09 December 2012

BDJ Box: Acetone-free Nail Polish Remover from Yuka

This is the first time I'm writing about a product that came from a box. Yes, this is my first BDJ product review. I've been so busy at work, I haven't even blogged about the two boxes I've received so far. But since I have some free time today, I'll finish this post about a new product I find convenient and very useful for us girls.

My November BDJ box came with a new product (since I haven't seen anything like this in the Philippine market yet), Yuka Acetone-Free Nail Polish Remover. The name is already a giveaway as to what the product does, but what makes it different is that it comes in thin, round sheets. Yes! This isn't your usual liquid form nail polish remover. It looks and feels like baby wet ones, but the round tissue-like sheets are "soaked" with the polish remover already, making it convenient for us girls to use it anytime, anywhere. No need to bring cotton balls or cotton sheets along with a bottle, big or small, of your nail polish remover.

04 December 2012

BDJ Box 2.0

My second BDJ box arrived a couple of days ago, and I'd have to say, this was better. It had more brands and products compared to the first one, which was, in my opinion, was overflowing with Garnier products (not that I have something against the brand). 

03 December 2012

Remember, remember the 1st of December :)

Happy December, everyone! My first December post is dedicated to Vikings SM Marikina for their delicious spread and very accommodating staff. I've been writing about food for some time now and if you read my posts, you'd notice that I'm not only big on the flavor (of the food), but also on the service the restaurant provides.

It was my mom's and boyfriend's birthdays so I was very stressed and nervous about how the whole thing was going to go down. I made reservations three weeks in advance. Their MOA branch was already fully booked a month before, so I had to make sure we got a slot. Thankfully, I was able to get a dinner reservation, and all I had to do was wait for the day.

We arrived at 5:30 in the afternoon, and I was so thankful for having a reservation. There was a very long line of people waiting outside the restaurant already. Since this was a surprise birthday dinner for Gus (my mom knows I'm treating her for her birthday), my family and I went in first. My boyfriend's sister, Gin, helped me distract him while I made sure our table was ready. A waiter led us to our table and made sure we had everything we needed before leaving. Once everything was set, I met Gus and Gin outside and brought them in. I gave them a walking tour of the restaurant, pretending that we were only there to check their buffet selection. When we reached the end of the long, very long buffet table, I told Gus to grab a plate and start eating. 

SURPRISE! We're celebrating your birthday dinner here! :)

29 November 2012

The BDJ Box

My first BDJ Box arrived three days after I placed my order. The shipping was pretty fast, considering it was an online purchase with a delivery schedule. At first, I was a bit hesitant with making the purchase because it was something new in the Philippine market, but it was also the reason I gave in. For those of you who aren't familiar with the BDJ Box, it is a samples subscription. Every month, subscribers receive a box of samples ranging from skin care products, cosmetics, and fragrances. Some of them come in small (sample) sizes, others in their regular sizes. 


28 November 2012

A Big No-No for Balikbayans (and regular Pinoys)

A few days ago, we brought our yaya and driver to Cabalen Trinoma for an early Christmas treat. They are very simple people who don't really indulge so we thought a dinner buffet would surprise them. Since it was just a few weeks before Christmas, we had to wait in line for a while since the place was packed. But for P298 only, we thought this would be worth it.


18 November 2012

Backlog 1: Adobo Connection

When I was still working in Makati, I discovered this small, literally hole-in-the-wall restaurant behind our office building. It was inside a parking lot along de la Rosa. I got so tired of the usual office cafeteria food so I decided to walk along de la Rosa in hopes of finding other restaurants where I could buy food. And that's when I saw Adobo Connection.

I know this restaurant isn't really unknown. I've seen it in malls before but I've never really bothered to check it out. This time, something caught my attention. They had adobo rice for only P39! I thought it was a good deal so I tried it. Was I surprised! I got a really big serving of delicious adobo rice topped with garlic and sliced scrambled eggs in a microwavable plastic container! Yup, I loved the packaging too. 

And because I really enjoyed the first one, I decided to bring Gus there since I wanted to try a lot of their dishes.

We had their Kuya's Mixed Adobo, which was the traditional salty adobo made of chicken and pork. The portions were good enough for two so we just ordered an extra cup of rice.

Kuya's Mixed Adobo

Taiwanese Fare: Lugang Cafe

A long overdue post on Lugang Cafe, one of the best xiao long bao places in Manila. Okay, biases aside, a really good Taiwanese dining place along Connecticut Avenue.

I heard of Lugang Cafe a year ago. Friends started talking about this new Taiwanese restaurant that served really good xiao long bao. The deal sites were just starting to gain popularity at the same time and I saw a deal on their famous xiao long bao so I decided it was about time for us to try the Lugang Cafe.

The restaurant was beautiful. It had a traditional-modern feel. The outside was made of stone bricks, and the interior was just grand. 

15 November 2012

Wake Up! Part 2

Another recent discovery was Tapsilog Avenue along Xavierville Avenue. Two weeks ago, Gus and I went to Ababu for a late night snack (yes, we usually eat rice for snack), and we saw this new tapsilog place beside. Since we went all the way to Katipunan from Ortigas just to eat at Ababu, I decided we could try the tapsilog place another time. And so we finally did!

The place was a little hole-in-the-wall. Nothing special. Tables and benches made of wood, an inside and outside area, a small restroom and don't count on parking. There's only enough space for one car in front of the place. But of course, we didn't go there to see/appreciate the place. We went there to try the food.

The place offered different kinds of silog. -silogs are famous breakfast meals in the Philippines. It's a meal with one kind of meat or processed food product, sinangag (fried rice), and egg (itlog). For P45, you can try the ever famous Filipino breakfast tapsilog -- tapa, sinangag, and itlog. Or if you're not a salty type of person, you can try their tocilog (tocino or cured sweet pork), hotsilog (hotdog), porksilog (porkchop), and all the other silogs you can think of. Yes, all kinds of silogs for P45 only. 


Wake Up! Part 1

To wake my blog from its unplanned hibernation, I am writing about two new places in one blog entry! I never intended to go on hiatus but I guess I'm not a real writer because I don't always have time to write *sob* So now that I have extra time from work, I will write as much as I can before it runs out. Let's go!

A few months back, Gus showed me this dimsum place in SM North EDSA which he described as "new and interesting." But with all the dimsum houses in Manila, I didn't know what to think of. "Another dimsum house? What's new? We could always go to an authentic Chinese restaurant for dimsum." What was so different and interesting about this one?

To satisfy our curiosity, we decided to have dinner there. It was called Dimsum Break. I was still a bit hesitant about going so all the stereotype images of dimsum houses started popping into my head. But when we got there, I was speechless.

The place did somehow remind you of stereotypical dimsum houses you might have been to in the country -- very simple interiors, rectangular tables, and a noisy ambiance. 

But what really stands out is their concept of "serving" food:

25 April 2012

Hot, hot hot! Buffalo Wings 'n Things

Gus picked me up from work two nights ago, and I thought of dropping by Wings 'n Things along De la Rosa. But because of bladder issues, we weren't able to have late dinner anywhere. We had to go straight home.

We finally got to try Buffalo Wings 'n Things yesterday. Since I love buffalo wings, Gus made me choose which kind we would try. They had the traditional, New York style buffalo wings, wings for the faint of heart, wings for risk takers, and wings for the brave. Since we've tried a couple of buffalo wings that weren't really spicy, despite their claims, I was a bit skeptical about their "hot" buffalo wings. I've tried "really spicy" buffalo wings that only had a hint of chili and something sour. Out of doubt, I decided to get their Level 5 buffalo wings: the Armageddon.

Since Gus couldn't live without iced tea, and I couldn't live without my rice, we also ordered a glass of their Downtown Iced Tea, and a cup of their Dirty Rice. Just to be safe, we ordered some bleu cheese dip to go along with our wings, in case it lives up to its name.

28 March 2012

A Slice of Heaven

The best things often come in small packages. That's exactly what I got after trying out a cupcake from this newly opened store beside Jamba Juice. 

While I was waiting for Gus to get off work, I chanced upon this stall beside his workplace. I assumed it was just a temporary stall since a bigger place behind it with the same name was being constructed. Thank God for boredom. Since I had nothing to do while waiting, I decided to take a look at the different cupcakes and cookies they were selling. 

Being a baker myself, curiosity got the best of me. I wondered how one cupcake could cost as much as the ones I was seeing. It looked like regular cupcakes. I assumed people were also paying for the place where it was being sold, thus the unusually high price of each cupcake. I got one without asking what it was. I just picked the most classy-looking cupcake I could see.

I picked a chocolate cupcake with rosette icings on top, which, judging from the color and texture, was made of caramel. I paid P60 for a cupcake that looked like another cupcake I usually buy for P11. But, I had to find out. Was it worth my P60?

Chocolate Yema Cupcake

The answer is a big, fat YES! The first bite was all it took. The cupcake was so full, the icing, to die for. The cupcake was filled with cake, not just air. It was heavy, unlike other cupcakes I tasted. I knew this was real cupcake. Not just aired batter baked to perfection. And the caramel rosettes? Turns out it was yema. Cooked condensed milk. The sweetness complimented the rich chocolate flavor of the cupcake. It wasn't a battle between two sweets. It was a union of bitter and sweet.

Wow, I can't believe how poetic I sound describing this cupcake. It really is a must try. No wonder this was their best seller. For P60, this is definitely worth it! 

Grab yours at Slice Bonifacio High Street. They are currently on their soft opening, so you can also taste their other non-sweets specialties like the Brown Arroz Caldo, and Seafood Puttanesca.

Price Range: P60-110 (for the baked goodies -- cupcakes and cookies)

5 out of 5 for Slice (their staff were very friendly and accommodating)

G/F West Superblock (beside Jamba Juice)
Bonifacio High Street Central
30th cor. 7th Street
Bonifacio Global City

27 March 2012

안녕, Jang Ga Nae

For our monthly date, Gus and I decided to go Korean. We were supposed to try Ye Dang, but we decided to check the Korean carinderia I was telling him about. We didn't end up eating there because he wanted a Korean place where he could grill the samgyeupsal himself. We eventually found ourselves in one of the more formal restaurants along Escriva Drive, which had table grills -- Jang Ga Nae.

Since we were both very hungry, we immediately ordered what we were craving for: bibimbap, and samgyeupsal. While waiting for our meals to arrive, the server brought us a pitcher of cold tea (yes, cold tea!) We were actually surprised, but very pleased, with the cold tea. It was the first Korean restaurant we've been to, which served cold tea instead of just plain water.

Cold Tea

26 March 2012

Eat My English

At first glance, one would think that this little hole-in-the-whole restobar is of Korean origin. With Korean restaurants and karaoke centers surrounding it, one would be quick to assume that this too, is a Korean establishment. It is not. Eat My English is a restaurant/bar that serves affordable Filipino, and American dishes, alcoholic beverages, and your usual pulutan (snacks to go with your beer/shots).

We chanced upon this restobar while looking for a 24/7 restaurant that serves Beef Steak or Beef Tapa. The name of the place caught our attention so we decided to have a look-see. To our surprise, they offered both at very reasonable prices so we decided to stay and check the rest of the menu. 

I decided to get my Beef Tapa, as originally planned. For only P98, I got crispy beef tapa, egg, and garlic rice. The tapa was really good, a mix between salty and sour, not the typical sweet tapa other restaurants would offer. Their vinegar mixture complimented the salty/sour flavor of the tapa. The garlic rice was real, garlic rice. Not just a cup of rice topped with garlic flakes. However, the serving was not enough for one meal. I had to roder an extra cup of rice to finish my food.


MonDATES: Spicy Fingers

Due to our busy working schedule, we rarely get to have weekend dates, or dinnerdates anymore. So today, Gus and I decided to make the most out of my light workload and his dayoff. We went around Greenbelt, grabbed a cup of coffee from McDonald's (because I always need my cup of coffee everyday), and went back to strolling around. I showed him the iTouch case I wanted to buy, and after that, we decided to look for a place where we can have lunch. On the way to Greenbelt 1, we chanced upon a tarp, which offered P120 lunch meals from 10 am to 3 pm. We scanned through the list of their lunch offerings, but continued to walk, thinking whether or not we should try it. The meals they offered looked good, and for P120, we decided to go back and try it out. 

The place looked more like a bar, booths and tables were both available in the air conditioned area, with a stage in the corner. But at 2:30 in the afternoon, it was a quiet little resto. There weren't a lot of people inside. Apart from Gus and I, the only other person eating inside was an American. Still, we went in and sat in one of the booths. The lady who was attending to us was very nice. Instead of shooing us away because I had a cup of coffee in my hand from another restaurant, she simply asked if it was okay for her to transfer my coffee into a glass, which I agreed to of course. We were shocked that she asked nicely, instead of going with the usual, "Hindi po pwede 'yan sa loob, ma'am." (You can't bring that inside, ma'am.) I had a feeling that this was going to be a good, blog-worthy lunch. Assuming the food is as good as the experience. :) 

Best Friends Pares and Mami House

It's been a while since my last update. I've a lot of entries waiting to be published, but I just don't have the time to finish all of them yet. Fortunately, I've some time to finish one today. 

A few months back, Gus and I decided to try this "pares" house along Aurora Blvd. It looks like your typical pares house -- simple tables and chairs, open air, fancy/colorful designs, and tiled floors. If you haven't seen other pares houses, you might think this is just a fancier eatery, or sidewalk restaurant. But don't let it's cutesy, or simple exterior fool you. Best Friends Pares House offers delicious, inexpensive meals fit for a king! 

Gus ordered the Beef Pares Meal, which came with a bowl of soup, two pieces of siomai, and UNLIMITED rice. All for the very low price of P89.

Beef Pares with UNLIMITED Rice

I ordered their Lechon Kawali Meal, which also came with a bowl of soup, a side dish of chopsuey, and a big cup of rice. As you can see in the photo below, their chopsuey serving was good enough for one more meal, not just as a side dish. Their serving of rice was also bigger than your usual cup of rice. All this for just P89 too.

Lechon Kawali Meal with Chopsuey

Best Friends Pares and Mami House prides itself in serving clean, delicious, and affordable meals, which, in our opinion, they succeeded in doing so. The food was delicious, we had everything we needed and wanted in a meal -- a bowl of hot soup, vegetables, more rice, and the assurance that what we were eating was clean food. For those midnight cravings, or spontaneous dates, drop by Best Friends Pares and Mami House for a delicious and affordable meal. They are located along Aurora Blvd. just a few block away from the Anonas LRT Station. They are open 24 hours. 

Price Range: P50-100/person

5 out of 5 for Best Friends Pares and Mami House

Best Friends Pares and Mami House
972 CDO 
Aurora Blvd. Quezon City
Phone Number: (63 2) 912 8957; 912 9614

Contact details courtesy of: http://bestfriendsparesandcateringservices.com/branches.php 

23 February 2012

MUA Experience 101: The First of 2012

This is my second attempt, a successful one I guess, at being a "make-up artist." My fried needed someone to do his model's make-up for one of his photoshoots. Since I am also an amateur at what I do, he decided to let me do the make-up of his model (he's a budding photographer) so I can practice my skills too. His theme was something along the lines of fierce. Here is my attempt at making Iza, the model, fierce.

I began prepping her face by applying a primer all over. I used Skin Food's Black Egg Pore Primer. I then combined Etude House's Nymph Aura Volumer #2 with Skin Food's Peach Sake BB Cream #2 in a 1:3 ratio. Skin Food's Peach Sake BB Cream, I think, is best for girls with a more Filipina-like complexion. It is not too white, and it doesn't make the skin look oily after application.

For her cheeks and lips, I used Tony Moly's Backstage Sure Tint in Peach (02). It made her cheeks and lips look very much alive, but not in an overpowering sense. I also added a drop of the Nymph Aurora Volumer on top of her cheeks to give it a certain glow.

For her eyes, I lined it with a thick layer of Maybelline's Waterproof Gel Liner, for that rockstar, I-am-fierce effect. I finished the whole look by dusting Majolica Majorca's Skin Remaker Pore Cover in OC20 all over her face, and neck.

Again, I am still getting to know make-up so don't expect expert-like make-up results. Here she is. :)

20120211 (12) copy

Disclaimer: I am not an expert, constructive criticisms are most welcome.

Photos courtesy of Christopher Lee.

22 February 2012

MUA Experience 101: December 2011

I am no make-up artist. I just enjoy hiding my pimples, pimple scars, EYEBAGS. That's it. The first time I learned about make-up was sometime during my late elementary years. My best friend was a looker. And with that, she possessed different sized, and colored foreign objects. A cylinder with colored, "clay-like" paint inside, pink powder, powder that came with a built in mirror, black, sticky liquid that's supposed to make your lashes longer, etc. Being the nerd that I was back then, I never really knew what these were, and what they were for. All I knew was that, these things make a woman, beautiful. Oh yes. For a smart kid, I was pretty shallow and stupid.

Now that I know just a little bit more about make-up, I was asked by my boyfriend's sister to help her put some on for a friend's debut. I am not promoting myself as a make-up artist, nor is this a tutorial. I'm just documenting my first ever, official make-up session with someone else. I have yet to learn so much more about make-up, and creativity before I can teach others professionally, or make a living out of it. For the pros out there, constructive criticisms, and tips are very much welcome. :) Here is my first try at being a make-up artist. 

Model: Gin Yu

Products Used: Skin Food Black Egg Pore Primer, MAC Studio Finish Concealer in NC20, Etude House Precious Mineral All Day Strong BB Cream in Sheer Glowing Skin #2, Etude House Nymph Aura Volumer #2, herbench/ Paintbox PrettyWhenPinched, MAC Studio Fix Powder Plus Foundation in NC30, (not shown in photo) Majolica Majorca Jeweling Eyes Eyeshadow Quad in PK785. (Model's Own) IN2IT Eyeshadow Duo in CE39 Natty, Fashion21 Eyeliner in Black, MAC Frost in AC9.

13 February 2012

Hello, ladies. Meet your new best friend: Jeunesse Anion Sanitary Napkin

Last Christmas, I was introduced to a new product. I was supposed to promote the product before it hit the shelves, but I've been busy with other things lately that I haven't had time to write. But, late is better than never, as they say. I am proud to introduce to you all, Jeunesse -- a new sanitary napkin that will amaze women everywhere. Yes, I use the word amaze because that's how I felt when I saw the demo of this product.

10 January 2012


On my latest entry on Emperor's Dimsum and Teahouse, the Xiao Long Bao serving has SIX not four pieces. Six delicious xiao long baos for only P98. :)

Have a great Tuesday, everyone! 

09 January 2012

cheers for really cold beers: Wing Hub

One thing I really appreciate is a bottle of cold beer and inexpensive (not overpriced) pulutan, or drinking food, to go along with it. I'm one of those people who just has the need to drink randomly to relieve stress. A bottle will do. But it has to go with something I can munch on.

when cravings attack: Moshi Moshi

Last year was a year of cravings. It was the year I craved for the perfect fresh lumpia, the perfect green mangoes with shrimp paste, the perfect orange quail eggs, and so many more cravings I wanted to satisfy. One of these cravings included a Japanese favorite -- gyudon. It started with one of our foodtrips in Megamall, where the gyudon I had tasted so sweet. From that day on, I've been craving for the perfect gyudon taste that will satisfy my taste buds. Nothing too sweet, nothing too salty, nothing bland. After months and months of searching and trying out different gyudons from different restaurants, I found one very close to home.

midnight adventure: Emperor's Dimsum and Teahouse

This entry marks the end of the backlog of blog entries I have for 2011. Start the year right by getting rid of the old stuff, right? :)

I shall begin with our midnight adventure last September 30, 2011. Oh, I guess this is one of our anniversary dates since it was on the 30th. We usually go out and celebrate our monthly anniversaries by discovering new food. Anyway, it was a midnight adventure because we had this at around 12:30 am. We were hungry, and looking for a non-fast food restaurant that was still open at that time. If I remember correctly, I was craving for some hot rice and a real, unprocessed, dish to go with it. Since we were in the Greenhills area, we decided to take a look at Emperor's Dimsum and Teahouse, and ended up having a filling midnight snack.

The food attendants served hot tea and pickled vegetables, which were oh-so-good, while we were looking at their menu. I've always loved how they automatically serve hot tea after sitting. The pickled vegetables I've only noticed now, but maybe it's because I've always been excited when ordering xiao long bao from this restaurant. I guess I finally took notice of it when Gus started eating it, and I'm glad I finally paid attention. The pickled vegetables were really good! A good way to start your eating adventure!

Pickled Vegetables
(free of charge)

House Tea

07 January 2012

First of 2012

Happy New Year, everyone! Yes, yes, I haven't been able to update my blog with any new reviews despite the holidays ending. I guess the new year wanted me to get the annual flu over and done with, so here I am, typing up my first post for 2012 while coughing my chest out. Anyway.. I hope the new year has greeted you guys better than it has me. As you've noticed, my entries seem fewer now. I decided to finish my blog's make-over and delete all personal posts from this blog, and move them to my personal blogsite. That way, I can keep all my blog entries organized. This site will now be used purely for food, restaurant, product reviews, and the once-in-a-blue-moon opinions I may have on certain issues. 

Just in case my over dramatized life, or writing, has sparked any interest in you, or maybe it's just my uncensored take on love and life, my personal blog can be located in Wordpress. 

Hoping to post something new before the weekend ends! Have a great one, and stay healthy. :)