And here’s ANOTHER STORY

And here’s ANOTHER STORY

“Friendship is the comfort of knowing that even if you feel alone, you aren’t.”

I am not much of a mall rat. But one mall near our place that I can’t resist is Evia Lifestyle Center. 

I’ve been there for only several times, and my most recent visit, I noticed a lot has changed already.

There’s an on-going renovation, a pizza parlor is no longer where I last saw it, I’m lost and figuring-out where is the old parking lot and the Mediterranean structure you’ll see from afar. It is now converted into a high-ceiling dome in glass. And they say, we should expect more changes to come.

But we went there just to try “Another Story”. I have been fascinated by it for a long time, it’s being dreamy and whimsical. Just like Cafe Voila (which owner happens to be also the brain behind Another Story), 4th street cafe, Dreamland Arts & crafts Cafe, Cafe Juanita, Vanilla Cupcake, Secret Haven Cafe, among many others. And I’m glad that my two high school friends willingly granted my wish. =)

Character-filled Interiors like this makes me feel like I’m not just in Another story but in another time too.

Like I’m a character in a Fairy tale story, embodied the spirit of someone significant in a story line.

I admire how intricately they put attention to all the details and be unique thus standing – out from the rest.

You will see and feel the owner’s passion even from the way she describes each offering from the menu like sharing her experiences as if we’re her friends or family, or as you choose your order, it felt like you’re reading a story.

And it is not just the ambience, or the interiors, you’ll enjoy their offering too.

We only tried 2 kinds: a green salad: “Another Story salad”, we chose it instantly because it has prawns on it. And as recommended by one of their very affable attendants, we had one of their best-selling pizza. And we truly enjoyed it and all agreed that these people are taking their jobs seriously. We even agreed to go back on a weekday to enjoy the “Eat all you can pizza”, their paella and the other flavors of their cake as we definitely liked the Tiramisu cheesecake that they served as a treat for my birthday. Surely, I’m planning to
try their All-day breakfast and maybe some pasta too. =)

Complimentary bread.
We all love veggies.
And their pizza is delish too. =)
This really surprised me..=)

If you haven’t been to Another Story, please do. It is truly mesmerizing. =)

Moment of beauty…

Second Floor, Evia Lifestyle Center, Daang Hari Road, Alabang, Muntinlupa City

PS

The birthday cake is such a sweet gesture for me. I really appreciate it. =)

 

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We had it at HEAT – Edsa Shangri-la Hotel

We had it at HEAT – Edsa Shangri-la Hotel

“It is lovely, when I forget all birthdays, including my own, to find that somebody remembers me.” ~Ellen Glasgow~

Each year, we usually celebrate our birth month in different places due to our busy schedule, Jen used to call it our month-long celebration.

This year, our last celebration was at Heat Restaurant. Heat stands for Healthy Eating and Amazing Treats.

It is located at the lobby level, Tower wing, 1 Garden way, of Edsa Shangri-la hotel fronting the huge swimming pool, so each time guests passed by our table in their swimming gears, I am no longer surprise.

We tried their buffet for a slightly late lunch (conflict of schedule it is), so we have very limited time bonding and consumed our food like were frenemies. I was telling her that “Hey, I can cook this!” but she says we need to just enjoy eating the more that we were not the ones who got tired preparing it.

This is what we’ve had:

No soft drinks for me. And i really liked that bottomless iced tea.
Should I be awkward with that rice? =)
Especially when Jen opted “no rice” instead.
But she had lots of these.
And some Japanese food too…
While I savored the greens..
And the hakaws!
And of course the sweet treats!
I especially loved this blueberry ice cream topped with unlimited walnuts…=) Of course I took advantage, walnuts is one of my favorites just like pistachio.
Jen isn’t much of a sweet tooth, though she truly enjoyed scooping from the dessert station.
This is what she actually wanted, but we can’t make it for dinner time, she had to work and I have to be home before 7pm, curfews nowadays isn’t only for teens…

So we will just have to set another date for Jen’s lobsters.

While I indulged on the sweets.

If you want to try this gastronomic treat, you can book a table thru:

Phone: (632) 633 8888
Location: Lobby Level, Tower Wing
Operating Hours: 6am – 12 midnight (Mon – Sun)
Dress Code: Smart Casual
Smoking Policy: The hotel’s designated smoking area is located at the 2nd floor, beside the tennis courts.

 

 

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.

CALIFORNIA PIZZA KITCHEN – Taking Italian food seriously like Italians do

California Pizza Kitchen – Taking Italian food seriously like Italians do

“Italian food is all about ingredients, and it’s not fussy and it’s not fancy.”~Woflgang Puck~

At Alabang Town Center, there is a wide array of Italian restaurants which you can choose from, such as Italiannis, Brooklyn Pizza, Amici, Cibo to name a few. When one I frequented. California Pizza Kitchen. It has been there as long as I can remember. I even have a photo with a friend at CPK more than 10 years ago.

So what’s the secret of a place to keep on thriving and remain strong despite of the numerous newly-constructed restaurants which offers the same products like they do.

Yes, CPK originated in the USA, created and owned by Americans, who put some tweaks on this traditional Italian dish and really took it seriously.

I think they do not stop researching for trends, they update their menu and they give out promotions during occasion constantly.

Their nachos now are colored when more than 10 years ago it’s just the usual yellow orange-colored chips. The ingredients they used are fresh and even the condiments are always updated, when it’s just Tabasco in the past years, they sense the demands of picky eaters and Sriracha or Cholulas are always ready on their tables.

Even the logo speaks for a thousand descriptions bringing you to this state where the legendary palm trees abound among other famous trees in California, from there to almost every part of the globe including the Philippines. =)

cpk logo
From 1985 to 2012 to present. =)

And of course not to forget mentioning the training they provide to their people extensive enough to keep customers coming. They keep this ROCK principle (rock philosophy: respect, opportunity, communication, kindness). Allowing their people to be inspired while at work.

So these are some of what they have in their menus:

I am not so much a fan of barbecue flavored stuff, but this hand-tossed pizza had me craving for more. I am used to pepperonis, so this one is new to me, and I really liked it. It is flavorful but not tiring and its’ spiciness is something I can tolerate. I’ve shared before I am not into spicy food, but this one is okay with me. =)

bbq pizza

The usual item that we asked to “advance call” is the nachos, we had this dip I so love, I wanted to do it at home. It’s their spinach artichoke dip, healthy and fun to eat too.

 

We tried one of the pastas too, vegetable primavera, which is also a healthy option.

veggie pasta

The flat bread with four cheese dip: hearth-baked mozzarella, queso quesadilla, smoked Gouda and Velveeta is so addicting.

4 cheese

I learned from the Restaurant Manager that Velveeta is a brand name compared to an American cheese, which texture is softer and smoother than a processed cheese. It is supposed to be consumed in moderation due to its’ high sodium content and preservatives.

While Gouda cheese is all natural from cow’s milk. Aside from the calories it’ll add to your diet, and fats, it’ll give you a little amount of calcium too. So, not bad.

The menu says “green mango salad” though I had yellow mangoes in it and I didn’t bother to contest it, it tasted really good, crunchy, fresh, a little bit funky like I’m a veggie lover all my life remember?

mango salad
Anti-oxidants. =)

So if you happen to visit Alabang Town Center and loves Italian food, you will have a lot of choices, and I’d like to personally recommend that CPK would be one of them. Happy eating!

You can find them in the following addresses:

  1. Alabang Town Center
  2. Greenbelt 5
  3. Bonifacio High Street
  4. Shangri-la Plaza Mall
  5. Century City Mall
  6. Promenade Mall
  7. SM Mall of Asia

You can also find them from time to time, offering promotions at Metrodeal (http://www.metrodeal.com/) if you want to enjoy great deals.

 

The Black Pig

The Black Pig
“Good food is good mood.”
Coming across an article that featured restaurants with the most beautiful and impressive interiors, being a designer,  it has drawn me to see them up close and personal. Neil’s Kitchen was in that list though I’ve been there several times and I must agree that their interiors is not just beautiful, their food is awesome too. The next that caught my attention from the list is The Black Pig.
It is a few blocks away from Neil’s Kitchen. It’s in Alabang too at the second level of Commerce Center. Without the heat of the sun, it is walking distance for me. The Black Pig’s facade isn’t too attractive as the whole place from the outside isn’t well- lighted. But the welcoming smiles of their attendants will compensate for that which kept my brain engaged.
Since Jen already commented:”The placed looked gloomy.” This is because they opted to use hanging lamps and pin lights on selected areas.
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Rustic..
Upon entrance, it is only the time I began admiring the place from the interiors, their furniture, lighting system, the colors that they’ve chosen, the vigilance of their attendants to the table wares (made by a known potter from Laguna), cutlery and the food itself. 
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Floor decal..

 

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Call cards..

 

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Looked Moroccan to me. =)
There are some touches of green elements which add life to the whole place. What will caught your attention is definitely the bar.
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Awesome..

 

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There’s the famous bar..

 

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I liked that swing door going to the kitchen..
It exudes order and class by the use of black and brown finishes. Usually, most bars looked untidy even if the items are properly arranged due to the fact that you see everything from it: sorts of bottles, glass, machines, some bars are even with baskets of fruits displayed on the counter like so much is happening in it. At The Black Pig, you will see the clutter though it will not sore your depicting eyes.
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Coasters made from Guava tree..

 

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All corners are inviting..

 

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And we choose this.

 

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Not yet peak time when we visited..

 

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That chair…

There’s even a guide for drinking wine.

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Very useful especially with me who doesn’t drink any liquor at all.

A cool utensils rack.

 

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Very orderly..

When it comes to food. We had a three course meal altogether which started with a green salad:

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I enjoyed this fresh treat..

I am training my palette with fresh greens and it’s followed by a slow-cooked chicken dish:

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Chicken please. =)

and home-made ice cream for dessert.

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Ube for me and caramel for Jen..

We had the feel of drinking Al fresco with that refreshing raspberry iced tea.

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Al fresco..
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Raspberry iced tea..

According to the attendants, peak time is usually dinner time onward because they serve alcoholic drinks too.

During the afternoon, if you wish for a less crowded place to have lunch or snack. The Black pig will give you that. It is ideal for business meetings too. For the overall experience, dining there, the ambiance, service and carefully prepared food is recommendable.
I suggest that you try it, when you’re heading to the south. They’re located at: Commerce Center Building, Filinvest Ave. corner, E Asia Drive, Filinvest Corporate City, Alabang, Muntinlupa, 1781 Metro Manila