When chef Baba Ibazeta Benedicto of Classic Confections opened Nono’s, we had to ask one thing: Would her iconic Nono’s Chocolate Oblivion be available there? We found out that yes, it is, but there’s so much more on offer. The restaurant, like the cake, is named after her father, and is chock-full of family stories. The space, designed by Space Encounters, might as well be a room in their home.
Her dad gets another namesake in Nono’s superb fried chicken. It’s impressively made without brining, which just goes to show how much Baba understands her ingredients. Her mom, on the other hand, is represented by a strawberry cake.
Most of the dishes on the menu trigger Baba’s family memories: Wonton triangles stuffed with mozzarella recall her favorite cheese sticks, while the Oriental Shrimp Salad reminds her of a shrimp snack she used to enjoy in San Francisco; the restaurant’s breads—burger buns, dinner rolls, and crusty loaves—are made by her brother-in-law, ace baker Richie Manapat.
Baba was careful to develop only dishes that everyone would surely love and keep coming back to. Nothing is completely unfamiliar, and she adds only small twists that one could consider improvements rather than revisions: balsamic vinegar in her adobo and truffle in her appetizers. Whatever other tweaks she comes up with won’t change the fact that this is one reliable family restaurant. Nono’s is at Level 1, Phase 1B, U.P. Town Center, Katipunan Avenue, Quezon City (tel. no.: 958-5713).
Nono’s Fried Chicken