July 29, 2013

A BGC Eats Food Tour Experience with Chef JJ Yulo- Vask, Orale!, Crystal Jade Dining In and Slice Hight St.

Last Saturday, The Foodies Circle along with D joined the last batch of BGC Eats. We were fortunate to score the last few remaining tickets for the July 20 (final batch) tour date. 

Tour begins at the Hop On, Hop Off bus stop in 9th St. between Nike and Bo Concept store at exactly 3pm. 

July 24, 2013

Mom's Birthday at Diamond Hotel's Lobby Lounge

Seems like I just can't get enough of Diamond Hotel's food and dessert offerings, that last May, D and I decided to treat my mom for her birthday here. It was just the three of us as my sister is currently studying in China, while my brother and father were in the States for vacation.

It was just a simple and intimate dinner at the Lobby Lounge on a weekday night. The place was very cozy and quiet with just a few guests dining in.

Lobby Lounge's menu is quite limited so we asked for Corniche's menu for more food options.

I decided to order this salad with chicken breast on the side. I can't remember what it's called but I love the play of colors and texture of this dish. It had nuts, sprouts, carrots, cabbage, herbs and wonton crisps in a sweet oriental dressing. 

Weekend Brunch Specials at The Cake Club by Diamond Hotel- Bonifacio High Street Central

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But I have to admit, the last time I constantly had breakfast was back when I was still working in Ortigas. 

I also remember when D used to surprise me with fully loaded breakfast in the car as he drives me to work.
(Hoping for Breakfast Surprise Part IV *wink)

I just miss those times when D and I share breakfast together early in the morning.

I really want us to have breakfast dates again, but with our busy schedules, the least we could do is have brunch on Saturdays. 

After having a taste of The Cake Club's weekend brunch specials, I told D right away that we must go back, for him to try it out. 

Smoked Salmon Benedict (P345)

July 20, 2013

Sweet Hunt- Taiwan Milk Tea, Snow Ice, Honey Toast and More in Robinsons Place Manila

Last Sunday, D and I went to Robinson's Place Manila and found ourselves in front of this cute dessert place called Sweet Hunt. It is located at the 3rd level of Midtown Wing right in front of Toy's R Us. We seldom frequent the area, so it was just the right place to be since we didn't want to try something we could also find elsewhere. 

The store was pretty simple and neat with quirky decors and chairs. Sweet Hunt is basically a dessert place that aims to bring Taiwanese sweet treats here in the Philippines. 

Their products include Taiwan milk tea drinks and smoothies, Snow Ice, Shave Ice, Honey Toasts and Taiwan's famous Salt Pepper Chicken.

We decided to try their Snow Ice offerings and ended up choosing two of their bestsellers- Full House (P130-medium) and Tiramisu (P100-medium) 

The Full House is basically a sweet and refreshing cup of their finely shaved milky snow ice topped with mangoes, kiwi, mixed berries, condensed milk and vanilla ice cream

July 18, 2013

YummySoy Philippines: Soy Craze in Singapore to Manila-Fort Strip

"Tahoooo!" A familiar chant we hear since our childhood days. 

With people gearing towards a healthier lifestyle today, more healthy products are being offered in the market. And Soy is one of them. Our family loves soy products like soya milk, tofu, taho and soya chips. In fact, we already have our suki taho vendor who visits us regularly at home. We've known him for more than 5 years already and until now, he gives us a special price of P10 for one big bowl.

But to be honest, I prefer drinking soya milk and munching on tofu chips than eating our local taho. It's just that taho is so heavy and filling to consume that one bowl is more than enough to fill my soy cravings.

Not until I was introduced to YummySoy!

YummySoy is an international franchise from Singapore, and finally, they decided to bring the soy craze here in the Philippines. Their flagship store is a kiosk located in Robinsons Place Manila, and just this June, they opened a concept store at the Fort Strip beside K-Pub BBQ and Modern Sichuan Restaurant.

July 16, 2013

Fiesta Bahia: Feast by the Bay- Mercato Centrale in SM Mall of Asia

After the success of Mercato Centrale's recently launched Mezza Norte in Trinoma, Levante in Eastwood and Cocina Centrale in Pampanga, they now bring us Fiesta Bahia in SM Mall of Asia

Last Friday, D and I went to Fiesta Bahia's launch to check what it has to offer.

Here are some photos of the the different food vendors you can expect from Fiesta Bahia:

Piper's Pan Cakes (3 for P100)- Super affordable and pretty good! :) 

July 15, 2013

Kebab Turki Baba Rafi Philippines- Indonesia's Biggest Kebab Chain

Kebab Turki Baba Rafi- The world's biggest kebab chain is now here in the Philippines! Honestly, I didn't know about it until early this year. D and I decided to visit their Makati branch in Dela Rosa Carpark 1 before having our weekly meetup with friends in Palanca. 

Kebab Turki Baba Rafi has over 1000 outlets in Indonesia, India, Malaysia and the Philippines, and has received a lot of awards and recognition since it started back in 2003. 

July 11, 2013

D' Amburger Gastropub- Home of the Original Juicy Lucy Burgers- Greenhills Town Center

I am officially in love with D' Amburger's Smoked Salmon Stack Salad (P266)- layers of fresh lettuce, smoked salmon, parmesan discs, tomato salsa, dill cream and balsamic dressing. 

The proper way of enjoying this salad is by cutting through the stack rather than eating it by layers. I was really impressed with its overall presentation that looks like a constructed tower of greens with salmon surprise on every layer. A must-try!!! 

You all know by now how much I love buffalo wings.. and D' Amburger hit my soft spot with a parade of  their buffalo wings and chicken. There are a total of 5 flavors, and after 2 visits, I was able to try 4. 

Adobo Buffalo Wings (P230)

Doesn't look like adobo right? But a subtle hint of adobo flavor is there underneath those crunchy and crispy skin. It also comes with a special creamy dip on the side to complement the adobo wings. 

Truffle Buffalo Chicken (P315)

July 9, 2013

Steak Dinner Date at Chops Chicago Steakhouse- Greenbelt 5, Makati

This steak dinner was supposed to be a post Valentine's date for me and D. If you could remember, we just stayed at home last Valentine's Day and decided to prepare some home-cooked dishes for dinner instead.

The month of March and April quickly passed by and still we weren't able to have our dinner date at Chops. When D got back from his summer trip in Croatia last May, our steak dinner was finally set.

Chops Chicago Steakhouse is located at the top floor of Greenbelt 5 near Peking Garden and Kimpura. Honestly, the place intimidates me. Good thing there's a big menu board outside for people who'd like to check the prices first.

The whole place was dimly lit for that cozy and romantic vibe. We started with some warm herbed focaccia served with balsamic dip.

July 8, 2013

Fiesta Bahia: Mercato Centrale Food Tourism-San Miguel by the Bay

Mercato Centrale Brings ‘Food Tourism’ to SM Mall of Asia this July! 

Did you know that one of top tourist destinations in Manila is the SM Mall of Asia? And what’s one of the best ways to welcome foreign guests to one of Manila’s top tourist destinations?- By sharing with them a variety of great-tasting dishes from different parts of the Philippines!  

That’s why the Mercato Centrale group, the organizers of Metro Manila’s premier night food and lifestyle markets, is bringing a new ‘food destination’ experience to the SM Mall of Asia By the Bay with Fiesta Bahia – ‘the food tourism’ market – every Friday, Saturday and Sunday starting July 12 (Friday) from 4pm to 3am.

          “In an interview with Today Show food blog, Bizarre Foods host Andrew Zimmen predicted that Filipino will be the next big thing.  Chef and culinary expert Anthony Bourdain of “No Reservations” also shared in his blog on the Travel Channel website that he enjoyed sisig and Cebu lechon during his visit to the country.” said Anton Diaz, co-founder of Mercato Centrale and the popular food and travel blogger behind www.OurAwesomePlanet.com.

Press Release: Ballroom Dancing at Sky Lounge- Diamond Hotel


Don your best dress and get ready to pump up your Wednesday nights as Diamond Hotel sets the stage of the Sky Lounge Music Bar for an all-night Ballroom dancing!

Put on your dancing shoes and sway to the lively music of Soul Republiq with the city’s finest dance instructors. Moreover, ladies with a minimum purchase of Php 500++ on food and beverage are entitled to a free flow of selected cocktails.

Happiness is never ending at Sky Lounge!  For only Php 599 nett per person, spend your Happy Hours from 5pm to 8pm with a free flow of standard drinks and a 30% discount on your total food tab.

From the metro’s best bands, a spread of international delicacies and signature dishes, to premium beverages and specially concocted drinks, Sky Lounge Music Bar offers all the perfect ingredients for fun-filled night outs. For inquiries and reservations, call (02) 528-3000, or email at restaurant_rsvn@diamondhotel.com.

Diamond Hotel Philippines is located at Roxas Boulevard corner Dr. J. Quintos St., Manila. For inquiries and reservations, please call (632) 528-3000. For more information on Diamond Hotel Philippines, please visit www.diamondhotel.com. For hotel updates and special offerings, follow us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/diamondhotelphilippines and Twitter at http://twitter.com/DiamondHotelPh.

July 5, 2013

Gloria Maris Shark's Fin Restaurant- Greenhills Shopping Center

Growing up in a Chinese family, I've been accustomed to dining in a lot of Chinese restaurants all over the Metro. Chinese cuisine is like our family's trusted cuisine. For them, it's like you can't go wrong with Chinese dishes. As much as I want to try and explore other cuisines, it seems like I always come back to that particular taste that feels like home. 

Gloria Maris Shark's Fin Restaurant is this famous restaurant in Greenhills that generated a number of loyal patrons and customers from the Chinese community. And now, they decided to expand and relocate to a bigger place and accommodate a bigger and wider market of foodies both from the Chinese and non-Chinese community.

After attending two weddings at their newly built establishment this year, I was ecstatic to go back and sample more of their classic and new dishes. 

Let the feast begin..

Abalone Sashimi

Starting the feast was a grandeur entrance of a wooden dragon boat carrying fresh slices of Abalone Sashimi. It was made more dramatic with the smokey effect brought about by dry ice underneath. Now this is my kind of sashimi, since I don't eat salmon or tuna sashimi. It's fresh, tender and chewy, a great way to start one fine Chinese feast. 

Chiu Chow Cold Cuts

July 4, 2013

It's The Best Time for Wendy's with Foodie.ph

I must admit, I am more of a dine-in person who enjoys eating outside a lot and admires the ambiance of a restaurant. The only time we settle for delivery or takeout is when we crave for pizza or fried chicken late at night. I also remember ordering in fastfood chains for delivery back when I was working in Pasig. After that, I don't recall ordering for deliveries again. 

Just yesterday, I got the chance to try out Foodie.ph, a new interactive delivery service for the best fast food chains and restaurants throughout the Metro. Since the weather was unpredictable lately, I decided to order our late merienda online via their website instead of having the usual takeouts. 

One may order online via their website, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. They have a very low minimum order requirement of P300 with a standard 10% delivery charge

It was very easy to navigate through their website. After creating your account, you must select your delivery area with your preferred delivery date and time. Select the restaurant or fast food chain from the given list and take your time browsing through their menu and selecting your orders. You could view your orders and total bill on the right side of the page to help you monitor if you are still within budget. Lastly, proceed to check-out and expect an order confirmation email from Foodie.Ph.

Aside from the email confirmation, a representative from Foodie.ph will also call your number within minutes to confirm your name, address, number, orders and total order bill. Expect them to deliver right at your doorstep within 50-60 minutes.

In my case, I ordered some sandwiches from Wendy's, I got my orders at exactly 60 minutes given that I made a mistake of not specifying Iced Tea on my combo meal order. The representative from Foodie.ph was kind enough to call me again and verify my order. If it wasn't for his call, I probably would have gotten a regular soda instead of my favorite Iced Tea. 

The food was kept in a warmer bag to ensure that the food is still warm when it reaches their customers. And yes, the sandwiches were indeed warm enough for us. The onion rings I ordered were no longer crunchy though and our favorite Frosty was a bit melted already. But tossing them into the toaster and freezer certainly did the trick and solved that minor problem :)

July 1, 2013

Monster Butter- Spoonable Cookie Butter and Cookies & Milk Spread

"Speculoos is better than Biscoff"
 "Biscoff is better than Speculoos!" 

And this starts a never ending debate on which cookie butter is the best.

While people have different opinions about this, let me introduce to you a great alternative to these premium cookie butter spread. 

Monster Butter is the brainchild of Ana Marfori, who after getting a taste of these premium brands of cookie butter and realized how good "spoonable cookies in a jar" were, came up with the idea of creating her own version and recipe. Several tweaks and experiments later, Monster Butter Cookie Flavored Spread and Cookies and Milk Spread were ready to hit the local market. 

Monster Butter Cookie Butter Spread (P200)

I first tried the classic cookie butter flavor which noticeably has lesser oil compared to other brands. I've had my share of Speculoos Cookie Butter and I must say that Monster Butter's texture was less creamy because of that. But if  that would lessen the guilt after stuffing my mouth with a few spoonfuls, then I'm all for it.