If not now, When?

If not now, When?

“By doing what you love, you inspire and awaken the hearts of others.” ~ Satsuki Shibuya

I came across this sort of quote from Steve Maraboli’s posts (I am an avid follower of this guy): “If not now, When?” And all those things I wanted to do came bursting in my mind. One of them is to really be able to surf, to stand in that board and really experience what’s it like. So getting an opportunity to be gone out of town, I chose going to Baler for my surfing experience.

I’ve always thought that surfing is so much fun. =) Even if I discovered some bruises when I get home. Lol!

There are actually several places in the country that can give you the best waves, when this is my choice due to other reasons (one of which is that, it isnt just a pleasure trip but a business trip too!)

So come weekend, there I was catching the last trip bound to Baler with Jen, my foodie travel and all things in between buddy. Aside from the surfing experience, we definitely love the food in Baler.

FOOD

HOTEL

Jen was the one in-charge as to where we’re staying and I really love what she got for us. It is very affordable (via Agoda), very clean and the staff are so accommodating and helpful. I don’t mind staying there again when we go back.

Though, I found these equally great places to stay in Baler. So, we might try them too.

Photo credits: http://www.traveltrilogy.com/2019/03/cube-baler-aurora.html
Photo credits: https://dealgrocer.com/

And my original choice to stay: Balituk.

If you’re commuting, it is best to reserve your seats a few days prior your intended date to visit. There are only two trips bound to/ from Baler:

While when you’re driving, it’ll take you four (more or less, because stop overs are really awesome right?) hours to get there if coming from Manila.

Aside from being able to stand in that surf board, we also get to see the biggest Balete tree in Asia. And a side trip to the Hanging bridge in Zabali. Said bridge connects two Barangays, Brgy. Tibang and Brgy Sabang. It is located at the endpoint of Zabali road. It isn’t just a spot for tourist but very useful to the residents too.

PLACES

Hanging Bridge

Aint afraid of heights! charot! =p

Balete Tree

Towering more than five stories high, this 600-year old Balete tree or is also known as Millennial tree is one of the reasons why I can’t wait to visit Baler. Weird to some as it may sound, It’s been years when I learned to get my energies from trees. So I took advantage staying with it for long and leave the place with a smile in my face. =)

Dogtown Collective

Oh, please also visit my niece’s cool place: @lilwarung.baler and @kokoanatural.ph located at Dogtown Collective. She’s got a lot of great stuff in store for you. =)

What’s travelling without buying local goods? =) When I shop, I really get to appreciate the artistic skills of my fellow Filipinos. Isn’t it great to earn while doing what you love?

PS

I definitely must go back, because I missed the Light house. =( And there are three. And some really great rock formations along the way. =)

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TUs Restaurant

Jobs fill your pockets, adventures fill your souls. ~ Jaime Lyn Beatty ~

I spotted Tus from their Instagram account. If you’ve seen mine, I have more than 8,000 posts always having fun, dreaming, setting-goals and just being happy and inspired watching posts of my fellow Instagram junkies.

Tus is a Spanish word for “yours”. I didn’t realize that I’ve been passing by it for several times because aside from Alabang Town Center & Commerce Center , Westgate Center is like a rendezvous to me when I’m in Alabang.

I have been eyeing their half-baked cookie, and upon checking they have more attractive dishes to choose from.

I fell in love with their interiors too. The place exudes a very rustic charm and is very homey and comfy too. =)

We took great pleasure having these:

Jen and I shared those deep fried breaded mozzarella cheese sticks served with a slightly spicy marinara sauce. Jen had this crowd favorite: rib-eye steak topped with sauteed onions and melted Swiss cheese. It comes with three choices of side, Jen chose mashed potatoes. The two other choices: steamed rice and sauteed corn.

Diavolo: Hmm, from the name itself, I’m pretty sure it is spicy. So I asked the attendant if they can lessen the spiciness, and they said they can, except for the Pepperoni which is naturally a little bit spicy on its’ own which for the good part of it, I can manage. Aside from the Pepperoni, it has chili olive oil, red onions, black olives, marinara sauce, mozzarella cheese and homemade pizza dough. As described, this pot pie is cooked upside down on a clay pot and homemade dough is oven-baked to perfection. And I really love their dough! =)

I am so excited for the famous half-baked cookie. For some reason, it reminded me of the cookie shots at Aguirre street, however, it’s just sad that Cafe Alezon shut down already.

Like a finale, we truly enjoyed this house-made cookie dough half-baked in a cazuela. It comes with a scoop of ice cream. Cazuela is a pan or a casserole in Spanish.

They’ve got all the drinks you’d ever need except for coffee. They’ve got iced tea and lemonades, fruit shakes, hot teas and they have wines too.

I reckon that there must be thousands who have tried dining here and most likely have gone back for several times. You should try Tus! =)

Tus Restaurant is at Westgate Center, Filinvest
Alabang, Muntinlupa City. You can contact them thru these numbers: 02-828-3178, 0917-568-0964. Nowadays, free connection to WIFI is a big turn-on to customers, and theirs is really reliable. =)

It’s chow time at Johnny Chow!

You have to taste a culture to understand it. ~ chickadeestories.com

When you’re at Resorts World, and you need to dine with all the flurry, you have some more than 50 delightful restaurants to choose from, whether you’re craving for local dishes, Asian cuisine, American or even European F & B, they have it, artfully integrated.

We spotted Johnny Chow at the second floor of Newport Mall, it is a sight to behold like a muse among other pretty faces. The vibrant colors and the hanging lamps are really a “come on”.

Johnny Chow was curated by the team who introduced to us SumoSam, Mr. Kurosawa and John and Yoko. A fusion of Thai, Chinese and Korean cuisine. I remember the first time I tried John and Yoko in Alabang Town Center, I really loved it and when my foodie buddy asked me to bring her there, this time the one in Makati, I had to say yes, and it’s just a difference of 2 days. I love their food and their interiors too. It’s purple. =)

Nowadays, menus of Restaurants are usually displayed in front, giving customers to gauge their choices, assisted by a bubbly attendant so amusing, enumerating points to help you make decisions. At Johnny Chow, theirs are somehow eccentric, the ladies are wearing colored wigs, the men exuding attires depicting a culture that is truly pop! =)

https://www.rwmanila.com/restaurants/johnny-chow

And the interiors mesmerized me, like a scene from a Broadway hit during the 1960s. My eyes feasted on all the colors that I love.

And our tummies had their own feast too. =) Check them out:

We had soup…
And some dim-sum.
Birthday noodles for our Ash…
Hainan chicken.
White fish fillet, loved those black beans, reminded me of my papa.

I remember they got sweet and sour pork for Echo, I just missed to take a picture I think, My son, Echo loved it too.

Head on to Johnny Chow, I think all those in their menu are really gratifying, really delicious and not that heavy on your pockets too. =)

It is located at Newport Mall, 2/F, Cybertourism Zone, Newport Blvd., Domestic Airport, Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines. You can contact them for reservations at: (02) 659-8353/ (02) 908-8888

Blue Ginger Restaurant – “Blame it on my Gypsy Soul”

Blue Ginger Restaurant – Blame it on my Gypsy Soul

“One of the beautiful effects of living your passion is that it inspires other people to live theirs.” ~ Curiano Quotes

I found it difficult what title should I bestow in this specific blog of mine. I truly enjoyed the brimming colors of Blue Ginger interiors and of course the food they offered and how beautifully they were presented. So I considered titles that has something to do with colors, like “Color your life” or “Live your color”. Especially now that I’m needing inspirations for my crafting. =) However, I have mull it around my head, the common ground of what really fascinates me is when a place exudes diversity. During college days, one of my professors call it “eclectic”.

Like a gypsy’s collection from her travels curated in just one place. Arranged aesthetically when upon seeing, you will truly admire. This what struck me when I accidentally discovered Blue Ginger. I really had to see it. =)

While for the delight of our tummies, Blue Ginger exceeded our expectations.

From the prawn kropek with a very nice vinegar sauce. The healthy and delicious Tom yang soup we got as starter. We both craved for veggies, so we had their fresh lumpia. It was a good choice, the sauce tasted great. It’s always in the sauce right? It came with chopped peanuts and roasted garlic.

The satay platter is nicely presented too. I must say it’s really in the sauce. =)

I stressed my buddy out, due to her busy schedule, we only had the chance to visit 2 weeks after New Year when I told her about the place as early as December while I was doing my Christmas ornaments. And I’m so happy to be there. The wait is truly worth it. I’m planning to go back and bring my loved ones there too.I should say, the pictures are worth a thousand words.

Jen wanted the raw chopped garlic and voila, they granted her wish in no time, in that cute little dish.

What else, that apple crumble cheesecake is why I’ll keep coming back here. =) Or maybe try the others: Ube cake, blueberry, red velvet and salted caramel alongside a slice of my apple crumble.

It was good to end this with something that really surprised me when I visited their Al fresco area. Those lanterns! It blew my mind because I didn’t see it from the researches I’ve made before our visit. It’s definitely unexpected and a sight to behold! =)

You might remember how I loved lanterns! =) That festive feel and whimsical mien of adorning a place. You saw them from my previous blogs like Another Story (same owner), Cafe Juanita, Fourteen Four Cafe, and about to post Tagaytay’s Cafe Voila soon, which happens to be of the same creator: Miss Ica Sebastian. She’s an instant idol of mine. =)

I can’t wait to see more. =)

Blue Ginger is located at The Wharf at Lakefront, East Service Road, Sucat, Muntinlupa City.

Let’s try TENYA

Let’s try TENYA

“Enjoy! Life is Delicious!”

To eat is an activity that we Filipinos are fond of. We dine to bond, to chat, to be relaxed, to cherish moments and look forward to the next “eating out” together.

As diversed as we are, we are adventurous and fearless to try new things, we appreciate different cultures and cuisines. One of ours is Japanese food along with the rest of the world’s offerings.

Jen and I’s favorite are Italian and Japanese food, of course we love our own Filipino dishes too. Jen recently fostered a penchant for Korean dishes which I couldn’t support since I am not into too spicy food. =)

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When Festival Mall did an expansion last year, Tenya is one of those exciting restaurants which occupied the expansion wing – The Water Garden. Strategically located at the entrance and just a short walk from Civic drive, Alabang.

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They’re in Indonesia and Thailand too. And more than 200 branches in Japan.

We opted to try it out usually due to our cravings. We’re in sync this time, usually, we craved differently so we had to decide whose wish will be granted. =)

Tenya’s interiors maintained the image of a typical Japanese restaurant with lanterns bearing some significant characters, always eye-catching you can’t help but look-up.

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That Zen feel (less is more), the unique atmosphere, minimalist approach and often uses neutral color scheme and natural woods with touches of bright colors like red, yellow or green.

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The wall calligraphy added the space a modern bibe and cascades commitment.

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Tenya’s offering boast its’ expertise in tendon. Mr. Yoshio Iwashita, opened a restaurant way back 1989 which provides a more affordable offering since tendon are expensive, and so the menu says. =)

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Tendon, also known as donburi (a bowl of rice with toppings),usually a complete meal, with everything on it, shrimp tempura, fish, vegetables,
squid, or any meat will do, topped on a steamed rice that comes with a special dontare sauce.

So I got the one with a poster outside. The Ultimate crab tendon teishoku. It comes with a special “aligue” (crab fats) sauce.

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Jen had the Jo tempura soba/ udon teishoku.

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Mine is with a miso soup while Jen’s Udon came with 2 Black tiger prawns, kani stick, green beans, sweet potato and eggplant tempura.

For sharing, we also tried their rendition of California maki.

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That dressing tasted like Kewpie…=) While their batter is so tasty.

We truly enjoyed mixing our own sauces. Their claim that theirs are the freshest is very distinct. The servings are just good enough, and the taste just met our expectations. We weren’t disappointed at all.

Due to the season, they just had a hard time attending to requests per table as swiftly as they can. As they only have 2 attendants when we came. There were times when people from production area are the ones serving our orders. Even the Security Officer is extending a hand already. Probably due to lack of personnel.

If I can also suggest, using pitchers with cover that might fall off is also not recommendable. It might spell trouble.

Over-all, we’re still wanting to come back here. =)

And it’s good to know that they are in the following locations:

locations
http://www.tenya.com.ph/store-locations

Itadakimasu! (spoken with a silent “u”!) =)