Discover places you'll love in the Philippines
I was invited by Ojie D (thank you!) to join her to the Grand Launch of Fantastic Baka. Fantastic Baka is an authentic Korean BBQ restaurant. It’s a 2-storey restaurant. The 1st level is more on casual dining and the 2nd level is composed of VIP/function rooms where you can set or plan your private events. The restaurant interior is not yet finished, some parts are still need to fix, like the signage. On its sneak preview We were so lucky to meet and greet and experience the traditional Hanguk cuisine from the 3-Michelin star Chef Jang Jung Yun. She’s the one behind the menu of Fantastic Baka. Fantastic Baka offers a huge array of premium beef and pork choices in their Unlimited Sets. Unlimited799 will give you up to 9 choice cuts of beef including the Brisket Point and steak-quality Prime Chuck Eye Roll. Up to 7 varieties of premium pork from Thick Cut and Thin Slice Pork Belly, Shoulder, Neck and Jowl. And up to 20 different side dishes such as Korean Ramen, Steamed Egg, Fresh Vegetable Salad, Korean-recipe Spaghetti, Sweet & Sour Chicken Tenders and Fresh Shrimps. You can also enjoy Korean classics such a Fresh Kimchi, Jap-chae, Dweng-jang Jjigae. Unlimited599 set offers an almost equal selection minus the premium cuts. *All items are unlimited including the sides. By the way, Fantastic Baka will open on June 22, 2018 from 11AM up to 4AM on the next day. First 200 customers who like Fantastic Baka’s FB page will get a 50% off discount. #ilovetoeatph ️
Here’s one of my favorite bars in Poblacion, Makati. They chose the name ‘Polilya’ as the owner wanted it to be in connection with the beer they launched called Engkanto. They also wanted a name that is very Pinoy too. The facade looks so inviting with the neon lights revealing the name. As you walk in, you can feel a homey vibe already with cozy sofas, warm lights and even the music was just pure relaxing. The vibe is perfect for after office hours. Did you know that most of their food were infused with alcohol? That’s because they wanted to make sure that their Beers are the main attraction here. Make sure to check the menu, if there’s an icon with logo on it, that’s infused with their local beers. Here's what we tried: Gambas Engkantadas (Php 440) – These Gambas al ajillo were cooked with Lager Beer to kill the fishy taste and it was so delicious. The bitterness of the beer and the sweetness of the prawns were such interesting flavors all bursting in your mouth. Served with Baguette too. Zen Chicken Nuggets (Php 250) – hainanese chicken crisps with three sauces: chili, ginger-scallion and kecap manis. Fried Pickles (Php 125) – These poppers are really spicy so make sure that you’re already holding a glass of beer. The cilantro-tahini sauce will make the spiciness a bit mild. This was cooked with Pale Ale, by the way. Ultimate Nachos (Php 275) – there’s a lot of ingredients in this pan. The corn tortilla chips with cheese sauce, meat sauce, sour cream, grated-cheddar, pico de gallo salsa, red beans, avocado, japaleno rings, strips of tapa. Bangla Mussels (Php 320) – steamed mussels in a beer, mustard oil, and coconut milk broth. This was tasty and blended well with the curry sauce. As per the owner, anything curry is the Chef’s specialty. I definitely am digging this dish. Served with their home made roti. Gangnam Style Chicken Wings (Php 210) – Deep fried chicken wings, coated in zingy Gochujang glaze. Tender on the inside and crispy outside. This is how chicken wings should be done. Pinoy Caprese (Php 215) – Smoked kesong puti, tapa, fresh basil and tomatoes with bagoong-balsamic. For the healthy ones. Also, there’s desserts available as well. Grown-Up Chocolate Mousse (PHP 175) - the Davao single-origin three-chocolate mousse was heavenly. This has some Engkanto stout with some freshly-ground black pepper sprinkled with Himalayan salt. Deep-Fried Apple Pie A La Mode (PHP 150) - Cinnamon-kissed apple pocket pie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Yes! A McDonald's kind of pie it is but way much better. For the Engkanto Beers, we tried the Lager which was their most famous beer. This has a citrus flavor and lime zest. Pale Ale has a sweet character, IPA has a darker color with intense piney citrus flavor. Double IPA has a blend of citrus and passion-fruit notes. This ones a bit strong and perfect for boys. Blond Ale was light and crisp. This ones bursting with citrus notes. Perfect for girls whose not really into beers. So, if you haven't visited them yet, I suggest that you plan it already to experience great beers and great food too. As of this writing, they're still my top favorite bar in Poblacion. :)
What a convenient and affordable way to a healthy life that is when you go for Go Salads! It's not so often you see organic goods to be cheap and easy to find since most of the time, they were imported but realize that we also have fine alternatives and our tropical produce are actually as good and suitable to our needs. So much for the intro but finally was able to meet the owner of Go Salads, Cibbie Gonzales as they launch their 20th store at Double Dragon Plaza. From their first store at Katipunan in the year 2013, recently opened is their 21st store actually in SM North however, they do not offer any franchise in case you'd ask coz they wanted to preserve and maintain the quality of the goods. Aiming to give you the best organic and healthy meals and beverages to help you live a healthier life is what their mission is all about. All produce are organically grown from their farm at Cavite basically from "Farm to Table" and they don't use any refined sugar or syrup on their products. They use coconut sugar or honey or stevia depending on the flavor plus the Superfoods, greens, fruits included. During the event, we tried several Farm Fresh Salads. The crowd favorites were the Sweet Caroline which is a mix of sundried tomatoes, parmesan cheese, candied walnuts, greens that comes with honey balsamic vinaigrette and the Bayani Salad which is also my personal favorite, a mix of corned kernels, candied cashews, chicken adobo flakes, greens that comes with soy sesame dressing. There were other options containing fish, steaks and chicken longganisa depending on your choice. To pair with your salads, you can try their smoothies such as Rock Smoothie and the Guzzler which are also crowd favorites. Rock Smoothie contains banana, raw cacao nibs, almonds, coco sugar, greens and soy milk while the guzzler contains banana, sugar free peanut butter, spirulina, coco sugar, greens and soy milk. If you are a coffee lover can also choose the Coffee Kick Smoothie for a hint of caffeine. A lot of other options like Paninis, Soups, Gourmet Snacks and Guilt Free Desserts are also available. You'll love the Chicken Kebab Panini and the Roasted Tomato Basil Cream soup if you are looking for a savory dish to pair with the Smoothie. Garlic Hummus is also good not having that strong taste but just the right balance and the pita bread is really soft and chewy. They also serve Muesli, which typically has less sugar and calories than most breakfast cereals. Surely recommendable because the prices are affordable while having the best quality products at the same time, moreover, the serving sizes were good for sharing. I honestly had a full stomach though they were all mostly veggies - indeed a healthy alternative. Kudos! Flatlay by EJ B
Our love for Japanese food is so obvious that it's not that hard to find one Japanese Restaurant almost anywhere. Malls, food strips and even food park there's at least one Japanese food choice you can try. The real struggle for us consumers now is to find which one is the best. I'm lucky I was able to try a good Japanese place in Little Baguio, San Juan. It's actually part of our mini food crawl that my friends and I set. The building where they're situated is kind of tricky to find. Since they have a not so standout bill board outside the building. But it's very noticeable in the 3rd Flr of TNA Building thanks to it's elegant black interior. Inside is a clean and orderly restaurant setup of tables and chairs which is very typical. Happy staff will tend to your needs just ask. Then the food started to be served. One by one I can't help but be amazed. You'll notice their attention to detail and balance. I told myself that I might love this place. Guess what? I sure did. Surprisingly I liked all the foods I tried. I maybe bias because to be honest I liked the Japanese Food. We all enjoyed the food and the service that Fukujin Izakaya has to offer. You should give this hidden gem a try and see for yourself. Check out some of the pictures.
Paradise Dynasty looks kinda intimidating due to its sleek and classy interior but try to take a peek at their menu and see how competitive their prices are. The place looks nice, some of the staff and servers are friendly, the service is exceptional, and the food is amazing- their menu may be quite limited but everything that I was able to try were really delicious (4.5/5 for the food). Everything seems great except that when I went there prolly two weeks after my first visit (during a packed day), the receptionist ignored me trying to act busy although he already knew that I was waiting for him to assist me. This is a restaurant, not a fast food where you can just take any vacant seat. Thus, it’s imperative on their part to attend to diners ASAP. I awkwardly stood there for like 3-4 minutes waiting for him to finish whatever he’s doing. Not to mention that another staff is also beside him, equally trying to act busy. (1/5). Nevertheless, as mentioned, the FOOD IS AMAZING. Here’s some of my top picks: -Crispy-fried Crystal Prawns tossed with Salted Egg Yolk- Prawns were meaty and somewhat tough (which is good). I even confirmed with them if it was really made of shrimp or pork cause it’s really that tough. Salted Egg Yolk sauce is real, not just some instant flavoring. Serving size is bigger than in the menu photo, prolly 2.5 x more. This is one of those dishes I’d definitely get every visit. -Poached Beef in Szechuan Chili Oil (a must try)- A very flavorful soup in a gigantic bowl with tons and tons of chilis floating on it. ‘Twas very intimidating and looks more like a chili dish than a beef soup . It comes with very tender meat and is surprisingly not that spicy at all. Prolly it’s not labuyo. You should try this one, it just looks super spicy but very very tolerable. The serving is very generous, it can prolly feed 5-7 persons. -Spicy Szechuan Crispy Chicken- Another intimidating dish which has so much chilis on it too. Chicken meat is very tender, juicy, and flavorful but not so spicy. Heat comes from the fried chilis so try to get some chicken and chilis in each bite to get that spicy kick you’re looking for. Again, it’s only intimidating until you had your first bite. -Charcoal Crusted Lava Bun- Believe me, it’s the best dessert I’ve had in 2018. It’s that kind of dessert you can eat and crave for weeks. It’s sweet and velvety. No eggy taste like most custards have. I guess it’s best eaten when still warm but I’m kinda curious how it would taste like if it’s frozen. Another must try 🏻. -Xiao Long Bao- They have a very interesting list of flavors for xiao long bao and it was all tasty. Very meaty and flavorful too. More soup inside than usual. The only thing that I’m not so okay with it is the color- it looked more like a dessert. Overall, Paradise Dynasty is a restaurant that I would go to from time to time. Definitely a good reco for Chinese food lovers.
Saboten Express is the new addition to the growing list of restaurants of Raintree Group. It is a spin-off of Saboten in the Philippines, which is an international franchise and largest Tonkatsu chain in Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan. Saboten Express is very casual and serving a pay-as-you-order system in The Mega Food Hall located at the 5th Level, SM Mega Fashion Hall, SM Megamall. Compare to Saboten, you can get a Tonkatsu set for as low as Php195.00. It comes with rice, salad and soup. Unfortunately the Ebi and Salmon Tonkatsu is only available in Saboten but don’t worry ‘coz Saboten Express has Katsu Sandwich and Pepper Sauce Katsu exclusively in SM Megamall branch. Overall, it was a good and quick lunch. Trying different flavors of Katsu. For me my personal favorites during our visit were Miso Katsu and Curry Katsu. Our orders were served fast too. Good job! Keep it up! #ilovetoeatph ️
If you are familiar with Open Kitchen Food Park in Cubao and Congressional, then this one is their newest branch in town. With its modern and vibrant interior design, everyone will surely enjoy eating from different food stalls, whether you like Japanese, Thai, Mexican, and many other options. Camille S and I agreed to share food so we can eat more!!! We were given vouchers to spend on everything that we wanted to order and we had the following: ▫️Golden Hat's Chicken Pad Thai Single (P140) Masarap and hinde nakakaumay. I loved the nutty flavor of this even the pasta was not soggy. It went well with the citrusy-flavor of the lemon. ▫️Oji-San's Yakitori Sticks (P50-P110) I ordered Yakitori's Best Seller that includes wagyu stick, kani bacon, chicken leg meat. I loved the softness of wagyu stick! Legit to that's why it's the most expensive among them. The kani bacon was also tasty because anything with bacon is life! While the chicken leg meat, it was also good but it lacked more of the taste, but overall pwede na for its P50 price tag. ▫️Oji-San's California Maki (P140) For the 8pcs of maki, it was sulit for the price. This just took an hour to arrive because of they were full of customers. ▫️Manna's Mexican Prawn Salad (P195) We were excited to eat something healthy but our expectation failed. I didn't find this sulit and nothing's special with the salad. The coriander yogurt dressing was also too sour for the veggies. The prawns were just 2pcs like we were expecting more. I think, they need to work on these as it looks good but the taste was just meh. ▫️ChickenZilla's Taiwanese Chicken Chop (P140) We were given free chicken chops so we tried to split the flavor into two. We got Salt and Pepper and Barbecue Flavor. The chops were dry and chewy. I guess it was exposed to the air for the long time so the crispiness was not even good. The flavors were also too salty for our taste. ▫️Lemon Central's Lemon Honey (P80) For the drinks, I ordered the lemon honey since I had a terrible colds. The juice was good but I couldn't hardly taste the honey. If you happen to have reusable straw, please use it here. ▫️Potato Corner's Sour Cream Flavored Fries (P29) No need to rate because potato corner is always yummy! ▫️Taste N See's Buchiron (P150) and Tuyo (P10/pack) The good thing about Open Kitchen is they have this stall for pasalubong! I bought buchiron and we super love it! I wished I hoarded more kasi isang upuan lang ubos na. And their tuyo, we paired it with champorado, ang sarap din and not too salty. The lady even gave this for P100 for a dozen. ️ Special thanks to EJ B and Midz S for the invitation! Thanks guys!
Va Bene is one of the most talked about restaurants serving Italian dishes in the metro. It's one of those restaurants that don't need instagram-worthy interiors or eye-catching signages to make an impact in the industry. Last Saturday, we were invited to try their newest business lunch menu. You get to choose an appetizer and a main course from the 3 choices available for only P399+ per person. I have to admit, I was pretty excited to try Manila's multi-awarded Italian restaurant. I've been hearing a lot of positive feedbacks about Va Bene since I became a foodie, and I can't wait to have one of my own. | Complimentary Appetizer The complimentary snack was a great starter for our lunch. I loved the dip, which was made of diced tomatoes, olive oil, some lemon juice and basil. The flavors were simple but delicious. APPETIZERS |Appetizer Choice 1: Salad The first appetizer is a salad consisting of mixed lettuce, roasted onions, and crispy tomatoes, drizzled with balsamic dressing, and topped with parmesan cheese. I'm beginning to enjoy salads with balsamic dressings, and I loved how Va Bene's had a nice balance of sweet, sour, and bitter. |Appetizer Choice 2: Polenta This appetizer is something I am not familiar with. It's a creamy gorgonzola polenta with sauteed mixed mushrooms, lemon, and parsley. It looks like smooth, melted cheese, but its texture is actually grainy. It's great if you enjoy devouring pure, creamy cheese. |Appetizer Choice 3: Tomato Soup The soup was thick and made of finely pureed tomatoes. It's topped with mozzarella cheese, basil pesto, and black ink quadrucci, although the tomato was the only dominant taste I was able to get. My friend and I highly loved every sip of this soup. MAIN COURSE |Main Course Choice 1: Tortellini Bolognese The tortellini is a pasta that is similar to a ravioli. This pasta dish is stuffed with bolognese and served on a light parmesan cheese fondue and topped with arugula. I honestly liked this one since the bolognese was perfect, and it combines well with the softer taste of the fondue. If you're looking into having something on the lighter side for lunch, then the tortellini is the main course for you. |Main Course Choice 2: Chicken Milanese If you're not feeling like having pasta for lunch, you can try the chicken Milanese. It's fried, breaded chicken topped with tomato-based sauce and parmesan cheese, served with a side of fried potato wedges and a side of salad with balsamic dressing. |Main Course Choice 3: Blank Ink Linguine My favorite out of all the main dishes would be the black ink linguine. I am normally impressed by pasta dishes that are rather uncommon, dishes that I wouldn't expect what to taste like before I get a bite. It's black ink linguine with zucchini, garlic, olive oil, chilli flakes, clams, and mussels, and a squeeze of lemon made it even more amazing. Va Bene's business lunch menu is available every weekdays from 11:30am to 5:30pm. Pick an appetizer and a main course from the choices above for P399+ per person.
Mimbalot Falls was our 3rd stop. It is also very accessible as you need not to hike or trek just to reach it. Swimming is allowed and several families were gathered for a picnic. It was a holiday when we went here and it was not crowded. If you are not swimming, you can spend just a few minutes here for photos and continue with the waterfalls chasing! I heard there are more than 20 waterfalls in this province! Amazing right?! Herl C this last waterfalls post is for you! haha!
THAI FOOOOOOD!!!!!! Yayyyy!!!! So happy that we got to visit this super budget friendly Thai restaurant in Angeles, Pampanga last June 12. #PampangaFoodcrawl 🤗 PLACE - A house turned into a restaurant. Literal na nilagyan lang ng chairs + tables yung bahay nila. Sakto lang. They have all things Thailand related all over the place (i.e., picture frames, paintings, etc.). *though this is a house, don’t expect homey slash so relaxing feels. FOOD - We were still full from our Banh Mi visit but because food is lyf, we still kind of ordered more than what we can eat and finish! | THAI PAPAYA SALAD (100php) - super light and refreshing. Loved the dressing and the generous serving of papaya and peanuts!!! Sana spicier lang. 🤗 | BEEF PAD THAI (180php) - first time trying a beef version and we surprisingly liked this. The beef was slighty sunog giving this noodle dish that yummy smokey flavor. It may be off at first but once you get to eat more, you get to appreciate the contrast of flavors. Just the right spiciness, sweetness, and smokiness. Add some lemon/calamansi to make the taste even better. Masarap to! Sana lang they added tofu and more egg. #demanding 🤷🏻♀️ *BAGOONG RICE - this was good. Tamang alat lang! Generous serving size as well!! (PS: Can’t find this in the menu so make sure to ask for this when ordering!). *DEEP FRIED FISH FILLET IN TAMARIND CHILI SAUCE (200php) - fried fish fillet with sweet chili tamarind sauce. We were kind of worried at first that they would just add jufran but surprisingly, hindi lang siya basta bastang jufran. You get to taste a hint of tamarind. Sakto lang! Sarap with the bagoong rice! Total bill was (i think) around 700 pesos only (or less). Super sulit na diba?!!!! Masarap pa!!!! 🤗 Definitely a must try!!! 💯 SERVICE was just okay. Servers aren’t the nicest and friendliest. You also have to wait for your order a bit longer than usual. #patience But despite the not so good service and the not so clean place, you get to enjoy yummy affordable Thai dishes! Okay na rin! Haha! #bawalchoosy PS: according to my cousin, the THAI MILK TEA (60php) is also good here.
Maria Crisitina Falls is also known as the "Mother of All Falls" and the 2nd Highest Waterfalls in the Phils. It was a surreal feeling seing it in person when I used to read about it in my school books! It is said that there are over 20 water falls in Iligan and Maria Christina Falls is one of its main landmark. It is accessible as the vehicle can go insode the compount and you just would need to walk for a few meters to see the majestic waterfalls. During my first visit, I tried their zipline. It's not operating now but will still most likely to be back in operation soon! Swimming is not allowed so you just have to make do with watching it's beauty.
If you’re in MOA and craving for good quality Japanese food, give Watami a try! I have tried it here several times and I have not been disappointed so far. Try their stone pot rice bowls - Chashu Rice (photo 1): flavorful chopped up pieces of pork chashu served with raw egg yolk and pickled ginger on top of steamed Japanese rice; or their Beef Pepper Rice (photo 2): strips of raw beef sprinkled with freshly ground black pepper and corn served on top of steamed rice. Other recommendations: Beef Rice and Hot Spring Egg (photo 3), Assorted Chicken Skewers (photo 4) and their Beef Sukiyaki (not in photo).
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