Lugang Cafe – A Taiwanese Treat

Lugang Cafe – A Taiwanese Treat…

“Count not the candles…see the lights they give. Count not the years, but the life you live. Wishing you a wonderful time ahead. Happy birthday ate Queng!”

In this iconic structure at BGC – SM Aura’s. On it’s fifth floor, You’ll find a long avenue of collective restaurants that give you options as to where to dine with loved ones and friends.

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Through the years, if chance permits, we were able to try Mexican food from Andale, Authentic dim-sum treats from Tuantuan Chinese Brasserie. Some scoops of ice cream from Bono Gelato, ube churros and frozen yogurt from Pink Berries.

Last week, on a long weekend and to celebrate my sister-in-laws birthday, We all agreed to visit Padre Calungsod chapel at SM Aura.

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And dined at this authentic Taiwanese restaurant: Lugang Cafe, named by Asia Tatler as one of the best restaurants in the Philippines for years.

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We had Xia long bao for a starter.

dumpling
Source: http://www.lugangcafe.com.ph/

A special dumpling intricately prepared and served warm. You can actually watch how it’s done. It is so delicious we had to order for it twice. =)

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For appetizer, we had Tofu with century eggs topped with pork floss and Garlic pork roll.

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For the main course, we shared Three cup chicken.

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Spare ribs with plum sauce. My son’s favorite. I realized spare ribs goes well with orange sauce, apple sauce and this time we were able to try it with plum sauce.

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The special Birthday noodles for the celebrant which is a tradition for a long life is a must-have.

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The Golden fried rice is one of their best sellers and I truly must agree. My personal favorite is the Soy sauce braised pork knuckles. as it is so tender and very tasteful.

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Over all experience is good, the attendants are bubbly and very attentive, the food were served ahead of declared waiting time. It’s just that their house tea isn’t complimentary. Or maybe I just got used to Chinese restaurants serving complimentary house tea while you’re still figuring out what to order, China bowl during the late 1990s even offers free shrimp chips.

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Anyway, before we get to decide if we want tea or not our food already arrived. It was a very good dining experience especially with your family. “Xièxie nĭ/nĭn!”

 

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Little Flour Café

Little Flour Café

“Love doesn’t just sit there like a stone, It had to be made like bread, remade all the time, made new.” ~Ursula K. Le Guin~

It was just accidental that I discovered Little Flour Café, it is the brainchild of Wild Flour Cafe, that charming country-style bakery which instantly became famous for the Cronut (Crossant + Donut) craze as they were the first one to do it, but I remember a hotel in Makati did Dossant (Donut + Crossant) too. Still, they captured the discriminating taste of Filipinos (4 branches in less than 3 years) but with some tweaks that are intentionally executed to create a signature distinction, still, both has achieved the same recognizable theme.

Very country-side signage.
“Off-mall.”

However, it saddened me when the “Pistachio Au lait” isn’t available during our visit.

Originally, I was eager to witness how those chairs were hung and instantly created a different and unique form of art.

One of my fascinations.

It isn’t peak yet, there are a few guests in some tables, so I was free to have my photo taken with those hanging chairs. You know how much I love chairs!

It’s almost lunch, so we kinda have like a brunch:

I had my mushroom bowl, it is packed with roasted mushroom, pickled vegetables, grains with fried egg. It is a bit spicy for me but I can manage. Besides, I am in front of half a dozen sweets ordered for me by my other-half.

My mushroom bowl…

They also do coffee art. You can even request your name be spelled on it. =)

Latte art. =)

These pastries that we personally choose from the display area, with an attendant who helped us decide by describing each and what sells best, so we came up with 5 different items. Both of us love “ube” (purple yam) so we get that one too. They call it “Ube Bomboloni”. Bombolini are doughnuts in Italy.

Neatly arranged goodies.
Are those flowers for sale too?
There are jams too. =)
Almost half a dozen goodies in front of us.
A very simple menu board.

There is a waiting area furnished with different types of chairs, in anticipation of guests waiting to be sitted while waiting during peak hours.

Nice chairs.

With its’ cozy interiors and well-appointed furniture, it is surely a place to linger with both colleagues and friends. And of course with a loved-one. =)

=)

PS

They also have special wines and beers. =)

But no Blue moon. =( Just Stellas.
Little Flour Café is at the ground level of World Plaza Building, 4th Avenue, corner 31st. Street, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig

         You can contact them at 02-777-7383. They’re open from 6:00 am to 10:00 pm                 daily.

Peperoni Pizzeria: “Appetite for Life”

Peperoni Pizzeria

“Stress and pizza cannot co-exist.”

When my son is still in my tummy, I crave for pizza a lot. I would try any kind. Even those that you can buy from the streets. We even prepared a DIY at home several times.

My friends were telling me that when my baby grows up, he would definitely love pizza too.

And I was able to prove it, he was a pizza addict. You could just imagine the grin on his face each time he discovers that we’re ordering a box or two of pizza. It really spells h-a-p-p-y all over his face.

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Yes he is!

There’s this one pizza parlor at Uptown Mall which I find really cute, there’s a signage that says: “All we knead is love.” Upon reading it, I instantly thought of pizza, and yes they sell pizzas. Wood fired pizzas. The store’s name is “Peperoni Pizzeria”.

=)

I heard that they originated from Singapore. Their first branch here in the Philippines is located at Greenwood and this one that we visited is at BGC (Bonifacio Global City).

What’s best to pair it are pastas right? So we tried two kinds. Carbonara with its’ creamy white sauce and tasty bacon, and we all like the red sauce since the taste of tomato sauce goes well with our pizza.

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On a day like this, as simple as it is, I knew in my heart, that in our own little ways, we were able to make my son happy as I catch glimpses of his smiling face looking at us in random.

When we’re about to leave, they are currently preparing one order at the working area.

We have a very limited time to go around this mall but it was a generous amount of quality time that we spent together since we do not go out as often.

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By the way, my son can consumed an entire box of pizza with 10-12 slices of his favorite variant all on his own. =) We don’t mind, as long as he is happy. As Peperoni Pizzeria’s principle says: “Appetite for Life”.

Photo below grabbed from:
http://www.peperoni.com.ph/about

PAUL Boulangerie -A taste of France…

Paul Boulangerie – A taste of France…

“C’est la vie!”

I opted calling Paul Boulangerie as modern French. I just came from this rustic restaurant in Antipolo, a Swiss restaurant depicting rustic luxe which is still fresh in my mind. Very country and shabby and chic and homey. All the light and relaxing adjectives I can pull up from the dictionary. Now comes Paul Boulangerie, a French restaurant in every essence of the word. Situated in one of the busiest central business district after Makati. BGC (Bonifacio Global City).

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Paul…

Established more than 200 years ago, was brought to the Philippines a year ago probably because Filipinos are known for being open to new gastronomic adventures and their guts of not being afraid to try new things not to mention the numerous French Nationals that frequents the country, as it is such a good feeling to have a place which will make them feel like they are in their home country.

huge on wall
Very eye-catching even if in many shades of gray.
framed stuff
Depicted more of France…
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I’m confused if my subject is that vintage poster or those chandeliers!

The same feeling of Filipinos abroad being very excited to have found a Filipino restaurant in an area where they are currently located, offering line-ups of specialties they have been craving for a long time which are staple back home. One friend of mine’s business in New Jersey is his Fiipino home-cooked bbqs! And its’ doing well, catered by fellow Filipinos and Americans alike!

Another thing that attracted me to try this French restaurant aside from the fact that I have no way of knowing as to how to pronounce those that I ordered from their menu list is their focus on wellness.

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Health is wealth!

What I did is I asked the attendant if he knew how to speak French and he was honest enough to admit that he doesn’t know how although all of the staff at Paul were trained to correctly pronounced the food on their menu list. Minus the accent I guess. Eating there reminded me of a French film which I watched for a couple of times because i enjoyed listening to French actors trying to speak the English language.

Here’s some of their offerings:

smoked salmon
Smoked salmon..
my food
Yes, loads of mushrooms..
mushrooms
With some greens..
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Complimentary bread with butter and jam… (–,)
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Coffee flavored eclair..

Another thing again which I found so enticing are the black and white floors.

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Black & White! ❤
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Loved those tiles!
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And that chalk written menu board for their “Soup of the day!’

Taking of pictures meant for this blog occurred spontaneously as we are nearing peak time. Still I captured some of their guests.

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Peak time..well almost..

It has been noticeable that most Filipinos would take photos of their food first before eating, which I usually do and I felt like placing a signage on my face that says please don’t mind me, I’m a blogger and taking photos is a normal thing to someone like me. Documentations. I even spotted a blogger where the title that he used was something like taking pictures first before digging in. I am embracing something new now and it excites me!(–,)

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Transparency…

There is actually a brief explanation on the menu which translates each into the English language. I am grateful enough and I actually learned a few instantly. “Fume” means “smoke”.

And given that I did not understand a single word from it, (I only knew the usual phrases): “Cest’ la vie”, “Cest’ mignon”, “Merci”, “Bon voyage” and my favorite “Jet’ aime”! =)

There are photos of each and like everyone else, I can instantly identify what I like the moment I see it. The usual “wow” thing that excites us. The giddy expectation and anticipation of realizing that you are happy with what you have ordered. As there are times which I personally experienced is ordering something that I didn’t totally appreciate. Well mistakes are meant to be lessons. Ahaha!

One of the surprises that comes with it is finding out about something that you know a long time ago though you don’t know the term to use for it.

It is also good to know that even if you can hear conversations from the other tables, the clamor itself from their world to yours is entirely different. The privacy is intact.

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There’s a trompe l’oeil of books! =)
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And the chandeliers are impressive..

I will convince my foodie buddy to go back and devour on the pastries.

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I see Macarons! =)
millefeuille
and
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And eclairs!

And some of those I haven’t tried yet for another culinary experience! =)

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Their sandwiches..
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And their quiche..

I just fell in love again… =)

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(–,)

Paul is located at the ground floor of Bench tower, Rizal drive, corner 30th Street, Bonifacio Global City. They also have a branch at the ground floor of SM Aura Premier.

Caffe Puccini at the Fort Strip

Cafe Puccini..

I love places that have an incredible history.
I love the Italian way of life, I love the food,
I love the people, I love the attitudes of Italian.
~Sir Elton John~

My foodie buddy and I were thinking of where to dine-out come Sunday of this particular week. We ended up at the Fort Strip and opted to try this authentic Italian Restaurant on this corner block somewhere in Bonifacio Global city.

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Welcoming and attractive…
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From the inside…
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Adorned…

Cafe Puccini reflects all that is Italian, without you reading it’s name, you will know instantly that it’s an Italian restaurant. There are murals everywhere depicting some icons of Italy. Various knick-knacks are all over the place giving us a hint of Italy.

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Entrance…

They specifically themed their interiors like it’s the 1920s.

We actually found ourselves craving for pastas and pizzas. And so we ordered those for this late Sunday lunch. I must say it is a place that will satisfy all your Italian cravings. Skipping the antipasti (the traditional first course of a formal Italian meal), zuppe (soup) and insalate (salad). They have a wide selection to choose from and are partnered with premium wines. Pastas are of different kinds: penne, spaghetti, lasagna, ravioli, gnocchi, fettuccine to name a few.

This vintage pasta maker caught my attention and I visualized how the chef was forming its’ dough and laid it there to create pastas in different shapes moreso spaghettis! =)

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Pasta maker…

As we wait for our orders, our eyes were already filled with experience of Italy. Each item that you see in all corners and walls are reminiscent of what a typical authentic Italian restaurant is.

bar
The bar…
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To the kitchen…
mural
West wing…
lamp
East wing…
chalkboard
I am always amazed with chalk written menu boards..

The feel is truly there, even in their menus, and even if some terms are unheard of, I didn’t have a hard time recalling them as I encountered them in my recipe books and other Italian restaurants in the Philippines.

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Is he Mr. Puccini? (–,)

I even saw their Sommelier assisting this couple across our table as she removes the cork from the wine bottle with a vintage cork borer. As she poured the sauvignon wine to their glasses, it clearly shows, she was trained to do that.

I have estimated that the inside of this restaurant can accommodate more than 50 guests, I especially loved their deep-buttoned scarlet upholstery on their “settee”.

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Scarlet buttoned seats…

And the patio outside can sit more or less than 30 guests.

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Their chands…

Having been to many different Italian restaurants including Guiseppe’s in Tacloban City, where the Italian owner mans the place himself, interacts with his guests and reminds me of those wedges and logs of cheeses in their display chiller. He would normally boasts that he bought them himself directly from Italy.

Cafe Puccini on the other hand minus the Italian owner to entertain you, created an Italian ambience like no other.

Most of the guests at that time are foreigners. It was such a good time to bond with one of my best buddies who loves to eat just like me. She had her favorite seafood: lobsters. And ordered for black raviolis filled with minced lobsters’ meat topped with tomato sauce with chunks of lobsters too.

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Black Raviolis and lobsters..

We shared with each other 10 slices of pizza Italiana with ricotta cheese which aroma I can smell as the waitress was about to bring it on our table. It was topped with salami that are lightly spicy and so the menu said.

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Pizza Italiana…

Since we are not wine persons, we ordered for their bottomless iced tea that comes with a slice of lemon which enhanced its’ flavor. Just like saying what’s an iced tea without the lemon slice?

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Thirst quenching…

This late lunch at Cafe Puccini was satiating and we left the place with happy tummies.

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I want to try their steak too!

Not to forget mentioning the complimentary breads neatly placed on a basket with 2 kind of spreads. A pate and tomato salsa.

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Pate and Salsa…

Buonissimo! (–,)

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They showed us their big display chiller with their specialty cakes lining-up and introduced us to each. Since we were craving for frozen yogurt since last week. We opted to give in to our indulgence and got this salted caramel flavored yogurt. Five toppings in all. Yey! ❤ And that is guiltless bliss! (–,)

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Guiltless…