Sunday, October 8, 2017

Coffee and photography at Shutter Cafe

Themed cafes and restaurants are interesting and fun. And being a photography enthusiast, I was excited to learn about a coffee shop with focus on this field. It's Shutter Cafe along Scout Lazcano near the corner with Tomas Morato in Quezon City. I was there with one of my kids on my weekday day-off recently. 
Well, I was pleasantly surprised to learn one thing about this coffee place -- that it's owned by a Christian man. How did I know? Well, Christian music was played during the entire time we were there. No secular song at all, much to our delight, that I couldn't help but ask the server if the owner was a Christian. The crew answered in the affirmative and even pointed to the man seated with another man near our table. 
It was then that I became interested in their conversation. Sorry, I didn't mean to eavesdrop! It was just that their voices were loud enough to reach us and also, I wanted to know what church they were attending. From their exchanges, it was obvious that the two men were both Christians as they were talking about church ministry. What a blessing to hear two men talking not about women, nor jobs, 
or business, but serving God!
Anyway, Shutter Cafe is full of things concerning photography and there 
is an adjacent area where various equipment are being sold. Also, photography seminars are held here very once in a while.
As for the food, here's what I had with my daughter: 

Quarter Pounder Burger with Cheese, P180.
This was delicious. The beef patty tasted great and the bun was fresh. The veggies were love, adding some healthy goodness to this sinful treat that I now decide to have just once in a while. 

Belgian waffles with ice cream, P150.
My daughter's choice that afternoon, as she craved something sweet.

Iced Caramel Macchiato, P110.
I would usually have hot coffee when eating out but as it was a cloudy but humid 
afternoon, I had my joe iced and a little sweet. 

Cafe Mocha, P100.
My daughter's hot drink that provided thermal contrast with 
the ice cream on her waffles.


In, around and outside Shutter Cafe

Shutter Cafe at 118 Scout Dr. Lazcano near the corner of Tomas Morato, 
Diliman, Quezon City

If you're looking for a nice, quiet place to have coffee, Shutter Cafe may just be your perfect choice in the Tomas Morato Morato area. You're gonna love it there even more if you're into photography, and yes, if you're a Christian who listens
to mostly or solely worship songs.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Always, Mi Amor

As a food blogger constantly looking for new places to eat in and write about, I rarely go back to restaurants that I've already reviewed. However, there's this one place that I keep coming back to even if there's nothing new to write about it. It's Amor Bakery along the busy street of Espana in Manila, near UST.
I first blogged about this place that was really just a "bakery" when it opened in April 2015. Today, I'm happy to report that it has grown really big, with several branches already! Amor also is now already a full service 
restaurant serving hot meals.
The new stores are in SM City Manila, Ongpin St. also in Manila, Tandang Sora in Quezon City, Katipunan also in Quezon City, and SM Center in Sangandaan, Caloocan City. There are also two stores now outside Metro Manila -- at SM Baliwag in Bulacan, and in Cagayan de Oro City. Soon, there will be branches as well 
in Pulilan, Bulacan and in Pampanga.
I visit Amor-Espana every now and then, usually on Sundays after going to church. I love whiling away time there, writing my blog. Sometimes, I tag the kids along; one time, a friend, who came all the way from Mindanao, and knew Amor is my favorite spot that really has a soft spot in my heart. Aww..
What do I love about Amor? The beauty of the place itself. If you haven't been to any of its stores, I strongly urge you to go and see for yourself the lovely interior and experience the relaxing ambiance especially at night when the lovely chandeliers are on, casting faint light as well as shadows. The capiz lamps on tables also 
set a fine, subdued mood that soothes. 
Now on to the food. It's last August that Amor-Espana started to offer hot meals. Before, I would just have bread and coffee or fruit tea as those were all that's available. Nowadays, I could go to have lunch as there's pasta, rice meals, soup and salad. Sliced cake is also available now, in case I'm in need of dessert. Haha!
These are what I've tried out of the new menu so far:

Corn-infused Cream of Cauliflower soup, P139.
This soup is healthy as well as tasty. I thought having cauliflower, it wouldn't taste as good as say, mushroom soup, but I was wrong. For once, I could have something both healthy and delicious. It's flavorful and creamy, only, too thick. I would have liked it more if it were a little more watery. But the piece of garlic toast was love. It was crunchy! 
I wished there were two pieces instead of one.
Kani Spring Roll Salad, P139.
This salad is heavy on the tummy because of the crabmeat and noodle-filled Vietnamese-style spring rolls. The greens are topped with very thin strips of kani or seaweed and everything is drizzled with a sweet peanut sauce. Delicious!

Kung Pao Pasta, P179.
You've gotta give this Asian-style pasta some love because it's really good! It's basically spaghetti noodles with maybe, soy and sesame oil and seeds, with lots of bite-sized chicken, carrots, peanuts and what seemed to me to be either cubed chayote or turnip. Thumbs up to this dish that could give one a filling and satisfying meal.

Braised pork belly with Buttered Vegetable Spears and Mashed Potato, P145.
I loved that there's a lot of veggies here. And the pork is really good! 
The sauce, with it's glorious red color, is sweetish and delightful. 

The only downside to this dish? The pork slices were horribly fatty and there 
was just so little lean meat for me to eat! Oh, Amor, please choose leaner pork 
as this one's gonna give me a heart attack! If you do, this Braised pork belly 
is going to be a perfect dish for lunch or dinner.

Matcha Red Bean cake, P89./slice
This was very new on the menu, offered starting only last Saturday, September 30, 
the server told me after asking if it was good. For me, this was heavenly 
although I'm pretty sure not everyone would agree. This cake's level of 
sweetness is really low, that's why it's the perfect cheat day dessert for
 diabetics like me. Haha! I love matcha and I shun anything too sweet, 
so me and this cake are a match made in heaven, methinks!
Meanwhile, Amor has made available several new bread varieties that 
aren't only visually appealing but yummy too! My top faves are the 
Sausage Danish and Ham BBQ Danish, while the others 
were my kids' orders which they loved.

Sausage Danish, P79. and Ham BBQ Danish, P59. I ordered these 
together with Cappuccino, P145.

Hawaiian Pizza, P79.
                                                Chocolate Bun, P45. 

Pork Floss Bun, 59.; Ham, corn and egg, P49. 
Drink is Chocolate Milk Tea, P95. 

                 As for the drinks, these are what my kids and  I love at Amor:

Caramel Macchiato, 500 ml, P170.

Mocha Frapmor, 500 ml, P160.

Lychee Smorthie, P120.

Lychee Fruit Tea, 500 ml, P85.

In and around Amor in Espana, Manila




Yummy-looking all!


                Amor at the corner of Espana Blvd. and Tolentino St., 
Sampaloc, Manila

Amor Bakery won't be "mi amor" for nothing and you can take my word for it -- you're gonna love it there. Enjoy the food, drinks and the place itself 
together with your family and friends. 
Happy eating!

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Milk tea breaks at Infinitea

Aside from coffee, milk tea makes my day complete. My co-workers know so well that I'm a milk tea addict! Lately, I've been frequenting Infinitea, which is one of the latest additions to the growing number of foodie places in our office neighborhood. This tea destination is now one my favorite hang-out places on Visayas Ave. When I say "hang-out", I don't mean idling time away, though. I mean spending some time working on my tablet while finishing my drink. Yup, I would sometimes spend my lunch breaks there but do office work at the same time. 
Sometimes I'm alone, other times, I have company and these 
are what we/I have had so far:

Blueberry cheesecake, P155./slice
The perfect after-lunch dessert. Infinitea's version is quite good! 
It's firm and just rightly sweet.

Cheese Quesadillas, P110.
This was my friend's order, which she was not happy about 
as they were "very dry".

Twister fries, P90.
My friend and I both loved Infinitea's version of this fried curly potatoes. They're crunchy, flavorful and not as salty as their more popular counterpart in a fastfood chain. 
However, it's pricier here at P90.
Mojos, P90.
Good munchies to go with milk tea. These were fresh from the fryer so they're a little crunchy 
on the outside. Great with the sour cream dip!
Oreo strawberry frappe, Large, P130.
My friend's choice. She loves berries because with their bit of sourness, 
they provide balance to sweet.
Iced coffee milk tea, P90.
My default drink here at Infinitea. I love how perfect coffee mixed with tea and milk is. And I particularly love that I could still taste the freshness of the brewed tea even with the addition of coffee and milk. Yes, I'm an addict and not desiring to recover. Haha!
Cappuccino, Medium, P95.
One day, I went for hot coffee to go with a slice of blueberry cheesecake. It would have been a perfect pair if my cappuccino were a little stronger, though, 'coz it was lacking in caffeine kick.


Inside Infinitea on Visayas Ave., Quezon City

Infinitea near The Food Hive on Visayas Ave., Diliman, Quezon City

Infinitea is definitely one of my favorite milk tea places, particularly their branch 
on Visayas Ave. Aside from their really good drinks and food (except 
for the quesadillas), I like the simple, classic and homey ambiance 
(I love to relax on the comfy couches!) plus the friendly crew. 
Cheers to more tea breaks at Infinitea!