Silantro Fil-Mex Cantina: Comfort food then and now

Silantro - beef nachos
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I’d first visited Silantro Fil-Mex Cantina in Kapitolyo during a disastrous date with a guy I’d just met. We waited in line for about one and a half hour (it was a Friday night and the eve of a long weekend), and after we’d finally had dinner, we asked a server to take out the rest of our food, only to get home and discover we were given the wrong food bag.

Despite this less-than-amiable start, I keep coming back here. When I met Hali, this was where we had one of our first dates. From EDSA, we’d either commute or take a long 40-minute walk to this beloved restaurant. (Did you know that from McDonalds in Greenfield, it’s just a long straight walk to Silantro?)

We’d been here so many times that we each have our own favorite items.

Our shared favorite is the beef nachos. It comes with a generous serving of flavorful chunks of beef, tomatoes, melted cheese and a small tray of dips (garlic sauce, guacamole and a spicy dip). It’s supposed to be an appetizer or snack, but large enough to be a meal in itself.

Silantro - beef nachos
Beef nachos.

Silantro - beef nachos

I also love their beef skewers, roasted to medium rare and served with a cup of rice. It has a delicious smoky flavor that’s perfect while still warm.

Silantro - beef skewers
Beef skewers.

Hali’s fond of their caliente wings, which are fried chicken wings in sweet-spicy barbecue sauce. The flavor is strong and best devoured with its accompanying portion of shredded lettuce. With a cold glass of root beer, preferably.

Silantro - caliente wings
Caliente wings.

We’d also tried their tacos, quesadilla, pancholo’s burger, seafood paella, pork fingers and Mexican rib-eye steak. It’s always a feast, somehow.

Silantro - burger
Pancholo’s burger.

We were rarely disappointed, and if asked our least favorite, it would be the beef quesadilla and ribeye steak. The quesadilla was uncommon in that it’s chick and the filling tasted like mushroom burger sauce, while the ribeye steak was tough — although ironically it’s one of the most expensive in the menu.

All in all, Silantro Fil-Mex Cantina offers delicious Mexican food, within reasonable rates. We’d usually spend P500-600 for a full meal for two, and we’d always go home with happy tummies and a little bit of leftover. It’s no wonder people always line up to get seated inside this local restaurant.

Aside from the good food, we’d shared so many moments in Silantro that I’d come to associate it with that generally good feeling.

Couple shot at Silantro

Normally, we’d only go here for a casual snack. But this is also where we had our first date, Hali’s family celebration of Father’s Day weeks before his dad passed away, and finally our last dinner out before my flight to Malaysia, where I would live for a year.

Silantro family celebration
Celebrating Father’s Day with Halis family.

Silantro Fil-Mex Cantina is one of my ultimate favorite restaurants in the Philippines, and it’s one of the things I’ll miss there.

About Silantro Fil-Mex Cantina

Silantro Fil-Mex Cantina is a casual restaurant offering Fil-Mex food, which one of its owners describes as “Mexican adjusted to the Filipino taste buds.” Its first branch started in Dagupan City in Pangasinan, and it has currently limited branches in Metro Manila.

We’d been here several times over the past 2 years, and most of the time we have to wait for an average of 40 minutes to get seated. The wait is longer on selected days such as Friday nights or holidays on a weekend. It’s such a testament to how much we love this restaurant that we’re willing to get in line every time. Anyway, do not go here if you’re already hungry.

Silantro Fil-Mex Cantina currently has branches in the following locations in the Philippines:

  • Kapitolyo, Pasig City
  • Alabang Town Center, Muntinlupa City
  • UP Town Center, Quezon City
  • Ayala Fairview Terraces, Quezon City
  • Ayala Malls Serin, Tagaytay City

Suggested budget: P500-600 for 2 people

You can find Silantro’s official Facebook page here.


Have you been to Silantro Fil-Mex Cantina? What can you say about it?

Silantro Fil-Mex Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


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