A belly-aching reunion

We must have all gone home with bellies full of delicious food, and more importantly, laughter. I love my staff now, don’t get me wrong, but really, nothing compares to the old samahan of the original members of our division. I don’t know if it’s me, but my new anaks who comprise our present-day division are not as close or as fun-loving as we were before. Maybe I don’t get them, or vice versa. hehe. Anyway, it’s a different ball game with different players.

So the old PMO folks got together last Friday. As I said, it was another hilarious reunion. Good thing we decided to book a function room at Casa Roces because I think we almost tore the place down. What a ruckus! We really should do this more often. Sometimes, when we are together, I forget that time does pass by, because it always seem like we just saw each other yesterday. There are no dull or awkward moments! Nothing changes much, except maybe our ages.



My folks just celebrated their ruby anniversary three days ago. And being the kind of people they are, they are not prone to celebrations, especially those not involving their children. So it went up to us to prepare something for them. An intimate dinner with some wine would have been the order of the day but we thought that they probably wouldn’t enjoy themselves without us. And so because I wanted something new for them instead of the usual mall fares, and because I fell in love with this, I decided to bring them to Casa Roces for dinner. Looks like they enjoyed themselves naman but I really wanted it to be extra special pa. Hmmm, maybe I ought to buy them something ruby. After all, it’s not everyday every couple celebrates their 40th wedding anniversary.

Gee, that’s a really long time, don’t you think? Sometimes I do ask myself if they ever get bored with each other (just musings, please don’t judge me). I wonder if they still remember the details of their wedding day in the same church the hubby and I got hitched? Can they still recall the love in the air? The quiet anticipation? The jitters? I sometimes think about what they think when they see us, their children, and how they raised us. Are they proud? Do they have a sense of satisfaction?

My little family has been staying with them for the past seven months ever since we moved out from our previous home. What could they have been doing if not taking care of my daughter?

But really, you gotta hand it to them. We’re a long way off from the foundation they have laid (we will also be celebrating our third later this month). I look at them with a mixture of awe and envy. But as my brother put it, forever is indeed possible. May you guys have a fuller life ahead! We are beyond grateful for all that you have done to help us establish ourselves and make a mark in this world.

Casa Roces

Finally able to dine at Casa Roces. I’ve been wanting to ever since I saw the reviews and photos over at Daphne’s and Anton’s sites. Chose to go there on a weekday to avoid possible throngs of people, especially as it is nearing Christmas, and many people are probably keen on reunions and all sorts of get-togethers.

The place was especially dressed up with twinkling lights in the spirit of the season so there was that extra oomph to the new “old” house-turned-restaurant. Upon arrival though, I didn’t like that they had no available parking area that night (although reviews show that they have valet parking). We had to do with the side street across the Malacanang compound, and that night was especially dark because of the intermittent rains that have been pouring all week. I was a little afraid that I’d step on some dog poop or something on that dark alley.

Anyhow, I soon forgot that little inconvenience as soon as we entered the compound, and the bright lights enveloped us in a comfortable warmth. A koi pond to the left, and an old wooden door with a brass knocker greeted us as we stepped into the compound. I immediately had that feel good moment as we wove our way among mismatched chairs and tables, to our table leading to the patio. How I wish our ancestral house in Batangas could be restored to something like this! While ours lack the same grandeur and well-kept, polished appearance, we did have similar furniture, like the wooden living room set and side tables, as well as the flooring. I know it would take a significant amount of bucks to restore our own house. Sigh!

The menu cover

Back to the dining experience. Since there were five of us, we each ordered what took our fancy, but eventually shared everything. We started with Onion Soup Gratin (which I do not have a photo of) and Truffle Mushroom Puree (Which I don’t like to post because the presentation wasn’t that great, it was a little messy like the soup sloshed all over the cup as the waiter carried it from the kitchen and served it on the table). Aside from two kinds of soup, we had our senses get teased by:

Choritos en Balsamico

Marinated Artichoke Salad

Warm Breaded Goat Cheese Salad

I love the choritos! It was kind of bitin as there were five of us sharing. lol. Much like the goat cheese, too. The salads were ok although I am not really fond of salads in general so not much I can say about them.

Oven-Baked Salmon Wellington

Bulalo Steak ala Pobre

Fettuccine with Bleu Cheese and Roasted Mushrooms

Spaghettini Gambas ala Jillo

Pan-Fried Sole ala Beure Noisette

Hands down, all the food we had were beyond terrific. I especially loved the salmon although I find the crust a little too thick that sort of drowns the flavor of the fish. Everything seemed to have been excellently prepared. I wish we could have gotten the other entrees, such as the Binagoongan and Pork Belly Humba but there was just no more room. I thanked my lucky stars that nobody thought of ordering lengua.

Both the hubby and I had the salabat soda, which is brewed ginger formed into little ice cubes dunked in soda water.

After all that glorious food came dessert, which, cliche as it may sound, are just to die for.

Leche Flan Brulee

Malacanang Frozen Souffle

Basque Apple Tart

As an added treat, we got to tour the entire house. The second floor is home to several function rooms named after various broadsheets back in the day, such as the Manila Times and La Vanguardia. These can be reserved for private occasions for a fee. Special thanks goes out to Debbie who showed us around, and provided snippets of the house’s colorful history. There are also tables out on the patio, which would be perfect for an intimate meal on a cool, star-filled night.

Wanted to take home some delicious-looking cakes and pastries as they also have a bakery (maybe next time):

All in all, this restaurant cum cafe cum bakery merits my two thumbs up! Prices aren’t that bad, either.