Southbound Cafe

“It’s not just about seeing beautiful places, it’s about seeing the beauty in every place…”

I have been blogging about Interiors lately. And this blog I must say is more about Interiors more than their food offerings.

We spotted this new cafe in our home town, in San Pedro City, Laguna. You will find it on your right if you’re coming from Manila. Upon reaching the city it is just across the huge sculpture of the rooster. The landmark of my hometown. Which I think is a very strategic location indeed.

What bricks can do.
The car plates are kinda masculine for me.
I love it when there are paintings on the wall. =)
The ropes, gave the entrance a rustic feel.

So it is a fusion of rustic and industrial and a dab of little quirkiness. I think I have loaded my mobile phone with more than 50 photos in all angles, the place has a charm of entertaining you in an amazing way and now I had this dilemma of choosing what photos to include here. Whew!

So, please take a look.

I think this coffee mural is the focal point of the place.
Be that as it may, not until upon looking upwards, I saw this striking chandelier.
I thought this shade of orange might be too bright for a place, though they were able to balance it with a teal. =)
Waiting area.

If you want it quieter, there is an enclosed area, providing you privacy.

There is actually a certain masculine feel on it. Due to the different symbols of cars: mags, plates, wheels, car logos, depicting the owners’ “could be” hobby.

My car for years. =)
My soul sister’s car =)
Our car when I was a kid. =) #beetle
Did I miss Toyota? I think this one will do and he will really love this! =)
An Audi perhaps.

So let’s check their food. =)

Aww, look at those Chefs! =) And that Sto. Nino…=)
The muffins looked good! =)
There are home-made donuts too.
Tableas.
Theirs is from Allegro.

Allegro is the exclusive distributor of the finest espresso machines, brewers, coffee beans, syrups, sauces and teas from Italy, Switzerland, France, Germany, Spain, Sweden, Ceylon, the Netherlands, and the United States. Our products cater to hotels, casinos, culinary and educational institutions, restaurants, cafes, and franchise chains.

It is the result of someone’s passion with coffee and brought with him over 30 years of entrepreneurial and financial experience managing 7 Italian Cafes and a coffee equipment wholesale distribution company in Dallas and Houston, Texas, USA.

Info source: http://www.allegrobeverage.com

Honestly, I loved their coffee. =) Nothing spectacular with our pasta, though it met our expectations, and the nachos is okay, however, I rather see fresh tomatoes than ketchup like a real salsa. =(
You need not worry if the cake you choose will fill the bill. As they’re carrying a popular branded one. That famous maker of “Mango bravo” which is Conti’s.
So I instantly know what to get. =) The Choco overload cake. =)
I can’t ignore the fact that they’ve chosen a good color scheme. ❤
This fab bouquet administered a soft and feminine feel when masculinity is found everywhere. Nice move. =)

Nowadays, the loos are no longer left-out. Like there’s a match as to where is the prettiest loo. =)

I love the pebbles on the wall and that modern spatial lamp.
Look! We’ve got freebies too! =)
Photo source: quotesbook.com

So I am agreeing to this quote. =)

There are other tempting dishes from their menu. So, definitely, we will be back. =) As for the Interiors. All the elements were finely doled-out in all corners. =) Good job!

Their address is at #87 Mabini street, San Antonio, San Pedro City, Laguna, Philippines.

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Niña’s Kitchen in Biñan, Laguna

Niña’s Kitchen in Biñan, Laguna

“Everyday may not be good, but there is always something good in everyday.”

Niña’s Kitchen is probably one the most talked-about restaurant in Laguna. Or becoming if I may say. It is a residential house which ground floor they turned into a commercial one, serving Filipino dishes (with a tweak) from breakfast to dinner.

I have been seeing it every so often from social media threads lately and out of curiosity, I dragged Jen one Sunday afternoon.

What made it more famous than its’ competitors is because it was endorsed by our former Ms. Universe since the owner is a friend (and a classmate) of hers.

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Photos and memories..

The most photographed item that they offer per my research is the “suman sa lihiya (lye)”. So it was my first reason why I wanted to visit their place. My mom used to prepare this before, and I really miss it. She is old already and can’t perform usual tasks anymore.

suman

The place is snug, there are decorative objects equally distributed in the garden,

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there’s even a bike with a basket holding a bouquet of flowers, which created a country-feel and very laid-back scenery. Relaxing and thought-provoking as well.

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The dining area is quite huge, which can hold more or less 50 guests. There are actually three separate rooms to dine and we chose the one in a corner. The space outside is huge too.

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It leads to the front yard too though it stays unopened and the entrance for guests is the one in the main dining hall where the counter and kitchen is situated.

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Jen and I both sitted in the tufted bench beside that gorgeous red door.

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On your left upon entrance is the stairs with quotes that I spotted in several blogs. So I made sure we have a picture on it. #thisthingwithstairs

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The decors that are equally distributed in every corner were hints that most of which were from the owner’s many travels.

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We’re supposed to order pasta and burger, but they’re no longer available. According to the attendant, there was a surge earlier. When we came before dinner time, only three tables were occupied giving me the liberty to take photos of items that are interesting to me.

We then chose pizza with pepperonis and still they’re no longer available. We ended up ordering the one with mushrooms. Jen ordered for the churros and I got my suman sa lihiya.

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As a disclaimer, the attendant warned us that the pizza must be consumed immediately. The pizza is good, a healthy option since it is meatless. But true enough, in all fairness, we were warned, the pizza dough got firmer, and it’s no longer chewy to the bite.

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The churros for me is over-rated, there is nothing special to it except for that mint leaf, just as how you expect churros to be, while the chocolate dip is good, it didn’t remind me of a brand, and only a good chef can do it or it is home-made. =)

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The Filipino way of gathering is skillfully interpreted in this place. Local favorites infused with some internationally known dishes and a homey ambience. Huge tables, family pictures, souvenirs, hanging plants, a Sto. Nino to guard the place, the greenery, makes-up for the over-all cozy feel.

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Surely, we can celebrate some occasion here with friends and family. Or maybe even if without something to celebrate. =)

It is located at:

Lot 32 Blk. 8, Silmer Village, Biñan, Laguna. You can call them at: 0915-649-3952

 

GELE Milkshake Cafe…

GELE Milkshake Cafe..

Nowadays, it is ironic that these so called millennials, have greatly influenced people of all ages. I am coming from this habit formed to perform activities outside of home over cafes that serve milkshakes, coffee, smoothies, flavored teas, paired with sandwiches, pastas and burgers with varying twists.

Millennials are undeniably showing hunger and thirst for change for something unconventional. I think their keywords are freedom and adventure. You will see black burgers which you normally find not so appealing but to its being different are catered and enjoyed by many.

As I also observed, the love for coffee has been a strong inclination by Filipinos. The competition from those beans coming from different countries and those beans that are locally grown is truly tight. What’s surprising is that both were thriving.

Proofs of these are the numerous hole in the walls establishments taking turns in coming up with something unique. The trend is attractive, the chalkboard menus are everywhere and full of color. Coffee shops, cafes are in all corners.

Just in my vicinity, Jen and I have listed a number of cafes to visit so as to verdict which one has the best tasting coffee on top of the aesthetic side that if not present, said cafe will lag behind by those who are bold enough to offer what is sometimes I used to call “out of this world”.

Weekends for us are our chance to visit these places. One from the list is Gele’s… It’s a 15 minutes drive from my place.

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While searching for it, the place looked big in the photos. However, when we get there, it is but a small place that can seat more than 4 groups of 3 to 4 pax.

The theme is clean and crisp with touches of nature’s colors. Browns and greens.

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We just had our drinks to chill and matched them with our staple Mexican favorite. The nacho salad. There was always excitement in our eyes upon the attendant’s arrival handing down our orders.

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I fell in love with the colored nachos, however, I didn’t like it much since I can taste the onions. It was too strong for me and I wished for more tomatoes.

I had Mudslide and Jen had Salty Pop. We both liked our first trys, it was not like those times when you get disappointed with your choice and wished for another. I took them more than 10 minutes to prepare both. Not bad.

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Who’d think, these drinks can match nachos? =)

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We finished them satisfied. And as we’re about to leave, some millennials are pouring in. It’s good to feel younger sometimes. =)

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THE FUSION CUISINE

The Fusion Cuisine

When the main bridgeway in our town closed for re-construction, our route going to Manila pass by two villages which includes Pacita Complex. The trip was longer but it allowed me to discover some new food places to visit anytime.

One of which is The Fusion Cuisine located at the main road of Pacita complex. It stood out along several restaurants.

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D’Fusion Cafe..

It caught my interest since the facade is very attractive and welcoming, an attendant is cooking “Takoyaki” right in front of their entrance when we came and it is enticing.

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Takoyaki…=)

There is a “Menu for the day” signage in a miniature easel, where the menu is written in chalk and the attendants are vigilant enough to greet you upon entry.

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I ❤ easels and chalk-written menus!

It is a joint that pours booze until midnight. It was only after dinner time when we arrived.

Jen was adamant to get a bottle of her favorite beer. An Estella. What I had is my usual iced tea.

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Finally, she got one..

For our food, we normally inquire what their best seller is and should it fit our preference, we get it.

I had grilled pork. And Jen had grilled salmon. Both of which are two of their best sellers.

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Attack! (–,)

It took them more than fifteen minutes to serve it. Slightly too long for me, I just had to kill our time while waiting for our orders to arrive by taking photos of this small nook. Literally, its’ name fits their place as it showcased a mix of cultures strongly hinged to Philippines, Thailand and Japan.

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We found it weird not to find the usual sidings for grilled items. They’ve attempted to create a twist, when we’re used to buttered veggies and probably only the lemon slice is suited for Jen’s salmon. The slightly buttered corn in that mini bowl is okay, however, it doesn’t fit the slices of cucumber and tomatoes. We then affix the term “fusion” to all our observation.

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We missed the soup..

It made sense that the attendants asked how our food is. It is a traditional take that I think is effective when you want to improve on your craft.

It made me raise the glass. Or should I say the Estella bottle. =)

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This is Jen’s, I don’t drink beer for almost 20 years now.. =)

 

MTV Cafe…

MTV Cafe

There is one cafe in our town that I always passed by but since it is in somewhere in between where I live and where I do my grocery every weekend, I haven’t got the chance to stop by and check it.

myv cafe
MTV Cafe..

One afternoon, when my mom attended an activity out of town with her siblings, I was too lazy to cook dinner and foodie buddy and I opted to find some place cool to dine.

We thought of MTV cafe to veer away from the usual “inihaw” stuff (grilled fish, grilled chicken, grilled pork, etc.), and even quick-service restaurants that are scattered in our neighborhood. MTV cafe could be an option.

There were only a few guests when we arrive, and the attendant directed us to the counter. We are to place our orders there and not while sitted on the table.

organo poster 2
Healthier coffee… #organic

menu
Choices..

menu board
Chalk menu board.. =)

The atmosphere is comfy, though the interiors isn’t not as grand or impressive. Just the usual benches facing 1 seaters and some coffee tables for two, 3 to be exact.

lotus
Lotus candle holder..

for twos
Coffee tables..

accent piece
Their greens matched..=)

Not too many offerings in the menu too. Though what we need are there.

Jen had the buffalo wings.

buffalo wings
Chicken wings that isn’t too spicy..

I opted for the Isabela longganiza. The attendant claimed it is better than the famous Vigan longganiza.

longga
Isabela longganiza..

For a starter, we had their nachos first.

nachos
I’m not so happy with it..=(

And for thirst-quenchers, we had iced coffee.

Ice cafe latte for me. And Black forest for Jen.

our coffee
Syrup pleease..

syrup ko
Oh, there’s my simple syrup..

Service is good, however, my longganiza was a bit burned. And the nachos I think lacks the usual ingredients. I was looking for shaved cabbages, lots of tomatoes, maybe cilantro if they wanted to be authentic and cheese. Where is the cheese? The cheese sauce is okay, though for a cheese lover like, I find it incomplete without some grated cheese on top of it. I also noticed that the oil that they used for the Nachos salsa tasted like re-used oil.

I can be corrected when I’m wrong. I’m so sorry for being the pickiest kid on the block. Still, the service masked my discontent over their food. Not that really bad.

MTV cafe can be an option if you just wanted to have coffee – hot or cold. Their coffee is from Organo, while syrups is again by Torani.

toranis
Toranis!

It is located at: #15 Oliver compound., Barangay Landayan, 4023 San Pedro, Laguna