February 5, 2017

Sarsa Kitchen & Bar, Manila…crispy buko pie is the best of the best

To most, Filipino cuisine is surprising unfamiliar as it lacks a mainstream following. While Chinese, Thai and Japanese restaurants can be found in any respectable-sized city it’s just not the case with Filipino food. One challenge is, it’s very hard to describe.

The food at Sarsa is a generous blend of savoury richness and fresh flavours.  The riot of Filipino dishes, both classic and new-school are stir fried French beans (+ ginamos, SARSA XO sauce, tinapa flakes and crispy dilis), grilled blue marlin (+ crab sauce and squid ink) and sizzling kansi (+batwan gravy). The standout course is the crispy buko pie a la mode (+ pandan sauce and ice cream) which is the perfect ending to a meal at Sarsa. Buko pie is a traditional Filipino pastry made with young coconut meat.

There’s something about the simplicity of this Sarsa version of buko pie that makes it so appealing. It’s the best of the best. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…




December 13, 2014

Museum Café/Kabila Filipino Bistro, Manila…One of the most relaxed and enjoyable places to eat casually in Makati

Museum Café, aka M is a restaurant with a Pinoy fusion menu opposite the entrance to the Ayala Museum that looks on to the Greenbelt complex’s lush gardens. An alternate Modern Asian menu is also available to make your deciding what to eat a notch more challenging. You can choose to be seated on either the right (Museum Café) or the left side of the room (Kabila). You can also cross-order from either menu. The  Kabila Filipino cuisine here is high up there for me – head and shoulders above Fely J’s in terms of flair and selection.

But what sets this place apart is the quality of the dishes.  The presentation of the food is captivating.  The aroma, inviting.  The taste, fresh and innovative…. What else can you ask for? From the comments of everyone on the table, everything was delicious!!!

One of the most relaxed and enjoyable places to eat casually in Makati, the traditional dishes are tastefully reinterpreted into a variety of intriguing new dishes, albeit with familiar flavor combinations. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

museum cafe, manila

July 28, 2013

Fely J’s Kitchen, Manila…good but nothing stood out as great.

Filed under: Food & Beverage, Philippines, restaurant — PEr @ 10:25 pm

Fely J’s Kitchen’s fare is solid, but there was nothing that stood out as great. You may satisfy your tummy, but you probably won’t be wowed

Everything on the menu seemed too scrumptious to pass up, so we went for maximum coverage. We came with an appetite and ordered a crap load of food…Sugpo sa karnias (mildly curried prawns with tomato and karnias), Crispy patang bawang (traditional favourite pork leg deep fried and served with a special dipping sauce), Ginataang gulay at hipon (shrimps and vegetables sauteed with ginger and spices then finished with coconut cream), Leche flan (caramel custard old manila style). The best of the lot was easily Claude’s dream (macapuno ice cream with coconut meat an pandan jelly ) It was very cooling and refreshing.

Fely J’s Kitchen is a pretty decent restaurant.  While the food was good, it still wasn’t amazing or anything special at all. This is the true truth as i say it as it is…



October 28, 2012

Nurture Spa Village, Tagaytay City…2 hours drive for an average massage.

Situated in Tagaytay City, Nurture Spa Village is a 2-hour drive from Manila. It was named as one  of the 28 Most Relaxing Spas in Asia by CNN Go (June 2010), and one of the Top Seven Spas of the Philippines by Asia Spa Magazine (May-June 2010 issue).

The ambience and environment – in their strategic location in the midst of well-tended gardens and the province’s natural tropical forest – is definitely a haven of rest.

Before a treatment, there’s a foot wash “ritual” using a corn scrub and floral-scented water. My therapist was professional and warm and was explaining each step of the treatment to me. After some time, I find that a tad annoying as I would prefer to have peace and quiet. Before the massage, you will be asked to fill a short customer information sheet and treatment sheet about which areas you feel sore and want more focus on. I don’t think the therapist ever read them.

I enjoyed the environment and the cooler temperature at Nurture Spa Village, but I would not drive 2 hours (each way) for an average massage. This is the true truthas I say it as it is…

August 18, 2012

Lorenzo’s way, Manila…so-so fare

I like homemade Filipino food, but not sure about this restaurant. The ambiance is very Filipino and traditional. The staff were very friendly and attentive.

Sadly, the food was just average. The crispy pata (served with gising-gising and garlic rice) which is a popular Filippino pork dish was lacking flavour.  Bulalo is a Filipino stew made from beef shanks and marrow bones. The meat was not tender and juicy as I am used to. If a Filipino place can’t make bulalo, they don’t deserve to be called just that.

I had high expectations of this place before but I was disappointed. First impressions are big with me and they failed in this area, in my eyes. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

May 27, 2012

2nd’s, Manila…I am sure to go back for 2nds after my first visit

2nd’s is a great little restaurant which is set up like a homey living room with a laid-back vibe.

I can see why the beef rib adobo is their bestseller. The slow braised beef ribs adobo with garlic, served with steamed rice and green mango and tomato salsa is indeed my all time favourite comfort food here. Delicious. We also had the three little pigs kawali (crispy pork belly with rosemary, foie gras bites, green mango and tomato salsa with steamed rice and special liver sauce) The roasted garlic rice is also very memorable.

Great food great service what more could you ask for !!!! I am sure to go back for 2nds after my first visit. This is the true truth as i say it as it is…

December 30, 2011

XO46 Bistro Filipino, Manila…I’ll be back!

I had a truly great, satisfying, and well-prepared meal. I have to give them a perfect score for everything, even the warm, friendly and accommodating service. I love the feel of this place…earth tones give the place an inviting, charming, warm and homey feel – perfect for a relaxed meal.

The extensive menu offers you the best of traditional Filipino dishes. Since this is a Filipino restaurant ,  chef did well in serving puto instead of bread.  Puto – for those who don’t know – is one of the Philippines’ many varieties of Rice Bread.

Bangus Salpicao (fish) was not bad.  Sugpo sa aligue was fabulously savoury – baked prawns in a special sauce with crab fat that melts in your mouth.  Kare kareng crispy tadyang was served with the sauce separate from the meat which is crispy beef belly laid out in slices on a platter. salabat sa tanglad (ginger drink) really hit the spot: it was refreshing and a real treat, especially for a ginger lover like me! What a great way to cool down.

To borrow from Arnie…I’ll be back! This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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