Mi Casa, Su Casa: CASA MARCOS

As soon as my dad found out that my buddy Muffin was the grand daughter of the famous Ben Del Rosario of Casa Marcos, he came up with an elaborate plan of how we could sneak into Muffin’s house at midnight to steal their family secret recipe book! Of course, this plan was never fully executed. My dad and I don’t really have the akyat-bahay skills. Thievery is really not our thang, you know.  It would’ve been priceless to see my dad in a black ninja suit though! So you can imagine his delight (and the delight of his oldie b’goldie friends from all over) upon hearing the news of the rebirth of Casa Marcos.

Casa Marcos was THE place to be during the time of my folks, it was a well known date place: classy and reserved for extra special occasions. The Casa Marcos of 2011 has carefully preserved it’s authentic Spanish charm serving all their best selling dishes in the exact same way it was served decades ago. If you want to take your folks on a trip down memory lane..this will surely get them truly nostalgic. It has that homey feel that’s perfect for Sunday lunches with the whole family. But this restaurant is also a hit for people like me, people who just want GOOD, HIGH QUALITY food! It’s very accessible for young people especially those coming from work looking for a place to unwind after office hours. (After you taste their gambas and almejas, you will be daydreaming about these pica-picas at work!!) It’s also a great happy hour hangout! Below Casa Marcos, you’ll also find The Bread Bag which serves yummy pandesal with special palamans. I love their roast beef pandesal, arroz ala cubana pandesal, and the classic corned beef pandesal. Comfort food talaga!!! The restaurant is located at the heart of The Fort, a very convenient location indeed. 🙂 If you like rich, succulent, dripping in heavenly olive oil kind of food..this is the place for you!

My personal Casa Marcos recommendations:

Almejas : Baked clams topped with melted cheese and crispy garlic bits.
Gambas : Spanish garlic shrimps, cooked Casa Marcos style
Tenderloin Tips: Sliced tenderloin tips with roasted garlic
Steak Ala Pobre: Steak cooked in its own sauce with cloves of garlic, cooked Casa Marcos style
Prawns Moliniere: 3 pieces tiger prawns cooked in a unique butter sauce with button mushrooms, blanched tomatoes and fried potatoes
Callos: Slow cooked tripe in tomato sauce with Spanish chorizo and garbanzos
Paella Valenciana : hearty rice meal with chorizo, seafood, and chicken seasoned
with paprika cooked over a slow fire that is good for 4-5

Here’s the Casa Marcos story…
The story of Casa Marcos began in the 1940’s when a Spanish national named Marcos de Guisasola
opened a restaurant in his name along Roxas Boulevard. Its warm and welcoming atmosphere and
authentic Spanish menu quickly won over the palate of the local crowd as well as other Spanish
nationals. At that time, our grandfather Ben del Rosario had Señor Marcos for a client and the two
struck a close friendship. When the latter needed to return to Spain, he decided to pass on ownership of
Casa Marcos to Ben, who was one of its frequent patrons and had become familiar with its operations.

In 1983, the family of Ben decided to open a branch on Gilmore Avenue in Quezon City so that patrons
from the northern part of the city would be able to satisfy their almejas, gambas, and calamares fix
without having to go all the way to Roxas Boulevard. It was also here that a bakery solely for the now
very popular Casa Marcos pan de sal was established. Casa Marcos eventually moved from Gilmore
Avenue to Tomas Morato before it closed its doors in 2000.

The opening of Casa Marcos was partly brought about by the regulars of The Bread Bag Pandesal Bar
at Ortigas Home Depot, where one can have his/her chosen palaman with our soft yet crusty pan de
sal, in a menu adopted from favorite dishes and tapas from Casa Marcos. The Bread Bag’s customers,
old patrons, relatives, and friends have continued to ask about Casa Marcos all these years, and have
never failed to say they miss the prawns moliniere, steak ala pobre, and sopa de mariscos, as well as
other dishes. This clamoring for the restaurant was a catalyst for us to truly consider the possibility,
with the sole aim of allowing our patrons, old or new, to once again experience the warmth, savor the
flavor, enjoy the service, and feel the appreciation of our family for your loyalty all these years – as we
welcome you, to the new Casa Marcos.

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