Obreros (Orewa, Auckland, New Zealand)

Was so excited when I found out there is another Filipino restaurant in town and it’s even better as my daughter knows who owns them, it is one of her close friend’s family businesses. Obreros, located in Orewa, while it is located far away from where we currently live, we had a chance to visit this place on our way home after our day trip at Matheson Bay Reserve.

Obreros is not your typical Filipino restaurant, while it serves mostly Filipino classic, they also offer a bit of the Japanese cuisine, an odd combination but the Japanese dishes served here are those dishes that are close the Filipino heart and palate, like Yakisoba, Karaage, Teriyaki and Tempura to name some. We did not try those as there are lots of great options that we are craving for.

First was the Bulalo (NZ$43.50), a meaty beef soup comprised of shank and bone marrow. Cooked until collagen and fat has melted into the clear broth. We seldom make this at home as the typical beef bone used on this dish is quite hard to find or is always out of stock. It is a massive dish, in fact I tried different bulalo’s from different Filipino restaurants in Auckland, so far this was the biggest serving.

The bowl it was served on was so huge, it occupied mostly the area of our table. As for the flavour it was definitely beefy and also one of the least fatty ones, it does not have greasy feeling after you drank its soup, vegetables are nicely cooked, still crisp.

Kare Kare (NZ$23.50), slow cooked beef in a rich thick peanut butter sauce, was our second choice after deliberating between this and crispy pata. We chose this over crispy pata because the serving size of that crispy pata was so huge and if we grab them together with our bulalo, we might not be able to finish them all. It was a good choice, the Kare Kare was the tastiest we ever tried, on the sweet side, it’s one of those kare kare that does not need the bagoong as a side.

We also had some Calamari (NZ$13.50), tender pieces of squid, dipped in tempura batter and deep fried to golden brown perfection. Well-seasoned and perfectly cooked, the squid was juicy but the breading when you grab it with a fork falls apart, they did not stick well on the squid.

To finish everything up, we were given some complimentary ice cream as a dessert, it was Gians queso, a Filipino ice cream maker here in Auckland which we also reviewed several months ago.

Overall, the food was great, we noticed none of the dishes felt greasy even though they are dishes with high fat content. This was really good as you will leave the place not feeling guilty as they all felt light even though they pack a lot of flavours. Serving sizes were huge, that bulalo alone can feed three people. The place is definitely spacious, it was very clean as well. As for the service, definitely it was great specially if it was my daughter’s friend who attended to us.

Address: 300 Hibiscus Coast Highway, Orewa, Auckland 0931, New Zealand
Phone: +649 906 3111


7 Responses

  1. Both beef dishes are awesome, esp. the one cooked in thick peanut butter sauce. Fried squid rings ain’t bad either…I don’t mind falling apart breading :-))

  2. Those dishes all look wonderful. And yes that bulalo was *huge*! Good for a large table or for bringing home a “doggy bag”…

    I’m intrigued by the name of the restaurant, “Obreros”, which as you probably is the Spanish word for “workers”. I wonder if it has the same meaning in Tagalog? If so, it’s a curious name for a restaurant. I wonder if there’s a story behind it.

  3. Shen Chen says:

    The bulalo looks so tasty. I’m going to a Filipino restaurant this weekend, Bar Magda. Looks very interesting. Have you heard of it?

  4. suituapui says:

    I would love that bulalo – bet the beef soup with that huge shank simmering in it would taste absolutely awesome.

  5. I love the idea of Filipino-Japanese fusion! I really enjoy trying new foods, and that Kare Kare sounds quite tasty!

  6. Bill Powell says:

    when are you going to have website ?
    And if you say you contactable from 11 am on Wed make sure you do It;s now 2.30 , I have phoned 4 times and still no reply

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