Regional Super Pancit Specials Trip with Pancitlove

Article by PancitLove
Photos by GoManila
Videos by ManilaEatUp

Though pancit is as Filipino as Boracay, John Lloyd Cruz and EDSA traffic, it wasn’t born in the Philippines. The greatest gift of the Chinese to mankind arrived on Philippine shores as early as the 12th century via lunchboxes of Chinese merchants who used to trade with Tondo, Manila residents. It became popular among locals because it was easy to cook, versatile, and paired well with other local dishes. Pancit can be the main meal, a side dish, the viand itself, or a carbs-on-carbs party between bread (genius!) as merienda. It can be eaten at any time of the day. It can be eaten as simply as seasoned noodles on a plate or as a fancy, complex dish with scores of ingredients.

From its foreign origins, pancit has become truly Filipino as we’ve incorporated our many regional flairs and variation. Now, almost every community in the country has a trademark pancit. They feature local ingredients, tastes, and techniques in cooking. They translate their own story and experiences into the simple noodle dish. Our extremely diverse culture made pancit a true Filipino dish and an integral foundation of our cuisine. @PancitLove is my humble attempt to capture all of those. A diary of my love for pancit and hopefully through this platform I can share more about pancit, the panciteria, and the stories behind them.   

The influx of workers from the provinces, the growing palate of the burgeoning middle class, and the ease of access to information and transportation are fueling a growing demand for regional food here in Metro Manila, and pancit is at the forefront. Now, people don’t have to go to their provinces just to have a taste of home. Here are some of the best regional pancit dishes that you can have here in Metro Manila you just have to endure the metro’s hellacious traffic.

PANCIT BATIL PATUNG

To say that Tuguegaraoeños are obsessed with Batil Patung is a gross understatement. There is a panciteria at practically every street corner of the city. Eating batil patung is like taking a shower to them, they have it at least thrice a week during rainy days and as much as they want in a day during summer. It is comfort food at its finest.

Batil Patung is a miki, or fresh egg noodle, dish that gets its name from the manner eggs are incorporated into the noodles. The word batil came from the Spanish word batir (to beat), for the beaten egg in the ‘sauce’ that is served together with the dish, while patong, or patung in Ibanag, is to put on top of, for the poached egg that is placed on top of the pancit. The springy miki cooked in carabao bone broth is then topped with sautéed ground carabao meat, pork liver, crunchy mixed vegetables, and the occasional chorizo and carajay, a type of super crispy pork belly.  Tuguegaraoans have always been in love with pancit specifically miki guisado, but in the 70’s, Teyo’s Panciteria invented the pancit batil patung that we know today.   

CAGAYAN’S BEST Batil Patung capitalized on the hunger pangs of Tuguegaraoans in the metro in 2011, and while few can claim that they are the best, this small panciteria in Sampaloc, can stake that claim with a straight face.

Here’s a short video of our visit to CAGAYAN’S BEST:

CAGAYAN’S BEST
SDRC Building, 1318 Gerardo Tuazon St, Sampaloc, Manila, Philippines

PANCIT CABAGAN

In the late 1880’s, a Chinese merchant named Sia Liang or “Dianga” fell in love with a Filipina and decided that he had found a home in Cabagan, Isabela. Together with his wife, they started a small noodle factory that made his miki recipe along with a panciteria that served his miki guisado. Little did he know that he had started what would become a rich pancit culture in northeast Luzon. Dianga’s original pancit Cabagan is made only from fresh miki sa lihiya (lye water), dried shrimp, bagoong alamang, soy sauce, and pork broth. It is served with sauce made from the broth the noodles were cooked in. Later versions of the dish added vegetables, igado (an Ilocano pork liver stew), carajay and hard-boiled quail eggs, resulting in today’s signature, extravagant presentation of the dish- a great symphony of flavors and textures bathed in a rich sauce.

The best pancit Cabagan in the metro is found in an 18-year-old panciteria in Blumentritt, Manila. You won’t miss it as they have this huge red sign that just says the dish, a feat of hubris worthy of their product. PANCIT CABANGAN SA BLUMENTRITT gets their noodles from Cabagan, Isabela fresh and cooks around 30 kilos of it every single day. The place is packed from lunch until dinner, I advise people to go there before or after those times, but if you are a veteran at lining up for milk tea and ramen places, you’ll be fine.

Here’s a short video of our visit to PANCIT CABAGAN SA BLUMENTRITT:

PANCIT CABAGAN SA BLUMENTRITT
875 Blumentritt Road, Sampaloc, Manila, Philippines

PANCIT LUCBAN

My only real connection to Lucban, Quezon is its simple, handy but very delicious pancit habhab. Pancit habhab is made from miki which also goes by the name pancit Lucban. What makes this special is that wheat noodles are smoked and dried, giving it a smoky flavor to the dish, and lends it structural integrity so it retains its springiness and chewiness even when exposed to heat for extended periods of time. Pancit habhab is sold in almost every street corner of Lucban. It is an ideal fast food cooked in pork lard, with bits of sayote and served in a piece of banana leaf. It is doused with vinegar and then vigorously slurped down, or “habhab”-ed.

BUDDY’S RESTAURANT was a Quezon food institution long before they expanded operations to the metro and with their foray to the capital, they took pancit Lucban to a whole new level. Their version is made with miki sautéed with copious amounts of vegetables and lechon kawali. The dish is then topped with raw white onions for added crunch and flavor. It is served with vinegar like how they do it in Lucban. Sorry, no calamansi, folks. Stay classy. 

Buddy’s started as burger place in Lucban but its popularity grew when it embraced its Lucbanon and Quezonian roots and added Quezonian fare to their menu, carried by their flagship pancit.

PANCIT CHAMI

Pancit Chami is a saucy dish of stir-fried thick miki noodles, meat, and vegetables. It’s also known as miki or lomi guisado in some areas of the country.  The dish’s name was derived from Chinese words cha (chaocal) which means stir-fry and mi (miantiao) which means noodles, but in Lucena, it is called by its whole name, pancit chami tamis-anghang to highlight Lucena City’s sweet and spicy version. 

Every year, Lucena City celebrates its love of their pancit by holding a Chami festival since 2006 as an additional attraction to the Pasayahan Festival held in May. The highlight of the festival is the Chami cooking contest where panciteros from all over the city compete for bragging rights of making the best pancit chami tamis-anghang in all of Lucena and practically, the nation.

People can enjoy Lucena’s pancit chami at BUDDY’S RESTAURANT branches around Metro Manila. Buddy’s significantly toned down the heat of their chami so both adult and kids can enjoy its savory sweet goodness. You could just ask the wait staff for a bowl of labuyo. 

PANCIT EFUVEN

My first exposure to Ilonggo cuisine was when my dad decided to bring the family to CHICKEN BACOLOD in Katipunan for Sunday lunch. Inasal hadn’t blown up yet then so the cuisine was novel to me. There were two items that stood out, pancit batchoy and pancit efuven guisado. Efuven is a staple in Ilonggo cuisine. It is thin, flat noodles made from high grade wheat flour. It looks like a linguine, has the texture of ramen noodles and tastes like canton. It is then cooked like chopsuey with noodles. The thick sauce with all its flavours cling to the pancit efuven like an obsessed ex-girlfriend.     

The information I got regarding the origins of pancit efuven is incomplete at best. I can only rely on the one I got from Nancy Lumen’s article Pancit Republic published on the Phlippine Center for Investigative Journalism journal. Lumen notes that efuven is derived from the name of the pancit maker. Efuven is weird name right? Maybe it’s a portmanteau of the kind of noodles and the name of the maker, e-fu is a kind of noodles, right? Maybe the name of the maker has a ‘ven’ in it, like Ven Diesel. Sounds about right.

PANCIT PUSIT

Pancit pusit was originally pancit choca ensu tinta, Chavacano  for pancit in squid and ink, and is one of the most unique pancit dishes. The love-child of Caviteno, Basque-Mexican, and Chinese influences, made possible by the Manila-Acapulco Galleon Trade, it was developed in Cavite during the Spanish occupation. It is a pancit guisado dish made with sotanghon and squid or cuttlefish ink adobo. It is garnished with kinchay, green onions, toasted garlic, and labuyo.

It is ironic that traditional Caviteno cuisine, and Tagalog cuisine in general, is hard to find in Manila considering its proximity. Fortunately, restaurants like CASA DAZA in UP Town Center ensure Tagalog cuisine is represented in Metro Manila’s burgeoning food scene. The restaurant serves an excellent version of pancit pusit that they call Pancit Midnight. The blackness of the sotanghon is the midnight sky and the pusit and other toppings are the stars and constellation. Can you imagine it already?

PANCIT LANG-LANG

If you are an unbelievably bright student of Philippine History, like me, ehem! you would know that Pancit Lang-lang is indelibly written in history through the food symbolism-filled chapter 25 of El Filibusterismo. The ingredients and presentation of the dish is thoroughly described that you can probably cook it based from the novel. It is not surprising because pancit lang-lang of Imus, Cavite, happens to be the favorite pancit of Gat Jose Rizal. In fact, he makes a detour to Imus when on a trip to and from Manila just to have a bowl of his favorite pancit. Pancit lang-lang is traditionally made with sotanghon, shrimp, chicken, mushrooms, and assorted vegetables. It is served like a soup and topped with thinly sliced omelette, and toasted garlic and onions.

CASA DAZA’s version of pancit lang-lang is not like that. Theirs is a combination of sotanghon, fresh miki and bihon as if flaunting their noodle expertise.  The noodles are cooked with chicken, shrimp, mushrooms, assorted vegetables and served guisado style. The aroma of the dish slaps you in the face with joy and happiness that even though Jose Rizal became the greatest of the Malay race at age 35 and here you are, older than him, and just doing pancit reviews, you can proudly say that Rizal never tasted this kind of pancit lang-lang, ever. 

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People Are Crazy For Gram Cafe’s Pancakes — We Are Too

Article by Pepe Samson
Photos by Manila Eat Up

We are obsessed with anything from Japan.

And why wouldn’t we be—the Japanese simply do everything with reverence and determination. Wherever you look, it’s evident how they pour their heart and soul into something and devote most of their lives perfecting, mastering it. Technology, food, crafts—there’s nothing they do half-heartedly, but of course, as big foodies, we are most interested with food.

Take the souffle pancake, for instance. Yes, it’s all over Instagram. Yes, people are lining up for it. But this is one hype we completely understand and embrace. Those jiggly, fluffy things look gorgeous—whether plain or with all the trimmings—but for us, the fact that these are Japanese-made make them even more attractive.

The pancake is a typical snack all over Japan—and not just for breakfast either. Dorayaki is so popular in the streets of the Kansai region that it even made it to TV, in Doraemon. There’s also the savory okonomiyaki, of course, and the sweet Japanese crepes. But the souffle pancake probably trumps them all.

In Osaka, Gram Café has been attracting hordes of pancake lovers since 2014. Its chief decoy? Their premium soufflé pancakes. Thick, fluffy pancakes that wobble like silken tofu. Or gelatin. Or Ivana Alawi’s boobs. Airy, cloud-like, delicate. It’s a creation that astounds not just with its aesthetics but also its texture and taste. They are so difficult to make that Gram Café only offers 60 pieces of it in a day in three time slots, and if you want to taste one, you really need to fall in line.

It’s truly a marvelous creation—how it feels hollow and airy inside but still so moist and soft. Slicing into it with a fork is like slicing into clouds. And the pancake itself is delicious and flavorful. The side trimmings—honey, whipped cream, butter—are just accompaniments to enhance each bite, but you probably won’t need them even.

The good news is that you don’t have to fly to Japan to get a taste of Gram’s delicious soufflé pancakes. Its first branch has finally opened in the Philippines—at the 3rd level of SM Mega Fashion Hall—last February 9! And what’s even better, they are offering 90 pieces of these yummy, fluffy things every day!

We are happy to report that the pancakes are just as good as they taste in Japan. One bite of the premium pancakes at Gram Café Philippines brought us back to the first time we tried this wonderful invention!

Aside from the soufflé pancakes, Gram Café also has a variety of other pancake options in its menu. Regular hotcakes—what you would probably refer to as “hotcakes”—are combined with sweet and savory components, and are sure to delight diners with different preferences. Take for instance the Chili Beans and Sausage Platter, which is one of our favorites from the menu. The chili provides a Mexican/Southern twist to this plate, while the sausage gives added bite and texture to the pancakes. The savory components contrast perfectly to sweetish, buttery pancakes!

Another savory interpretation is the Bacon and Scrambled Eggs Pancake set, featuring lovely thick-cut bacon, creamy scrambled eggs, and a refreshing side salad. It is the ultimate breakfast pancake, one you would definitely crave for especially if you’re a bacon lover.

Got sweet tooth? The Mixed Berries French Toast is for you—and well, for us! The toast slices? Perfect. It has that sweetness level you crave for, one that makes you want to take one more bite. And then one more. Topped with blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, honey, and powdered sugar, it’s a fusion of irresistible tartness and sweetness.

We couldn’t get enough of the Apple & Tea Cream which has sweet, poached apples on top of fluffy pancakes, as well as a side of vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, and earl grey cream. The tea cream is mind-blowing and provides an interesting dimension to a dish that is otherwise just sweet. We would definitely go back for this.

Are you a fan of coffee? Try the Tiramisu which has layers of pancakes, mascarpone cream cheese, coffee, and dark cocoa. We love this interpretation of the classic Italian dessert. If you love dark chocolate or coffee flavor profiles, you need to get this dish! And hello—who can say no to cream cheese?

The next time you find yourself craving for pancakes, round up the gang and hop over to SM Mega Fashion Hall and try the newly-opened Gram Café. If you want to catch the premium pancakes, make sure you get there before 11AM, 3PM, and 6PM. If there’s a line—fall in line, it’s worth it.

And since we are huge fans of Japan so much, we hope to be masters of eating pancakes too.

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3 Reasons Why We Like Tapa King’s Fried Chicken

Whenever we want good and affordable dried cured thin slices of beef also known as “tapa” in Metro Manila, one of our go-to places is Tapa King. All-day breakfast is our thing so it’s only natural that we always look for Tapa King when the breakfast cravings hit at the weirdest hours. We’d often get either the classic or the spicy version of their Tapsilog which is basically tapa with garlic rice (sinangag) and fried egg (itlog). When we’re in the mood for something fit for royalty, we get their Royal Meals which consist of not only tapa but also servings of other known Filipino breakfast food such as fried milkfish, crispy danggit, longganisa, and tocino. We always end up full and happy— making every trip to TK worth it.

We thought we have enough reasons to visit Tapa King until we were introduced to their newest member of the Royal formation— their All New Fried Chicken. Let us tell you 3 simple yet compelling reasons why we like TK’s fried chicken and why we’re including it on our list of our regular order line-up.

1. BIGGER.

Bigger chicken portions mean bigger savings and bigger satisfaction. Imagine getting a box of 6 big pieces for just PHP440 (price as of March 2019)— you’ll be able to feed 6 kids or 3 very hungry adults. See? Bigger savings, bigger satisfaction.

2. CRISPIER.

We love fried chicken and we have eaten quite a good amount ever since we learned about its existence. A fried chicken’s crispy skin is like our kryptonite. We just couldn’t stay away once we see the chicken’s craggy skin fried to golden perfection, tempting us to peel it away from the meat and enjoy the sound of that crunch as we bite into it. With TK’s fried chicken, you don’t just imagine it, you get to experience it because the rumors are true— definitely crispier.

3. JUICIEST.

When you encounter a fried chicken that has that beautiful golden crispy exterior, that also smells fantastic, and is moist and tender inside— don’t let that fried chicken go because that’s a keeper. Tapa King’s fried chicken totally got this one in the bag.

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Sisig Rice Bowl x Petsa de Peligro Experiments

It’s that time of the month again! Petsa de Peligro in the midst. Not because we’re tightening our belts more this weekend, it doesn’t mean we can’t eat delicious.

Well, here’s another one of our go-to dishes when we want something filling.

SISIG RICE BOWL

What you’ll need:

1 150g can of Purefoods Sizzling Delights Sisig at PHP41.00
1 medium Bountry Fresh Cage-Free Specialty brown egg at PHP12.00
1/2 cup uncooked Best Choice Jasmine Brown Rice at PHP11.50
1/2 avocado at PHP18.00
2 Red chillies for garnish at PHP4.00
1 teaspoon of olive oil (you can use other types of oil)
Salt and pepper to taste

What you’ll do:

1) Wash the uncooked brown rice, add 3/4 cup of water, and cook the rice. Btw, we used a rice cooker to make cooking even and faster. Once done, put the hot rice in a bowl. This will yield about 1 1/2 cups of cooked brown rice.
2) Open the can of sisig and reheat in a hot pan.
3) On a separate pan, fry the egg using little bit of oil— sunny side up style. Put a little bit of salt and pepper.
4) Once sisig is reheated and a bit crispy and the egg is cooked, place them in the same bowl along with the rice.
5) Cut the avocado in half, take out the pit, scoop the avocado from one cheek, slice it vertically, and place beside the sisig.
3) Chop red chillies and sprinkle on top of the sisig.

Serve and eat.

Wallet damage: PHP86.50 (as of Jan 2019)
Serves 1

You’ll notice we used brown rice and organic egg because those the ones we have in the pantry. To save more, we recommend you buy the rice by the kilogram and the eggs by the dozen or by the tray.

In addition, instead of using mayonnaise to make the sisig creamier, we opted for avocado which is the healthier alternative.

Happy cooking!

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Pancit Canton Espesyal x Petsa de Peligro Experiments

If you’re a part of the employed population in the Philippines, you will often hear the term Petsa de Peligro. Its literal translation is “date of danger”. For Filipinos, it refers to the last few days before pay day when cash is running low.

To make sure that we stretch our cash till the next pay day, most of us resort to buying more affordable food such as instant noodles and canned goods as well as buying and cooking at home which saves everyone money.

And we’re here to share one of our favorite PDP Experiments for everyone to try.

PANCIT CANTON ESPESYAL

What you need to buy:

2 packs Lucky Me Pancit Canton Chillimansi at PHP11.25 each
2 medium eggs at PHP6.00 each
1 can Libby’s Vienna Sausage Chicken variety at PHP56.60
1 cucumber at PHP22.00
Spring onion and red chillies for garnish
Shichimi Togarashi (if available in your pantry)

What you need to do:

1) Cook pancit canton as instructed on the package directions.
2) Boil eggs for 6 minutes then put in an ice bath to stop cooking process.
3) Pre-heat your trusty oven toaster for 3 minutes before putting chicken vienna sausage. Cook sausage for 6 mins, turning halfway to brown all sides.
4) Wash cucumber and cut crosswise according to your desired thickness.
5) Put everything on a shallow bowl starting with the noodles, followed by the sausages, then the eggs sliced in half, and finally, the cucumbers. Chop spring onion and red chillies to prettify the noodles. Sprinkle togarashi on the eggs to add flavor.

Wallet damage: PHP113.10 (as of Dec 2018)
Serves 2

Happy cooking!

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5 Perfect Coldlayers Cafe Pairings That Will Make Your Day

The first time we went to Coldlayers Cafe in Evia Lifestyle Center in Daang Hari, Las Pinas, we specifically came for their snow ice treats. We enjoyed a couple of their snow ice selections— the Secret Affair and the Avocado Snow Ice. The moment we opened their menu, we were pleasantly surprised that they offer more than just snow ice — they also have milk tea drinks and a good selection of savory dishes. So we promised to go back and give them a shot next time we visit the store.

And one mid-morning, we found ourselves back in the cozy, friendly restaurant vibe of Coldlayers Cafe. That’s when we tried 5 pairings which we’re happy to recommend to all our friends and family.

1. Koori Chicken Chops + Special Yakult Tea

First pairing of the day. Coldlayers Cafe‘s Koori Chicken Chops is the new dish on the block. We liked the thin crispy coating of the chicken tenders but at the same time, moist on the inside. The slight saltiness from the chicken and the herbed flavor from the crunchy basil blended so well with the sourness and little touch of sweetness from the combination of strawberry and passion fruit flavors of the Special Yakult Tea drink. The chicken chops was so good that we had 2 servings of it.

2. Pork Chop Casserole + Chocolate Milk Tea

On to a full meal treat. The juicy pan-grilled pork chop was placed on top of mozzarella rice with tomato and mushroom cream sauce. The mix of salty and peppery flavors from the meat together with the tanginess and earthiness of the tomato and mushroom, not to mention the creaminess from the mozzarella, made the casserole quite a delicious dish to indulge in. One long sip of the milk tea with that chocolate flavor, on the other hand, changes the palate altogether which makes the pairing more exciting!

3. Cheezy Meat Lasagna + Wintermelon Tea

This is a classic pairing for us. The lasagna with béchamel sauce topped with cheddar and parmesan spell creaminess, slight saltiness, and umami from the savory meat. Pair it with the touch of caramel flavor from the wintermelon and deep, strong taste from the black tea, you’ll get a classic pairing that will keep you coming back to enjoy them all over again. Oh, and we had some pudding added into the tea which made it more tasty to drink.

4. Philly Cheesesteak + Matcha with Salted Cream Cheese

As of this writing, we’ve already consumed a total of 4 orders of Coldlayers Cafe‘s delicious Matcha with Salted Cream Cheese. Being lovers of anything matcha, we find this drink genuinely good and tasty. There aren’t a lot of food places that serve good matcha and we’re happy to let everyone know that Coldlayers Cafe found the right balance of that vegetal and sweetness in their matcha drink. The salted cream cheese added that creamy, salty contrast to the sweetness of the matcha blend. As for the Philly Cheesesteak, the meaty and juicy steak with that pesto slathered on the soft bread with the tomatoes and cheese is perfect with anything.

5. Coldlayers Nachos + Sloppy Fries + Horlicks Milk Tea

You won’t go wrong with this pairing. The layers of nachos are loaded with ground meat, tomato salsa, lettuce, and grated cheese. While the perfectly cooked fries are topped with the same delicious mix but the lettuce. The savory flavors of both appetizers go wonderfully well with the sweet Horlicks Milk Tea. Great pairing, for sure.

If you want to make these pairings more delectable, it wouldn’t hurt to add orders of snow ice while you’re at it.

Now, go and find the perfect pair for you.

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7 Things Shopwise Circuit Got Us Excited About!

Last July 27, 2018, Shopwise opened in Circuit Makati. Since we have been doing our grocery shopping in Shopwise for years now, we decided to troop to Circuit to see what the newly-opened branch has in store for everyone.

As soon as we entered the well-lit store, we grabbed our shopping cart, started checking out the shelves and freezers, and excitedly loaded our cart with 7 things we always look forward to get in Shopwise.

1. Bread.

From loaves to rolls to buns to cakes, Shopwise’s bakery has everything you want and more. They make fresh batches everyday and you can smell the gorgeous aroma of baked goods from their open kitchen. We got their delicious ensaymada, cinnamon buns, dulce de leche cake, and ube cake.

2. Seafood.

Our love for seafood knows no bound. We got excited when we saw 3 of our fresh favorites— prawn, lobster, and salmon. We couldn’t wait to get home to cook the fresh goods that we got.

3. Fruits.

Shiny, fresh produce available everyday. There is something inviting about fruits stacked neatly on the shelves. Of course we got some avocados.

4. Cheeses.

This area is our little piece of heaven in Shopwise. 2 things we love—  Southdale Farm cheese and Landana cheese especially their pesto-flavored cheese which we were told is only being sold in 2 Shopwise branches including this one in Circuit Makati.

5. Wines.

Their selections might not be extensive but they carry good wines. We were so happy to see Rioja on the shelves.

6. Local Treats.

This is one of our favorite parts to go to in the store. We love seeing different local products from various regions in the Philippines getting the attention they deserve.

7. Sure Buys.

Of course we won’t forget Shopwise‘s own brand. They have almost everything and the best part, they come at a totally affordable price! Definitely a Sure Buy.

Shopwise is one of the supermarkets we go to on a regular basis because of the excellent products they offer and the excellent customer service they give.

After spending a good 90 minutes in the store, we came out with bags filled with everything tasty and we came out with huge grins because we had a great shopping day.

Check out Shopwise on Instagram and on Facebook. Go to their website too for more information.

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3 Reasons Why You Should Try Tokyo Tokyo’s Unagi-Style Bangus

by Ian Tapang

Tokyo Tokyo is, without a doubt, one of the most well known Japanese food chains in the Philippines. They consistently serve us quality and popular Japanese dishes such as the Prawn Tempura, Beef Misono, and Pork Tonkatsu among others, and at the same time, they introduce new and innovative dishes that bring Japan closer to us. With Tokyo Tokyo’s existence for more than 3 decades in the country, it has never failed to satisfy our appetite for Japanese cuisine.

Speaking of new dishes, Tokyo Tokyo’s newest offering will sure delight your palate. Just being back from Japan, it was like taking a trip down memory lane as I can’t help but reminisce my gastronomic experience and tasteful adventure in Tokyo. That’s why I’m sharing the 3 reasons why you should try Tokyo Tokyo’s newest item!

1. Delicious Innovation.

Japan is taking the world by storm with its remarkable innovations and we are happy to say that Tokyo Tokyo is doing the same. With its brand new creation, the Unagi-Style Bangus, it is proving to be another one of Tokyo Tokyo’s delicious innovation. Instead of using unagi or freshwater eel, the well-loved bangus or milkfish took its place. To bring the unagi flavor to the dish, they created the smoky and sweetened unagi sauce which they used to baste the fish with. To complete the ensemble, crunchy garlic bits and onion leeks were added on top of the perfectly grilled milkfish. An order of the Unagi-Style Bangus Bento comes with vegetable misono and unlimited rice and goes well with Tokyo Tokyo’s Red Iced Tea.

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2. That Filipino Touch.

To personalize the taste to the Filipino palate, Tokyo Tokyo merged both Filipino and Japanese flavors; marrying the familiar with the foreign. With its Unagi-Style Bangus, Filipinos will surely love the savory taste of grilled milkfish paired with the smoky sweetness of the unagi sauce. At first glance, it may seem an unlikely combination but once you’ve tasted them together, the whole thing makes sense.

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3. Healthy Alternative.

Be it a lifestyle change or the practice of abstinence in time for lent, people are looking for lighter yet delicious options from the usual chicken, pork, and beef selections. Tokyo Tokyo’s Unagi-Style Bangus is a tasty choice should diners want to go the healthier route.

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Now that I’ve given you the reasons, I think now is the perfect time to visit Tokyo Tokyo to try their Unagi-Style Bangus for yourself.

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6 Reasons Why COAST is the Perfect Host

During our previous visits in Boracay Island, we have stayed in beachfront resorts in both Station 1 and Station 3. No idea why we haven’t picked to stay in Station 2 even though we’re always there to eat, drink, and party till the break o’ dawn. So we were excited when we learned that we’ll get to stay in COAST, a 71-room boutique resort by the Raintree Group, which is situated in Station 2. Finally, we’ll be right smack in the middle of where most of the fun happenings are on the island.

Since Coast has their own van, they picked us up at the Caticlan airport and together with our friends Pepe of @pepesamson, Ramil and Edgar of @pinasmuna, and Elei of @iameleimath, we were whisked away on a fast and a furious speed boat ride from Caticlan to Boracay Island. We have heard a lot about Coast and one them being voted as Number 1 on Trip Advisor. Now allow us to tell you the reasons why we think Coast is the perfect host.

1. The Relaxed and Warm Beach Vibe

We absolutely love the white and blue theme of the resort! There are also splashes of colors that can be found in every part of the resort that will make you feel that chill tropical vibe. As soon as we entered the lobby, we were taken by the high ceiling as well as the natural light that filled up the space.

2. The Friendly and Hospitable Staff

Their staff’s remarkable service is one of the things that made our stay memorable in Coast. They are intuitive and attentive. We also appreciated the fact that they are knowledgeable about everything that concerns the resort— from the amenities to the service hours to the schedule of activities. We definitely felt genuine hospitality.

3. The Cozy and Comfortable Room

We’ve got to hand it to Coast for letting us enjoy our Boracay visit in total comfort. Other than the welcome treats of cheese, fruits, and wine— a bright space with big windows where we can enjoy natural light also excites us! The floor to ceiling windows let us enjoy the pool view and made us feel the beach vibe even when we were inside our clean air conditioned room. When we got back in the evening, we realized that they have a turndown service. The room was cleaned, the beds have been turned down — ready for us to just slip in under the blankets, the lights were dimmed, and the blackout blinds covered the entire window. We don’t know about you but we absolutely love turn down services because it makes us feel that the place cares about giving us a good night’s sleep.

4. The Well-Maintained and Clean Amenities

Having most of the structure dominantly painted in white can be a gamble. It means that they have to keep the resort as spotless as possible therefore committing to its upkeeping. We were utterly impressed by the cleanliness of the place. Both the swimming pool and the swim-up bar are well-maintained as well as the pool lounge chairs. We love the beach vibe of their restaurant, Cha Cha’s Beach Cafe. The high ceilings and the big windows allowed us to see the palm trees, the clear blue sky, and the pristine waters of white beach since Coast is a beachfront property.

5. The Beautiful and Delicious Food

Since Coast is a Raintree Group concept, we never doubted its capability to provide us quality food. The buffet breakfast has everything we need to start our day right including our ultimate favorite, the Ube Champorado. We love champorado so much as it reminds us of when our grandparents will prepare a pot of this dark chocolate rice porridge as a breakfast treat because we just love to have chocolate in the morning. Then we’d pour evaporated milk on top of it and add sugar to sweeten the dish. We’d sometimes put salted fish flakes in the porridge to get that addicting sweet-salty taste. But Cha Cha’s Beach Cafe wasn’t contented with the classic. Instead, they put a twist on it by creating this ube-flavored rice porridge which totally blew us away. It was such a beautiful dish that we had 2 bowls of it every morning we were in Coast.

Of course we didn’t pass up the opportunity to have dinner in Cha Cha’s Beach Cafe. Since it was a cool breezy night, we decided to have dinner by the beach. We got their Cold Spicy Salmon and Tuna Poke Bowl, the ever-so-tasty Winner Winner Chicken Dinner (which is our favorite in one of Raintree’s restaurants in SM Aura called Providore), their Mixed Plate Grill, and the Cold Seafood Platter to bring more of that fresh beach dining experience. Fresh fruit shakes, smoothies, and cocktails are available too so there’s nothing more that we could ask for.

6. The Well-kept and Gorgeous Beachfront View

Even though this visit was our 7th time in Boracay, the beauty of the island doesn’t get old for us. There’s nothing like waking up early in the morning, reaching the beach in less than 5 minutes, see the gorgeous horizon where the water meets the sky, and just get hypnotized by the sound of waves rolling unto the white fine sandy shore. And the best part is, Coast made us experience that everyday we were there because the white beach is just a few steps away from the hotel.

Our Coast experience was definitely something that we’d love for everyone to experience too— from the accommodations, to the amenities, to the food, to the service. The next time you go to Boracay, give yourself that Coast adventure so you can discover why they were voted Number 1.

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