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Monday, February 29, 2016

Hai Chix and Steaks Greenhills

As a huge fan of chicken and steak, I have always been curious about this place called Hai Chix and Steaks. Though their first location is a stone's throw away from my workplace, I never had a chance to give it a visit. 

However, I recently got a chance to visit their second branch in Greenhills, where I had the opportunity to meet and talk to their chef, Chef Ferdie. 

Opened almost a year ago, Hai Chix Greenhills is cozy and perfect for intimate gatherings with friends and family as well as date nights. 

For starters, we had Butter Garlic Shrimp (Php 295) and Shrimp in Balsamic Pasta (Php 295). 

Butter Garlic Shrimp
Shrimp in Balsamic Pasta

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Russell Peters Almost Famous Tour Live in Manila 2016!

Aside from foodie shows like MasterChef and many others, I am a huge fan of comedy. From TV shows (like How I Met Your Mother, Big Bang Theory, New Girl, Fresh Off The Boat, etc) to Stand Up Comedy (Max Amini, Omid Djalili, Achmed the Dead Terrorist, Amy Schumer). Watching comedy is a huge destressor for me, and there is one comedian that I love watching over and over -- Russell Peters.

Russell Peters is one of the most popular stand-up comedians in the world. He may not really be that popular in the Philippines as he rarely appears in movies and TV but you may remember him appearing as a Miami cop in the movie "Chef". I vowed to watch him should he have a show here in Manila. 

And just last week, my dreams came true. 

the Manila crowd for Russell Peters

His one-night-only show in Manila happened last February 22 at the Kia Theatre in Cubao. 

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Lugang Cafe's New Dishes

I was recently invited by Lugang Cafe to try their newest additions to their menu. 

Lugang Cafe is a Taiwanese restaurant with several locations in China. Manila is the first location outside China. 

Kao Fu

For starters, we had Kao Fu (Php 220), Steamed Angled Loofah with Shrimp Xiao Long Bao (Php 228 for 8 pcs) and Steamed Kimchi and Pork Xiao Long Bao (Php 268 for 8 pcs).

Steamed Kimchi and Pork Xiao Long Bao
Steamed Angled Loofah with Shrimp Xiao Long Bao

Kao Fu is braised wheat gluten, a popular Taiwanese vegetarian dish known to be used as alternative to meat. I love the smooth texture and flavor of the gluten. I liked the subtle crunch of the angled loofah with the Shrimp Xiao Long Bao and I loved the aroma of the kimchi with the pork xiao long bao. Both new Xiao Long Baos are must-tries.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Temple Run in Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai, a beautiful city located in Northern Thailand, is home to around 300 Buddhist temples. As our guesthouse is in the Northwestern side of the walled city, it was easy for us to visit some of the temples or wats. Wat is Thai for temple and Chedi is Thai style stupa. 

I must note that all the temples are still used as places of worship, so I highly suggest that you  wear decent clothing (no shorts and sleeveless tops), but since Chiang Mai can get humid and wearing sleeveless tops is more practical, bringing a shawl or sweater is a better option. 

Here are the temples the boyfie and I were able to visit during our stay. Except for Wat Doi Suthep,  all of these temples can be visited on foot (especially if you're staying within the walled city).

1. Wat Chedi Luang

Wat Chedi Luang is the most popular wat located in the center of the walled city. It was the largest chedi we have visited. It is also known for housing the city pillar of Chiang Mai.

What makes this Wat more interesting is the waxed figures of the former monks who served in the temple, but I didn't take a photo because it seemed disrespectful.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Charlie's Grind and Grill Kapitolyo

A few months after visiting their Makati branch, I returned for more, this time in their flagship branch in Kapitolyo. Charlie's Grind and Grill started around as a 'joke' among friends but eventually evolved into a burger hole-in-the-wall restaurant in Kapitolyo. Around nine years later, Charlie's has opened two more branches: Makati and Greenhills, and is planning to open up more branches in the next few years. 

We started with my favorite, Black Truffle Fries (Php 210) and Dirty Fries (Php 195). 

Black Truffle Fries
Dirty Fries

The Black Truffle Fries is Idaho potatoes with truffle salt and truffle oil, topped with chicken liver. As I mentioned before, I never visit Charlie's without ordering the Black Truffle Fries. It is really my favorite. A discovery that evening was the Dirty Fries, Idaho potatoes with rock salt, ground black pepper, bleu cheese, bacon bits, tomatoes, green onions and chicken liver. I haven't tried a combination of these toppings before, and I was impressed that all the flavors worked together amazingly well. 

For pasta dishes, we had the Meatballs Marinara (Php 330) and the Spicy Shrimp Pasta.

Meatballs Marinara
Spicy Shrimp Pasta

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Cebu City Marriott Hotel

Note: As of October 2017, Cebu Marriott will closed in January 2018 and will be rebranded as Seda Hotel. 

Our accommodations for this year's Sinulog Festival is Cebu City Marriott Hotel. This hotel is located within Cebu Business Park and conveniently located beside Ayala Center Cebu. 

Our room is the Guest Room, the deluxe room with either 2 double beds or 1 king bed. 

The Guest Room is fully air-conditioned non-smoking room, with a chair and ottoman, a working desk with ergonomic chair, complete with an outlet with dual voltage adaptors. For entertainment, there's an LCD TV with cable with both wired and wireless internet available. Two phones are also available: one in the desk and one on the bed stand. 

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Ippudo Introduces the Hakata-Style Tsukemen!

Ippudo Philippines takes the art of ramen to the next level by introducing the Hakata-Style Tsukemen. Tsukemen is a type of ramen more popularly known as the dipping ramen, where the noodles are served separately from the broth. You have to dip the noodles in the broth each time. 

There are two tsukemen flavors we had in Ippudo: the Classic Tsukemen (Php 485) and the Spicy Tsukemen (Php 495). Both can be served with hot or cold noodles and a bowl of Ippudo's signature tonkotsu broth. 

Classic Tsukemen

Spicy Tsukemen

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Experience Sweeter Moments with the new #McDoLoveDesserts

Special celebrations call for special treats and McDonald’s has always delighted customers with desserts fit for every occasion. This month, with Valentine’s Day just around the corner, McDonald’s has found a way to make customers feel and share the love with its first ever Love Desserts!

Starting February 5, Filipinos can indulge in McDonald’s New Sweethearts — limited-time offer love-inspired desserts that are sure to make moments sweeter during this season of hearts. Three new desserts are up for grabs for people who like to treat themselves or share happiness with their sweethearts,  may it be their significant others, children, parents, relatives, or barkada. 

Strawberry Kiss Oreo Sundae

Those who adore McDonald’s classic sundae flavors will surely enjoy the Strawberry Kiss Oreo Sundae — creamy vanilla soft serve embraced by luscious strawberry syrup and topped with crushed Oreos. This treat can surely pass as one’s new crush.

Red Velvet McFloat

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Guilt-Free Indulgence with The Dessert Kitchen

I love desserts. I eat anything and everything as long as it's dessert. However, I know that I should not eat as much dessert in one sitting as I can only take enough sugar in a day. This is exact reason why I was so ecstatic when I found out that The Dessert Kitchen is finally opening a store in Manila. 

Originally from Hongkong, The Dessert Kitchen is known for their light and unique desserts. TDK offers low sugar and low fat content in their desserts, which makes me happy because I can indulge with my favorites without worrying about gaining too much weight. :)

I tried their bestselling dessert, the Purple in Love (Php 258).

Purple in Love

Monday, February 8, 2016

Colonial Spanish Cuisine at Cafe Enye Eastwood

Note: This location is already closed. 

A few days ago, I went to Eastwood to have dinner at the newly-opened cafe in the area: Cafe Enye

Cafe Enye, from the letter ñ, is a restaurant that serves Spanish colonial cuisine and open from early morning to late night. It just opened last December 2015. 

Contrasting to the food concept, Cafe Enye's interiors are modern and stylish, with handcrafted tables, artsy wooden chairs and couches. 

We had the Gambas Enye Style (Php 350) and the Enye Callos Buns (Php 135 for 3 pcs) for appetizers. We each had a glass of Calamansi-Cucumber Smoothie (Php 90) with these dishes. 

Gambas Enye Style
Enye Callos Buns

Saturday, February 6, 2016

The Frazzled Cook at Tomas Morato

My friend Lovelee and I recently had dinner at one of the places I have been wanting to visit for a long time, The Frazzled Cook in Tomas Morato. 

This lovely old house is quite spacious, with a function room available, but it is known to be packed every night so a reservation is a must. 

For starters, we ordered Herbed Chicken Salad (Php 275) and Frazzled Sisig (Php 225).

Herbed Chicken Salad

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Osaka Ohsho and Cafe Kumori Opens at The Block SM North EDSA!

Last January 28, Osaka Ohsho officially opened its second branch in Manila and Kumori Japanese Bakery opens its first cafe in Manila at The Block, SM North EDSA.

Osaka Ohsho, the king of gyoza, opened its flagship store at SM Mega Fashion Hall last 2014. 

We were served some of the Osaka Ohsho favorites: all five gyoza flavors - Original, Nori, Bacon & Cheese, Curry and Kimchi. We also had Mabo Tofu, Crab Cream Croquettes, Black Vinegar Chicken and Ebi Chili
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