Thursday, January 28, 2010

iloilo birthday errands

The Philippine driver's license expires and must be renewed on or before one's birthday. Is it the same all over the world, or just here?

Seems like a lame way to spend your birthday... unless you plan an out-of-town sightseeing/ shopping/ eating trip to, say, Iloilo.

A flat tire is inevitable.

Deja vu.

But we managed to do what we were supposed to do that day-- special thanks to Mr. T's progeny, the AJ.

To reward ourselves-- Good job!-- and to celebrate my birthday, we went to Smallville and restaurant-hopped.

First up was Afrique's. Bunny Rabbit liked it.

We had the Portuguese sardine pizza. The crust was interesting. Crispy, but not ultra-thin. A bit bread-like, but not bad. In fact, the texture reminded me of the fast-food 3M pizza of my youth, but in a high-class setting.

The menu is a wide selection of Italian and quasi-Mediterranean dishes, but with a distinct Pinoy twist. I would go back for the friendly service and cozy ambiance. In a compound with over 20 restaurants/ bars, Afrique's was full. The locals certainly think it's worth a visit.

We decided to follow the crowd. Next stop was Nothing But Desserts.

The bottled water was too cute! It's actually water by the Hidden Spring bottled water company, but in very cool packaging. (At first, we thought it was a baby bottle.) They even printed Nothing But Desserts's name and web address on the bottle. I saw some green and black bottles, too.

The strawberry pavlova was OK, if you like meringue. With the amount of fresh strawberries on it, it was a steal at less than US$2. We will try the gelato next time.

Before we headed back to the hotel, I wanted some oysters. Yez, I know. Weird. We got some at Imay's, another popular place. Cheap. Not spectacular, but value for money. This platter of grilled oysters with garlic and cheese cost less than US$2.

We noticed that quite a few places set their tables with the cutlery in these tiny brown paper bags. Like the ones used for fresh roasted peanuts that you can buy by the jigger. Why kaya?

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