Food Photodump 10

Since I have this habit of procrastinating during critical moments (i.e. finals week aka now), let me make myself feel a little better by posting another food photodump to make it seem like I did something worthwhile today. I promise to finish the laundry later. And read a page or two so I can reach today’s quota of productiveness. Pardon if this post is unusually incoherent, mema, and sabaw.

Two classic favorites: Kenny Rogers Solo B with Mac n’ Cheese and Sour Chives Potato as sides. And every Filipino’s favorite, Chicken Joy and friends! Over the past months it has surfaced that you can actually ask for extra sauce for Jolly Spaghetti free of charge. I tried doing so in one branch but I was asked to pay 14 pesos to which, of course, I declined. On another occasion, I tried again at a different branch (because I like my spaghetti masabaw) and the crew gladly obliged. Now I don’t know what’s true anymore.food4I’ve been frequenting the food court at Harrison Plaza because the stalls there offer decent, affordable choices. If you’re not too snob about authenticity, there’s Korean, Japanse, Filipino, Filipinized shawarma and siomai, and my current favorite: Vietnamese. I always order beef pho and spring roll. Sulit because they’re under 150 bucks and that includes softdrinks!img_4912Last year, the Aristocrat along Roxas Blvd offered buffet breakfast for less than 200 pesos! I thought it was too good to be true but of course there was a catch — it was only available every Friday from 1:00 AM to 6:00 AM. While reviewing for finals (naks), Nicole and I dropped by after CBTL Adriatico closed for the day. The spread consists of Lugaw, fried rice, adobo, scrambled and sunny side up eggs, tocino, bangus, and tinola. As far as I can remember, there was no free coffee but there was unlimited soda, just the kind of drink you’d want in the morning haha. It’s not the best breakfast buffet but for the price, I really have no right to complain.food1Buddy’s at Fishermall. I appreciate that the pizza had a lot of toppings, Lucban longganisa is always welcome, and the pork viand called Hardenera was a pleasant discovery. It’s like pork and other innards plus egg in a llanera.img_4633Event though there are already a lot of decent Korean places in Malate, one night with TLW, we still decided to go all the way to Makati (not exactly far but still…) to try Dong Won because it is allegedly one of the best in the area. It looks like a house converted into a restaurant and Korean products like frozen beef and packaged seasonings are also sold.

We ordered two meat variants and dolsot bibimbap. First off, the banchans were disappointing and they weren’t even refillable. We didn’t get to cook our meat and they were kind of dry. I think we could have had better with the amount we spent on other restaurants.img_5907The bibimbap is another story. We don’t always order this because we usually settle with meats, tteokbokki, and ramyun. At first we were grossed out — the ground meat and egg yolk were raw and the stone bowl didn’t seem hot enough. We mixed everything but it still looked unappetizing. However, after one spoonful, we were converted. It was unexpectedly delicious! We ended up strictly following the order of whose turn it is to have a bite, para walang lamangan.food7Wingstop! I personally think it’s too expensive for wings because it wasn’t exactly the best I’ve had (Flaming Wings Taft pa rin mga ulol). The only reason I’m going back here is to avail of my buy one take one coupons from the Coffee Bean planner 🙂img_5311Teresita’s at SM Manila. Still better than Razon’s in terms of food. In terms of halo-halo, well, I have a soft spot for the latter.

Pictured right is Bangus in Mall of Asia where we had dinner during schwester’s first Manila layover. Ironically, one of their specialties is Crispy Pata and it was really good. The only bangus we had was bangus lumpia and it was my least favorite among everything we had haha.food5Irish Potatoes. You know how when some fries get soggy you no longer want to eat them? This one is the thick variant. Maybe it was because of the cheese sauce, bacon and mushroom, but for some reason, even though it became soggy after a while, we still enjoyed eating it ala mashed potato. If you got curious about the name and assumed that these particular potatoes are Irish, they’re not. Read about it here.img_6143Sometimes you think most restaurants serving Filipino dishes are not very different from each other. Then you come across Manam. This place brings comfort to comfort Filipino food. It’s recommended for both the adventurous and the careful because the menu is divided into into “Classics” and “Twists”. Plus, I love that their servings come in three sizes — Small, Medium, Large good for 1, 3, and 6 persons respectively — because customers can be alone or in big groups.

Had the opportunity to dine in their Greenbelt branch with Trishia last year (yeah everything here happened last year, told you I’ve been slacking).

We had House Crispy Sisig, Pancit Molo,  and Turon of Mango and Kesong Puti with Ice Cream from the Classics while we chose Ensaladang Namnam from Twists.img_5345Everything was delectable but my favorite is easily their dessert. It was salty and sweet, hot and cold, crunchy and soft. I think it’s one of my favorite desserts ever and I’m not  a desserts person.

I haven’t been back since because their branches aren’t exactly places I frequent and I’m no longer the type of person who goes to a faraway locations with no other agenda except to eat at a particular establishment. But I’m already excited for my second time and maybe, just maybe, I’ll be adventurous enough to try their famous Watermelon Sinigang.food2Ate Meg told me that the best Takoyaki she ever tasted was from Osaka in Japan where the snack was first popularized. I didn’t know that 10 years ago when I was in Osaka and I’m not returning anytime soon (no budget huhu) so I’ll settle for Hokkaido Takoyaki in SM Makati. They’re so good and filling you can order six pieces and make them a rice meal substitute.img_5364BLK 513 is a yogurt place famous for their charcoal yogurt (I think). It’s really good plus there are a lot of toppings and syrups to choose from. And there’s the novelty of eating black yogurt.

It has long been known that the Japanese can appropriate food and make it better. I’ve seen from watching animes that the characters are fond of eating Japanese curry and I remember all the ready-to-eat curries in supermarkets but my first actual taste of it was only late last year. In true Japanse fashion, I went alone, sat on one of those high stools facing the kitchen, and ate using only a spoon. Thank you Coco Ichibanya for opening a branch at Robinsons Manila! I hate that you’re expensive (need to shell out 300-500 for a complete meal) but I love that I can still taste the curry when burping even after hours. Whenever I eat here I promise myself never again because I get too full and it’s too pricey for a single meal but then when the craving kicks in, I succumb to it anyway huhu. Pictured below is pork cutlet with egg but the one with mushrooms is also good because also, I like shrooms now.food3Last December was one of the few instances when I traveled outside Manila for the sole purpose of eating out. But then again, I met with college friends who I haven’t seen in a while so it was forgivable. Besides, I’ve been curious with The Frazzled Cook in Tomas Morato — it was consistently in the Top 100 of Booky, the app I use for checking out restaurants (works offline too!). Since it was Christmas season and none of us thought of reserving seats, we had to wait more than an hour for a table, the restaurant was full even on a weeknight. Good sign, bad for patience.img_6786We were only 8 but we ordered the set meal for 10 hahaha and there was an unfortunate incident involving the health of one of us so we weren’t able to finish everything which was unfortunate because the food was flavorful — from the mushroom soup, herbed chicken salad, pizza caprese, tenderloin nuggets, grilled salmon with mango salsa, and spicy shrimp pasta. That dinner was costly only because we shared for what’s supposed to be divided by 10 but I think the overall price of the menu is acceptable, a steal, even. I wish someone invites me to eat at Frazzled Cook again so I’ll have an excuse to commute for more than an hour.

Thankfully, we were given a private room because nothing has changed, we’re still boisterous and I’m sure other customers would have been irritated by our crassness.img_6795Since some ramen places are too expensive, I am thankful for Ramen Kuroda! I’ve tried all three of their broth variants and my favorite is Aka, the spicy one. Least favorite is Kuro because of the garlic oil. It’s savory and the noodles are thin and firm. Plus the eggs are cooked just the way I like it. I have no complaints. Stick with the noodles though because their curry sucks 🙂food6A restaurant opened in my hometown and of course it generated a buzz because the place was sosyal, it was right smack in the middle of rice fields accessible through Maharlika highway, and the food was allegedly delicious which justifies its Manila-level price point.

The place is called The Simple Table and I visited last Christmas vacation with high school friends. It occupies the whole 3-storey building and I must say, it was aesthetically pleasing. The air conditioning is also strong which was very welcome (and almost unheard off apart from Jollibee) where I came from.

When it came to the food, uhm, trust me, I tried to really like it because I’d love to have a place to recommend to visitors or celebrate special occasions in. But it was a miss or meh for me. Especially considering the price. We had two pastas and a pizza. They were average at best. I guess I’ll be back to order their bestsellers which were unavailable during our visit or too expensive for students/young professionals. I’ll bring my mother with me next time. Not my father because he abhors overpriced food haha.img_2117Their saving grace is the Matcha cheesecake. It was so good it can rival any other cheesecakes from the big city!img_2121The young pro with three students.img_2157Wala lang, singit ko lang ‘to dahil namamalengke kami minsan sa Lipa at bigla ko itong naamoy. SINUUBAN!!! SOBRANG BANGO, SOBRANG SARAP IULAM SA MAINIT NA KANIN!img_2317And I only found out last year na iba pala ang buko sa macapuno. Yung macapuno ganito ang itsura pag hinati sa gitna. Mindblown!img_2328Much as I hate it, I need to end this post on a sad note. I was walking along Adriatico last year when I saw this. I did not believe it at first. I checked whether I was on the right street and asked a security guard how long has it been closed, if it was only closed for renovation or for good. It was for good. And I was heartbroken. Still a bit heartbroken.

Good thing I haven’t been frequenting that area. Goodbye ChickenCharlie, thanks for the memories, the good food, and the friendliest store crew ever. I don’t even know her name but I hope to meet her again somewhere. Her smile is like sunshine.img_4971


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