The Month of the Heart of Winter

the new leaf of January is my Month!

Tag Archives: date night

icings|cakes•breads•cafe

Jun 12. I somehow missed spending holidays with the husband –I mean wandering at the mall or to someplace nearby, we used to go on daytrips too when we feel like going to but with his current work sched our vacationing and dating became numbered. Sigh!

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During last year’s Independence Day we were at the MAFBEX event at World Trade Centre, it was our second year of attending this event however we failed to visit his year. We missed the foodie event because he had to work on a holiday, now you know why his current work is really annoying me…to the nines! 😦 And I’m seeing a lot worse soon as the café is up and running. Oh well, I’m trying to survive the schedule and all that’s why each time he’s free I make sure we don’t just sit and stare at each other at home –I need a breather, a turn into the mall or a decent kind of food to keep me happy and sane.

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We used to frequent Icings in Market! Market! for their affordable yet yummy baked treats –flavored muffins, English muffins, ciabatta and cakes. Take note that my personal favorite is Hearts on Fire. ♥ During its temporary closure we missed more the bread sale that happens every day few minutes before its closing time. And maybe because we no longer frequent BGC that much we have no idea that Icings was already up and running again, on a rather bigger location inside the mall and it’s now more than a bakeshop, a café is open this time. Since I had a full lunch at home (and the husband had his usual free lunch at the office, I assumed) we didn’t plan to eat anything heavy for dinner, a light meal would be just fine to cap off the day.

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Premium House Blend P75. I didn’t get to taste his coffee but I got the free almond biscotti, I liked its cake-like flavor other than its dry and crunchy consistency makes it the perfect coffee pairing. We went home with a pack of it.

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Banana Walnut Muffin P???, I forgot how much each cost but it’s inexpensive and substantial for its price.

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Spanish Sardines P155 from their Filipino Breakfast plate for the husband. Who says I’m the one addicted to sardine?  I told you we can survive months eating this and gourmet tuyo. 🙂

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Old Fashioned Spaghetti P170. The sauce was very classic, on the sweet side which I’m think would be perfect for kids. I loved it by the way.

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Classic Caesar Salad P165. Mixed green tossed in Caesar dressing, parmesan cheese, bacon bits and croutons. I just find the dressing too average, I don’t know how to describe it but it didn’t passed my standard of Caesar dressing.

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I know our dinner choices are becoming repetitive of the last –pasta, salad and sardine, but we really like to keep it this simple especially that after dinner we have no more activity to exert ourselves. We’re just trying to balance our week day’s meals with what we’re having on sundates and family weekend dates.

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…and we’re happy to choose our battle versus food. 😛

 

 

Icings
G/F Market! Market! – New Wing
Carlos P. Garcia Ave
Fort Bonifacio, Taguig
T. +632 728 3580
 

the coffee bean & tea leaf

Jun 7.  Because we’ve been partial to Starbucks coffee and dessert we had this tendency to revisit and revisit thus the idea of dining at a different coffee shop was always somewhere off the topic. But since our current fixations are pasta and salads we keep our options open this time. 🙂

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We keep on passing by Coffee Bea and Tea Leaf in Salcedo Village for the longest time, and everytime we do I can’t help but adore its peaceful ambiance, well on weekends perhaps and I can’t attest if it’s the same scenery during the week days. I love it even from afar because the place doesn’t get too overly crowded, there’s always an empty seat for diners.

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Well, I’m slowly morphing back to becoming a coffee addict despite the acid attacks and palpitation but there’s no need to worry, I know my limits and there’s always this alternative to coffee and tea –the fruity flavored drink? But once at the coffee shop I can’t hold back myself not to order a coffee blended drink, I think it’s a bit odd not to order coffee at all. During our visit at CBTL, we had dinner first, a lighter one (I guess), we had our usual favorite combination –a classic Caesar salad and sardine pasta. Yep, we can survive eating that combi everyday –fresh and tasty and warm?

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Coffee Bean’s Classic Caesar Salad® Everybody’s favorite! You can also opt to enjoy this traditional salad made of romaine lettuce, croutons, eggs & Caesar dressing with chicken. We got ours less the chicken.

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Sardine & Garlic Linguine. An olive oil-based pasta with Spanish-style sardines and roasted garlic. Garnished with parmesan cheese and parsley. I super, super love this because the garlic is crunchy and the sardine is super tasty. And because the serving is big it’s good for sharing, value for your money here. I’d probably go back for this pasta dish!

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CBTL cakes and pastries are very hard to resist, I can’t passed over to that Chicago Cheesecake. It’s not the usual cheesecakes you’d find around, that’s too foamy and soft or sweet, CBTL’s cheesecake had that perfect texture.  From now on, I’m declaring it as one of my must-try cheesecakes in town. ♥

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Chicago Cheesecake. Velvety cream cheese with a hint of lemony tartness, on a subtle almond cookie crust – best with Espresso.

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The cookie monster husband would always get a small or big piece of cookie to pair his coffee. He had the Café Americano –one of his usual requests. While I had the ice blended one, Mocha if I remember it right. Hehehe. I love my drink only that it’s too filling, probably because of its heavy cream.

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Ice Blended Mocha. Mocha lovers, you’ll be in heaven… Our delectable Special Dutch™ Chocolate and Coffee Extract blended with ice and non-fat milk.

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The next time we’ll visit I’ll try the All Day Breakfast –Eggs Ben, Bagel, Salmon Scramble, I can’t wait! 😀

 

 

The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf
Ground Floor, Four Seasons Salcedo (at Tordesillas St & Toledo St) 
Makati City     
T. +63 2 8172873
 

seattle’s best coffee

Before the long break, the Holy Week that was, I’ve been on a busier sched, I was juggling between work and my household (as if I have a dozen of kids at home), so whenever we have the luxe of time to go out even if it was a weekday we’ll give it a go, besides the red-hot temperature was a good excuse for me not to cook, I hate sweating in the first place. Take me to Arendelle Castle so I can meet Elsa and froze, the cold never bothered me anyway! 🙂

One of our unplanned dinner date happened on Holy Monday, I was running after to use my discount voucher at Old Navy so we drove to BGC. The remaining voucher I had was nearly expiring I suspect esp that it’s almost a month since its opening day and that it’s a promotion thing only, so I’m not letting it perished just like that, it must be utilized. 😛 After a really quick peeped around Old Navy and shopping for new flip flops I heard my tummy growled. It’s like telling me I’m hungry sarcastically, just like that Lenovo guy whom I hate for his very disdainful remarks and comments. Hahaha. Anyhow, because it’s a week day most stores and restaurants closes early in Boni High so our choices were trimmed to coffee shops that normally stays open until past midnight.

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Not that I’m tired of eating sandwiches at Starbucks other than I wanted a slight change that night and Seattle’s Best was the best option, me thinks. 🙂 Because they have more than pastries and dessert, they have light meals and even breakfast plate to proffer, that’s a weakness and I’m all in.

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We opted for the light meals, which in my judgment wasn’t really light because the serving was quite huge and filling, coming from a big eater like me you should trust me here. Seattle’s Best light meals are pasta, sandwiches, salad and paninis. We got ourselves the pasta dishes because we feel like eating it that time, if you’d been following this blog and my IG account we’ve been eating pasta more than the regular meal these days because we feel its lighter than the usual combo of rice and meat or chicken, we feel it’s a little healthier tho it’s not really recommended esp on late nights, note to self: the calories from pasta is highly prone to settle around your waist. Now that explains the husband’s Pooh-belly, and that makes me Piglet. Hehehe.

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I got the Amatriciana. Linguine pasta tossed with a tomato-based sauce and sautéed bacon slices, topped with parmesan cheese. Served with two slices of wheat bread. It tasted fresh tho a little salty probably because of the generous portion of bacon slices which makes this a traditional Italian pasta.

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It’s Pesto for the husband. Inspired by fresh basil, this pesto pleaser is sprinkled with parmesan cheese, chopped walnut and fresh parsley. Served with two slices of wheat bread. I love that it’s not too oily and too strong for my taste, it’s just right.

I’m not really a frap person, I’d always go for the hot variety but you see the sweltering Manila climate is killing me and my baby fats 😀 so I paired my pasta with something cold and rich.

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Mocha Javakula.Our deliciously rich classic mocha blended with ice and generously covered with whipped cream. I’ll be hypocrite if I won’t say that I love it better than Starbucks fraps, it’s smooth and not too sweet at all. While the husband enjoyed his Americano, the classic brew that is bold and traditional.

This to self and to people who have been inquest of a justifiable reason: I love the fact that we can date even on week days, I love the fact that we have nothing to worry at home, we’re childless and yes we have a myriad reasons and selfishness isn’t one of them so please excuse us. At times it’s almost irritating when everyone we knew would peppered us with the kid question, and I would simply smile and turn my back. I wish I could just exactly say “I don’t want a kid” to end their inquiry. It’s a personal choice and we don’t live in a vacuum for all ye know. 🙂

 

 

Seattle’s Best Coffee
Bonifacio High Street
City Center Quadrant 3
9th Avenue, Global City
Taguig City
T. 632 856-4527 / 856-4528
 

commune ph

April 9. Because the eager beaver husband had work that day despite its being holiday nationwide, I had no choice but to stay home and go idle, I don’t know but the idea of going out alone wasn’t really a comfort for me besides its too hot to come out of the house so I remember spending the rest of the day in bed where it’s pretty cooler.

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And commonly during the summer season cooking is another of those difficulties, so I try to cook mostly in the morning alone to avoid sweating and stinking badly. But because I was very immobile that time, I had sandwich the entire day. And rather had my full meal at dinner time –out to some place cooler and fancy. I was suspecting the mall to be crowded as well and noisy and I don’t want to hassle myself so we decided to look for a place nearby where we could eat decently and relax.

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Commune is one of those third wave coffee shops which became popular in the social media scene because of its cute coffee art. I love coffee art and I sometimes feel short if the coffee art is too plain for my taste. I love it that Commune wasn’t crowded that night, its contemporary vibe was perfect for some light talk with family and friends, with the husband in my case. 😀

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The seats were comfy and that’s more than enough for me to make a second come back. Hehehe.

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The food was another reason to revisit Commune, I was planning to get myself a sandwich only but that all day breakfast meal was so hard to pass esp when my favorite is offered. You know how I love Tocino and theirs didn’t fail. It was tender and sweet and serving was just right.

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Pork Tocino P160+  

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The husband had Beef Tapa which was equally tender and juicy tho a little steep at P220 compared to my plate. Anyhow, you want it best then be ready to pay more, I guess it’s the little hoax of eating a real meal.

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Beef Tapa with garlic rice, fried egg and atchara. I’d like to have two eggs next time.

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After dinner, we stayed and had coffee of our choice. I got myself the Café Mocha, P124 mug serving, you have the option to order it by cup only which is slightly cheaper.

The husband had Brewed Coffee only so there’s no cute latte art to capture in his cup. To pair my coffee I tried a cookie, it’s not cheap at all because with its price I can have an Eric Kayser big cookie already. I was tempted to order a slice of Apple Pie but the price was sickening as well, probably they’re just outsourcing the pastries the reason why it’s pricey. Pero bakit naman si Starbucks, affordable pa rin kahit outsourced lang, I’m just saying. I wish they’d bake and create their own sweets.

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If there’s no work the following day we could have stayed longer until its closing time, we’d like to go back to try their comfort food –adobo, sinigang and more,

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…and another cup of coffee with a kitten latte art next, please. 🙂

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Commune
Liberty Plaza, 102 H.V. Dela Costa Street, Salcedo Village, Makati City
T. +632 889-2660
 
 

smoked golden tinapa

I’m not a fan of Pancake House even prior to that November incident. And well, for one because their food is not cheap I could easily count the number of times I’ve dined in their so many restaurants. But sometimes you get to that point that you crave for something, you want something out of the ordinary and then you saw something on IG that made you drool and then you break the rule. Hahaha.

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*photo from here

For weeks I’ve been raving for tinapa (smoked fish), even when we went home at the parental’s house I was hoping that mother dear have some leftovers at home but there’s not a bit, she was rather busy with her galunggong experiment. So when I catch sight of PH’s new offer by chance I felt I suddenly weaken and soften (to self: forget your issue for now 🙂 ), I need to rush and get a taste of that smoked golden tinapa. ♥

But because there remains a little hesitation about dining back in Pancake House I was like diddling and doodling the whole idea, I don’t want another untoward incident, I just want to enjoy the night for Christ’s sake. That was Friday and I don’t want to mess up a fridate. But even if there are 101 reasons pulling me back then, my heart’s desire won and we gave it a go! Woohoo!

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I don’t mind that at past 10pm I was eating breakfast food, I don’t mind, really. My salty-cravings taste bud was in pure bliss!

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Smoked golden tinapa (milkfish), 2 cups of steamed rice, 2 eggs sunny side up, 2 sidings of mango salsa and 2 orders of iced tea P480 

For some reasons I don’t believe sometimes when it says that the deal is good for two already, in most cases you get a small amount of food (in poor quality) and sharing isn’t probable except if you eat like a bird. Other than PH’s offer was a treat of its own, I was impressed!

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The milkfish was big enough to feed us and the sunny side egg was perfect! Kahit lalim na ng gabi nun kumain kami it brightens up my day! 😀

I don’t mind going back and ordering the same set, I rarely recommend and this one is an exemption, you should try it yourself because Pancake House hit the spot, winner ang Smoked Golden Tinapa because it’s bigger, heavier and better for sharing! ♥

 

 

Pancake House
G/F Greenbelt 1, Paseo de Roxas cor. Legaspi St., Ayala Center, Makati
T. +632 8190453

jt’s, angel’s + rustan’s

I still got a dozen of unwritten post up until now, I don’t know probably it’s the mood swings and the unpredictable weather that’s causing my idleness, lost of interest or whatsoever you’d like to call my delays. But believe me I’m trying to get a good recall of the photos I have so I can start a good, readable piece. Hehehe.

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Mar 1. It’s supposed to be a bright day because it’s the first day of the month plus it’s a Saturday but I don’t know what made me busy that day. 😦 All I can remember now was the simple dinner we had at JT’s Manukan in Malugay. It’s been ages since I last dined at JT’s, the one in Gilmore which I think is the first branch to open amongst the many stores now around Metro Manila and Tagaytay. It used to be our even place to-go after a badminton routine at Valencia Badminton Center, see I’m not at all a sleeping giant all my life I have a healthier schedule back then when life was still easier, back when I’m still pretty enjoying my early 30’s.

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Anyhow, JT’s Manukan specializes in chicken inasal, I remember how its owner Joel Torre (yes, the actor) keeps a close eye of the operation in Gilmore, he himself supervised the grilling part the most and everytime we’ll dine there we’ll bumped to him casually. The branch in Malugay was a permanent sight everytime we’ll pass by the area but it’s only that Saturday eve that we got the chance to dine and come back for its famed “inasal”.

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There were a number of items on their menu but most were not available that night including an order or pork sisig, and pecho, tho a little disappointed we happily settled for an order of paa, stuffed squids and dinuguan. I wasn’t so happy with the chicken inasal but the stuffed squid was the winner of them all! ♥ Two baby squids for P65 was such as steal so I got two more orders which I willingly shared with the husband. I’ll be honest here, JT’s Manukan didn’t left an impressive impact on me other than the food is cheap and service is fast. 🙂

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Mar 15. Another Saturday to lurve! ♥ Sometimes I don’t dare to ask the husband his preference because it tends to be a repeat of a repeat, hahaha, but on days I don’t really have any specific in mind he wins the restaurant of his choice.  On this day we revisited one of our favorite pizza parlors in Makati Avenue –Angel’s Pizza! Tho I wanted more to eat rice that time I can’t complain anymore because already picked the place and ordered our staples in a breeze.

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The secret to a happy marriage order the pizza of your choice! *Excuse his not-so-happy-look here, deep within him he’s rejoicin’ 😀

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We had two family size pizza, he got his favorite Fancy Aloha with bacon, ham, pineapple, mushroom, green pepper, mozzarella cheese with gravy sauce. I don’t really like the gravy sauce so he requested the half without it so I can savor a slice without having to dab the gravy sauce. Thank you ‘ney!

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I had my favorite Garlic Shrimp pizza topped with culinary sauce (?), shrimp and garlic of course, cheddar cheese and mozzarella cheese. See how my preference can be so uncomplicated. I’m not so hard to please and feed.

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Just so you know we didn’t finished our pizza, we took home more than half of what we ordered because it’s stuffing and I don’t want to feel blown up especially at dinner time. I’ve learned my lessons now to enjoy a sound sleep at night. Hehehe.

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Right after we drove to Rustan’s Supermarket in Ayala Center. I remember Rustan’s Supermarket was having that Summer 3-day sale where it’s mostly Christmas chocolates and wines and sauces and pasta. There were items for kids as well including princess costumes and Halloween costumes for as low as P160+ only. I could have brought one only that the sizes wouldn’t fit Ysa or Kuya P, its way too big for them.

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So, what else would make me happy and my other half would be the bounties of chocolates, we got a good stock of Fort Knox Dark and Milk Chocolates, some Peanut Butter Bar and Gum Balls. Biscoff was discounted too at P303 only.

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And the ultimate buy was this Heart of Wisconsin Assorted Cheese Set. Imagine the price dropped from P1500+ to P395. I bugged the husband to buy me one and I got a really good one –the Cheese Wheel of Good Fortune! ♥

So there’s no sarcasm to it if I say that I soooo love weekends, who doesn’t anyway? Now, it’s time to shake off your week, take a deep breath and think positive, tomorrow is the start of a new weekend and I’m heading south to lead another batch meeting and on Sunday I’m seeing my maternal family. I’m overly excited! 🙂