäsüki used to be called something else. It has been around since the 1930's.


Typical of many Filipino-Chinese restaurants is the receptionist's counter by the door / entrance.


Mäsüki makes their own mami noodles (egg noodles). To me, they're buttery and rich. Just the way I like it!


If I could, I'd order all of these bowls of noodles, patiently waiting to be snatched and doused with piping hot broth, ready to be slurped to one's delight.

“Ganyan mga silya natin dati, remember?” (We had the same chairs when you were young, remember?) Mama asked as I tried my best to subtly take photos of Mäsüki’s wooden chairs.  I had the urge to because, as Mama pointed out, those were chairs I grew up with.  That’s the kind of feeling that I would always get from being in typical Chinese restaurants in old Manila – the warmth of home.  I looked around and indeed felt transported back to my youth – the jalousies, all the wooden treatments, no airconditioning.  I took a sip of the complimentary brown hot tea and I almost looked for an ottoman to rest my feet on and the day’s broadsheets to go over.

While everybody else had the siopao (steamed buns with meat filling) and the siomai (steamed dumplings) along with their mami, I just concentrated on large servings of the latter – both the chicken and the beef!  Unlike most of Mäsüki’s patrons, I would totally do away with slathering the house brown sauce on to my mami.  Only the generous side of chopped spring onions would always make it to my dish.  I dug my chopsticks in to pick up as much of the noodles that I could get and slurped as quiet as I could.  Though it is only in Mäsüki that I would allow myself to make noise when eating.  I added more of the spring onions to the soup and sipped and sipped.  It was heaven.  Before long, I was ready for my second bowl.

My first bowl, Special Chicken Mami.


Added at will, lots of chopped spring onions!

While waiting to be served my second round, I stood up and took some more photos.  At one point, the cook at the counter told me, “Sir, umalis na po kayo dito at wag na kayo kumuha ng picture kung ayaw nyong mapagalitan.”  (Sir, please move away and stop taking photos unless you want to be told off.)

My second bowl, Special Beef Mami.


The scalding hot broth just added.

Just like a kid yet again, I felt embarrassed and gingerly walked back to our table.  When Mama asked what was wrong, I almost felt like telling her I was feeling so at home – very much like being told to stop from wandering around during meal time and go back to the table and eat.  Hahaha!

Copyright © 2011 by eNTeNG  c”,)™©’s  MunchTime™©.  All rights reserved.



One response

12 02 2011

Masuki….This is as nostalgic as “funeraria nostalgia” hahahaha! When I was still in grade school, my dad and I would have our merienda here every Saturday before going to santa cruz church for anticipated mass. We rode a caleza going there, passing by Funeraria Paz along Tomas Mapua St. which I thought was a movie house after seeing people going out crying (I thought they watched a sad movie). That time, Masuki was still called Mah-Kong. I rediscovered this place through Mr Tycoon who we all know owns chinatown :P. I was so surprised to see the balding waiter still working there after ~20 years!. Boss I hope you tried adding the siopao sauce in the soup. Syet! ang Sarap!


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