Stores They Should Have in Katipunan

This June I weighed in and was thrilled to find out I lost 6 pounds over the summer. After three months in college, they have reattached themselves to me - and I can’t seem to lose weight again. Going to a university in Katipunan is a dietkiller in itself.

You see, you can find practically everything along Katipunan Avenue. From Starbucks to Banapple to Greenwich to Cerealicious to Flaming Wings and even to a mini-art gallery, there’s almost nothing that isn’t within walking distance. As a dormer, I am faced with the consistent dilemma of where to eat dinner. This, friends, is what has caused my momentary lapse in weight loss.

In addition to the already booming volume of existent stores, a new building is on the rise as we speak - Regis Center - which will house Red Mango, Saint Alp’s Teahouse, and the Peanut Butter Company, among others. A Dairy Queen branch is soon to open right beside Pizza Hut, and I hear Cravings is in the works next to McDonald’s.

Hitherto, it never really dawned on me that Katipunan could still possibly lack anything else, until I sat down and thought it through. Believe you me, it was a conscious effort, but here is my list:

1. Tokyo Tokyo

Now, who wouldn’t want this nearby? One bite of their Tempura or their Chicken Yakitori and zoom - you’re up on cloud nine where nobody else can bloody mess around with you, regardless of whatever hell you had to go through during the school day. Face it, we all need a break from fast food and those godforsaken squid balls they sell on the street. Bottomline, Tokyo Tokyo is prime. If not a legit store, they should open up a stall in the Ateneo.

2. The White Hat

I love how the White Hat is faithful to the real flavor of frozen yogurt - sweetness with a tinge of sour.

3. Fully Booked/Powerbooks




Now I know this doesn’t exactly fall under the food category, but if either one of these two bookstores opened up in Katipunan, we would all just die. Ovaries would combust everywhere. The guys would grow ovaries and then they would explode. Just for this.

4. Power Mac Center

There’s an iCampus store in the Ateneo but it’s not much to play around with - it occupies just a tiny corner of the LS Bookstore. Give us a full-blown store complete with 27-inch iMacs and the jumbo MacBook Pros and we’re talking.

5. Mrs. Fields

I have not one, but 27 sweet teeth, and where else better to do something about my cravings than Mrs. Fields? (Sigh.) Their chocolate-chip cookies are divine, and I would do anything to get a bite of one of their mocha cakes. (Sigh…) And I can’t stop sighing.

In the meantime, I can’t wait to rush into the new stores once they open up. Diet, schmiet - I will die obese, but happy.


Manila Bake

A week ago my mom and I dropped by Manila Bake, a bakery along Katipunan Avenue, and got these:

  • Mango Cream Pie: The crust was more on the flaky side, the cream had a faint mango taste, but the mango petals were more sour than sweet. It looked really pretty though.
  • Banana Cream Pie: The crust was more on the crumbly side and the chocolate, banana and cream had the right amount of sweetness. I wasn’t sure if there was peanuts in this but it seemed like I could taste a layer of peanut butter.
  • Pineapple Pie: This one was pretty good - sweet pineapple filling with a flaky crust.
  • Calamansi (Philippine “lemon”) Muffin: This was probably the most interesting for me among the 4 desserts. I liked the sweet-sour, crunchy sugar-calamansi rind topping on the soft, not-too-sweet muffin. The flavor was definitely more concentrated on top, I was expecting the muffin to have a bit of calamansi flavor too.

7 October 2011 | “Katipunan hates me”

Ate my second dinner of the night (had pizza during my last class of the sem with the lit majors) at Jam and Jay’s belated birthday bash! Kamille came all the way from Taft to celebrate with us. She took a CAB from the Katipunan Station to Shakey’s because she got lost, then spilled gravy all over her blouse! Haha! Some things never change —forever klutz. Love you ‘nay! ;)

UPCAT 2012

Tomorrow and the day after tomorrow are the days that will turn seniors’ gimmick nights to the most memorable assessment of their lives. Just like what it did to me few years back. 

While reading posts about UPCAT in Tumblr, I just saw myself smiling because of the different stories of Tumblr people about their share on this exhilarating event on the years they have taken it. Then, I remember mine. I was sharing my experience in UPCAT back then when it (I’m not gonna tell what is “it”.) finally hit me. I’m almost at the end of my story when I scrapped the whole text post and do this instead. 

I really don’t want to share my UPCAT story. It’s not that I think people cares, anyway. 

It’s an inspiring story though. But, I just don’t want other people to know it yet as it was one of the saddest episodes of my life. I don’t care about whatever happened that day. However, whenever I remember it, I can still feel the same feeling I felt back then. And it saddens me. :’( 

Now, it’s drama. LOL. I am cutting this shit now (After all, I’m an UPCAT qualifier.) and abruptly want to say good luck to all future Iskolar ng Bayan!

K&L Cafe: Bringing A Taste of Baguio to Manila

Coffee shops and cafes can be found in just about any street corner or mall nowadays, whether it be one of the thousands of branches of Starbucks or even one of the big local coffee chains. While those areas offer a convenient place to get a quick beverage or to do some light reading or browsing, they are usually quite generic and impersonal, similar to how it would be to eat at a fast food restaurant. However, there are a few cafes that offer so much more in terms of personality and unique ambiance, and I just found one such cafe right along Katipunan Avenue.

K&L Cafe by Blushing Cupcakes is a small and cozy cafe located at White Plains subdivision in Quezon City, right in front of the upside down house of Pan de Amerikana. It is owned and managed by sisters Karen and Loren who have turned their love for food and baking from just primarily a cupcake business to a full-fledged cafe serving home-grown comfort food. The cafe’s name immediately got my attention because it also reminds me of the initials of two other persons (hmm..). The cafe does not just serve your typical comfort food as K&L Cafe brings a taste of Baguio City right into the heart of Metro Manila.

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02.18.11: Flaming Wings (NY Buffalo Wings)

Who’s game for HS batch reunion in the middle of the semester? HAHA. Well, we do. :) We just had our 5th year anniversary celebrated last October 2010 but we were still opt for more gatherings and bonding time! Another reason why we had a reunion last Feb 18 because it’s Czarina’s birthday last Feb 7 and we only seldom see her since she’s very busy studying Medicine at UP PGH. Anyway, we decided to eat at Flaming Wings, Katipunan. (Sorry I failed to get a photo of the place). Here’s what we ordered:

Pulled Pork Barbeque Plate || Php 148

(L-R) Smokey Barbeque Chicken Tenders; Mild ‘n Sweet Chicken Tenders; Carribean Jerk Chicken Tenders; (all with blue cheese dip, rice and drink for only Php120 each)

Smokey Barbeque Chicken Wings || Php 120 (with blue cheese dip, rice and drink)

And for dessert, Wicked Oreos || Php 75.

We had a great time especially when we tried to eat Yakee bubblegum and see who had the mukha-sim face in the photos. Jaynel, our pseudo-batchmate, came with us that night.

If you want to learn more about Flaming Wings, you can click this link: Flaming Wings.

/Photos were taken by: Andrea Hannah Valencia and Rod Barit.

Casa Verde: My Favorite Dining Spot at U.P. Town Center

The U.P. Town Center in Katipunan Avenue is fast becoming one of my favorite dining places in the city. This relatively new “strip mall” from Ayala Land is their second commercial partnership with the University of the Philippines after their UP Ayala Technohub in Commonwealth Avenue. The U.P. Town Center, which opened late last year, is actually just a small portion of the entire 7-hectare development which in the future will house office buildings, cinemas, and an even bigger mall. But for now, the more than 20 pioneering restaurants in this area are enough to entice students and foodies from around the neighborhood to spend their lunch and dinners here.

Some of the notable restaurants at U.P. Town Center that I have already dined at include IHOP, Ginza Barin, Vanilla Cupcake, 8 Cuts Burger, and J. Co Donuts. There are several others I am still eager to try like Tokyo Tonteki, Shrimp Bucket, Steveston Pizza, Red Onion, and more, but there is one restaurant that had truly stood out of me which I have returned to several times already, and that is Casa Verde.

The first time I heard of Casa Verde was during my trip to Cebu last year (read about it here) when I was looking for popular and recommended restaurants there. I was about to dine at their Cebu I.T. Park branch but had to change my plans for another dining option. Casa Verde was established in Cebu in 2002 by a family with Spanish roots, with its original branch starting as a small canteen at the family’s ancestral home. 12 years and three branches later, Casa Verde has become one of the most popular and well-loved restaurants in Cebu.

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