Sweet na, Healthy pa! : Filipino Bean-to-Bar Hiraya Chocolates

Christmas is really just around the corner, and this festive season is just a perfect time to be merry and munch all those goodies we’ve long stayed away from. Hehe 😉

Gaining more pounds this time of the year is absolutely normal and forgivable, if I may add. 😉

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I am actually rooting a for a new addition to your chocolate fixations and I was hoping you have room for more! Because this chocolate is not taking any ‘NO’ for an answer!

Hiraya is a chocolate brand you’ll definitely go ga-ga for. They have dark chocolate and chocolate bars with coffee nibs.

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72% Dark Chocolate Single-Origin Davao (85g).

It tastes fruity with just a tinge of bitterness.

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They are 100% locally sourced ingredients, all-natural, hand harvested cacao. It’s a lot healthier too than most brands, because they contain no preservatives, no additives, and no artificial flavors.

It’s even suitable for vegans.

* SRP: PHP180.00

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Hiraya x Kalsada Chocolate Bar with Coffee Nibs (70g)

A strong chocolate with hints of robust coffee. This variant is a collaboration with Kalsada Coffee – a social enterprise based in Manila and Seattle that promotes specialty coffee from the Philippines.

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You’ll never go wrong with premium coffee beans sourced from the highlands of Sitio Belis, Benguet Province

* SRP: PHP200.00

 

Hiraya is actually an ancient Filipino word which means “the fruit of one’s hopes, dreams, and aspirations”. True to this meaning, the brand has been in great support of our local farmers, following a sustainable partnership and fair trade in building both their dreams together.Hiraya Chocolates 8

To date, they already have one (1) community composed of 58 farmers in Brgy. Malabog, Davao City

I can’t believe that after a tumultuous education of Professional Chocolate Making and Professional Chocolatier Studies from Ecole Chocolat in March 2010, here they are, ready to satiate our sweet tooth!

 

You may contact them through the following:

HIRAYA ARTISAN CHOCOLATES, Inc

* Office c/o Roots Katipunan Unit 106 FBR Arcade Bldg.,

317 Katipunan Avenue Loyola Heights, Quezon City

* Mobile: Arvin Peralta 0917-8511685

* Email: hirayachocolates@gmail.com

* Online: http://www.hirayachocolates.com

* Social Media: facebook.com/HirayaChocolates    |   Instagram: @hirayachocolates

#BloggersPhilippines #ILoveHirayaChocolates #HirayaChocolates

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Are you excited to try these chocolates?

 

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What to Expect at The Yard Street Food Cinema (Timog Ave., QC)

“Location, location, location.” “These are the 3 things an investor looks for when they are trying to scout for a property.”

Not too long ago, you can often hear me say these, especially when I was still working as a Training Officer for a real estate company.

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Consequently, I have been spending most of my time in Quezon City, particularly because most of my events are in here, and John lives in West Avenue as well. So it definitely equates to being my favorite work and play place!

That is why my joy wasn’t quite contained when I learned that The Yard was having its soft opening. Right on time, I was actually in SM North EDSA to meet a client to deliver her bridal shoes!

I booked a ride, and head on to this newest food destination! To my surprise, it greeted so well telling me it’s only a short distance from West Avenue!

I was so thrilled how a food park is going to change the food scene on this side of town! Surely, Timog Ave. and Morato has always been ringing streets when it comes to hang out places, date nights and food trips.

Well today, the game has just started to become more interesting!

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Compared to the Yard in Xavierville, I am really excited and rooting for how this place is going to be a big hit in the coming months; especially that Christmas is sooo close already!

It didn’t hurt either when the foodpark’s theme was circumvented and inspired by movies and tv series! Expect to see hints from Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones, The Lion King, Star Wars , Monsters Inc. The Avengers etc.!

The creative juices were actually on a hurricane level that night for me! I really loved how the stalls were wittily named; they were all very well-thought-of!

The lighting was also gorgeous! It made my photos more Instagrammable! To the point that I actually changed my theme! Check @encyclopevia on Instagram for you to see what I’m talking about.

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It was no wonder when I saw a familiar face there too! We always see each other in random places! And it makes me feel like 21 again!

I don’t feel old at all, considering our ages are a decade apart! Haha 🙂 *Pagbigyan ang tita.

And of course, while we’re enjoying the misty lights, together with my blogger friends, we got to try The Yard Street Food Cinema‘s wide array of dishes and drinks from different creative food geniuses!

And they were divine!

God Pasta Pork BellyMac n Chicks MNC Buffalo WingsPipa House Audrey HepBURGPit Master 1Lord of The Ribs Baby Back Ribs Solo(1)

A drink bar is also situated at the far end of the whole food park – The Yard Quenchers. They have unique interactive drinks that bring friends and family together,  much like the objective for the Yard.

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They have fun drinks like the Ultimate Hulk Smash and The Wrath of Thor, which is already going viral as of the moment. They both need you to wear props and be like Hulk or Thor before you get to drink the cocktail. Is it served on a big bowl good for sharing for 3-5 pax. It’s also quite affordable as it is only PHP 350 pesos.

So if you’re hungry (which is like 90% of the time) head on to the groovy The Yard Street Food Cinema at Timog Ave. and I’m positive, that your food experience will absolutely be a blockbuster hit!

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Facebook:
The Yard at Xavierville – https://www.facebook.com/theyardatxavierville/
The Yard Underground Pasig – https://www.facebook.com/TheYardUnderground/
Instagram:
The Yard at Xavierville – https://www.instagram.com/theyardatxavierville/?hl=en
The Yard Underground Pasig – https://www.instagram.com/theyardunderground/?hl=en

 

The Yard Street Food Cinema- now showing, I mean, eating! 😀

 

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Hops & Brews in Makati is Your New After Work Chill Place

Remembering my time back in our Makati office, when I had to print lots of sales kits, that I could almost pull out an all-nighter on my work shifts, I suddenly thought I haven’t really had much time to order good food while I was at work. Or even after work.

A hard day’s labor often ends up in an empty-bellied workaholic girl who succumbs to sleep when she comes home. Just because, she doesn’t know where to go after. :/

Looking back, if I can just tell her, “Hey! There’s a good resto down the block, and if you can just finish everything on time, you might even have a chance to score good food while listening to their acoustics!”

I may not work in Makati anymore, but it’s a relief to know that good food is literally just some minutes away from the office;  or if you’re lucky based on your office’s location, probably only seconds.

Want to know what I’m talking about? Just keep on reading!

 

I recently discovered this up and coming cafe bar in Makati, and I am sooo stoked!

One of the founders of Hops & Brews is actually an attendee of  my Search Engine Optimization talk. I know, the wonders of events and learning!

I was so happy I got to meet her, and share insights about marketing, social media, and business!

The other day, I was fortunate enough to try some of their best-sellers and here is what I have to say!

Fish and Shrimps Nasi Goreng

I got so kilig when I read “Nasi Goreng”.

When I was in Malaysia, all menus have them! Nasi is rice, while Goreng is fried. It’s like their most basic dish, and restaurants play with the add-ons, like beef, chicken or whatever the kitchen has. It depends on how they get creative.

I literally squealed when I read it, so I asked the waiter to serve us this dish because I got so curious how they will manipulate the flavors. Although I know it’s going to be spicy,  I just braced myself and had my water gallons at the ready.

Surprisingly, the spice was just right. Something I can handle, and the flavors were just bursting everywhere. Even without the fish and shrimps, the rice itself can stand alone as a meal, so I highly recommend you try this one!

Chicken Karaage

The flavor was strong, yet gentle to munch. I had a very good time eating this dish, because I never need rice to feel busog with it.

The crunch was just right, and I like how freshly made it was. The sauce was good too, although I prefer eating it without it.

I like dry things! Hehe :))

The Buddha Bowl

This surprised me. I was just expecting a lot of greens to this salad, but the meat strips proved a fine addition to it.

It felt more like a meal than a salad to me. I love how the flavor of each ingredient is also  subtle enough to complement and produce a different kind of taste with the mixture of all the involved spices.

I recommend you to visit Hops and Brews, especially on their acoustic nights, which varies between Tuesday, Wednesdays, and Thursdays! They operate from 10:00 AM to 2:00 AM.

Visit them at: G/F of I’M Hotel 7862 Makati Avenue, Poblacion Makati 1210

Contact Number: 0916 785 0568
I will be holding one of my talks here soooooon! 😀
So I’ll see you here one of these days, yeah?
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5 Reasons Why After All Bar & Grill is Perfect for Your Next Girls’ Night Out

One of my favorite songs is “After All”, by Peter Cetera.

I know it’s an old song, but there is just something about it that draws me big time. I just feel the sincerity of the lyrics, and how it has captured the scenes in the movie “Chances Are”. OMG. If you haven’t watched it, you have to! You get to see the baby Robert Downey, Jr.!

I am getting ahead of myself here, so allow me to put justice on the title on why this could be your next, or probably your permanent girls’ night out hang-out place!

  1. There is so much history in the nameIMG_20170518_210053

Okay, so I think I am just so biased on this one because I really love the movie where it was the theme song!

I was quite curious about this up and coming restaurant who share the same name. I was wondering why did they name it “After All” after all. ;p

It turns out that the group who owns the restaurant chose from a list of songs they all love. Naturally, you know what won! 🙂

“Good times” by the Jackson 5 was one of the choices, but I guess the words are too mainstream, so choosing “lesser heard words” and “not typically used words for hashtags” might be a good brand to capitalize on. OMG! This is the social media and SEO bug venom creeping in!

2. The ambiance of the place reminds you of a crossbreed of a restaurant and a pub.

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There were a lot of people in the restaurant considering it was a Thursday night, and they were just on their 17th day of operation! Woah! 🙂

The crowd was a mix of generation X, millennials and baby boomers! It’s actually a perfect place for an after-work hangout or a girls’ night.

3. Amazing menu awaits the foodie and the nottie!

We were served a lot of dishes that night and I cannot stress how delicious they are! I was there on Thursday night, and I went back Monday for lunch tagging along with some girl friends!

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This is the kind of lunch you would want everyday, right? For only P150, the meal is complete! Not to mention savory! 🙂

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Their recipes are modern and unique, they often add some new twists and flavors to give each dish a rewarding and palatable gastronomic experience!

4. Recipe drinks are available, and you’ll love them even if you’re not very close with alcohol!

We were served drinks to complement the appealing flavors we were eating. I am not a drinker, you know that, and for someone who is not a fan of alcohol, it was a surprise how I loved devouring their recipe drinks.

I think I owe it to how they blended the concoctions well, masking the taste of alcohol and lifting the tasty and fruity aroma instead!

Oh look at this one, we have the same color! Haha 😀

5. Cool tunes of the band will serenade your night away!

I was lucky enough to get to know the lead vocalist that night! Hi Gin Papin!

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She is not just a beautiful splitting image of Beauty Gonzales, but she is also exceptionally talented! Not to mention very sweet!

She sang “Always Forever” and “We Found Love” – the two important songs for me and my fiance. She sang them immediately after I shared how these songs are tantamount in our love story.

We were able to find an introduction and the short chitchat seemed like we’ve been friends forever!

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So one thing is for sure, you can request songs, and get amazing vocals in the background while having the best time with your friends!

I could go on and on, but this is probably the best food blog experience I had! I am definitely coming back!

After All Bar & Grill is located at 235 Ground Floor, Jazz Mall, Nicanor Garcia Cor. Jupiter St., Makati. You may contact them through (02) 816 36 52 and afterall.barandgrill@gmail.com .

Find more about them on Facebook !

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When Taste Buds Rouse at Vittorio’s Steakhouse

Aside from pretzels and chocoflakes, steaks are equally important in my life, as they particularly signal that there is something special to celebrate!

I have tasted quite a few menus of steakhouses, both in and out of Metro Manila and I am  grateful that I had the chance to taste Vittorio’s Steakhouse style on this much-coveted Pinoy favorite.

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To my surprise, this restaurant has quite a lot to offer, and their menu is evolving to serve more exquisite dishes.

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Here are the parietal cell-inducing specialties!

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Corn Chowder

Corn-flavored soups are my tastebuds’ bestfriend, and it’s no wonder that I liked this one. They are creamy and seasoned perfectly. I actually wanted another serving, but I have to save some space for the other dishes.

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Crab Bisque

This is definitely appetizing, and it’s easy to discern the spices. Delicious as it is, I wished the crabby taste was more apparent. But overall, it was delicious.

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Chop Noodles Salad with Miso Dressing

I didn’t know noodles and greens will go meant-to-be! I love this recipe! They were surprising and intriguing! Every bite was wonderful!

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Oyster Rockefeller

I love how the oysters tasted! They made me want to go to the beach! If it was just me, I might have devoured the whole plate! But of course, I am a polite foodie. :p

I also admire how they tasted so fresh, despite the generous smothering of garlic and cheese into each shell. I believe this will be perfect for those who are on a strict diet.

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Mixed Green Salad with Balsamic Dressing

I am kind of biased with salads like this. Greek Salads are my favorite, such as this variant, so it wasn’t a shock when I had to control myself in taking over the bigger share of the plate. But hey, the serving was hefty, so no biggie! 😀

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Buttered Garlic Shrimp

If it wasn’t stated that Vittorio’s is a Steakhouse, I might have thought that this is a Shrimp House! This is their best-seller, and it was truly stellar!

The shrimp tasted superb along with its spices, and you can practically eat them as is, or pair them with rice. This is a must-order! Do not skip this one!

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Clams Pasta

It was a new dish for me because I haven’t tasted anything like it before. The sauce was good, although I kind of hoped it would taste stronger. And it wouldn’t hurt either if there was a crunch element added to it.

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Shrimp Pesto

I love tasting different takes on pesto. I remember, I used to rank the best pestos I’ve ever tasted, just because.

The princely amount of shrimps was commendable, and if given the chance, I would urge every restaurant there is to take a cue on the serving made in Vittorio’s. However, I kind of hoped that the pesto tasted more aggressive.

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Beef and Garlic Mushroom

This recipe made me want to learn it, and prepare it when I become a Mom someday. I really think that it’s perfect for lunch, and the flavour was just everywhere. Everything was just bursting with spices, and the aroma was addicting.

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Meatballs with Honey Soy Glazed

This dish reminded me of Rosie, the elder woman who took voice lessons from Robbie Hart (Adam Sandler) in the movie, “The Wedding Singer”. She used to give Robbie with meatballs as compensation. Haha 😀

And if I can imagine, if those meatballs that Rosie made ever tasted like Vittorio’s, Robbie Hart was well-paid then.

The meatballs that were served to us that day were excellent!

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Crab Cake

The cake was a bit over-cooked for me, and a little dry. Perhaps because it was prepared way before the time we had to taste it? I don’t know. But I would love to go back and check if my tastebuds were just cranky that afternoon.

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Bone in Steak with Steakrice

So this is why it’s a steakhouse!

The star of the restaurant didn’t disappoint. It was soooo good, that even if I was a bit full, my stomach still urged to let them in. My golly, I really loved it! It was like a feast in itself!

They were served as medium-rear, and even if I am not a fan of that technique, I appreciated how soft and chewable the beef strands were. They were delightful in the mouth, as well as how chunky and rich they were in flavor.

You definitely need to order this when you visit!

“Gusto kong kumain ng karne!”, is the usual line of one good friend, and I can’t wait to share this with her!

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Rebel Bar and Brownies

And finally, the dessert! 😀 They were chocolatey, very chewy, and complementing with the dishes we had. I am not a lover of chocolates, but these are good ones I bet. My fiancé loved them!

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Over all, I loved the experience! It’s a great place to go for lunches and dinners, family bonding, friendly hang-outs and even dates! You could actually drop by here even if it’s a lunch meeting.

The place is quiet and the selection of food is wide. I can see that you will really spend some time debating on what to order, so better come in early!

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Thank you, Chef, for an awesome and gastronomic food experience! I went home with food coma! 😀 Hehe

Visit Vittorio’s Steakhouse at 1103, 32 Sct Borromeo, Diliman, Quezon City, 1103 Metro Manila.

You may also follow them on their social media accounts:

FB: @vittoriosph

IG: @vittoriosph

Email: vittorios@gmail.com

Amazing menu awaits you dear merfriend! 😀

 

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Exquisite Dining Only at Solstice by Ilustrado

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I got invited to check out this new restaurant in Rockwell, by the name of Solstice Bistro & Boulangerie. By the looks of it, it won’t be difficult to discern that this is one of what’s seemingly lined up in the upscale list of restaurants you can see in the area.

About: Solstice by Ilustrado at 8 Rockwell

Solstice Bistro and Boulangerie is now called Solstice by Ilustrado, a merger of two great culinary brands offering modern continental and heritage Filipino-Spanish cuisine. This is coupled with a well-curated selection of wines and spirits located at the ground floor of 8 Rockwell, one of Makati’s chic urban communities.

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A merger of two well-loved culinary brands.

Solstice draws inspiration from the success of One Way Restaurant, once touted as among Makati’s best-kept secrets. Ilustrado, on the other hand, brings with it its rich history and heritage, with its status as one of the well-established household dining destinations in Manila’s famed walled city.

The new management has taken this as a challenge as they reinvented the restaurant’s menu just this year adding new recipes and covering multiple cuisines.

They also complemented the refreshed menu with a selection of fine wines carefully chosen to complete the gastronomic experience.

 

I love their interiors. The design has a modern feel, and the cascade of a photo-history kind of brings back memories people shared via good food and company.

I highly imagine this place hosting to close family gatherings, reunions, friend get-togethers and even dates! The ambiance will surely make you feel first-class!

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And oh, the food! How do I start with this?

Well, first is, this wasn’t like the normal food tasting slash food blog event I’ve been to. We were all sitting in a long table, and there were food servers who would put some amount on our plates, and in that way we could somehow tell them if the serving was too much or enough.

Because they never give small ones! I was literally overwhelmed with the idea that I can talk to the servers and ask what is in the dish, and if it was spicy, or if it’s seafood, pork, vegetable, or whatever.

I felt like Rose Dewitt-Bukater (Kate Winslet) in Titanic! Remember that scene?

So here is the mouth-watering feast we had.

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Kapampangan Sisig

I love how flavorful this is, and the crunchyness made devouring it a more fun experience.

The Sisig Kapampangan which is a refreshing departure from the mayonnaise and egg laden dish. This one is cooked with their home-made liver spread gravy and topped with chopped red and green chili. Of special mention is that the sisig consists of crispy pigs ears, skin and mascara.

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Stuffed Chicken Ilustrado

Their take on Stuffed Chicken is wonderful, it tasted fairly well. Although it didn’t quite leave a remarkable impact, the chicken was rich and thick and something that is ideal to order at lunch.

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Serrano and Manchego Skewers with balsamic glaze

Aside from it looking fancy, I had an enjoyable time eating them. Mixing it together allows you to appreciate both distinct flavors.

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Pasta Aligue with Crispy Soft shell Crab

This is an interesting dish to include in any event I suppose. It’s fresh and modern! I believe if I were to conduct an event in Solstice, this is a must-order!

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Paella Ilustrado

I love how this becomes a complete meal already! Among all the dishes served that night, this is probably my favorite! The taste is exquisite, and every spice is just shouting like crazy!

I think I quite had three servings of this! No judging!

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Callos Madrilena

I love this one! I had a great time savouring the spices. I would want to eat their version of Callos Madrilena with rice next time!

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Norwegian Salmon Ceviche Poke

I didn’t expect to adore this one! It really tasted healthy! I believe this dish is perfect for those who are on a strict diet! It’s a seafood-vegetable and fruit combo! What more could you ask for?

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Adobong Bagnet with Crab fat

Super sarap! Period!

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Shroom Pizza

This is also delicious, although I wanted more salt in it. The cheese melted perfectly, but I wished the salt balanced more with the cheese. The mushrooms were soft and easy to chew as well!

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Chorizo Pizza

It was delightful, because all the spices were just blended evenly and perfectly, and I never distinguished any spice that wasn’t right on its place.

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I forgot what this one is called, something with Lime or Lemongrass I think? But OMG. This one is so delicious, probably something I could order in Hogsmead.

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Mango Jubilee with Sampaguita Ice Cream

Have you ever tasted Sampaguita before? Now is your chance! Taste a flower like no other, and I promise, the taste will make you sing!

It’s nothing like any dessert you’ve tasted before, so when you visit Solstice by Ilustrado, this one should be part of your experience! Thank me after!

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Matcha Cookies and Cream

This dessert is a shocker for me. I am not a fan of Matcha, and these cookies are making me feel that I can convert already! Plus the cream tasted like a pure soul.

OMG. I hope it didn’t sound weird to you.

The cream tasted so innocent, very pure, creamy, and it matches the Matcha Cookies like destiny!

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These lovely ladies are the ones we have to thank for bringing the illustrious dishes in this beautiful restaurant!

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Your favorites next door.

With the new Solstice by Ilustrado, customers no longer need to scour the metro or brave the traffic to seek out their favorite food in Manila. Be it with colleagues, family, friends, or significant others, everyone is sure to find something to enjoy in Solstice by Ilustrado.

For Reservations, please call (+632) 802 1891 or (+63 977 748 8861), from 11AM to 11PM daily. Follow @solsticebyilustrado on Instagram, and like facebook.com/SolsticebyIlustrado/ for updates.

Dine like an elite, but spend like an economical citizen! The food is amazing, and reasonably priced!

You would have to start checking them out now, and taste a piece of luxury! You would be happy you did!

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Taste Southeast Asia in Erwan Heussaff’s Pink Panda

I’ve been hearing a lot about Pink Panda, and how it became a household name in the list of great Southeast Asian food joints in Metro Manila. It is owned by Celebrity Influencer and Chef Erwan Heussaff, together with Hatch22 group (his other restaurant). It serves Thai, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Chinese, and Filipino comfort food.

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No wonder the restaurant’s architecture is also a cornucopia of different influences and features from the menu’s origins in Southeast Asia. You definitely get that modern feeling coupled with the fear that this place may charge more than what you’re prepared to pay. Because the place looks damn expensive and classy!

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To appease your weary yet hungry hearts, please be pacified that Pink Panda has a reasonably-priced menu, and that’s one of the many reasons why you should visit them!

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We had the Lumpiang Shang Hang, and the pieces were generously stuffed with finger chilis, minced pork, and mint yoghurt. The finger chilis were a bit spicy for me, but I really liked the mint yoghurt, as it balances the whole taste. It was really delicious; although I must say if you’re not a fan of spicy food, better keep a glass of water nearby.

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Crispy Baby Squid was a surprising entrée! It was easy to chew and I can practically imagine having this over and over again!

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Mango and Catfish Salad is so refreshing! This is something I would love to eat while I’m in a resort or beach! The mango accents added a tropical feel to the whole dish!

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Pork and Shrimp Laksa was very flavorful. You just have to let it simmer down, because the spicy flavor and the hot temperature may not be the best combination for your tastebuds.

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Chicken and Dumpling Noodle was so soft and nice to chew. The flavor tasted very healthy too!

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Sisig Siopao was a big revelation too because I’ve never seen anything like this! And it’s not everyday you get to taste Sisig locked in a popular white Chinese bun! You have to see how the juice oozes out when you take a bite. It’s as though your eyes are already tasting them!

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We also had Pink Panda Pork Bun, and they’re super cute! It would be a perfect gift for Panda lovers!

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Chili Prawn Fried Dumpling wasn’t that spicy, and these will definitely tickle your tastebuds! I think sharing it with a group of friends would be sensational!

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General P’s Chicken, Beef Rendang, Pad Thai and Panda Balls were perfectly cooked, seasoned with just the right amount of spices, and I can say that these dishes are delectable enough for you to make it a habit to visit Pink Panda!

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The menu is overflowing with such great food, it would definitely be fun to try the dishes three by three every visit!  Haha I hope that my previous sentence was understandable! 😀

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And plus, let’s not forget about the zesty drinks! Each drink has a distinct flavor of citrus and fruit, and it would be a nice addition to your dinner feast when you order one or two!

I was also blown away by how talented their chefs are because they practically serve the best cuisines in Asia – all in one place! Apart from Filipino food, of course, I am a big fan of Thai and Vietnamese food, considering I am not the spicy sort. There is just something special in their recipes that taste healthy and divine, which I don’t know what. All I know is that, I love eating them!

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This is quite an adventure for a foodie like me. Among all the Asian restaurants I’ve tried, this has got to be the most diverse, considering it’s not even a hotel!

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Overall, I loved my experience! Pink Panda is like a crossover from your favorite Asian restaurant to the fine dining one, but so much better!

Visit Pink Panda at G/F, Y2 Residence Hotel, 4687 Santiago St. Cor. B. Valdez St.
Makati 2981. You can also contact them through 0927 728 8753.

You may also follow them on Facebook and Instagram.

OMG. Are you excited to taste Southeast Asia?

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Caught Rib Handed at RBCTY Maginhawa

I was so skinny in college I barely eat. I had this notion that eating takes up so much time that it could have been put to better use by studying instead. Fast forward to now, I can tell how fun I must be back then. It’s a wonder how I even manage to have friends! Haha 😀

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But seriously, I am so grateful that phase is already over. And to give truth to that, I recently had the chance to taste delectable dishes from RBCTY (Rib City), a food joint in Maginhawa Street near UP Diliman. I can imagine how college students in this area must be crashing on their diet on a constant basis!

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I got into the restaurant and it’s apparent how hip the ambiance is. It felt so poppy, and everything seems so colorful! I actually took a fancy in their lego displays. I bet these should keep their clients busy as they wait for their orders.

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We were first served with Dynamite (P188). The kick of green chili peppers and cheese made this one of my favorite Dynamite recipes. I used to be so scared trying these because I am not a spicy food fan, but RBCTY’s take was mild though, and delicious! I don’t mind taking another one or two!

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IMG_20170322_193546We had the Not Just Nachos (P248), and the sauce and toppings were just so generous. I was blown away!

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The main star was definitely their ribs which can come in ‘Big City’ (P898) and ‘Big City Mix’ (P838). Both can serve 4 but the difference is ‘Big City’ offers additional 4 side-eats and 4 drinks, while ‘Big City Mix’ delivers additional 4 awesome wings, 4 side eats + 4 drinks.

Naturally, this won’t be called RBCTY (Rib City) without their flavorful and perfectly cooked ribs! They are tasteful, soft, and will send your tummy in its most full and actualized form.

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We also had fun taking photos!

I suggest you starve first before going here. Perhaps not eating all day so you can eat as much as you want! Hehe 😀 Kidding! But seriously, I hope you leave enough room in your stomach so that you can eat more!

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Their fried chicken was extra crispy, and the pepper-ish taste was awesome! I wish they just have more gravy for all of us to share! I can be a gravy monster sometimes! 😀

We were also able to try their sweet and puffy Strawberry Shortcake Milkshake. I appreciate that it’s not that sweet because it made me want to order another one. It was evenly blended.

For me, the big surprise were the desserts! We had the opportunity to taste their 2 best-selling cakes, and they are White Toblerone (P148), Queso de Bola (P148) and Decadent Brownie a la Mode (168)  .

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White Toblerone was exquisite. It tasted fine and melted inside my mouth.

IMG_20170322_201215Queso De Bola was cheese with a twist. I’ve never tasted anything like it. It’s delicious!

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Decadent Brownie a la Mode reminded me of Ice Cream Brownies in La Marea in Cebu, and they are one of the reasons why I like dining in there. RBCTY’s version was more elaborate and generous; I just wish the brownie is warmer when served. There is just something special when you feel the fusion and variation of cold ice cream and the hot brownie inside your mouth – like yin and yang flirting with your taste buds.

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Eating in RBCTY is one of the experiences I wish I had in college. It just makes me want to go back and experience eating in restaurants near my school, or perhaps I could have eaten more back then and fed my brain better glucose! Haha 🙂

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But oh well, I highly recommend eating in RBCTY! The staff is super nice, the prices are affordable, not to mention they have the wittiest lines playing on their restaurant name! You could even have your photo taken and be caught rib handed! This wall is actually such a scene stealer, you wouldn’t miss it!

You may find RBCTY (Rib City) in 63Maginhawa St. UP Village, Diliman Quezon City. You may visit their website at www.rbcty.com or call them through 0917 871 4681. They operate at 11:30AM – 10:30PM daily!

You can also follow them on Facebook and Instagram!

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Have you been here? How was your experience?

 

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Shakeaway at UP Town Center

I am so excited how months are so cooperative in flying by so fast, because that means summer is just around the corner! Yay! Time to be all sleek and sneaky with bikinis, beaches, and cold drinks! And what better way to beat the heat than drinking fresh and flavorful shakes from Shakeaway!

Last month, I got invited to try shakes and I never thought there could be so much variety in one milkshake place! Shakeaway is a London-based milkshake bar company and is the original re-inventor of milkshakes. The store started a cult following in 1999 with the first shop opening in the sunny seaside town of Bournemouth on the south coast of England.

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The store’s interior design reminds me of mint and utterly spotless clinic. Or a fruity makeup store.  Haha It’s soo neat!

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What’s unique about Shakeaway is that they have a winter menu. This is made available especially during the snowy season in London, as a means to complement the cold weather. Normally, regular customers won’t order cold drinks, so to bridge the gap, Shakeaway invented hot shakes! Yes you read that right! Something new and worth trying, especially, on our closest version – the rainy season.

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TOASTY TIM is their very creamy hot chocolate shake. I am not a fan of chocolate and hot drinks, not even coffee! But this one definitely changed my mind! You should try this. ASAP!
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With their intense variety on shakes, a booklike menu wasn’t opted, instead they have all laid them out on each table! Nifty and brilliant in my opinion.

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We were first served with MAX, it’s part of their World Famous Named Shakes. Comes in regular size for P250 and large at P310.

World Famous Named Shakes are a special menu with actual people’s names as the drinks. This is a pretty interesting idea. I wanna have HARRY! (There’s actually a Harry shake!)

Anyway, Max  is a chocolate fudge brownie shake and chocolate-filled mint candy with milk chocolate chips on top.

You can really taste the minty flavor in your tongue. This is a perfect cooling shake post workout.

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The fun thing about Shakeaway is that they also have an exclusive World Famous Named Shake. It is one distinct flavored shake with the influence of the host country’s most popular ingredients, and only offered in the  Shakeaway branch of the said host country.

As for the Philippine branch, it is called JOSE, and only available in the Philippines. It is ube and macapuno with pinipig on top. This tastes very Filipino. This probably is my favorite, it is something you’ve never tasted before! I highly recommend this one! It’s so yummy, I may even finish a large cup of this!

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Shakeaway has soda shakes as well! Super genius idea! This one is Sarsi shake. The milky taste was a good twist on our childhood soda.

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IZZIE is part of the Named Frozen Yoghurts. It is a frozen yoghurt with strawberries, banana and granola. Comes in regular at P250 and large at P310. The granola made it extra fun to eat because flavors were just bursting left and right!

I just find all the named menus a bit confusing. It definitely sounds interesting, but I can hardly memorize all the names. Oh my, signs of being a Tita!

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Together with my foodie friends of Team Aldous!

Manfred Manalo in a slicky state of shake coma!

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You can find Shakeaway at Unit C1101F Ground Floor Phase 2 UP Town Centre
Diliman. Call them at (02) 958 5841. Operating hours are between 11:00AM – 9:00PM.

So what are you waiting for, head on to Shakeaway this week afterwork or afterschool, and get ready to be blown away by the largest menu on shakes in Manila!

Have you been here? How was your experience? 😀 Let me know in the comments!

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El Chapo’s Filipino Mexican Food Cartel at The Yard

Food parks have been emerging left, and right, and for some reason, we really can’t get enough of them! There is just a familiar thrill of going inside a food park and waiting to discover something gastronomically satisfying! Much similar to finding a rare shade of a nude lippie! 😀

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Team Aldous got invited to try this Filipino-Mexican food joint in the The Yard at Xavierville. I was pretty psyched because it is going to be my first time there, and back in college, I really don’t have the freedom to check out places like these! Plus, I was annoyingly underweight for the sheer lack of enthusiasm to eat. Not because I’m anorexic or weight-conscious or whatever, it’s just that I am a lazy eater. (Haha Not really proud of that past!)

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When you get inside, it is pretty easy to get lost and be lured in the variety of food wonders The Yard has to offer, but to make things more convenient for you, you can opt to try the interesting dishes at El Chapo’s!

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Nestled at the mid-left of the food park lies the palate ticklers of El Chapo’s Filipino Mexican Food Cartel. 

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The name sounded different so I asked Mark Copuyoc, the owner of the joint for some enlightement. He said that it was inspired by a Mexican drug lord who heads the Sinaloa Cartel known as El Chapo. And that explains their tagline, ‘Don’t worry, it’s legal!”.

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We tried their “Chicharitos” Lechon Sisig Taco (with sour cream and salsa verde) valued at P85 per plate. It’s no wonder that this is one of their best sellers. The dish’s taste will definitely send your spirits high as it is perfect for a night of chitchat and drinks with friends.

I really find their chili detail adorable too.

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Cheesy Beef Salpicao Nachos valued at P160 per plate

I am not a fan of nachos, but this is a game changer. Their take on this is extremely flavorful, it’s a must-try!

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El Chapo’s Onion Rings (topped off with Parmesan and Sriracha) is suprising at P75 per plate. I like that theirs are not oily, and they were fried just right. I particularly like the sauce on this one.

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Fil-Mex Style Barbecued Street Corn at P60 .

I am not a fan of spicy food, so I have to say that if you are like me, have some liquids at the ready, because you’re going to need all of them. But if you are a lover of spice, I highly recommend this one. The dish will challenge your taste buds, and will probably leave nostalgia in every bite.

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Food bloggers on queue in every dish served!

 

Sooo thrilled to share a selfie with my very good friend Lou Ongpin!

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Team Aldous eats again!

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Over all, El Chapo’s Filipino Mexican Food Cartel is a great choice for a weekend eat-out with friends, whether you are on a pre-dinner or some after sesh, this food wonder will definitely deliver.

Catch their flavorful dishes at The Yard, 83 Xavierville Avenue Quezon City 1108 and you may contact them via the number, 0920 983 1619 or through their social media accounts.

https://www.facebook.com/elchaposph/

http://instagram.com/elchaposph

And don’t worry, it’s legal!

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