Sunday, October 31, 2010

Murtle Eats Her Cakes

It was Murtle’s birthday and in our household, birthdays aren’t complete without cakes.

This year, Murtle had two cakes. A White Toblerone Cheesecake from Apartment 1B and a Red Velvet Cake from Karen’s Kitchen.

Let’s start with the cake I suggested Murtle to order.
Apartment 1B's White Toblerone Cheesecake (1200php)

Murtle and I first had a piece of this cake years ago. I remember it being sinfully delicious that one slice is almost not enough. After eating Delize’s White Chocolate Cheesecake though, it's apparent that Apartment 1B’s White Toblerone Cheesecake pales in comparison. It's simply no match for what I consider as the best cheesecake in town.

The main problem I had with the White Toblerone Cheesecake is the scarcity of actual Toblerone pieces. Based on my portion, each slice only had a single bite-sized portion of Toblerone. Surely, not enough for a cake touted as a Toblerone cake! While I would still recommend indulging in this cake after a meal in Apartment 1B, I would not make an effort to go to Apartment 1B just for this cake.

Murtle also got a red velvet cake from a friend. This came as no surprise as Murtle simply adores red velvet cakes.

Karen's Kitchen Red Velvet Cake
Admittedly, I'm not fond of red velvet cakes because I often find the overall taste too artificial for my liking. Thankfully, it was not the case this time. Karen not only managed to preserve the real flavors of the cake, but also made sure that it was soft and moist. This was airy and light with the sweetness level just right. Murtle even said that she now prefers this Karen’s Kitchen's creation over Cookbook Kitchen’s version which used to be her favorite.

Good thing Karen’s Kitchen delivered another sensational cake as it made Murtle forget about the Toblerone disappointment.

Apartment 1B is located at One Lafayette Square G/F Unit 1-B 132 L.P. Leviste cor. Sedeno St., Salcedo Village Makati. For more information, call 843-4075.

Karen’s Kitchen is located at 107B, #210 Zodiac St. Palm Village, Makati. For more information visit:

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

PB &Co: Interesting? Yes! Delicious? Maybe…

It was too late when I learned that there was an on-going sale at Mall of Asia one weekend. We were already there and had no choice but to brave the crowds.

When it was time to eat, it wasn’t surprising to find most restaurants packed. Tired, hungry, and feeling the heat, our party of 3 no longer cared and decided to just enter the first restaurant that had available seats.

It was a lucky coincidence that Peanut Butter and Company fit the criteria as I’ve been wanting to give this interesting concept a try ever since it opened at SM North Edsa.

Almost all the food in this restaurant of course has peanut butter. An exception is this:

Box of Chips (65php)
OK. Crispy and made from real potatoes. Murtle didn’t like it though.

 Barbeque Wings (125php)
The wings had a good balance of sweet and spicy. The peanut butter, however, felt more like an after thought instead of a necessary component of the dish. Yummier without peanut butter in my opinion.

Roast Beef Sandwich Half (105hp)
The peanut butter overpowered the entire sandwich as the beef was lacklustre. The peanut butter carried the sandwich instead of the other way around. Better try other sandwiches first.

Classic Spaghetti (135php)  
Sweet style spaghetti with a hint of peanut butter. Different at best

Ulrich also had no problems finishing his milkshake.

Classic Milkshake (125php)

I’m not so sure what will happen to PB Co. when the novelty wears off. But that's just me as majority of the population might not mind having a little more peanut butter in their lives.

Peanut Butter and Company is located at the Ground Floor North Wing (near SM Hypermarket), SM Mall of Asia Pasay City. It also has a branch in SM North Edsa.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Too Much Spice: Lays Kettle Cooked Jalapeno

Heard from the radio how good and addicting Lays Kettle Cooked Jalapeno is.

Thinking that it would be as addictive as Cheetos Jalapeno, I immediately bought a pack.

Coming from someone who loves all things spicy, believe me when I say that this is just too spicy. This is barf in a bag as it was hard to even eat two consecutive chips. 

Yes, it was that hot!

It’s rare for me to give up on junk food but I did on this one.


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Ye Dang Minority

I’ve heard from a lot of people that Ye Dang offers good Korean food. Since its location is not really convenient to where I live, it was only recently that I was finally able to try this popular Korean restaurant in Ortigas.

Overall Look of Ye Dang

The meal started with free appetizers:

We were very hungry so I didn’t have time to take individual pictures of the appetizers. Some were good (vegetable pancakes, potatoes) but I was disappointed with the dilis as it was not as sweet and crunchy as I would have liked it to be.

Taegi Kalbi or Grilled Pork Spare Ribs (250php)
Tough to chew as it was overcooked. It was as if we were eating rubber. Such a waste as the flavors were good.

Dak-Kui or Grilled Chicken (250php)
The chicken thankfully turned out tender and had a distinct Korean taste which everyone in the table loved.

Yukgaejang or Soup of Chopped Beef w/ Various Condiments (250php)
Too spicy though we already requested for the kitchen to temper the spice level. Didn’t enjoy this at all.

Japchae or Noodle with Chopsuey (300php)
 Japchae is my favourite Korean dish and I loved the consistency of Ye Dang’s noodles. It was, however, lacking in flavor and just had a few meat pieces.

Ojing-o Bokkum or Spicy Pan Fried Squid with Vegetables (300php)
 The dish I loved the most. Squid was very fresh and the spice level was perfect.

Bolsot Bibimbap or Vegetable Hash Rice in Hot Stone Bowl (250php)
Last minute order which proved to be another favorite. Make sure to wait a few seconds before mixing the rice with the vegetables as the tutong (burnt rice) was to die for.

While Ye Dang had winners, my best bet for Korean food is still Korean Village in Malate.

Diners should also be careful as my table companions had trouble sleeping after eating at Ye Dang. They coughed non-stop later that night and suspected that the food served at Ye Dang had too much MSG.

Yedang Korean BBQ Restaurant is located at 88 Meralco Ave., Pasig City. For more information call 636-1461.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Revisiting an Old Favorite, Mely’s

There are only a few instances wherein I would gladly volunteer to become the designated driver for a road trip. Eating at Mely’s in San Fernando Pampanga is one of them.

Curls and I first learned of Mely’s three years ago from Pololo, our Kapampangan friend. Since then, Curls and I have made it a habit to visit Mely’s at least once a year.

Welcome to Mely's
Mely’s is a humble roadside eatery, which has gained popularity over the years through the power of word of mouth. Mely’s mostly offers grilled food though its sisig is what put it on the map.

Mely's Simple Menu

Don’t be surprised to see inuman sessions in Mely’s as it is also a popular drink joint for locals. We, on the other hand, surely weren’t here to drink.

 Let’s bring out the food!

Adobong Mani (20php)
Perfect way to start the festivities.

Buro at Mustasa (70php)
Buro is fermented rice with shrimps so it was no wonder I didn’t like this. A taste only Dum appreciated.

Ensaladang Mangga (50php)
One can’t go all the way to Pampanga without having this comforting mixture of tomatoes, green mangoes, and onions.

Included with the ensalada, this bagoong was very fresh with just the right amount of saltiness. One of the best I’ve tried.

The Sauces. I especially love the sauce on top.

Mely’s secret weapon. Everything tastes better when dipped in these.

Mely’s Sisig (150php)
Mely’s has continued the old tradition of serving sisig without chicharon. Devoid of the crunchy bits, the focus is solely on the flavors of the sisig. This never disappoints as its the most flavorful sisig I’ve eaten.

Hito (28php per 100grams)
This has grown to become my favorite Mely’s dish! The hito is always fresh giving it a sweet taste. Dip it in Mely’s sauce and you’re in heaven. No trip to Mely’s is complete without me ordering this dish.

Pork Barbeque (35php per stick)
Pass on this. Not bad but pales in comparison to other dishes.

Pwet ng Manok (50php per order)
Another Mely’s staple. This at first grossed me out as these are the biggest pwets I’ve seen. Good thing I wasn’t deterred as it tastes marvelous. Far superior than what Manila grills offer.

For those who appreciate Filipino food at its simplest, Mely’s is certainly worth the 1 hour trip from Manila.

Can’t wait for next year!

Mely's Bbq and Seafoods is located at San Fernando Pampanga. Better call (045)9615296 for directions and its operating hours.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Family Time at Tender Bob’s

My brother Pelgene Parkus loves carbonara so it's a must to choose a restaurant that serves carbonara whenever we eat out with him. Tender Bob’s was the first restaurant we saw in Promenade that had carbonara in their menu so it was there that we had lunch.

While we were immediately ushered to an available table, the wait time for the food was just too long.

Even the free chips didn't make the wait less agonizing.

chips > bread

We had to wait a good 20 minutes just for the soup to arrive and another 10 minutes for the main course to be served.

Mushroom Soup (105php)

Looks unappetizing but this was made from real mushrooms. Good!

French Onion Soup (110php)
They had a decent version of my all time favorite soup. Not bad at all.

Carbonara for Sharing (410php)
Definitely a kid’s delight. It delivered on what’s expected as Pelgene Parkus had no complaints. As an adult, I found this ok. Nothing wrong about it but nothing great either.

Original Chicken Tenders (220php)
I appreciate that the chicken was fresh and the portions were generous. This was made delicious by the honey dijon mustard dip.

Salmon Head (205php)
I know it’s not smart to order seafood in a restaurant that specializes in beef but I was pleasantly surprised with the freshness of the salmon. The teriyaki sauce also blended perfectly with the fish. The B.O.M.B. which was the siding of my choice was unfortunately just so-so this time.

Vanilla Milkshake (120php)
 Pelgene Parkus gulped this easily.

If you have the patience to wait, Tender Bob’s is a good choice for families to dine as their food are sure kid-pleasers.

Tender Bob’s is located at Unit 6 Phase I Lower Level Promenade GSC Ortigas, Greenhills, San Juan. Contact them at 7262328. Other branches include: Shangrila- Plaza.

Monday, October 11, 2010

It's All Relative at Kashmir

Murtle swears by Kashmir telling me that it’s one of her favorite restaurants. Thinking that I’m missing out on a good thing, I finally tried Kashmir with friends Teej and Vics.

Kashmir tries to stay true to its roots with its Indian and Persian inspired decor. It’s noticeable that the restaurant has seen better days though. Aside from the furnishing, I noticed that a good number of the diners in Kashmir were Indians. This tells me that food here is authentic.

Food that night:

Roti Chanai (90php)
Their version of this bread staple was good especially when dipped in curry sauce. I still prefer Arya’s version though as this was not as soft.

Naan (90php)
A glorified shawarma pita bread is all this was to me.

Palak Paneer (300php)
The cottage cheese was good when eaten on its own but horrible when combined with the spinach. Should Palak Paneer taste burned??? Looked like shit and tasted like shit. :(

Barra Kabab (490php)
Forget about the flavors as the meat pieces here were hard as rock. Meat could inflict serious pain when thrown at someone. I should have complained but didn’t want to bother.

Mutton Sayel (490php)
This doesn’t picture well but it’s actually the only good dish that night. The sauce was uniquely tasty and the lamb was very tender. What every dish in Kashmir should be.

In one word, here’s how we each described our experience in Kashmir:

TEEJ: Ordinary
VICS: Weird
ME: Sucky. But on second thought, my word should have been NASTY!

My friends and I had mixed reactions but were consistent in not giving Kashmir glowing reviews unlike Murtle. I now somehow question Murtle’s choice in restaurants but I guess everything is just a matter of taste. I’ll not be back at Kashmir anytime soon though.

Kashmir Restaurant is located at 816 Arnaiz Avenue Pasay Road Makati City. For more information, visit

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Cerchio: When Ambiance Isn't Enough

I got a message from Romulo Café that they are launching a new restaurant called Cerchio in the same Tomas Morato neighborhood. My friends and I tried it one random night.

Similar to Romulo Café, Cerchio looks stylish and hip. Nice place for cocktails and drinks. There were a lot of families and oldies when we dined there though.

On with the food...

Pumpkin Malunggay Soup (90php)
Tasted more of the malunggay than pumpkin. A very healthy soup!

Crispy Squid Head (180php) 
Not close to being delicious but I found myself munching on this the entire dinner. Must be because it was so crispy!

Bourbon Ribs (590php)
My friends’ favorite dish at Cerchio but I was apathetic to this since I also ate ribs for lunch that day. Ribs overload much?

Crispy Beef Tadyang (490php)
Dry and bland when eaten on its own. Once dipped in sauce, this tadyang becomes awesome.

Margarita Pizza (220php)
Regret of the night: Not noticing that sisig pizza was on the menu since our pizza was oh-so-bland. The sisig pizza for sure at least would have been interesting.

Since we visited Cerchio during its soft opening, I'm willing to give this restaurant the benefit of the doubt. Their food should get better as their chefs gain more experience. Otherwise, what a waste of time!

Cerchio is located at 76 Sct. Limbaga, Tomas Morato, Quezon City. For more details, call 3550998 or 3515279.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Cheap Fix: Turk's Shawarma

Aside from Osama’s, Turk’s Shawarma is my go-to-place whenever a shawarma craving hits.

There's always a long line which goes to show how popular it is.

What I like most about Turk’s version is its uniquely sweet pita bread. It’s so delicious that I wouldn't mind eating the pita on its own.

The sweet pita bread complements the strong salty flavors of the beef and the garlicky goodness of the white sauce.

Turk's Shawarma is a real pleaser. Not only is it cheap, but it also hits the right spot.

Turk's Shawarma is found in most SM Food Courts in Metro Manila.
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