Nanam Takapuna (North Shore City, New Zealand)
We first visited Nanam three years ago, that was when their restaurant was located in Symonds Street, Royal Oak. Our review during that time was OK, there was one let down during that time but everything was great specially their Taco Pao, now many years later we revisited, in a much better and improved location, in Takapuna.
First thing we noticed is that the place is million times better compared to their old restaurant, its cosier and it was decorated accordingly. The place is much bigger and the menu had changed but they retained some of the best sellers. It was a busy night when we visited but even though that was the fact we still were served on time and with a smile, they even adjusted the count of entree items on each dish to cater for the number of diners.
The food preparation for our mains took some time but that understandable since the place was full when we visited so I heavily suggest to get some entrees which comes in really fast. Eating at Nanam would not be complete without the Taco Pao (NZ$11.00) so that was one of the things we ordered. Basically, this dish is a beetroot bao served with fill it your own humba pulled pork and assorted condiments like pickled radish, crumbed chicharon, fried garlic and carrots. This dish never changed, it was very consistent from their Royal Oak days, it was so delicious and if there is one reason to visit this place then this would be it.
Next on the entree was this Wagyu Sausage “Longaniza” (NZ$11.00), a type of Filipino sausage prepared with Wagyu and lemongrass sausage served wrapped in a tortilla with coriander, atchara pickle and chipotle mayo.
This was another WOW! If Taco Pao made it into our regular diet when we first tired Nanam then this is like one of those, I so love this, sweet, mildly spicy, creamy, so addictive, I can eat two dozen of this, it was so delicious.
For the mains we had their version of Crispy Pata called Crispy NZ Pork Hock (NZ$33.00), which is basically Boneless free range crispy “pata” pork hock served with chili calamansi dip and cabbage salad. Very tasty, very crispy and even though I have reservations of it having no bones (as I really love bones), it was perfect in this scenario as it was in a restaurant, I don’t want to nibble those large leg bones in public 🙂
For our second mains we have this Beef Cheek Caldereta (NZ$26.00), a 10-hr braised beef cheek served in a red pepper Caldereta sauce, braised lettuce, mushroom and garden peas. Another champ of a dish, which was unexpected! The beef after I uncovered from that braised lettuce does not look appetizing (I guess that’s the reason for the lettuce) but my God! It was amazing, so fork tender and the fat and meat just dissolves in your mouth. It’s not just a good dish but also an amazing sensory experience, I also love the spiciness of it which does not happen while you eat it but it happens as an after effect, feels like the kick coming from horseradish similar to a mild wasabi.
We did get two Nanam Rice (NZ$2.50) and the serving is quite ample, I suggest if you are a Filipino then order 1.5 orders per person other than that one rice per person is enough.
Overall, we love the experience, even though we only have two mains for three people we were quite full after the dinner, we were planning for some dessert but there was no more room for it. Definitely they stepped up the ladder compared to the old Nanam. It’s one of those Filipino places I would highly recommend to my non-Filipino friends.
Address: 178 Hurstmere Rd, Takapuna, Auckland 0622, New Zealand
Phone: +64 9488 9976