Wednesday, April 24, 2013

food porn @ terry's bistro

Terry's Bistro in the basement of Podium Mall in Ortigas. Since it opened almost a decade ago, the delicious aromas wafting from it have stopped me in my tracks whenever I'm in the area. I've bought stuff from their deli. I've browsed through their menu book displayed at the entrance many times. But I've never eaten there. Why? I don't know, I can't explain. I can only kick myself now.

9 April 2013. Ma's orders came out first. Everywhere we eat, she always has to have soup. Terry's pumpkin soup was OK, she said.

Pumpkin Soup. A singular blend of pumpkin and saffron, created by the Spanish Clarisse nuns in the 16th century.  A classic at Terry's! 180 pesos

And if it's on the menu, she always has to have the baked oysters. Me, I like 'em raw and quivering with fear as they go down the hatch. I passed on these.

Oven-Baked Oysters (6 pieces). Coated with our finest spinach-La Courala-Parmesan Rémoulade cream. 560 pesos

I've been traumatised by many bad croquettes over the years, so I wasn't too excited about ordering these, but Ma insisted. Good call! So this is what a croquette is supposed to be: light and crispy on the outside, smooth and gooey inside. And I could really taste the ham and the chicken. Completely different from the heavy, greasy bullet-like things I've eaten in the past. Quite addicting.

Jamón Serrano And Chicken Croquettes (6 pieces). Crisp-tender Jamón Serrano and chicken Béchamel croquettes. One of our best sellers! 290 pesos

Monday, April 22, 2013

eating binondo

Earlier this month, my friends suggested I accompany them to Quiapo where they were going to buy camera accessories and bicycle parts. I hemmed and hawed a bit because Manila was sweltering and the traffic was sure to be horrendous. But when Mr. DJ said, "Afterwards, we can go to Binondo and eat!" I was sold.

I practically grew up in the area, but regretfully I hadn't spent much time back there in the last 20 years. When I returned on 4 April 2013, things hadn't really changed much, but I was not as familiar with everything as I thought I was. I felt like a tourist, I'm ashamed to say.

The first thing we did was look for breakfast. Behind Quiapo Church, I was introduced to the quintessential hole-in-the-wall: Globe Lumpia House on Raon Street. It was exactly the type of eatery my elders had always warned me about-- dingy and decrepit, and more than likely to give one food poisoning. I liked it.

I have eaten lumpia all my life, but never for breakfast. Globe's hand-wrapped morsel served on a tin plate was just a little bit scary, but I gobbled it up and nothing bad happened to me. Of course this was not the best lumpia I've ever had, but it was tasty enough and hit the spot at 9AM. And it was definitely cheaper and more nutritious than a plastic McMuffin.

Lumpia at Globe Lumpia House, 16 pesos.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

why i like old churches

We left Vigan at around 11AM on Easter Monday, 1 April 2013. It took us 15 grueling but fun hours to reach Quezon City because of all the stops we made-- eight in total, not counting the toilet breaks.

Aside from Santa Lucia (previous post), we also dropped by two other churches. The first was the 300-year old Baroque-style Saint John of Sahagun in Candon City, Ilocos Sur. It had a new coat of paint and literally sparkled in the sunlight.

And the other one was San Nicolas de Tolentino in Balaoan, La Union which was built in the early 1800s. People sometimes ask me why many of our bell towers in the Philippines are built some distance from the church's main structure. My theory: Earthquakes.

santa lucia church, ilocos sur

When we were driving back to Manila from Vigan, we made a short detour at this church in the town of Santa Lucia.

From Wikipilipinas: St. Lucy the Martyr Church was built by Father Juan Pascula Barreda and Father Manuel Arguelles in 1887. Its dome and ceiling was repaired and the surroundings were reinforced by Father Venusto Mata. Its bell tower was damaged by an earthquake but was repaired eventually. It's one of the most beautiful churches in Ilocos. Its interior has a painted ceiling, pulpit and a carved retablo. The Church has an image of the Dark Virgin of Santa Lucia, the patroness of those with failing eyesight.

The exterior was impressive enough, but when we entered through the side entrance...

Monday, April 8, 2013

vigan dancing fountain

What were we doing in Vigan on Easter Sunday, anyway? Well, to be honest, we were waiting for the mass to be over.

So that the evening's entertainment could begin.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

cake porn @ dulcelise

Enter Dulcelise.

It's a cool little refuge from Vigan's unrelenting summer heat and the only place to get a decent dessert in town.

Recommended by @Wikireena: the Molten Choco Lava Cake, Php85.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

everybody's café: oh my frog

On 30 March 2013, the day before Easter Sunday, my friends and I went on a road trip. Our destination was the city of Vigan in Ilocos Sur province, about 400 kilometers from our starting point, Quezon City.

But first, dinner.

Everybody's Café was actually our second choice-- Aling Lucing's sisig place was closed-- but I had no complaints. I'd been wanting to eat here for the longest time.

The set-up was simple but effective. The dishes were displayed in a glass case and we chose what we wanted to eat, turu-turo style.

Friday, April 5, 2013

walking in my shoes

I know, I know. I already have too many shoes. But they were on sale!

At first, I only wanted the plum-colored ones. They were 50% off. How could I resist?