Enjoy the smell and taste of charcoal grilled meat
Kalye is the Filipino term for road or street. Located on The Parade at Norwood, Kalye is so named because it offers a variety of Filipino BBQ street food, a cuisine that we were not aware about until now. Also known as Philippine cuisine, this cuisine is known for its use of strong flavours whereas other Asian cuisines tend to be a bit more subtle in their flavours. As most of the dishes have Filipino names, we ordered our meal by looking at pictures of the dishes and seeking explanation from the staff when the pictures did not speak the proverbial thousand words to us.
Chicky-Q Skewer is one of Kalye's various grilled dishes which can be ordered as individual skewers or as part of a meal accompanied with pickled green papaya, salad, rice and a dipping sauce. We ordered the meal and found the chicken to be cooked just right with a delectable char-grilled flavour from being barbecued. The sharp taste of the dipping sauce and pickled green papaya helped to offset the rich taste of the chicken with the rice being a good partner to all the ingredients.
Chicky-Q Skewers (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
For something more suited for sharing with family and friends, Kalye offers two types of Sisig dishes. Sisig means "to snack on something sour". It also refers to the process of cooking meat by marinating it in a sour liquid such as lemon juice or vinegar, then seasoning it with salt, pepper and other spices. The Pork Belly Sisig we chose had pork belly which was tender with the sauce bringing out its flavour. It also had some bits of pork crackling to give it a bit of crunch and a lemon to squeeze over the dish to give it a delightful sour flavour. A version made with minced chicken instead of pork is also available.
Pork Belly Sisig (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
Kwek Kwek Tido is a popular Filipino street food - a Filipino version of a miniature Scotch Egg. This dish is a quail egg covered with minced pork and fried in an orange batter. The crisp orange batter coating the Kwek Kwek Tido was a good contrast to the softer minced pork and egg with the minced pork having a distinct Asian flavour. It came with a sour dipping sauce that the egg can be dipped in to enhance the flavour.
For dessert, we had their Lecheng Turonette which was deep fried spring roll wrapper with crème caramel filling. The crispy wrapper was a great contrast to the filling which was not too sweet. The pastries were served on ube (purple yam) paste that complemented the flavour of the pastries.
Lecheng Turonette (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
While dining there, we saw a group of diners enjoying a special feast of meat and seafood piled in the middle of their table on banana leaves. The staff informed us that the feast is available on request by booking one day in advance. The café is pretty small and I think the meal would be more enjoyable at the outdoor seating in nice weather. A decent amount of parking is available on the street where the café is located.