Because Starbucks and CBTL are too mainstream, Chabs brought us to Noriter along Taft Avenue. The place is on the second floor of a building in between Tapa King (1st floor) and RMZ Billiard Hall (3rd floor).
The place was cool and very laid back. There’s nothing of the corporately-designed themes you see in every internationally franchised cafes. It reminded me of all the cafes I see when watching Koreanovelas so I’m guessing the owner is a South Korean. Some tables have mismatched chairs while others, you have to squat on the floor which adds to the feeling that you are just in a friend’s really cozy and bright room. And by bright I did not mean white bright. More like the relaxing yellow bright which makes one really sleepy in a conference room or auditorium.
I forgot the drinks we ordered but they were all good especially the whipped cream on top. You can actually taste the milk with a hint of eggs so we’re assuming it was home made and not artificially flavored. Plus, it’s nice to drink frappe from a fragile glass container instead of plastic cups. I sort of like heavy utensils.
We ordered their waffle and it came with fruits on the side plus the whip cream which was starting to climb our “favorite things” list. Not being a fruit lover, I had a slight glimpse of the wonderful world of fruits. Haha. Dai really enjoyed this because she loves these things. I, meanwhile, only had bananas.
The best thing about Noriter, other than the ambiance it exudes when almost-empty (because even the most beautiful and cozy cafe turns me off when there’s too many people) is their Honey Bread. It was so good with the home-made whipped cream and the cinnamon powder and the caramel and the bread (toasted just right) that I dreamt about it once. We almost licked the plate after eating (we did not. We just used our fingers to wipe the plate clean and THEN we licked our fingers).
The place also encourages “self-expression”. Hence, paper cups and coloring materials were provided. It was a nice way to kill time. Heck, the place is very cozy you could sleep there and feel really good after waking up. Back to the artsy thing, Chabs drew this and her cup is the only one I’m posting because ours sucked.
Because there are too many people who wanted to express themselves, the next time I went there, our cups where nowhere to be seen. Guess they were stashed somewhere (or thrown away). I am very thankful because on all occasions that I’ve been to the place, it was never full of students. It’s always half-empty which was good because the Noriter in my mind is not polluted with overcrowded-ness and noise and boisterous laughter (except ours). A friend told me that when she was at the place once, two college students were having a quickie somewhere near the bathroom. Now you know.
By the way, you can also draw on the floor, tables, walls, etcetera. “Expressing yourself” going too far? I don’t think so. That was before. Someone told me you are not allowed to vandalize their things anymore. Guess the place reached its saturation point in receiving drawings from pseudo-artists.
An afterthought: I think Noriter appeals to teenagers and young adults because it promotes freedom. Like, you can go there and be yourself to hell with others. This formula, which I fondly call the “i-accept-you” formula (very dominant in Lady Gaga’s songs) is effective because as we are all aware, everybody just wants to belong somewhere.