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Showing posts from 2012

Happy 2013!

Let's sail to a more wonderful year, To more food trips and travels Or wherever the waves take us
Happy New Year!

8 Spices Thai Cuisine

Note: This restaurant is already closed. 

A good friend from Malaysia went to Manila for work. We haven't seen each other for a long time so we had lunch to catch up. Since we both love Thai food, we tried the nearest Thai resto in the office: 8 Spice Thai Cuisine.

The resto has a very pleasing environment. Honestly, I didn't want to visit this place back then because I thought the prices in this resto are astronomical.

The Pitstop Restaurant Guimaras

After spending our 1st day touring Iloilo, we went to Guimaras for a day tour. After a short target shooting course, Kuya Mai (our trike driver) suggested that we have lunch first. He brought us to the resto that serves Mango Pizza: The Pitstop Restaurant.

The Pitstop is a fast food restaurant that serves pizza, pasta, fried chicken, and other dishes at outrageously affordable prices. The place is quite spacious, with a small souvenir shop inside.

Rediscovering Suzu Kin

If there's a cuisine that I can't say no to, it's Japanese food. From a hesitant eater, I grew loving this cuisine more than I expected. I'm a carnivore, but I'll willingly eat shrimp if it's tempura or salmon and tuna if it's sashimi.

When Spanky invited me to have lunch at Suzu Kin, the name suddenly rang a bell. I realized that it was the Japanese resto I saw when a good friend and I had dinner at Pat-Pat's Kansi, which is almost across Suzu Kin. By the way, Pat-Pat's Kansi also has delicious chicken inasal, aside from the kansi, of course.

Suzu Kin has been serving affordable Japanese dishes for more than 30 years. It has also been in the same location in Kamagong ever since. We were also joined by Guia, who has been to the resto several times. Spanky and Guia were telling me that except for a few minor improvements, the entire look of the resto hasn't changed.

Merry Christmas!

I was supposed to have a giveaway today but circumstances didn't allow me, so maybe I'll run another giveaway next year (suggestions for the prize/s are welcome, just post a comment below :P).
Anyway, this has been a very fruitful year for me. Let me do a rundown of the highlights for this year:
1. The concerts! 
- Katy Perry California Dreams Tour - Maroon 5 Overexposed Tour - Creed Live in Manila
2. The travels!
- Davao - Cebu - Iloilo - Guimaras - Bacolod - Puerto Princesa (I still have to blog about this trip)
3. The food overload!
- Ang Mo Kio, Singaporean Hawker Cuisine - Watami Japanese Casual Restaurant - Pino Resto Bar | Pipino Vegetarian Food - Lobby Lounge, Diamond Hotel Manila
4. The food discoveries!
- ChillOut Cafe, Maginhawa - KBOB Korean Buffet, Cubao - 1970 Grill - Backyard Burgers, Davao City - Lyndon's World's Worst Ribs and Awful Chicken, Davao City - One Claypot House, Cebu City - Tamagoya! Noodle House, Antipolo City
Can't wait to share with you …

Spam Jam

Note: This establishment is already closed. 

I always pass by the Spam Jam kiosk but haven't given it a try so one time I was feeling a bit hungry, I finally decided to give this place a try.

I love Spam, especially the Classic, but my mom thinks it's too salty so we usually have Spam Lite at home (though I sometimes sneak some classics in the grocery basket).

Spam Jam is a small kiosk at SM Megamall, where you can just stop by to have some snacks after shopping.

Home Cooking 101: Mac and Cheese

I'll let you in a secret: I know how to cook. Though I can't say that I'm an expert, I know how to cook dishes and even desserts. So I decided to share some recipes that I would usually cook or experiment on cooking at home.

My kid siblings love macaroni, but it's my kid brother who loves Mac and Cheese. He'd always eat the instant noodles version, so I tried cooking this dish for him.

I have read complicated variations of this dish, but this version is quite simple so you can always create this at home.

Afrique's Italian Restaurant, Iloilo

After spending the day touring the Iloilo's countryside, my friends and I went back to the Ong Bun Pension House to freshen up and take some rest. Fortunately, our pension house is a block away from Robinson's Iloilo. We went around the mall to look for a place to have dinner, and we found Afrique's, one of the places my fellow foodie Allen recommended.

Afrique's is an Italian restaurant that opened 10 years ago in Iloilo. It now has 5 branches around Iloilo. The resto resembles a small old Italian kitchen. It wasn't crowded when we arrived, which was okay, we needed some peace anyway.

My 1000-Peso Challenge at the Lunti Eco Products Fair Year 2

Last year, I started to get involved with an environmental awareness club called Lunti. I have posted some of our activities in this blog to help people realize the value of helping our environment and local communities by supporting their products.

We recently had the Lunti Eco Products Fair Year 2, where we showcase eco-friendly local products. Aside from the other vendors who joined for the second time, we also welcomed new vendors to our event.

For this year, I tried to work on a budget: Php 1000 and see what I could buy without exceeding it.

Let's see what I managed to buy:

2012 Book Challenge: November

This year is about to end, and so is my book challenge. I'm really positive that I could reach 40 books this year, but I hope I could finish more next year. How about joining the challenge next year?

To continue the previous month's list, here are my November books:

35. Mini Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella

- Becky Brandon is now a doting mother to a little bratty two-year-old Minnie. Still living with her parents, she and her husband Luke are still working on having a permanent home. The country undergoes a financial crisis that will affect Becky's job and her shopping habits. She tries to discipline Minnie (though she's spoiling her than disciplining her). She also plans Luke's surprise birthday party, trying to do it herself, she finally asks help from friends.

The story ends with Luke's successful party and figuring out that Minnie can behave well with a little toughness. Luke asks Becky to join him as he works in Hollywood for a few months.

- I feel happy th…

Cheesecake Addiction: Indulgence by Irene

I have an on-going addiction and utmost love for cheesecake. In case you haven't read my old blog posts, I created a Cheesecake Addiction series to prove how much I love this lovely dessert. I was so addicted to it that I used to consume cheesecake at least 2-3 times a week, before I realized na hindi pala siya dapat ginagawang kanin.hehe.

Fellow foodies Yedy and Eugene was telling me how delicious this cheesecake was, and knew it would blow my mind away as they know how much I love cheesecake. And boom! Richard gave me a box of what I was dreaming of tasting for quite a long time: Indulgence by Irene.

Pino Resto Bar | Pipino Vegetarian Food Opens in Makati

Note: This location is already closed. 

Pino Resto Bar is finally in Jupiter! No, not the planet. In Jupiter Street, Makati City.

Pino is the brainchild of Chef Ed Bugia and his team, who also owns Pipino Vegetarian and BRGR: The Burger Project. He also owns Brgy. Bagnet, which I've seen at the SM Megamall food court (and will give a try soon). Pino Resto Bar's first branch is in Malingap Street, which is near the Maginhawa foodie area. I have been to BRGR: The Burger Project before, and Pino has always been on my must-visit list. I was glad I was invited by Chef Ed (through Spanky Enriquez) to visit their 2nd branch at Makati.

Pino Resto Bar has a modern and neat ambiance with beautiful lighting (yes, it's really important nowadays, for the food photos). This is also where Pipino is located but separated by rails for a little privacy.

Tatoy's Manokan and Seafoods Iloilo

After spending the morning touring the Iloilo countryside, we went back to the city at around lunchtime, so we decided to have a feast at Tatoy's Manokan and Seafoods.

Tatoy's is a native restaurant that serves Filipino, specializing in Ilonggo dishes. The place looks like a huge cottage in front of the beach, with open-air ambiance and sand on the floor. Available dishes are displayed on the counter, where one of the staff can take the orders.

Manila Ocean Park

My family and I went to Manila Ocean Park a few months ago for some bonding time. Also, we haven't been to the place since it opened. I got vouchers from Metrodeal for us at Php 699 for 8 attractions, instead of the original price of Php 1900. The voucher is quite a steal since there are six of us.

We arrived at around lunch, so we decided to have lunch at Gerry's Grill first. Lots of other restaurants in Manila Ocean Park are Pancake House, North Park, and Makan Makan.

Here are the attractions included in our package:

1. Oceanarium - Regular Rates: Php 400 for adults, Php 350 for children

The main attraction of the Manila Ocean Park, it has an underwater tunnel where you can see lots of marine creatures, including sharks, stingray and other fishes. It can be overly crowded since people would just sit in the tunnel. Nevertheless, it's an educational and beautiful attraction, especially for the kids.

Ted's Old Timer La Paz Batchoy

We arrived early morning in Iloilo and we were starving. So before we headed out for our countryside tour, we went to La Paz Market. Two popular batchoy restaurants in Iloilo are Ted's and Deco's. There are lots of branches of the said restos near Ong Bun but it was too early that the ones in La Paz Market are already open.

La Paz Batchoy is a noodle soup with pancit miki, pork innards, pork liver, pork slices on hot broth topped with fried garlic, and chicharon. Though the inventor of this dish is still a mystery, we can only be sure that this dish originated in La Paz, Iloilo City.

Ted's in La Paz Market is a no-frills eatery with monobloc chairs and electric fans for ventilation. The resto was founded by Ted Lepura in 1945 at the La Paz Market. Ted's Old Timer La Paz Batchoy now has branches around the country, including Metro Manila.

Mister Kabab

I'm a huge fan of Persian cuisine. I've always loved eating kebab with lots of yogurt sauce and buttered Basmati rice. But I haven't been to Mister Kabab until recently. Mister Kabab was established by two Iranian students more than 20 years ago to offer affordable yet delicious Middle Eastern dishes to Manila.

Walking Around Bacolod City

I have always wondered how the participants felt while doing the Amazing Race, and I was given a taste of it when we had to catch the last trip to Bacolod from Iloilo.

We just came from Guimaras for a day tour, we weren't able to estimate the length of our stay at the island that we almost didn't make it Bacolod, but then we did, with a little strategy.

We split our group into two: the two boys to ride a cab, return to Ong Bun and get our things and two girls (including myself) to ride a trike to the Iloilo Ferry Terminal and buy the tickets. If you're going to Bacolod from Iloilo, fast crafts are available daily,  but the last trip leaves at around 5:30pm via Oceanjet.

We arrived at the ferry terminal as the ticket counter was about to close. We had to ask the counter if they can accommodate 4 more passengers. Luckily, they agreed. We got Economy tickets for Php 250 per person. The crew was already asking that we ride the boat, but we pleaded that we wait for our other …

Watami Opens at SM Mall of Asia

I was invited last week by Bistro Group (through Spanky Enriquez) to try the newest restaurant under their belt, Watami Japanese Casual Restaurant at the SM Mall of Asia. 
Watami is an international restaurant chain with over 700 locations all over the world, and the SM Mall of Asia branch is the first location here in the Philippines.

The place has a modern Japanese vibe, and the restaurant was quite spacious. Seats are also available at the alfresco area if you want a better view of the Manila Bay. 
Watami offers both traditional and modern Japanese dishes and is a Japanese food fanatic, I was really excited to try what they have to offer.

Conquering Guimaras in a Day

After our Iloilo countryside tour, we spent the following day in Guimaras.

Guimaras is a small island province that used to be a sub-province of Iloilo until it was created an independent province 20 years ago. The province is known for producing one of the sweetest mangoes in the world. They even prohibit the entry of mangoes or any part of the mango plant from other places to preserve the pure breed of Guimaras mangoes.

Exploring the Countryside of Iloilo

One destination I crossed out on my list is Iloilo. I was dreaming of trying the La Paz Batchoy and Molo Soup, which both were named after places in Iloilo. Aside from Iloilo, a side trip to Guimaras is also recommended. We also squeezed a visit to Bacolod. I wished we had stayed longer, nevertheless, I enjoyed this trip and I'm looking forward to revisiting these places again.

We arrived at the Iloilo airport around 5.40am. Iloilo International Airport is located outside Iloilo City. The airport is quite new and can be likened to the NAIA Terminal 3 in terms of architecture. We rode a taxi to Iloilo City proper for Php 350 fixed fare. Not bad, since we have no other choice in the morning.

We dropped our bags at Ong Bun Pension House, then walked to La Paz Public Market for La Paz Batchoy. There are lots of  La Paz Batchoy restos around the city, but the ones in La Paz Public Market are open early in the morning. You can ride a jeep to La Paz from Ong Bun, but we chose to walk …

The Return to Krung Thai

I always have a soft spot for Thai food. Ironically, I'm really not into spicy food, but I could endure the spiciness of Thai dishes. That's why my heart melted when I got an invite through Openrice to revisit Krung Thai. I've been to this place more than a year ago, and this is where my love for Thai food started. An invite to this place shouldn't be missed, at least in my opinion. 

I arrived an hour late since there was a public event in Marikina so some roads were temporarily closed. It was the same homey resto I visited last year. Incidentally, I was seated on the same spot I sat a year ago. Call it destiny.

Ang Mo Kio Singaporean Hawker Cuisine

Note: This restaurant is already closed. 

Singaporean cuisine has always got my curiosity. Its diversity can be likened to Filipino cuisine, which is also a mix of cultural influences. Singaporean cuisine is greatly influenced by Chinese, Malay, and Indian cuisine, making Singapore a food mecca.
I first saw Ang Mo Kio at the Podium while dining at Shi Lin a few months ago. It was still on its soft opening back then so I made a mental note to try it when I get the chance.

Ang Mo Kio is named after a district in Singapore, which is Hokkien for "red tomato". The interiors of the restaurant are designed to resemble the hawker centers in Singapore with a modern feel. Customers can view the kitchen from their seats. 

Creed: Live in Manila!

This year has been a great year for music enthusiasts like me. Lots of foreign artists have visited our country for concerts this 2012. Since I watched a concert by a foreign artist for the first time, it got me hooked to checking who's coming to Manila in the coming months. Please don't get me wrong, I love and support OPM, but most local acts I wanted to watch were already disbanded (Orange and Lemons, Eraserheads, Sugarfree).

I wasn't really planning on watching Creed until I chanced upon a 3-hour online sale, where all ticket prices for the said concert would be half-off. I instantly grabbed the sale, getting Lower Box tickets for Php 2065, instead of Php 4030. We even got the first row seats!

2012 Book Challenge: October

The challenge is still alive! More than finishing a quota for this year, this challenge makes me realize the value of reading books. I believe that we should really make time for some reading. Maybe you can start at 10 pages a day? That would suffice.

As a continuation of my previous post, here are my October books:
31. ABNKKBSNPLAKo?! by Bob Ong
Bob Ong's first book is about his memories from Grade School to College, until his return to school as a teacher. He remembers how simple the life of being a grade-schooler is, and contrasts with his struggles when he reached college. He discusses his troubles when he entered college. His personal frustrations and his exhaustion from all the pressures.
I couldn't say Bob Ong should be emulated but the book teaches us that one could always correct his/her mistakes and we shouldn't stop learning. 

Korean Buffet at KBOB Restaurant and Family KTV

Note: This establishment is already closed. 

A good friend and I were searching for Korean restaurants we can try when she discovered this place on Facebook. They were running a promo at that time that we wanted to try it out. Good thing my friend was available and so was I, and we grabbed that coupon offer on their FB page, printed it out, and headed to KBOB. 
KBOB Restaurant and Family KTV is one of the newest attractions in the Cubao area. Aside from the KTV, they also offer Korean Buffet at an amazingly affordable price. 

The buffet area is located on the ground floor. One would mistake the place as a canteen due to its simplicity. The walls are almost bare with some posters and television on display. And yeah, the TV's playing K-pop music videos.