Wildflour Cafe+Bakery

Okay so this is my first time in this acclaimed breakfast place because there’s no branch in the south. Since we were watching a show in Ortigas last New Year, we decided to have brunch (because we stayed up late for New Year’s Eve and we were lazy enough to prepare our own breakfast) at the nearest mall. As it was New Year’s Day, most of the restaurants are closed at 10:00 a.m. and this was the only one open.

The only items available that time were breakfast fare and so we were not able to sample their entrees. It was okay but I was kinda looking for carbo. Anyway, I ended up with the fundido, and some of the mac and cheese, which is great at the first few bites but maybe because I had too much cheese that I started to get umay.

In general, everything was a bit better than good, but it was kind of expensive for the quantity and quality. I got sad because it didn’t live up to the hype for me. Maybe it’ll grow on me once I got a taste of the main dishes.

Complimentary baguette (served hot and fresh!) with salted butter
img_97711

Ham and Mushrooms on Toast
img_97721

Chia Bowl
img_97731

Chorizo Fundido
img_97741

Fluffy pancakes with blueberry and lemon spread
img_97751

Mac and cheese
img_97761

Advertisements

Gourmet Farms

Our last stop during our trip to Tagaytay City was another late lunch, this time at Gourmet Farms along Aguinaldo Highway in Silang, Cavite. I’ve been wanting to go here since forever, ever since I read about how they use their own organic produce from their own garden. Not that I’m into overzealous healthy eating (I call myself a balanced eater), I am normally on the lookout for healthy options for the husband.

So here we are. Another thing I was looking forward to was the Greek-inspired design of the place. The main building, which is the Dining Room, is an imposing white and blue structure reminiscent of Santorini, complete with climbing trellises all over it. At the back and sides are the organic gardens, while up front are a coffee shop for those wishing to just grab a cup and some sweets then go, and souvenir store, where they primarily sell coffee.

IMG_8454[1]

IMG_8453[1]

IMG_8451[1]

IMG_8452[1]

IMG_8456[1]

IMG_8461[1]

IMG_8460[1]

What we had:

Ampalaya tea for Dad
IMG_8457[1]

Lettuce chips with salsa
IMG_8458[1]

Pesto arugula pasta
IMG_8463[1]

Carbonara
IMG_8464[1]

Pasta Alfredo
IMG_8465[1]

Chicken ala Kiev
IMG_8466[1]

Gourmet Pizza
IMG_8467[1]

I immensely enjoyed our meal and stay in the restaurant. As it was nearing 3:00 in the afternoon when we came, it was quiet and we had the chance to leisurely savor the food and the ambience. The taste and presentation of the food were impeccable. I especially like the pesto arugula, however, the pizza was a bit blah for me. Everything else was good. Perfect way to end our family trip.

Stockton Place

My bestest friends and I seldom see each other these days. While we tread different paths now, I always come home to them. And I can foresee that we won’t be seeing each other sometime soon since one of us will be going back to law school come June, and I don’t think I will be able to go out at all when I give birth towards the last quarter of the year. So we dined, and finely at that, last night.

Rino chose this beautiful restaurant in Salcedo, Makati called Stockton Place. He said he was getting too old, and wouldn’t want the noise and bustle of restaurants inside malls.

st8

For a weekday, the place was full, and upon calling for reservations, we were given an al fresco table as most of ones inside the restaurant were already taken. I liked it immediately. There was nothing showy (except some of the diners hehe), and everything just looks nice, clean and classy. It didn’t look like it was built to impress but rather to make one have that feeling of comfort and homeyness.

When I was browsing its website, my initial thought was that the food was quite on the expensive side. But as soon as our orders started coming in, and we dug into them, I realized, it was right off the mark. The portions were big and wonderful. It does not leave one feeling bitin or shortchanged.

For starters, we had:

Tomato soup

st2

I practically had this to myself, and immensely enjoyed it. It has the right amount of sweetness and tartness, and the roasted tomatoes buried in the rich soup gave it the right kick.

Pan Roasted Sirloin Salad

st1

Not much of a salad fan but I liked the arugula and the generous helpings of sirloin.

Clam Linguine

st3

This was good but the texture of the pasta noodles bore a strong semblance to pancit canton noodles. Sauce was delish, though.

We shared the entrees, and even among four, we were not able to finish it all off!

Sole

st5

This one was for the hubby to keep up with his healthy eating habits. The fish was a little bland for my taste but I liked to vegetables and almonds it was sitting on.

Poached chicken

st6

This was the only dish I didn’t get to taste because I was too full of the steak. It didn’t hold that much appeal for me although the chicken skin on top looked good.

Prime Grade Rib Eye

st4

This was the masterpiece. A humongous slab of prime beef that made my eyes and mouth water as it was being set on the table. It was juicy, and had the perfect tenderness and taste. This was a total winner. It was also paired with the most sinful and best fried potatoes I have had in a while.

For dessert, we had Chocolate Marquise

st9

The berries and chocolate are the perfect way to cap the meal and polish all of that goodness. A sweet tooth’s dream come true.

Twas a good night. We had excellent food and I was in even better company. I do wish for more times like these.

st7

Fire Lake Grill

I still owe a post on how we celebrated our fifth year wedding anniversary two weekends ago. I still haven’t put all the photos taken from various cameras in one place so I couldn’t see which pictures I want to include in one go.

Anyway, so I’ll go ahead with this one since we took another brief road trip to Tagaytay, this time with the whole family. Mico took us to the Fire Lake Grill, one of the several restaurants in the Cliffhouse compound overlooking Taal Volcano (the hotel also looks mighty fine here but seems a little hard on the pocket). It offers a magnificent view, which I think is better than the one fronting the Taal Vista Hotel where we stayed the last time. It is more “photo-ready” and perfect for photography buffs and enthusiasts.

fl10

It also has a central garden and pond where the little girl had fun.

fl11

The restaurant had a nice, clean, ranch-y look. I love the all-white motif.

fl1

Here is Mischa with her ninong

fl2

If it were not noontime, I’d probably want a table outdoors to sniff all that fresh air. So we just settled for one inside. Mischa tried to wait for her food patiently. Which took all of ten minutes before she was out sprinting out the door again.

fl3

Didn’t take them much long to serve the food. Five points agad. I think their bestsellers are their steak, but which we didn’t have. What we had were all good though. Well-done, well-prepared, nice to look at. Oh, and quite expensive, too. But well worth it.

Kebab for Mico.

fl4

Salmon for the husband, ma and dad.

fl5

Prawns with angel hair pasta for me. Two thumbs up, especially for the pasta! Mischa had a lot of it.

fl6

Baked penne pasta with broccoli for the kid, but which she didn’t eat so we ended up sharing it.

<fl7

We polished our wonderful lunch with coffee and cake.

Flourless chocolate

fl8

Vanilla and salted caramel cheesecake, which was so sinfully goooood!

fl9

Drive was worth it although I had a really bad experience on the way home, which is just too unsavory to share.

Ihop

I am a big fan of breakfasts! I can eat it at any time of the day. Apart from that, as a true-blooded Filipino, I eat ’em big. On a normal day, we have rice at home, which we partner with any viand (longganisa, tocino, nuggets, daing na bangus, tapa, hotdogs, bacon, are just some of my repertoires). On other days, pancakes, hash browns, waffles, make my day. I’m not really a big fan of breads, though.

Anyway, so happy Ihop now has a branch in my part of the world (south of Manila), yay! So breakfasts in the morning are a thing of the past.

i5

When I saw down with the menu, it took me so long to decide among the many fares. I wanted them all. But in the end, we settled for these:

To start with, Seasonal Mixed Fruit and Yogurt

i7

I settled for eggs (I’ll be back for the others). Bacon Temptation Omelette won my heart this time.

i2

It was y-u-m-m-y with all the bacon and cheeses. But I don’t know, though, if I’m just takaw-tingin, but I kinda lost steam eating it towards the end. Maybe it was a tad too big for me. And the bacon could use more minutes in the pan for that just about right crisp. It was a little soggy.

Thank God it came with two pieces of Ihop’s signature buttermilk pancakes. Pamatid-umay.

i4

Had fun pouring all the different syrup. But I liked the pecan butter best.

i6

The husband had this grilled balsamic chicken with house salad on the side. He said my own version tastes better. Haha. Sipsip!

i3

i1

A little bit expensive but still went home with a happy tummy. And I really promise to return.

Blackboard Restaurant

One word to describe this restaurant in Podium: disappointing. It could have the been the place of a long-awaited reunion among lifelong friends who haven’t gotten together for years. It would have been the backdrop of laughter and stories.

Since two of us in the group work at the Asian Development Bank next door, and have tried almost every restaurant in the mall, we scouted for one they haven’t been to. We chanced upon Blackboard at the fifth floor. The decor was avant garde enough for one to be curious and try the place, however, everything else just seemed to be off.

While it did host our catching up, it was able to do so because of the waiting time for the food, which arrived more than thirty minutes after we ordered. And they taste as pitiful as they look:

b1

b2

So when the rest of our crew arrived, we just transferred to Shi Lin, where I forgot to take pictures of the food. Just this happy group:

b3

Gosh, I miss these guys at work. They were my contemporaries, and we have been through a lot of life lessons together – travels, drinking sessions, food trips, boyfriends/girlfriends, shopping, babies, promotions, heartbreaks, even deaths. I wish I could still see and be with them everyday.

Tiara Restaurant

My review of the Tiara Restaurant deserves a separate post from the Abu Dhabi post. This was the only fine dining experience we allowed ourselves to have during our Middle East trip. The restaurant was located atop a revolving deck on a 55-storey tower attached to the Marina Mall. You reach it via a dizzying elevator ride, and thank God I was too far from the glass windows to notice.

The restaurant was highly recommended to us by the protocol officer of the Philippine Embassy. And why not, you get to enjoy 360 degree views of the city while sitting down to a proper meal. The deck takes on a leisurely rotation, which takes about an hour and a half.

And guess what, our server is again a Filipina.

Meals start off with bread with several spreads. We didn’t order any more starters aside from that, and went on to order entrees, which we shared with each other. Mine was the steak, which was done to perfection.

image

image

image

ad2

ad1