Dekada : OpenRice.Com Review

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If you are driving towards Ayala Fairview Terraces, the first thing you see are the bright lit wall of Dekada restaurant. If you are on the lookout for a quiet nook, it has its own walkway and not too much foot traffic around it. It is also connected to Wellworth ground floor and offers additional quiet space if you want to dine al fresco. Dekada offers a meryenda buffet served daily from 2pm to 6pm for only Php200.00, yep, it is eat-all-you-can for all your favourite Pinoy meryenda specialties.

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It is when you are starting to feel the Christmassy cold afternoons and I just went straight to the buffet table and had a big serving of arroz caldo with hard boiled egg. It was so tasty, I didn’t need to put any condiment on it. It may be a weird combination but I followed it with traditional pansit. Would have loved it warmer, nevertheless, I super enjoyed it I finished off the entire plate over tastier conversation with friends.

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Remembering Manila days when one can step out of the house and have your pick from a long list of meryenda options. This list always includes turon. Interestingly, I paired it with palitaw with a generous amount of sugar. Not a big fan of niyog, so I helped myself to sugar instead. They also serve brown or muscovado sugar.

20151110_162228 20151110_152923(0) 20151110_152931Then you can move on to their dinuguan and puto. Just take the time to scoop not too many pork bits. Other varieties on the table? There is their ginataang mais and halo halo.

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Marriott Garden Cafe : OpenRice.Com Review

rsz_1mbp_pinkThe first thing that greets you at Marriott’s Hotel’s breakfast resto Garden Cafe is their varied options for food. I am always thankful for free breakfast from hotel bookings. For sure, Marriott hotel will not be known as the preferred hotel from visitors around the world for nothing. Nearest to the entrance is their salad station, with various greens and toppings to choose from. They also have mixed toppings ready with flavoured sauce.

20151125_154637As soon as you walk in, servers ask for your preferred spot, sit you, and asks you a series of questions anytime they feel you need anything (not in an annoying, bothersome way). So we chose a spot that is quiet and asked for coffee. Tables are automatically served with a good amount of milk. Since the Garden cafe is on the same floor as the lobby/reception, whatever music you have from it is shared with the cafe’s. There was Thanksgiving night with a twist, because the Pinoy choir from the lobby sang right next to the gigantic Christmas tree. It is thanksgiving added with a Pinoy flavour.

20151126_06174720151126_06125920151126_06224420151125_151502marriott2marriott1For our breakfast, I went for the safe fare of crispy bacon, rice, and ham. All my meat favourite dishes are also served on heat, keeping it fresh and refilled until breakfast ends at 10am.

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Cold Stone Creamery : OpenRice.Com Review

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Coming off from a Saturday outreach activity, we all opted to go for ice cream. There were a couple of ice cream shops just right outside our workplace and we went with Cold Stone Creamery’s airconditioned spot, the other one serves ice cream but you will need to eat it bistro style sans AC.

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Right at the door, this ice cream shop is hard to miss with their staff dancing with choreographed steps with the menus on their hands. As soon as you step in, you will get the best attention as they give you all the information you will need to make it the best ice cream experience for you. That is not enough, to add to the fun, you can either choose to watch how they make your ice cream (these ice cream staff will give your dancing bartenders a run for their money). They also randomly ask their customers to catch your scoop of ice cream on your cup/cone! (my Gab surely enjoyed this on our previous visit).

Based on my Pinoy serving, I find the waffle servings small, so I went with Cheesecake fantasy on their biggest cup and I asked that the waffle be served on a separate cup instead. My friends all did the same! It was the best waffle dipped in ice cream experience of strawberries, and a generous amount of Graham crackers plus cheesecake.

My friends also got creative with theirs, one with three different caramel scoops in one cup: salted caramel, banana caramel crunch and chocolate caramel and the other with Chocolate devotion.

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Mister Kabab : OpenRice.Com Review

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Everyone must have known by now that there is a Mister Kabab restaurant in Ayala Fairview Terraces. Back in the late 90’s, there was just one Mister Kabab restaurant located in West Avenue corner Quezon Avenue. It is a Persian restaurant that serves unique food. I remember lining up for a queue that stretches right outside along the road because there was just so many people who want to visit and eat. It is the same flavour that everyone has known to enjoy and the eating experience is even better. Because the other branches we have tried (Technohub and Fairview Terraces) both offer airconditioned rooms. Their kitchen seem to be different, too. I remember the first branch was not airconditioned because the kitchen vents out the smoke right inside the resto. It makes people hungrier smelling the food. The mall branches may not have this but it has the same yummy flavour that we always crave for.

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We will never let the day pass without ordering our Mister Kabab fave Keema (beef with special Persian flavour) and we usually put white sauce that goes with it. This is perfect for buttered rice (they used to serve it with more butter instead of the current’s pinch of butter on plain rice). You may opt to have keema with pita bread instead of rice. My husband enjoys it with chilli sauce, too. I enjoy my meal better with mango shake.

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Till the next meal!

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Focaccia : OpenRice.Com Review

rsz_1mbp_pinkSo it is midweek and all of us at work are getting on a project we are calling: Happy Us At Work (Okay, I made this project name up) The ultimate goal of the project is to be happy at what we are doing at the workplace. In my mind, I know that this will not be too different from what I have always been an advocate for: working at it with all of your heart as if you are working for the Lord and not for men. And so, to celebrate that Happy Us at Work opportunity, three of us trooped to Focaccia at the A. Venue Mall in Makati. Of course, you also have to remember that this is still part of my Yummy October partnership with OpenRice.

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It is interesting to see that a wall welcomes you in, full of scribbles and notes from those who have already dined in Focaccia. Reminds me of a restaurant in Mekong River, Vientiane, Laos with a wall full of colourful notes.

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One thing that stands out for me is their pizza roll, served with fresh arugula and alfalfa sprouts. If you have tried Yellow Cab’s Dear Darla, you may be confused and say that it is exactly the same except that Focaccia had it first since 2011.

So next time you are visiting Mercato right outside A.Venue, roll away your cravings with pasta, pizza and friendship.

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Ready for the Lazada discount weekend? Use my voucher WEEKEND12 and avail of a 12% discount! It’s a special voucher since there is no minimum purchase required! All you have to do is input the code and you get the product for less 12%! Just click here or click the 12%banner above.

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Caramia : OpenRice.Com Review

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And so my gastronomic and tummy-filling relationship with Open Rice still continues. Tastier September may have ended but Yummy October has started and will stretch to Delish November. It seems my Christmas season has started early with the amount of eating I will need to do, but enjoying every second of it. I am not new to the cake scene and in fact, have tried Sonja’s Cupcakes (no longer in Terraces), Tous Les Jours, and even Cake2Go. I am no cake connoisseur but I certainly know my cake.

We were surprised to find out that we walked into Caramia Fairview Terraces in perfect timing, as they offer a 20% off your total receipt when you dine with them between 1pm to 6pm. With the amount of food we had, glad to see a receipt that was under Php500.00.

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First slice to try is Pistaccio Cioccolata, lightly roasted pistaccio brimming with chocolate. Imagine the yum level of a home made refrigerator cake and take that taste to tons of delicious level. If you like the mixed taste of nuts and chocolates on your taste buds, this will be a big hit.

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Caramia is a chocolate cake heaven. Next up was Dream Chocolate cake. It is not like your regularly-red-boxed chocolate cake, not too sweet but flavored enough to take you to eat a couple of slices or even more!

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Sometimes I get confused if what I was eating was regular cake or gelato cake and it is the same delicious and happy confusion I got when I tasted Sea Salted Honey Crunch. There is light mocha cream sandwiched inside the cake and there are solid candy crunchies on top. Just go easy with snacking on the topping, I originally thought it was soft, I gulped a big one with a hard crunch surprise.

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Amici : OpenRice.Com Review

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So there is this restaurant that is aptly named for its ambience, Amici, which means ‘friends’ in English, really gives off that perfect backdrop for conversations with friends. I am a pasta lover and one does not need to be in Italy to try that authentic Italian yummy pasta taste we have all grown to love. I do not certainly need violinists around me or a gondola. All I need is the taste of al dente pasta and my cravings for it is instantly satisfied. When do I usually give in to this cravings? Yep, at least once a week.

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We actually ended the previous week at the workplace with ordered food from Amici and I certainly enjoyed the seafood pasta and the chocolate gelato! But I just had to try their food straight out of their kitchen.  And so as much as I always shoot first before eating, my friends have come to love the fact that if we go together, we should be ordering different plates. Thanking God for food buddies! I am certainly now raving about Penne Rosa and Bacon. Penne made more interesting with Italian bacon flavoring. In love about classic spaghetti? Go for Linguine Fantastico Pasta and you will never look at a classic-looking Amici spaghetti again. Bon appetit!

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Conti’s : OpenRice.Com Review

rsz_1mbp_pinkPinoys are always big about the food served on the table. For one, we have one too many family traditions celebrated with food! It is your hamon and bibingka during Christmas, it is your festive fruits and keso de bola on media noche, it is your pansit or spaghetti on birthday meet-ups, or your brewed coffee and cake combo on afternoon visits from friends. And so at the workplace, it is also common for us to either eat at the pantry (which serves good food!) or step out at least once a week, to take time off the walls of your office, or to engage with happy-thoughts-conversations with your favorite people from work.

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And so when we heard that Conti’s is now at Fairview Terraces, we didn’t waste the time to go in and sample what people are raving about. Of course, we have already tried their famous mango bravo cake countless times, it has become Pinoy’s favorite cake present or even favorite potluck dessert to bring.

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Trust Pinoy restaurants to always have the classic carbonara on their menu. And trust me to always go for one. I will probably have to write a separate blog post about the countless carbonara’s I have tried from different restos. So how different is this? For one, it is served warm, it didn’t taste like it has been plated hours before you ordered them. That can’t happen with Conti’s as most of the tables have wait lists.

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Pinoys end a good meal with dessert with an S! We tried two: Mango Cheesecake and the one we will never get tired of: Mango Bravo.

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Meal Times Made Easy – Foodpanda.ph

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I know of a mom who would schedule paper plate meal times on select days each month. This takes out time she needs to spend on after-meals clean up and creates additional time for mommy-me-time. Another mom I know also schedule take-out nights, another one would regularly have eat-out-nights. If you are any of these moms, you have another type of eating adventure to schedule with your fambam. It is food delivery nights. So what would be perfect delivery meal times for mommies?

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Videoke Nights with friends at the comfort of your home calls for food delivery. You can go home straight from work and not have to worry about having more time to prepare for food. All you have to do is go online at Food Panda and choose to have your fave food delivered from Indonyaki or from Il Padrino Coffee.

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Instant Meryenda – no one needs to fret anymore for quick meet-ups. So if you have just gotten back from completing your weekend morning errands, no need to rush back to cook because you can order food from Lia’s Cakes in Seasons  anytime.

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Celebrations at home – whether you have prepped for food and you find yourself with not enough food or want to stay away from more time stressing in the kitchen rather than celebrating with family or friends, opt to have food delivered either from Pepper Lunch or from Papa Johns’s Pizza.

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Nothing to serve on game nights? Pair the games with Tapa King with as low as Php10.00 delivery fee. Now you do not have to worry if hubby’s friends show up late for a game of Stacko.

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Playdate with kids. Get all the kids running and jumping all afternoon without having to worry about what to serve. Get food options from the Old Spaghetti house or from Caramia.

You will never be limited from hosting visitors again, with food options anytime, food delivery in minutes is always just one click away.

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Il Padrino : OpenRice.Com Review

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How Il Padrino Coffee came to be is an interesting story. It came out of the owner’s need to find the perfect nook to sip his Cafe Americano while working from nearby Fairview area. Unfortunately, he found none. And so he went on setting up one. Il Padrino for me, has been a repeat venue for everything imaginable, catch up with friends, seminar, celebrations and for last night, bridal shower. Since the bride herself has not been around the Philippines for the past year, we all welcomed the Pinoy style Italian fare we have come to love. Shower organizer booked the private room on the second floor which can seat up to 30 people. Since booking this room comes with a consumable cost, we opted to try their group packages. That gives me more option to try everything on the table. Yep, the key is to get small-sized sampling of each so you can sample everything served.

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First plate stop, Meat Feast Pizza, it was served warm which is the best part. Cheesy peasy, loved every part of the pizza, including the crunchy crust.

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The shower started at 7pm so it was perfect to try Roasted Garlic Chicken for dinner. Not a big fan of garlic but the girls made sure no piece of chicken is left on the plate. The chicken made wonders with the sauce, or was it the sauce that made wonders to the chicken? Doesn’t matter, it was gone in no time.

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Bangus Cordon Bleu, yep, Pinoy style cordon bleu. It was tasty that it was passed around the table so everyone can have a taste. Pinoy’s behaviour of leaving one piece untouched didn’t happen because everyone gamely finished off every morsel on the plate.

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If you find the consumable food cost too much for what you ordered, you may opt to take home the rest of the sweet treats equal to whatever amount will complete your consumable food cost.

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