Tim Hortons

It’s planner season once again in the Philippines. I’ve already started my CBTL stamp collecting, but I’ve been craving the coffee of a new player in Metro Manila: Tim Hortons! The Canada-based fast food restaurant is finally here! The first time I tried it was at Eastwood with Inggo.

Interiors. They’re beside Ippudo at Eastwood.

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We ordered the Large Hot Mocha (130php) & French Vanilla (125php). The hot mocha is what you would expect it to taste. But the French Vanilla… oh my! It was heaven at first sip. ♥ Too bad that it was Inggo’s drink huhu. Price is competitive also, they’re wayyy cheaper than their competition. The only thing for a coffee connoisseur is that their coffee is not that strong. It’s too creamy for the experienced. But we don’t mind. ♥

He also ordered a Croissant with Cream Cheese. (75php).

I ordered an Apple Fritter. (Forgot the price, sorry! But it was also not bad for the price.)

And for every receipt, there’s a promo code where you have to answer their survey form. Once filled up, they’ll give you a code for a free donut when you buy a drink. ♥ I’ve already used 3-4 receipts HAHA.

Another thing is their iced drinks are different from their hot drinks. I always order the iced coffee (95php) with an add-on of vanilla shot (20php). For a large drink of 115php, I’m already happy with my creamy drink. Ughh! I’m craving for it now.

Once the planner season ends, and once they expand to the northern side of Metro Manila. I think I’ll become a regular at this place HAHA. ♥

Heat

A few weeks ago, we celebrated Inggo’s birthday at Heat, Shangrila. ♥ We were looking for a buffet around Ortigas area this time. After a lot of research, we discovered that they still offer their Wagyu Buffet every Saturday for 2,600 php. Please click the link above to book a table.

Shrimp! ♥

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For those who don’t have a vehicle, the entrance that you need to go to is beside Shangri-la Mall instead of the one at St. Francis street. It was a good thing that we had an errand at the mall! We arrived 15 mins before dinner service. The staff ushered us to our seats & we waited inside admiring the interiors first.

Sashimi ♥

Shrimp! ♥ You can eat it as is or you can ask the cooks to re-cook it however you want. (We asked for garlic butter shrimps!)

Mussels & Snails.

Crab! ♥

Plate after the sashimi. Asparagus Salad, Antipasti, Cheese.

Inggo’s plate. The redder meat is US Angus Beef. At the back is the famed Wagyu meat.

My plate.

My favorite at their dessert station. Maple pecan ice cream with pistachio toppings.

Was it worth it? Well, it depends on your preferences. We realized that day that we preferred a different way of preparing the meat. The seafood had to be re-cooked so its not as tender as we would want.

Will we try another expensive buffet again? Maybe. But we’ll try the best next time.

The 9th – Hole in the Wall

For dinner on our second day, we decided to try out Century Mall’s “food hall“. This is Hole in the Wall on the fourth floor. It consists of various food establishments inside a common dining area.

One of the dining areas during our visit.

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Where we sat during dinner time.

For dinner, we decided to eat at the most popular store there which was Bad Bird. They specialize in chicken. Apparently they won numerous awards in the Philippines.

My Dirty Rice Plate (390 php). Dirty rice (fried rice, chicken liver, bacon, tamago, and bonito), kimchi coleslaw, and 2 pcs fried chicken.

Inggo’s Waffle Plate (360 php). Sweet potato waffles, miso butter, maple syrup, and 2 pcs friend chicken. The 2pcs small balls are hush puppies (+ php)

BB Corn (190 php). Corn on a stick with kewpie, bonito, cheese, and toragashi.

Verdict? We understood why this restaurant is popular with the crowd. But for us, personally, we didn’t like it. We thought it was too expensive for the food. But maybe this is the “normal” price for the Makati crowd. I dunno.

This is just one out of 9 establishments inside Hole in the Wall. I hope we could try the other restaurants when we’re near the area next time.

The 9th – Le Petit Soufflé

On the first day of our 9th anniversary staycation, we discovered that Century Mall is only a 5-minute walk away from our hotel. On the second day, we decided to try out the interesting restaurants there. ♥ Based on online reviews, Le Petit Soufflé is the #1 restaurant in Century Mall.

Pretty interiors.♥

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If I were to describe the interiors, it would be french chic. I love their furniture. ♥

Our drinks: Iced Matcha Latte (130 php) & Hot Matcha tea (100 php). No strong matcha flavor, huhu.

Kinoko Frites (235 php). These are fried enoki and another mushroom. I loved these! But so expensive.

Hambagu with truffled cream & mushrooms. (595 php). This is Inggo’s dish. He craved for Jolibee’s burger steak after eating this.

My dish: Squid Ink Riz (395 php). This took a while. Its a small, but filling dish. I love the fluffy egg & squid ink rice.

Matcha souffle with vanilla syrup (350 php). Expensive! But worth a try. We loved the crispy edges instead of the fluffy insides.

Facade design. So cute huhu.

Verdict? Its worth a try. Not sure if we’ll come back though.

Le Petit Soufflé is located on the Third floor of Century Mall.

The 9th – Little Tokyo

For our first dinner during our 9th anniversary staycation at Makati, we wanted to try the Wagyu cube buffet at Little Tokyo. This place features a group of restaurants which specializes in Japanese cuisine. We’ve been here a lot of times before (check out our old food blog!). But we didn’t get to try the wagyu buffet at Urameshi-ya before since they only offer this during Monday to Wednesday. But this time, we did!

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We walked from our hotel to Little Tokyo instead of taking an uber. The surge was insanely high for the distance. Well, at least walking was healthier (but tiring).

The “buffet” at Urameshi-ya is worth 500php + 10% service charge. We got wagyu cubes, wagyu spam, marinated pork belly, and some scallops. You have 45 mins to cook everything you ordered. But you can still stay after the 45min. mark to eat your food. The buffet comes with miso soup, salad, and rice.

The server gave us a plate of wagyu cubes. ♥

HUGE scallops! ♥

Sadly, there wasn’t any crabs/oyster/shrimp during our stay compared to the other review blogs. But since we went here for the wagyu cubes, we didn’t mind. The wagyu cubes were delicious! Service was great as well. Our server helped us cook the scallops. (Tip: you don’t have to remove the shell!)

Satisfied with Urameshi-ya, we went to their neighbor restaurant Hana for dessert: We always order the Matcha Kakigori + additional icecream here!

After our Little Tokyo adventure, we got an uber and went back to our hotel. ♥

The 9th – City Garden Grand Hotel

We celebrated our 9th year anniversary this May! ♥ Instead of going far away this year, we opted for a staycation instead in Metro Manila. I’ve decided to divide the posts into smaller parts. For the first entry is our hotel! We checked in at City Garden Grand hotel for 3 days and nights. I would like to note that this is the City Garden Grand Hotel. They have a sister hotel which is just nearby.

Reception area.

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Check-in was a breeze. You need to present your ID and pay a security deposit at the reception. Then you’ll receive your room card. We got the Superior King Bed room on the 29th floor.

Lobby.

Ceiling details. Love the 3 huge capiz chandelier!

I love our room!  ♥ The bed and pillows were so comfy. Both side tables have equal numbers of power outlets, switches, and telephones compared to others. Wifi was also free (up to 3 devices I think). It has a sophisticated feel to the interiors through the use of dark & neutral tones, accentuated by the use of lights.

Our king size bed with the comfiest pillows. ♥

Bathroom.

Bath tub : the #1 reason that we chose this hotel.

Left: View from our room ♥ | Right: Trump tower! (I did some of the interior plans in my previous job)

For our last day, we had breakfast at Spice Cafe on the 7th floor. You could go ala carte or do the breakfast buffet worth ~800php.

Sadly, the only photos that I took were below. I was too shy to take photos of the others because there were a lot of foreigners that morning HAHA. The breakfast buffet consists of the following: Bread station, fruit station, cheese, chocolate fountain, cereals and yogurt, salad bar, noodle station, egg station, maki station, viands from the Philippines and different countries.

I was satisfied of the buffet because of the bread station with blueberry jam. ♥ He was satisfied because of the unlimited olives & bacon. Service was very nice.

Overall, our staycation was great! No complaints on the room except for the aircon (which took a while to cool, but apparently they replied at our review on Agoda & said aircon was repaired). The hotel was nearby Century mall and other food establishments which was a plus for us. If we had a bigger budget, I’d like to try the Presidential Suite next time.  ♥

City Garden Grand hotel website.

Art Fair 2017

A few weeks ago, the January Girls met up for another Art Tambay at Makati during the Art Fair Philippines weekend. ♥ We chose Fundamental Coffee as our location. Heavy rains poured the whole afternoon, so it took a while for us to be complete.

Pretty interiors.

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Getting to Fundamental Coffee is easier than the previous coffee shop we went to. From Glorietta Mall, exit through the Glorietta 2 exit (the one with the new activity center/waterfall entrance), and just cross the street to Park Terraces.

The menu.

Hannah and I got there first. I ordered the Double chocolate mocha & their Fundamental French Toast. Hannah ordered their best seller, which was Cappuccino with butterscotch. We talked about the interiors of the cafe while waiting for our orders.

Their fundamental french toast was heavenly. ♥ Three hefty slices of french toast with honey & nuts. So delicious!

Double chocolate mocha. The chocolate foam was a unique touch to this drink.

We invited another person to our art tambay. She was our (Aiza & I) group mate back then in the ATC trade last year. Her name is Monique. She makes the yummiest food illustrations on instagram! I did her portrait during this art tambay. Speaking of portraits – I did portraits of the girls as gifts for this meet-up. I’m glad they liked it. ♥

Flat lay attempt of my table space lol.

That cute tin can pictured above is from seamountainco. A local store that makes its own artist-grade pigments! Thank you Jean for gifting us a sample of your watercolor paint! I can’t wait to make art with this. ♥ I did try it out during our art tambay, and its really pigmented! A small amount of paint goes a long way for this. I can’t wait to experiment with it.

After that, we decided to go to The Link for the Art Fair. This event is held at the top floors of a parking lot building. There was a long line to the entrance. But it was orderly and the management/security did their jobs well. We went on a Saturday so the venue was crowded. This event showcases the best of the Philippines’ contemporary art. Here are some of the paintings that caught my eye:

Mass hysteria number two by Liv Vinluan.

Ramon Orlina glass sculptures.

Takahiro Hirabayashi paintings.

And that’s it for the month of February. For March, we plan on meeting again at the Just Add Water + Ink event. Hope to see you there!

Vanderlust

Not all those who vander are lost.

Corny. HAHA. Anyway. A few weeks ago, we were looking for a place to have coffee & dessert long Tomas Morato where we found Vanderlust Bistro + Patisserie. A European cafe hidden at the corner of Tomas Morato & Sct. De Guia. Curious, we went in to see the display case showcasing European desserts: German Schneeball, Italian Cannoli, and Spanish Churros. The well-trained, friendly staff explained each dessert to me and recommended their best sellers.

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Second floor. Or maybe Mezzanine? Ceiling height is a bit low. You could say that this place is “cozy”.

How to enjoy the Schneeball.

Our order.

I ordered the calamansi schneeball for us to try. Coffee was Mocha for me and an Americano for him. I loved the procedure to eat the schneeball! You put it in the paper bag, and wack it with the mallet. It felt like my frustrations with work were being wacked away. HAHA.

Overall, our stay was really nice. We didn’t get to try their non-dessert food. But there’s always a next time. ♥

Vanderlust Bistro + Patisserie : Menu | Facebook page.

Genki Sushi

We had another art tambay last Sunday. But before I get to that post, a few weeks ago we had another food trip with our friend. This time we tried Genki Sushi at UP Town Center.

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They had a different way of ordering here. There are touch screens on every table with their complete menu. You can browse & order through the touch screen. It can even compute your total bill. Orders are then delivered via train:

4 orders per delivery.

Ohhhh my chirashi don. ♥

Sushiiii. ♥ Different colored plates mean different prices.

Our bill amounted to 3k php+! Their sashimi were certainly fresh. But I don’t think we’ll go back here again. Its too pricey.

Coffee was at Negative Space Cafe. Speaking of this cafe: this is currently one of our favorite cafes. I haven’t done a proper review yet of this place. Sooo many pending blog posts!

Left another doodle at #negativespacecafe. ❤ #suffnirain

A post shared by Paulina / Suff (@suffnirain) on

 

Digital Walker x Recession Coffee

One random Saturday, Inggo & I met with a friend for a food trip at Eastwood. After eating at 2 restaurants (Ramen Kuroda & Beef Barn), we wanted coffee. I suggested we try this place because of its unique selling point. This is Recession Coffee, which is located inside the Digital Walker store in Eastwood mall.

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VSCOcam goodness, lol.

The unique way of ordering. You pay what you want! I paid 150php for mine. Inggo paid 100php in coins.

Cute.

It was okay. But it didn’t satisfy our caffeine cravings. So we went to another coffee shop after this HAHA.

Facebook page | Menu from Zomato