Bakahan at Manukan

The boyfriend & I finally had the chance to dine at Bakahan at Manukan at Metrowalk, Ortigas. The restaurant was very spacious & the kitchen looked big, upon seeing it from a distance.


I wanted to order a lot! But couldn’t since there were only 2 of us 😦 It’s really better to go here as a group so you can try a lot of their dishes! 🙂

Crispy Pata (large)

Ordering a Crispy Pata was a no-brainer for us. Unfortunately, they ran out of a small size, so we had no choice but to get the large! Crisp skin, tender, moist meat… What more could you ask for ;p More rice please!!!

Barrio Fiesta’s Kare-Kare

One of my favorite Filipino foods of all time is Kare-Kare. When our order arrived, we thought it looked too yellow, so we became a little doubtful if it was going to taste authentic. However, it was perfect! It was absolutely delicious!!! No wonder Barrio Fiesta is at the forefront of Filipino cuisine 🙂

Lechon Tinupig

Lastly, we had their Lechon Tinupig. Tupig is a native delicacy from Pangasinan made with glutinous rice & grated coconuts, wrapped in wilted banana leaves & cooked over live coals. I had the opportunity to try it when the boyfriend brought me home some when he came from his mother’s province at Sual, Pangasinan.

This, I thought, was the best among all the entrees we ordered 🙂 It was uniquely delicious! The process of how they made & cooked this gave the chicken sooo much latik flavor right down to its core! It was sweet & had a subtle smoky flavor to it. I ABSOLUTELY LOOOVED IT.

We had a very satisfying dinner at Bakahan at Manukan! We were well-accommodated by waiters & waitresses clad in Filipiniana costumes 🙂 We didn’t wait long for our food to arrive too! 🙂 Considering the restaurant was almost packed. It was well-ventilated & the restroom was very clean. They also have a room for those who want to hold a private rendezvous.

Check out the beautiful couple, Allan (playing the guitar) & Bambi (smiling at Allan) found in the painting on the wall! 🙂

Overall, I give Bakahan at Manukan a well-deserved 5 out 5 spoons! 🙂 This is a wonderful place if you’re looking for authentic Filipino fare or if you simply want to impress your balikbayan family/friends ;p

Do visit Bakahan at Manukan at the ground floor of Metrowalk Commercial Complex.

For reservations, please call: 6619632

PARIS delice

I have an affection towards French food, so when I saw this “delightful” restaurant as I drove by Makati Ave., I promised myself I would come back.

I first actually knew about PARIS delice when I read about them in a magazine while I was on a plane heading back to Manila. The thought of an authentic French fare excited me, so much so when I was finally able to come back 🙂

It was around 4 in the afternoon when the boyfriend and I decided to have merienda there.


I wanted to order everything I saw 😛 But as they say, “A moment on your lips, forever on your hips.” I withdrew and ordered only what our stomach and wallet would allow.


Classic Tuna (tuna, eggs, tomatoes, mayonnaise, lettuce)

This is what the boyfriend had. He said he wanted something healthy, so healthy was what he got. Unfortunately, we were not informed that the sandwich was going to be served cold. I believe a lot of Filipinos are not used to eating cold sandwich (I know I’m not) so we had to ask them to warm this up in the oven.

I’m not a fan of healthy sandwiches either. So what you see is what you get with this one. The baguette was rather hard to bite on though.

Croque Monsieur

I am not a fan of healthy sandwiches, because I prefer sandwiches such as this; butter, cheese, fried–in short, heartstopper 😛 Croque Monsieur is one of my favorite French foods, breakfast food for that matter. It’s one of those rare occasions I can enjoy eating ham, considering I am not a fan of ham either. The other Croque Monsieurs I’ve tried had more of that delicious gooey cheese sauce on top. Perhaps Paris Delice‘ was trying to stick to their health concept, hence, the scarcity on the cheese sauce. Nevertheless, their Croque Monsieur was very good. The toasts were baked to perfection, creating a crusty exterior and soft, flavorful center. It was love at first bite.

Opera (P80)

Dark chocolate ganache, coffee butter cream and Joconde biscuit.

The famous French pastry was first paid tribute to the prima ballerinas, “les petits rats de l’opera” in 1955. Sad to say, but this Opera sang melancholy. It was, unfortunately, hard and dry 😦 Perhaps I should have asked them to slightly warm this as well.

Macaron de Paris (P35 each)

What their Opera lacked, their French macaron well compensated. This must be one of the best French macarons I have tasted in Manila! The almond meringue discs were neither too delicate nor too hard. The pistachio filling was neither too sweet nor too buttery. It was exquisite (say it in a French accent! :P)! J’ai adore! ❤

Cafe Moccha

I cannot recall the coffee they use at Paris Delice (as I am making this review from memory), but I remember looking it up on the internet the moment I got home, and I remember it was a brand from Canada (no, it wasn’t Tim Horton’s), which was surprising because I thought their coffee would also come from France. Their Cafe Moccha was sooo strong! It instantly gave me a palpitation, that I ended up giving it to the homeless outside :-/

I had a wonderful experience overall 🙂 Their restaurant actually looks like a cafe, with regard to size and appearance. If you plan to drop by, you’ll notice there are also French customers there. And usually, when a restaurant hosts a number of foreigners coming from the country of that restaurant’s cuisine, the food is said to be good and authentic.

Paris Delice is a lovely place to hang out with friends, have a date, hold business meetings, especially because they have free WiFi there.

Overall, I give PARIS delice 4 out of 5 spoons 🙂

If you want to see photos of how it looks like, you may visit their facebook page.

PARIS delice

1 Juno St. cor. Makati Ave.

(02) 798-0740

Open on Monday to Sunday, 7AM-10PM


I didn’t expect that there are quite a number of good restaurants at A.Venue, because I don’t think a lot of people go there… During a meeting I had, a co-model suggested that we transfer to focaccia. I actually didn’t eat since I was heading to Tsumura after for dinner, but I told myself I was going to come back because the food looked promising. So after spending the day with my son in Makati, I decided to take him there.

The following photos though, were not taken at their branch at A.Venue, but were taken at their branch at The Fort Strip. This was when we availed of their promo at MetroDeal.

First of all, I would like to commend their branch at The Fort Strip for allowing us to use our vouchers there, even if my boyfriend mistakenly selected A. Venue, as to where we will use our vouchers.

For starters,


Complimentary Focaccia Bread

We were given a complimentary basket of focaccia bread, with EVOO+balsamic vinegar. It was a good thing that a restaurant named focaccia has good focaccia bread! 😀 It was definitely something to boast about. Their focaccia bread was soft and had a nice crunchy crust, evident of a freshly baked focaccia bread.


Prosciutto Tartufo (P460)

Truffled cream sauce with prosciutto & mushroom slices.

I originally wanted to order their Cannelloni al Funghi, but because the waitress said it was not available, we settled for this instead. As soon as our order arrived, we immediately distinguished the lingering scent of truffle. And because of that, I was happy to know that they did not scrimp out on the truffle oil and made the P460 price worth it. The pasta was al dente, the sauce was very rich. In fact, we thought it was too rich because there was too much cream.. I don’t remember if they used fresh button mushrooms, but basing from the photo, I think they didn’t. I wish they could have used more prosciutto too, to cut the richness of the dish. But this was not bad 🙂 There was just too much cream.

Pazza Rollio Maranello (P399)

shrimp, sundried tomato, salami & cheese sauce

What actually piqued my interest to eat here was their Pazzo Rollio–their thinner version of Yellow Cab’s Dear Darla Pizza. It was literally paper thin! And like Yellow Cab’s Dear Darla Pizza, this also came with

Arugula & Alfalfa Sprouts

The pizza was very good 🙂 And though it was paper thin, it was very filling. The stuffing and rolling added that fun factor too 😉

Chicken Pancetta (P280)

Pancetta slices & cheese wrapped in chicken roasted in olive oil served on farfalle noodles.

The breading they used on the chicken was the same breading they use on their Mozzarella Fritta, which I got to try at their A. Venue branch. I prefer crispy breadings, so this didn’t completely satisfy me. However, the boyfriend loved it. Like they say, “Different folks, different strokes.” The portion was generous. The components made the whole dish well-balanced. The farfalle noodles, in itself, were delicious.

I like the ambiance at The Fort Strip better. However, the service at A. Venue was much better.

We had to wait for a looong time at The Fort Strip before our food finally came. I was watching the chefs/ cooks from my seat, and they were moving soooo slow! If Chef Ramsey was there, he probably would’ve whooped their asses 😀 We also didn’t like how the waitress (there were only 2 of them: 1 waiter & 1 waitress) (what to us felt like she) disregarded us when she was chatting loudly with (we assumed to be) her co-workers who were on a day off. Their children were everywhere too! Walking with those squeaky shoes that were ANNOYING AS HELL. That, for me, was what made our experience traumatizing.

Despite the good food, I can’t help but take into consideration the extremely slow service and the inconsiderate staff. And for that, I sadly give focaccia at The Fort Strip a 3 out 5 spoons. However, their branch at A. Venue definitely deserves a 5 out of 5.

Shang Palace’ Dim Sum Buffet

For the longest time, I had been wanting to try Shang Palace’ Dim Sum Buffet, ever since I read about it on facebook. It’s a good thing I have someone who’s equally also a foodie like me 😛

Little did I know that the unlimited dim sum also comes with endless servings of soup, appetizer, rice, noodles, congee, vegetarian dishes, dessert & a choice of one main course! Can you say SULIT? 😛 It’s a good thing I went with an empty stomach!

For starters, we were given this seemingly simple bowl of tofu, which turned out to be absolutely delicious! It was fried in a sweet sauce, yet the tofu remained al dente. I had to stop myself from eating too much of it lest I become full right away!

I was overwhelmed to see so much variety in the menu! I, then, realized that it’s better to go there as a group so you could try everything, without having left-overs.

Deep-Fried Taro Puff with Diced Scallop

For my first dim sum, I had the Deep-fried taro puff with diced scallop. My God this was sooo good! Believe it or not, it was my first time to try this, & Shang Palace definitely hit a homerun! Perfectly crisp outside with a soft taro filling & a generous portion of diced scallop that was big in size. I think among all the dim sums we had, THIS was THE BEST.

Deep-Fried Seafoods with Mango and Salad Sauce Wrapped in Rice Paper

One of my absolute favorite dishes in Chinese cuisine is Hot Prawn Salad. This dim sum was like a hot prawn salad in lumpia wrapper. J’adore! ❤  

Steamed Giant Shrimp Crystal Skin Dumplings & Spinach Dumpling Stuffed with Shrimps

I only got to try the Hakaw, and I must say, that was probably the best Hakaw I’ve ever tasted! The crystal skin, in itself, was very good. It was silky, and you could easily tell that it was freshly made. On the other hand, the shrimp was also fresh. It was big & plump! It was truly a treat for shrimp-lovers like me! 😛

Steamed Shanghai “Xiao Lung Pao”

I noticed that a lot of people fancy eating this. I don’t know if it’s because they truly appreciate the intricacy of this dim sum or they simply hopped on the Xiao Lung Pao (called Xiao Long Bao in other establishments) bandwagon. I’m not one of those, but for the sake of comparison, I ordered this anyway. I didn’t like this so much… I thought the soup unfortunately tasted malansa 😦

Steamed Glutinous Rice Dumpling with Dried Scallop and Chicken

I was already full by the time I had this, but curious to see and taste what was inside the lotus leaf made me force myself to eat and finish this because it was THAT GOOD! I have an affection towards glutinous rice, and this one was delicious.

Steamed Rice Roll Filled with Diced Honey Glazed Pork

I loved the steamed rice roll! It was smooth, silky and also freshly made. You could see how siksik the rice roll was with the diced honey glazed pork bulging already. The only downside to this was the sloppy presentation.

Chicken Feet

Excuse the haziness in this photo, but it was because of the steam. This was good. It had just the right of spiciness, which I liked.

My friend, Haebina, and I tried to come up with a plan on how to eat as much as we could without easily getting full. So with that, we skipped the appetizer, soup and congee.

Hot Prawn Salad

Ordering this was a no-brainer for me, since this is my favorite Chinese entree. I enjoyed this main very much because the prawns were ginormous! It was also fresh, and unlike other Chinese restaurants, there was not a lot of dressing, which made the prawns the focal point of the dish. After eating all 3 prawns, I happily affirmed that Shang Palace’ Dim Sum Buffet was so worth it!

Sweet and Sour Pork with Walnut

For Haebina’s main, she ordered Sweet and Sour Pork with Walnut. The dish was so-so.. The pork was not that tender. I think Wee Nam Kee‘s version is better. I liked the candied walnuts very much though!

Fragrant Fried Rice with Diced Honey Pork and Shrimps “Yang Chow” Style

This is what Haebina ordered, and it was just alright. For a restaurant of their caliber, it’s a shame that hole-in-the-wall, Hong Kong Roast ExpressYang Chow Fried Rice tastes a lot better!

Fried Rice with Diced Chicken and Salted Fish

Our waiter said this was better than their Yang Chow Fried Rice, but unfortunately, he was wrong. I thought this was less likable.

Stir-Fried Noodles “Fujian” Style

Sad to say, but this was dry and very bland. I immediately put it aside after having a forkful. Don’t bother ordering this, lest you want to have leftovers.

Chilled Mango Puree with Sago and Diced Mango

I had to think twice if the mango puree was artifical or not because of its vibrant canary yellow color. I like my chilled mango puree on the milky side, so if you’re like me, you might find this a little more acidic than usual. Nonetheless, I think the acidity and the milkiness was well-balanced. Did I make sense? 😛

Here’s a quick peek of me & my friend, Haebina, for my post-birthday celebration 🙂


If I was to die that day, Jesus would probably drag me to hell for eating so much :-/ Kidding aside, you can bet we left Shang Palace with what was previously an empty stomach, a heavy tummy. With the ridiculous tax prices and service charge fee, we ended up shelling out 1K each. Nonetheless, Shang Palace’ Dim Sum Buffet was sooo worth every penny! I can’t wait to go back and pig out again!

Overall, I give Shang Palace’ Dim Sum Plus 5 spoons 🙂


(63 2) 840 0884


Dim Sum Plus : 11:30am – 2:30pm, Mon – Sat
Lunch : 11.30am – 2.30pm, Mon – Sat / 10:30am – 2:30pm, Sun
Dinner : 6.30pm – 10.30pm, Mon – Sun

Level 2, Makati Shangri-La Hotel
Dress Code:
Smart casual
Smoking Policy:

Shang Palace accommodates both smokers and non-smokers

Sweet Bella

Prior to a derma appointment with Dr. Aivee Aguilar-Teo at Burgos Circle, I decided to kill time at Sweet Bella. I did not only kill time, but spent A LOT of time there! 😀 Which gave me enough time to try out some of their best-sellers 🙂

Once you enter the cafe, you will immediately spot this cakes display to your left, which boasts of a wide assortment of exquisite cakes.

Sweet Bella proudly serves Nespresso coffee, the brand name of Nestle Nespresso S.A., an operating unit of the Nestle Group based in Lausanne, Switzerland.

(I have yet to make a separate blog for this. But before that, I must learn about & experience this firsthand, since this was not what I ordered.)

This is what you will see on the ground floor. Aside from quality specialty cakes, they also have French macarons, pastries & a selection of pralines.

French Macarons (P60 each)

Sweet Bella also specializes in French macarons. And after having been able to try most of the flavors in this photo, I must say, they have easily replaced The Cookie Jar & have conquered the title having The Best Macaron de Paris! The macarons were baked to perfection & have a nice, delicate texture to it. The fillings were also AMAZING!

The Salted Caramel was a dream. The Strawberry was magnifique! You could taste the achenes & it makes you understand why the macarons were priced a bit higher–is because they don’t use artifical fillings. The Chocolate, like their other variants, was the best I’ve had in Manila, while their White Chocolate with Coconut can suitably be described as a Filipino take on a French macaron. Lastly, the Passion variant had a somewhat mabango taste to it that’s not at all unpleasant! 🙂

Overall, I enjoyed EVERY variant I’ve had the pleasure of eating! 😀 Special thanks to the hubby-to-be 😉

Croque-Madame (P350)

Grilled ham & gruyere cheese with poached egg on a warm brioche.

I’m not really fond of eating ham. I only eat it with an Eggs Benedict & in this case, a Croque-Madame. Though Paris Delice‘ tasted better, this was also good. However, this wins first place with regard to size. It came in a hefty portion that I was only able to finish half, half of which I took home. The following day, when I ate half of what I had left over, lo & behold, it tasted even better!

Philly Cheese Steak (P350)

Thin slices of USDA Beef, caramelized onion, melted American cheese on steak bun.

Sweet Bella, being owned & headed by Pastry Chef, Chef Cristina Santiago Rivera, daughter of Melo’s Steakhouse‘, Melo Santiago, you cannot help but expect an entree involving steak to be at par with that of Melo’s. Some people feel iffy ordering something like this at a dessert cafe, thinking it might just be mediocre. But surprisingly, Sweet Bella was able to successfully deliver! I would usually pick this if I see this on a sandwich menu. And I’m happy to say that Sweet Bella‘s Philly Cheese Steak was a homerun 🙂

Mini Chocolata (P ) TWG Paris-Singapore Tea (P100 )

Because their Chocolata Cake was voted “Best Dessert for 2007” by the Philippine Daily Inquirer, and was listed among the “Top 10 Best Cakes” at the dessert critic blog,, by Lori Baltazar, I just had to try this 😛 First of all, I absolutely adore the presentation, especially the butterfly made of chocolate! The cake was fudgy, thick & dense. It wasn’t sweet at all! Which is probably why it bagged the best dessert award. It seems as if slightly sweet has become the new preference for chocolate cakes among the young, especially the young-at-heart.

Mini Pearl (P295)

Another dessert I had was another best-seller from Sweet Bella–their Pearl cake, which was a pink guava mousse filled with flambéed mango on chiffon cake. I was hesitant to try this at first, but when I finally gave in to the pink temptation (I was easily drawn to the pink color, it being my favorite color :P), I then understood why that was one of their best-sellers. Unlike their Chocolata cake, which you will eventually get suya halfway through, this will make you keep your fork on your hand. The amazing combination from the slight sourness of the pink guava to the sweetness of the flambeed mangoes created a wonderful melange of flavors that is light, refreshing & utterly amazing. It has now become one of my favorite desserts & apparently, so as the Philippine Daily Inquirer! 🙂

Singapore-based tea company, TWG (The Wellness Group)’s Paris-Singapore tea is described as a distinguished green tea enhanced with fragrant cherry blossoms & red fruits. A sensual & sweet tea of reminiscence. This went very well with the cakes I had, thanks to one of the waiters’ (Rey) recommendation.

I love the soft, plush sofas at Sweet Bella. Not to mention the abstract art pieces hanging on the wall. I also especially love the tile walls in the bathroom! 😛 It’s a wonderful place to hang out at, especially with the girls 😉 It’s also a plus that the cafe has free WiFi.

I had a pleasant experience overall. Though the prices are a bit high, the quality is outstanding. Overall, I give Sweet Bella a 5 out of 5 spoons.

Sweet Bella Dessert Cafe

Forbeswood Heights, Burgos Circle

1221, Fort Bonifacio

844-0680/ 392-7571


Tsumura Sushi Bar & Restaurant was recommended by a friend when I made mention about my desire to eat the world’s most expensive sashimiBluefin Tuna Belly, it being in my Top 5 Foods to Eat Before I Die mental list 😛

Just on hindsight, what makes the bluefin tuna belly sashimi so expensive is that the bluefin tuna is the most expensive fish in the ocean because its species is already considered endangered.

Prior to heading over to Tsumura, like always, I checked out its menu online & several food blogs about it. I did not find any negative reviews, so I was convinced to book a reservation, despite the whopping P2350 price tag on their Honmaguro Toro (Bluefin tuna) Sashimi.

It was a shame that I only knew about this restaurant recently. When Dard & I arrived at the place, I understood why. Tsumura is located inside a corporate building, so its semi-hidden location makes it unknown to some people, like me. But when we got inside the restaurant, I was surprised to see that the place was packed, despite the heavy rains.

I immediately ordered the Honmaguro Toro Sashimi and the waitress, together with the manager, had to clarify it with us twice if that was what I was ordering indeed. I hate to think that they were doubtful if we can afford to pay for it, or they simply wanted to double-check.

Honmaguro Toro Sashimi (P2350)

Toro is the general term for the belly flesh of a tuna and can be divided into two main types: chu-toro, cut from the less fatty sides of the belly, and o-toro, the belly’s supple and glorious center (Info credits).

I hate to think that we were short-changed with what was given to us because I was expecting purely o-toro. But, as you can see, there were only 2 slices of o-toro compared to the 5 slices of what was obviously chu-toro.

The first thing that entered my mind was how my cousin, Marbee, would have loved that, considering she loves tuna.

Thoughts: I thought it wasn’t anything exceptional. It didn’t blow me away, as how those who have eaten this before exaggeratedly descibed. The o-toro on the other hand, was just as divine as a salmon sashimi. Well, there went our P2350! It has got to be the craziest thing I’ve done related to food, to spend THAT much on a few pieces of raw fish.

Uni Sashimi

I consider this the “foie gras of Japanese cuisine”. Silky, melts-like-butter-in-your-mouth kind of texture. The experience this dish evokes is of pleasure and a heightened arousal of senses. It is definitely foodgasmic.

Appetizer (free)

The appetizer was a simple melange of chayote & prawns covered in a thick, savory sauce. Delicious.

Beef Usuyaki (P600)

I was excited to try this, as this is one of Tsumura‘s best-sellers and most talked about dish among food bloggers. I love mushrooms, so I did not think twice of ordering this despite its P600 tag price.

Thoughts: It was good.. Especially with the dipping sauce. Though it wasn’t like “WOW!” as how those who blogged about this described. The thin wagyu strips were tender and juicy, while the sliced mushrooms were generous in portion.

I think this was called Zara Udon

I didn’t mind eating cold noodles, but these noodles were too thick for our liking. We had to submerge this in the sauce (on the right) in order to have some taste. It was also too unpleasantly filling.

Tsumura is TSOOOMAHAL! 😀 Nonetheless, you are guaranteed with the freshest ingredients and an authentic Japanese fare 🙂 Overall, I give Tsumura Sushi Bar & Restaurant a 4 out of 5 spoons.

Tsumura Sushi Bar & Restaurant

2nd Level 88 Corporate Plaza

Sedeno corner Valero Streets,

Salcedo Village, Makati City

(632) 887 4848/ (632) 4850

RED Garlic Bistro Cafe

The RED in RED Garlic Bistro Cafe stands for Read, Eat, Drink. Owned and headed by Chef Vincent Rodriguez, together with Kapuso celebrity, Raymart Santiago and 5 other entrepreneurs, this bistro cafe opened its doors last October 1, 2011. The curiosity to eat at this month-old bistro cafe located along Katipunan Ave. was due to Dra. Vicki Belo’s tweets about it. So last October 29, this is what the family & I had:

Santiago Chili Poppers (P195)

Green chili stuffed with taco filling placed on shooter glasses with some sort of sour cream.

Raves: I loved the creative presentation of this appetizer. The chili only had a slight kick to it, which was favorable for us considering we have low tolerance for spicy food.

Rants: I wish there was more sour cream though & that it was tidily poured inside the shot glasses. I think it would have also been better if the poppers had cheese in it, together with the taco filling (unless there was, because I totally missed it).

Score: 4 out 5 spoons.

Melon Yakult (P65)

Rave: I though the glass looked really cool.

Rant: I ordered this for Basti, and when we tried it, it tasted so-so. The melon was bland and we couldn’t really taste the Yakult.

Score: 2 out of 5 straws.

U.S. Angus Beef Shortplate (P285)

Raves: We loved this entree! The meat was tender, the sauce was flavorful and had the right consistency, the greens were perfectly cooked, and everything on this plate just went well together. I appreciate the triangular-shaped parsley rice 🙂

Rant: Dard’s (who ordered this) only rant was that he wished there was more 😛

Score: 5 out of 5 spoons.


Softshell Crab Salad (P260)

As you might have noticed, this should have been placed after the Santiago Chili Poppers. But I thought of arranging the dishes according to what came out first.

Well, there was really nothing to rave about this salad. The components, when combined, seemed ordinary. I was hoping for something unexpected that would go well with the softshell crab.

Rants: The salad could have used more dressing.

Score: 3 out 5 spoons.

Salpicao Medallions (P550)

Rave: The applewood smoked bacon that went with this a la Filet Mignon dish was so good. I thought it tasted even better than the steak!

Rants: Unfortunately, our waitress didn’t inform me that this was going to be served atop a grill. I believe it also wasn’t specified in the entree description. So what happened was, instead of getting a medium steak, my Salpicao Medallions ended up being cooked well-done. I would have also preferred it to have been paired with potato instead of parsely rice, unless they added a different variety of vegetables to the greens. The medallions could have also used some sauce, instead of its drippings, since the entire entree seemed dry. I also thought it was quite pricey considering the size of the beef tenderloin.

Score: 4 out of 5 spoons.

Country Fried Chicken Steak Sandwich (P290)

Raves: The country fried chicken steak and potato wedges were perfectly crisp. I like how this came in a big portion, thereby justifying it’s almost P300 tag price.

Rants: The chicken wasn’t seasoned well, so it ended up tasting bland. Yet again, another messy presentation with the shot glass.

Score: 3 out of 5 spoons.

As you can see, the bistro is surrounded with bookshelves, which promote the R in RED, as what I have mentioned earlier. The place looks inviting, with its minimalist modern design and subdued lighting.

Despite the place’s full accommodation, the waiters and waitresses managed to stay alert.

The food was good, but it was not very memorable. I also thought the prices were a bit high. So overall, I give RED Garlic Bistro Cafe a 4 out of 5 spoons.

I would like to go back there and try their other dishes though! 🙂


RED Garlic Bistro Cafe

218 Blueridge A Katipunan Avenue, Quezon City.

Serves breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Open from 7am-12mn.

For reservations, please call 682-1860.

Swensen’s Manila

Named after 

Earle Swensen

Swensen’s Ice Cream finally invades Manila! 🙂 I know.. This post might appear late to some who already know about it, but I’m not always the first one to know about things 😛

With international franchises opening here and there,  I was so excited when I learned that “America’s Favorite Ice Cream” has finally arrived. Located at the South Wing of Mall of Asia, this ice cream parlor was bound to hit Manila by storm. Franchised and brought in by restaurateurs, Chito and Lizzie Guerrero of Grilla Bar & Grill and Old Spaghetti House, ice cream enthusiasts like myself can now indulge in all-natural premium ice cream, with a variety of decadent flavors to choose from!

I have more reasons to go to Mall of Asia now! 😛

So yesterday, since my son wanted me to bring him somewhere, I decided to take him to Mall of Asia. After a fun-filled night of playing at Kids’ Universe and Timezone, we had dessert at Swensen’s, and these were what we had:

Oreo’s Cookies n’ Cream (P220)

Cookies n’ Cream ice cream with hot fudge and Oreo cookies.

This was Basti’s order, and it’s a no-brainer why 😛 Children (and adults alike) love Oreo! I mean, who doesn’t?! 😀 And it’s even better with ice cream. Can I hear an Amen? 😛 Mhmmm.

He couldn’t wait to try it 🙂

Basti & his chocolate-stained teeth 😛

Children are normally picky eaters, especially when there are vegetables involved. But if you give them sweets/ desserts like ice cream, you don’t even have to make a fool out of yourself by pretending that the spoon you’re holding is an airplane 😛 Imagine their ecstasy (and ours) if it actually rained ice cream, a la Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs.

Imagining……….Drooling……….Now back to regular programming 😛

Unfortunately, my son didn’t like what he ordered 😦 He abhored the whipped cream, and by the end of our stay there, I found myself unwillingly exchanging my dessert with him 😦 Hahaha! 😀

Waffle Sundae (P155)

A scoop of ice cream on freshly baked waffle with chocolate fudge and almond.

I picked Rock at Heart, which was a white chocolate vanilla ice cream with chocolate fudge, loaded with mini chocolate chip filled with peanut butter. I liked how there was extra chocolate fudge inside a shooter. It made this dessert more interesting and fun. However, I would have preferred the waffle to be crisp on the outside. Hello one thousand calories!

Water came in these cute imported glasses filled with scribbles.

Looks like somebody wants another cup 😛

Eat your heart out in this vast selection of premium all-natural ice cream and sorbets!

Here’s to reliving and making new memories while having the ultimate Sundae and Sunday experience! 😉

Frozen yogurts may have been the fad, but ice cream will always remain a classic 😉

A date with my li’l man ♥

So what are you waiting for?

Bring your family and friends to Swensen’s Ice Cream Parlour located at the ground level of the South Wing of Mall of Asia and treat yourselves to that well-deserved ice ceam dessert.

You know you want to 😉

By the way! Cash Cash Pinoy actually has an ongoing promo regarding Swensen’s! 🙂 I actually just purchased one 😛 Get this, you will only pay P299 instead of P525 for a Heavenly Fondue for 2, which consists of 4 mini scoops of Swensen’s ice cream, bananas and mangoes, whipped cream and waffles served with warm chocolate sauce! Aside from that, you will also get a Nutty Crispy Tower with layers of Macadamia and Mocha Almond Fudge ice cream with caramel, almond and pecan praline! Give in to the temptation and click on the link to this promo! 😉 For the love of ice cream, I don’t mind adding 5lbs to my current weight!

A Culinary Tour Around Asia

Though Banana Leaf has been around for quite some time now, I only got to eat there last week. All this time, I thought it was a mediocre Filipino restaurant as I kept on ignoring their branch at Powerplant everytime I would pass by! Little did I know that their menu contains a vast assortment of Malaysian, Singaporean, Thai, Indian, Vietnamese & Indonesian fare! And what’s great about it was that everything was averagely priced! 🙂

This is a great place for those who are dining out on a budget, like us 😛 So, here is what the hubby & I ordered:


Stuffed Chicken Wings with Sticky Rice (P128)

Although this can be found under “Appetizers”, we opted to eat this together with our main. The portions were small, but it was only because the half part of the chicken, where the sticky rice was stuffed, was already boneless. We liked the mild sweetness of this, contrasted with the sweet chili sauce on the side. I wasn’t sure if the sticky rice was relevant to the dish as a whole though. Perhaps it was just to provide a nice surprise with a hint of texture inside.

Malayan Beef Rendang (P238)

I remember my good friend, Johmie, brought me Rendang Curry Powder from her trip to Brunei. When I got her pasalubong, I felt a sense of panic, as I didn’t know how to make Beef Rendang. And from the sound of it, it seemed complicated. I did my research and felt anxious all the more after seeing the rest of the ingredients. I thought to myself, where the hell was I going to get those ingredients, except the dried ones I luckily bought at Chatuchak Market during my trip to Thailand last year?!? When I finally got almost all the ingredients that I needed, I put on my zebra-printed apron, went to work and did my best. Surprisingly, it was easy peasy! Though I wasn’t sure how it should have tasted, because at that time, I have not tried eating Beef Rendang yet. After tasting Banana Leaf‘s version, I can say that mine was better 😛 Though don’t get me wrong, this was also good. It was mild in taste.The only downside was that the beef was a bit dry and kind of tough to chew.

Stir Fried Chinese Kangkong with Sambal Sauce (P138)

Our waiter warned us that the sambal was a bit spicy, and because Dard and I have low tolerance for spicy food, we asked the sambal sauce to be placed on the side, instead of being incorporated with the Chinese kangkong. Surprisingly, the sambal sauce wasn’t that spicy! It had just the right amount of kick for me and it definitely enhanced this simple yet delicious dish.

Penang Fried Rice with Salted Fish and Chicken (P188)

One of Banana Leaf‘s best-sellers, which our waiter strongly recommended. I must say, this was one of the best fried rice I have ever had in my life! It was really good. Well done, Vietnam!

To view Banana Leaf Asian Cafe‘s menu, click here

The extensiveness of Banana Leaf‘s menu revolving around different asian cuisines makes this multi-awarded international restaurant worthy of another visit (and another, and another :P). We had a wonderful experience overall! And for that, I give them 4 out of 5 spoons 🙂

Visit them at the location nearest you:

2/F The Podium

2/F Greenbelt 3

4/L TriNoma

G/L The Terraces at Ayala Center Cebu

P1 Concourse Level Powerplant Mall

G/L Midtown at Robinson’s Place Manila

G/L Greenhills Promenade

3/F The Block at SM City North Edsa


It’s quite impressive how the collection of restaurants in BF Homes, Parañaque vary from cuisine to cuisine. There were some houses-turned-restaurants who were daring enough to step out of the usual b n’ b (barbecue & beer–think Central), & one of them was Songkran. Songkran, as the name & color motiff suggest, serves Thai cuisine. Authentic? Well, let’s find out.

If there was something I could eat everyday, without getting sick of, it would probably have to be Thai food. The utilization of different ingredients & spices make Thai food a culinary journey in its own right. Having been able to go to Bangkok last year made me realize that though their environment closely resembles that of Manila, their food is totally worth going back for.

I would crave for the usuals, Pad Thai & Shrimp Cakes, every now & then, & learning about a restaurant in BF that supposedly serves authentic Thai food made me giddy. I just had to try it. So after my son’s United Nations Program in BF Homes yesterday, we decided to have lunch at Songkran.



(fish sauce, soy sauce, chili flakes & white sugar)

Thai Iced Tea

I like how their Iced Tea was presented. The size of the glass was also huge (compared to other Thai restaurants). However, the taste was just okay… I would have preferred it to be creamier & a little bit sweeter.

Green Papaya Salad (P90)

The inclusion of chicharon in this dish was a nice surprise. And perhaps, it was the only thing that was nice. The Som Tam, or Green Papaya Salad, tasted  a bit off. It was somewhat malansa & I didn’t enjoy this salad at all.

Shrimp Pad Thai (P140)

You can immediately see that the Pad Thai lacks some greens (like chives & cilantro). It looks dry because it WAS! The noodles were undercooked & the entire dish was blah, I mean bland. Even my 5-year old expressed his discontent about this dish.

 Shrimp Cakes (P130)

I looove Shrimp Cakes, Crab Cakes & all cakes alike! Haha! 😛 But seriously, this is a staple dish I always have whenever I dine at a Thai restaurant. The presentation was a bit messy, but nonetheless, it was good.

Chicken Pandan (P175)

The chicken was overcooked that it became a bit dry. It tasted okay though.

Bagoong Rice (P100–I think)

A bit pricey considering it was only good for one person. Said to be one of their best-sellers & I must agree! This was delicious. I just wish they would change their silverware though 😛

I was a bit disappointed with how our lunch went at Songkran, especially because of the Pad Thai. The average, mediocre taste was expected considering the price, but the failure to execute a proper Pad Thai was shameful. Nonetheless, I give Songkran a 3 out 5 spoons because of the friendly staff & the memorable Shrimp Cakes & Bagoong Rice.


Aguirre Ave. cor. D. Tuazon, Phase 3, B.F. Homes

Parañaque City, Metro Manila


(02) 829-2963