I decided to treat a dear friend from the office to lunch at Kandle Cafe for her birthday.
Because a) it’s been years since I last ate there; b) I remember the place to be very Instagrammable and my friend and I are both IGers; and c) it’s reasonably near our office which means we can get back from our lunch break on time.
Kandle Cafe initially made a name for itself with its coffee brews and blends, given that the owners, siblings Khryss, Don King, Leslie and Eli Ong (from a play on whose names came the resto’s moniker – KANDLE), were all passionate about coffee culture.
The place is also marked by a design aesthetic that combines warm and homey interiors with nature’s beauty outside.
Along the pathway leading to the dining area, for example, abound plants and water feature installations. The steady sound of trickling water and the sight of verdant growths did have a calming effect on my work-frazzled nerves. Wood and metal furniture add a modern touch to the al fresco setting.
Inside, the sprawling space is lit with warm lighting, showcasing the fun and quirky collection of bric-a-bracs and whimsical accents.
This place is designed to be memorable, and to be a setting for great memories.
For our memorable birthday lunch, we ordered:
Chilean Mussel Pasta (Php380). Chilean mussels sauteed in a garlic and white wine sauce served on top of al dente tagliatelle and topped with grated parmesan.
Pork Tonkatsu (Php350). Tender pork loin stuffed with cheese, breaded and deep-fried to a golden brown, served with house-made teriyaki sauce, sesame cabbage salad and blue rice (yep, the color comes from the edible flower they serve it with).
For dessert, we indulged in a moist and heavenly Carrot Bar (Php100), a Lava Cookie (Php55) and a Maple Cookie with Bacon (Php80).
While the food items were definitely a sight to behold, there were hits and misses upon eating them. I think that the pork tonkatsu may be better accompanied by the sweet and peppery tonkatsu sauce rather than a teriyaki sauce which does not bring out as much of the pork’s flavor as I would like. The lava cookie, on the other hand, was lacking the rich chocolatey taste and gooey texture that I’ve come to expect.
That said, we loved the interplay of textures and flavors in the Chilean Mussel Pasta and the moist and richly sweet Carrot Bar.
The servers were also attentive and knowledgeable about their offerings, citing features or ingredients that make their dishes unique as they are serving them.
I definitely wouldn’t mind returning here for a nice and relaxed coffee break so I could try out the resto’s celebrated brews and more of its pastries.
Kandle Cafe is located at 113 Mother Ignacia Avenue, Bgy South Triangle, Quezon City, Sundays to Thursdays, 11am to 11pm and Fridays to Saturdays from 11am to 12mn. For reservations and inquiries, call +63 2 3724504. Or you can book your table via Zomato like I did. 🙂