Along Scout Rallos in Quezon City, there’s a place where you can get stoned every day, without fear of becoming a “tokhang” victim.
Get high on dry-aged Wagyu and USDA prime steaks served on a 350-degree Celsius lava rock at Stoned Steaks—the brainchild of couple Dick and Mars Balajadia.
“The idea of Stoned Steaks was born out of a family trip that we took several years back. We were then on a cruise ship and we ordered steaks. We were surprised when we were served a tray that had a lava stone on it,” relates Dick.
“We were amazed at the experience of cooking the steaks, at being able to control the way we wanted it cooked and the doneness. We wanted to bring this experience and share it to the market in Manila,” he adds.
The lava stone traps the natural flavor of the steak, which are hand-carved with expert precision to remove extra tissue and tendons.
Dick admits the price point may cater more to an upscale market, but Stoned Steaks remains non-intimidating, urban and hip.
“Filipinos now have a more inquisitive palate, and they have that itch to explore and discover new things and create new experiences while dining. We sell quality and experience, and these drive up market demand. Our Stoned Steaks price point is at a spot that it is affordable to some, and aspirational to others,” he says.
Dick continues, “Despite neighboring restaurants that offer higher or lower-priced steak or unli-meat dishes, we believe customers return to Stoned Steaks because of the personalized service and our non-intimidating ambience.”
The Angus tenderloin, for example, is priced at P1,850 for a solo order of 220 grams and P2,680 for 350 grams. Wagyu Grade 4 ribeye starts at P2,950 for a solo order, while the 220 grams Grade 7 Wagyu ribeye is priced at P3,800.
Stoned Steaks also offers Wagyu spaghetti meatballs (P520), Oyster Rockefeller (P380), Wagyu cheeseburger (P560), truffle parmesan fries (P220), grilled salmon (P625), and baked veal bone marrow (P290), among others.
It also has regular promotions of unlimited steak every Monday to Wednesday, Wagyu steaks at 50 percent off on Thursdays, and buy one, take one on dry-aged steaks every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
Stoned Steaks has recently partnered with Moët Hennessy PH Terrazas de los Andes as it rolled out The Wine Room, its latest venue for intimate family gatherings or even small corporate meetings.
“Pairing our steaks with Argentinian wine is just the first of many. We have just recently opened our Wine Room and are still currently exploring how we can better serve our market by giving them more options,” says Dick.
According to Clemence Dufeu, brand heritage manager for Moët Hennessy Philippines, Argentina’s high altitude ensures that their wines are not as acidic as other wines, and taste more fruity.
For Dick, who is opening his second Stoned Steaks branch at Eastwood in August, the market has been good for the kind of quality steak they offer.
“As a business-owner, who would not want to explore and expand? As they say, strike while the iron is hot.”
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