Right beside Salad Stop in Alabang Town Center Corporate Center is a pretty little churros shop that opened three months ago. Before this, the only place I would go for churros was Dulcinea. But since they no longer have this in the south, it would take a while before I could have some in Greenbelt. Thank God for La Maripili!
I immediately fell in love with the shop’s interiors: white and wood, rot iron, bulbs, intricate tiles, and mirrors, and the lighting–on fleek! Its front is mostly glass which lets in natural light, giving the place its nice, moody vibe coupled with the restaurant’s yellow bulbs and industrial lamps.
Last weekend’s quick getaway was spent in Panglao, Bohol to witness the binding of two very special people. It was a four-day vacation under the sun with friends and batchmates whom I barely get to see nowadays, surrounded by the wonderful people and beautiful scapes of the island.
For this trip, my friends and I booked at The Bellevue Bohol. While the wedding to attend was in South Palms Resort, we were not able to make a booking there due to the limited rooms that were left. Luckily Bellevue came up, and we were able to get a good deal for the Premier Suite that fit all eight of us.
Would you take a look at how gorgeous this hotel is?
Tagaytay has always been a go-to for quick getaways. Whether with friends or family, the city outside Manila has its way of calming our minds and temporarily but not totally shutting out a good amount of regular life, distancing ourselves from the chaos. We may not be on a remote island where signal is totally off and we have no choice but to socialize face to face, but the slightly slower pace and quietness of being a little high up has the tendency to make us voluntarily put aside our phones. This vibe and numerous good places to eat never fails to make a good yet brief getaway.
One of the places my family and I almost never fail to go to when we’re there is Il Gallo Nero, an Italian restaurant just by the entrance of Royal Tagaytay. It’s a very small restaurant connected to Alfonso’s Hotel that could seat possibly thirty people comfortably. There’s an airconditioner available, but in all of my visits for dinner, it has never been turned on and the restaurant just relies on the cool breeze of its location. In front of it is just the road that leads to Royal Tagaytay Estates, and across the road, untouched land, so the place is void of excessive noise and is overflowing with the cool Tagaytay breeze. The perfect spot for some cold cuts and wine.
Yesterday’s brunch consisted of sweet and savoury cream cheese, delicious bagels and laughs over random conversations with new friends. The get-together happened in LES Bagels at the Podium, the most recently opened branch of the New York inspired deli and bakery, and my most recent favorite discovery. Their first branch opened in 2013 in Mckinley Hill, Taguig, but I was only able to try it for the first time yesterday. What a shame.
As part of my Aguirre resto sweep, I decided to try out the Drive By – Taco Shop. It’s a very small eating place located beside a huge G-Spot (car place that’s also a resto grill) so you might not immediately notice it while driving along Aguirre. It can only seat around eight people inside, and the rest of its tables are outside.
Yesterday I tried out a Korean restaurant called Masarap Korean Grill. It was so unusual hearing a Korean place called Masarap, but when my sister invited me to try it out, she got me at Korean food (my second favorite cuisine) and bang for buck.
The restaurant is located along Aguirre Avenue in BF Homes. In the line of restaurants in this area, you most likely won’t choose this place as a first option because of its nondescript exterior. From outside you wouldn’t even be sure if it was a restaurant or a place to buy meat, because the first thing you see is the meat cutting section. You might not also see the sign immediately, but once you see Pan De Manila, the restaurant’s to the left.
This is Sur Yong Su, the restaurant owner. Once I entered and whipped out my camera, I turned to him and he said “Me,” and was ready for his shot. He can speak very little English but his staff of two people in front are Filipinos.
I have a new papak (meal without rice) favorite. Usually when my family and I drink together, we like to make papak on whatever we can find at home: cheese, jalapeno, cold cuts, nuts, chips, kinilaw, or some dip with crackers. It’s usually how we bond after a long day of work or when someone’s in need of a drink. So when I tried the Spicy Ilonggo Chorizo by Bite& Co., I was so excited to take it home because I knew my family would enjoy it as much as I did.
This chorizo recipe used to be one of those items you’d have at a friend’s house, enjoy it so much, but can’t have it anywhere else because it’s your friend’s lola’s secret family recipe that can’t be bought. Luckily it’s now available to the world, and you can take it home and have as much Chorizo as you want!
Tricia Espino, who makes and runs Bite & Co. from her home, now shares with everyone a long time family Chorizo recipe that originated from her Wawa (lola). It was a family merienda staple that their grandmother used to serve them with toasted pan de sal and quesong puti.
My friends and I wanted to find a new drinking place around the BF area and after doing a little research, I found Fat Butchik’s to be one of the new places mentioned on Spot.ph. After looking through different photos and the prices, we were convinced to pay it a visit.
The restaurant is located at the rooftop of one of the buildings along El Grande. When I got there I found it to be so south, like a really chill, laid back and a comfortable place to drink. It was really cool that night, the guy singing was good, and the setup was simple but pretty. The smoke coming from the grill smelled delicious so it got me extra excited to eat.
Of all the ramen places I’ve tried in Manila, I have to say my favourite ramen house is Ramen Nagi. Don’t get me wrong, I do have other favourites, but every time I think of eating ramen, this restaurant is the number one place that pops into mind. I guess what makes it appeal to me the most (aside from the fact that it’s delicious) is one, it sort of reminds me of Ichiran from Japan; two, I like that we are given the option to sort of customize our ramen (from noodle hardness, strength of flavour, choice of greens, part of the meat, spice level and others)—they give you a sheet for this with options; three, the waiters in the two branches I’ve eaten in (SM Aura and Mall of Asia) are extra nice and are willing to help you with your dish; and four, you are given extra garlic to add to your ramen in case you want more. Aside from the food, the add ons make the whole dining experience from me, and with Ramen Nagi I am always pleased with the meal as a whole.
When ordering, I always pick the Butao King and have them prepare everything normal/medium/the chef’s recommendation. I probably make the spice level a bit higher then just add more chili powder to the bowl after giving it a taste and gauging the spice of the ramen. I also like adding the garlic myself because sometimes they overdo it in the kitchen and I end up getting tired of the taste easily, so with this setup at least I can add just enough.
I haven’t tried their Black King or Red King which I heard are also best sellers of the restaurant, but I plan on doing so on my next visit. If only they had a branch closer to the south!
On other ramen notes:
I haven’t tried Mendokoro and Santouka, two of the famous favourites I often hear. Mendokoro I hear is the best for a lot of people, and once I do get to try it you can count on a post for that.
Also, I heard UCC has delicious ramen not known to a lot of people. Is it true that they no longer have it in their menu?
Others that I do enjoy are Ippudo and Ukokkei. And when I’m just desperate for any kind of ramen, Ramen Kuroda!
Until next time #danielaeats!
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