What’s new at Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Unli Korean BBQ joints abound in the metro. So much so that one may be challenged in distinguishing one resto’s offerings from another’s.

Well, Geonbae Modern Korean Bar & Grill will make sure that you remember it well.

Geonbae translates to “empty glass” which has the same meaning as the expression “bottom’s up.” The name is quite apt because here, you and your friends can eat and drink to the good times.

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Last year, I had lunch at the Geonbae branch in the Tomas Morato area together with my officemates, during which we took advantage of a Buy 3 Get 1 Deal on its Php499 set. Then, I praised Geonbae’s ambiance, variety of offerings, great service and value for money.

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

After taking part in a Zomato Foodie Meetup at the same Geonbae branch, I’m happy to report on some new things for K-BBQ fans to enjoy.

1) A hyped up Php649 set

With the Php649 set (50% off for kids 10 years old and younger), you can eat your fill of:

9 kinds of appetizers: includes buldak (chicken) kimbap, yachae (vegetable) kimbap, fried and steamed manju, japchae, tteokbokki (spicy rice cakes), kimchi takoyaki as well as yoen yeo (salmon sashimi) and chamchi (tuna sashimi)

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

11 Entrees: includes saewoo twigim (shrimp fry), galbi jjim (beef stew), ramyeon (Korean ramen), bibimbap, chicken bibimbap, salmon bibimbap, spicy salmon ramen and Korean wings.

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Soups and stews: includes doenjang jigae (seafood stew), kimchi jigae (kimchi stew) and galbitang (beef rib stew)

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Side dishes: includes odeng (fish cake), pajeon (green onions pancake), hobak jeon (pumpkin pancake), gyeran jim (steamed egg), napa kimchi, gamja jurim (potato marble), myulchi bokkeum, lettuce, kimchi bokkeunbap (kimchi fried rice), bap (plain rice) and cheese for dipping

21 kinds of meat: includes samgyeopsal (pork belly), spicy yakiniku samgyeopsal, ginger samgyeopsal, gochujang samgyeopsal, smoked pork belly, spicy yakiniku pork ribs, spicy yakiniku moksal, herb pork jowl, herb pork belly, pork bulgogi, pork intestine, sausage, woo samgyeop (beef belly), oyster woo samgyeop, gochujang woosamgyeop, chadolbaegi (beef brisket), galbisal (rib finger), oyster hoshisal (hanger steak), beef bulgogi, ginger chicken breast and assorted odeng.

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

The Php649 set (maximum of 3 hours staying time) is available for dinner Fridays to Sundays from 3pm onwards. Price is exclusive of VAT. Leftovers will be charged Php649.

2) A high-tech ordering and requesting system

When dining at unli Korean BBQ places, you sometimes get frustrated at the slow fulfillment of refill requests or changing of grills, right?

Well, not here. By connecting to Geonbae’s WiFi network and scanning the QR code provided per table, you get redirected to an online menu of dishes and refills, as well as service requests such as “change charcoal,” “change grill” and “check out.”

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

As soon as you select the dish or service you require, a wait staff immediately comes along to fulfill your request.

Pretty nifty, huh?

3) The entrance to a hidden bar

At Geonbae’s dining area, you will see a doorway marked with a neon sign. This door is the entryway to Alibi, a speakeasy where you can enjoy cool tunes, refreshing cocktails, yummy bar chow, and get this: an oyster bar!

Alibi, Tomas Morato

Read more about Alibi here.

So the next time you have a hankering for Korean BBQ, be sure to drop by Geonbae. Who knows what new exciting things you’ll encounter there on your visit!

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Geonbae, Tomas Morato

Many thanks to Donna of Zomato and to V and Yvette of Local Folks Group for the invitation!

This Geonbae Modern Korean Bar & Grill branch is located at 115 Scout Delgado Street Barangay Sacred Heart, Quezon City, open daily from 11am to 10pm. For inquiries and reservations, call +63 2 84298549.

Other branches are located at

  • Third Floor, UP Town Center, Katipunan Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City
  • West Drive corner Champagnat Avenue, Marikina Heights, Marikina City

Geonbae Modern Korean Bar & Grill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Together with other foodies, I attended a Zomato Foodie Meetup held in this restaurant.  The food items mentioned here were served to allow us to sample the fare to facilitate honest reviews and were not paid for by the attendees, including myself.

Check out my posts about other Korean restaurants:

Rick Price and Morissette put a new spin on the classic ballad “Heaven Knows”

Australian singer-songwriter and producer Rick Price teams up with Filipina pop sensation Morissette on the 2020 version of “Heaven Knows.”

Released on Valentine’s day, the classic ballad is rearranged with a fuller sound and a more contemporary touch. “The original recording of Heaven Knows is basically piano and voice only,” the award-winning Rick Price discloses. “The new version is a duet and has a full band added with lush strings and background vocals. It was such a delight to record and I can’t wait for you to hear it.”

Morissette, on the other hand, gave the previous iteration a different spin with her adept and powerful vocals. The Asia’s Phoenix, who happens to be a Wish 107.5 Hall of Fame awardee, stayed true to the song’s enduring message of romantic longing, while making sure to deliver a transcendent performance. “Working on this track, RP and I kind of agreed that we didn’t want to make the verses predictable, but to keep the chorus singable and heartfelt,” the Akin Ka Na Lang songstress shares. “He also allowed me to put my own flavor and twists into the melodies.”

Pairing made in heaven

After working with Asia’s songbird Regine Velasquez on the remake of “Nothing Can Stop Us Now,” Rick Price returns with a lovely duet featuring one of the biggest music stars in the country, Morissette. The collaboration, according to Rick, was indeed monumental not only because it pays tribute to one of the biggest hits of his career, but also gives him a chance to revisit the song with a talented singer who knows how to interpret the material with precise emotional heft. “Thankfully my record label Sony Music was able to put me in touch with Morissette,” the multi-platinum recording star gushes. “I fell in love with her voice. She made me cry: truly the voice of an angel. Morissette is a wonderfully talented artist and a delight to work with.”

The young diva shares the same sentiment on collaborating with Rick Price. According to Morrisette, “Getting to work with an international music icon such as Rick Price is already such an honor, and with a song that I didn’t only grow up to but should continually be passed on through generations. This project inspires and challenges me to appreciate and do different types of music.”

A classic love anthem

“Heaven Knows” was originally released in 1992, and peaked at #6 on ARIA Singles Chart. In the Philippines, the beloved Rick Price anthem became a staple adult contemporary smash with longevity that spans for more than 25 years. Resonating with music fans from opposite sides of the generation spectrum, young and old, the chart-topping tune is perfect for the season of love and romance this month.

Even Rick Price himself has no idea why the song continues to make a mark up to the present day. “It’s hard to say why this song has stayed around for so long. It just seemed to strike a chord with so many people. I imagine almost every human being experiences heart break and loss at some point in their life and it’s comforting to know we are not alone in that process.”

The 2020 version of “Heaven Knows” is available now on Spotify and all music streaming and download platforms worldwide via Sony Music.

Image and details provided in a recent press release.

SKY partners with Shopee for a special subscription offer

A rewarding online shopping experience awaits new SKY subscribers as it launches the “Go Online for Great Deals with SKY and Shopee Promo” to give new subscribers up to Php400 discount on their Shopee purchase.

This thrilling promo is available to anyone who is successfully installed with a SKY Fiber, SKYcable, or SKYdirect postpaid subscription via online application at mysky.com.ph within the promo period, February 11 to April 30, 2020.

All qualified subscribers will be able to maximize the convenience of applying online and at the same time, get exclusive deals and perks such as 2 Shopee discount vouchers sent to their registered email within 3 to 5 working days from successful installation. Each voucher will entitle users to 10% discount upon checkout of their beauty, fashion, or even home product purchases. The maximum discount per voucher is P200 and there is no minimum purchase required.

All online applications will be subject to SKY’s existing approval processes and guidelines. To enjoy SKY and Shopee’s latest deal, subscribe to SKY online today. For more details, visit mysky.com.ph/shopee.

Show details and image provided  in a recent press release.

Disclosure: I work for SKY and part of my job is promoting its products and services, especially the content it provides to its subscribers. I consider being able to share my love for TV shows and movies and the experience of watching and talking about them with like-minded people some of the biggest perks of my job.


New HBO Original Series PLOT AGAINST AMERICA Debuts 17 March Exclusively On HBO GO And HBO

Based on the acclaimed Philip Roth novel of the same name, this six-part limited series imagines an alternate American history, told through the eyes of a working-class Jewish family in New Jersey as they watch the political rise of aviator-hero and xenophobic populist Charles Lindbergh, who becomes president and turns the nation toward fascism. THE PLOT AGAINST AMERICA will premiere same time as the U.S. on Tuesday, 17 March at 9am on HBO GO and HBO with an encore telecast on the same day at 10pm on HBO.

The cast includes Winona Ryder (HBO’s “Show Me a Hero”) as Evelyn Finkel, a spinster whose plans were constrained by years of caring for her infirm mother, Zoe Kazan (HBO’s “The Deuce”) as Bess Levin, Evelyn’s younger sister who fears the escalating political climate, Morgan Spector (HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire” and the upcoming “The Gilded Age”) as Herman Levin, Bess’ husband who struggles to maintain normalcy in his family’s life, Anthony Boyle as Alvin Levinm Herman’s orphaned nephew, Azhy Robertson as Philip Levin as the youngest of the Levin family, Caleb Malis as Sandy Levin, the artistic son and John Turturro (HBO’s “The Night Of”) as Rabbi Lionel Bengelsdorf, a conservative rabbi and a transplant from Charleston, South Carolina.

THE PLOT AGAINST AMERICA is based on the novel by Philip Roth and created by David Simon and Ed Burns; executive produced by Simon, Burns, Nina K. Noble, Joe Roth, Megan Ellison, Sue Naegle, Susan Goldberg and Jeff Kirschenbaum; co-executive produced by Philip Roth and Dennis Stratton.

HBO is available on SKYcable Ch. 54 SD/Ch. 168 HD (for Metro Manila, Cavite, Laguna, Bulacan, Lipa-Batangas) or on Ch. 402 SD/710 HD (for Bacolod, Baguio, Cebu, Davao, Dumaguete, General Santos, Iloilo). SKYdirect subscribers can watch it on Ch. 22 HD. HBO Original Series as well as live channels are also available for streaming on HBO GO. To subscribe, call your local SKY office or fill up this form.

Show details and image provided by HBO in a recent press release.

Disclosure: I work for SKY and part of my job is promoting its products and services, especially the content it provides to its subscribers. I consider being able to share my love for TV shows and movies and the experience of watching and talking about them with like-minded people some of the biggest perks of my job.

Check out my posts on HBO shows:

Japan’s MOS Burger aims to take a bite out of the PH fast food market, opens first store on February 27

In a market dominated by western-style burgers, MOS Burger will introduce a distinctly Japanese flavor to burger-loving Filipinos as it opens its first branch in the Philippines this February 27, 2020 in Robinsons Galleria.

 “We heard that Filipinos love burgers as much as they love Japanese food. In introducing MOS Burger to the Philippines, we are giving them two of the things that they most love. We can’t wait for them to try our Japanese-style burgers,” said MOS Burger Philippines president Araki Masahide.

 During a pop-up store event last month, MOS Burger introduced its version of a signature cheese burger with meat sauce and the original yakiniku rice burger. Some of the items on the menu for the first Philippine branch are the following: yakiniku rice burger, MOS cheese burger, wagyu burger, seafood tempura rice burger, and natsumi, a lettuce wrap burger. 

As a way to welcome the dining public to its first store in the country, MOS Burger will give out gifts to its first 50 customers on opening day. In-store surprises also await customers every hour on February 27. The store’s operating hours will be from 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM.

Founded in Tokyo in 1972, MOS Burger is ranked number two in sales among all burger chains in Japan. It has around 1,300 stores in Japan and almost 400 stores overseas.

MOS stands for mountain, ocean, and sun—three elements that symbolize the company’s commitment to good service and how it trains its employees to approach their work. The mountain symbolizes its thrust to “stand tall and firm as a mountain.” The ocean, meanwhile, symbolizes its aim “to have a heart as big and generous as the ocean”, and the sun stands for “undying passion.”

MOS Burger also adheres to the old Japanese proverb “ishoku dogen”, which means food and medicine come from the same source so we could maintain our health through a balanced diet.

MOS Burger Philippines was formed in 2019 to oversee the local operations of MOS Burger. The company is the result of a joint venture agreement between MOS Food Services Inc. of Japan and Tokyo Coffee Holdings of the Young family of General Milling Corporation.

Its aggressive expansion plan in the Philippines will see the opening of several branches in Metro Manila this year. Apart from the one in Robinsons Galleria, MOS Burger stores will be opened in SM Megamall in Mandaluyong, One Eastwood Tower 2 and Robinsons Magnolia in Quezon City, O-Square in Greenhills, San Juan, and Robinsons Manila.

For more updates about MOS Burger Philippines’ opening, follow its Facebook page and Instagram account.

Image and details provided by MOS Burger in a recent press release.

Sweets to the sweet from Inang Charing

Everyone who knows me is probably already familiar with my sweet tooth.

I’ve always had a strong affinity for desserts: cakes, cookies and creams. My belief is that there’s always room for dessert. In fact, the dessert at the end is what I usually look forward during meal time.

And the sweet treats from Inang Charing’s are definitely worth the anticipation.

Former BPO employee Mylene Capili had a love for sweets and a skill for baking. Dreaming of having her own cafe someday, she studied Hotel and Restaurant Management in college.

When she was gifted with an oven, her passion for baking was rekindled.

Her first foray into the baking business began in 2013 under the name Dress Up Brownies, with her lucky BPO coworkers as her first customers. They were the first to get a taste her revel bars and brownies. In a burst of inspiration, Mylene and her partner offered dressed-up brownies, bars custom-decorated similar to cupcakes according to their customers’ request.

Her drive for both her job and her side business was challenged a year later when her grandmother, who raised her and her siblings, passed away. She resigned from her job to focus on Dress Up Brownies but her grief over her grandmother’s passing contributed to her business going on hiatus for two years.

A big order for her mini chocolate chip cookies for her sister’s high school reunion in 2018 spurred her to revive her business.

Wanting to pay tribute to her beloved grandmother, she rebranded her business, adopting the name her grandmother was called by neighbors when she was growing up: Inang Charing.

Thus, Inang Charing’s Cakes and Pastries came into being.

With her grandmother serving as her inspiration, she was motivated to create more baked goods for people to love.

Today, she operates Inang Charing’s Cakes and Pastries with her partner, Bem, who oversees sales, marketing and procurement of ingredients, while she handles the baking and pricing of the finished products.

They expanded their product line from brownies, revel bars and custom pastries to include cookies, cakes and cheesecakes, some of which I was able to sample.

Inang Charing

Inang Charing

The Triple-Flavored Cheesecake (Php785) presents three mouth-watering toppings on a three-inch tall cheesecake. The cheesecake itself is rich and compact, mildly sweet with a smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Its toppings of Mango, Blueberry and Nutella add different dimensions to the dessert. Also available are single-flavor (Php735) and double-flavor (Php755) variants.

Inang Charing

Inang Charing

The Chocolate Truffle Liquor Cake (Php265), on the other hand, is a decadent 5-inch diameter confection of layers upon layers of chocolate goodness. A moist chocolate cake flavored with chocolate liquor serves as the base layer covered by a thick and creamy ganache and a generous sprinkling with cocoa powder.

Inang Charing

Inang Charing

Lastly, the Salted White Chocolate Almond Cookies (Php50/pc) are delightful treats with complex flavors and textures owing to the white chocolate chips and toasted almonds scattered on top of moist and chewy cookies.

Inang Charing

Inang Charing

So if you’re looking for a showstopping cake for your party or just want to stock up on desserts to give your meals a wonderful ending, check out Inang Charing’s Cakes and Pastries.

Many thanks to Mylene for these scrumptious sweets.

To get your hands on these and more from Inang Charing’s, course your orders through its Facebook page or Instagram account with a three-day lead time and pay via BPI bank deposit a day before the delivery.

Disclosure: Product samples were provided to enable an honest review.

Check out my blog posts on other small enterprises and startups in the food business:

Gerry’s Grill, restaurant and bar pioneer turns 23

What comes to mind when one thinks of the number 23? Is it Michael Jordan, the G.O.A.T. of basketball? Is it the age of real adulting for some, a point in one’s life where he realizes he’s a full-grown adult with all the responsibilities that come with being one?

For Gerry’s Restaurant and Bar, more widely known as Gerry’s Grill, the number marks the years it has successfully catered to the discriminating palate of the Filipino people. Twenty-three years ago, on February 14, 1997, the first Gerry’s Restaurant and Bar opened its doors on Tomas Morato, Quezon City. And the dining landscape has never been the same since. Gerry’s Grill pioneered the resto-bar concept that continues to appeal to the Gen X, its original clients, as it does the Millennials of today. Many have followed suit but Gerry’s maintains its uniqueness for a good number of reasons.

Touted as among the few preferred go-to restaurant–bars in the metro, Gerry’s boasts of over a hundred stores thus deserving to be called the “sari-sari store” of resto-bars by virtue of its being found in every major dining and entertainment hub in Metro Manila. And in each branch, one is surely never short changed.

Gerry’s has proven time and again to withstand food fads like the grill wars, i.e., shawarma, samgyupsal (Korean Grill), lechon manok/baboy and numerous experimental and fusion cuisines. This means that their Filipino-themed menu has become ingrained in the food psyche of Filipinos, a tradition no less. Their variety of dishes and beverages represents the whole Philippine cuisine. Its flavorful Sizzling Sisig, Beef Kare-Kare and Inihaw na Pusit have been legendary food staples at every Filipino customer’s dining table. The rest of the menu caters to almost any craving.

Even the beer gulping culture of the country has been shaped and influenced by Gerry’s Grill being a top-of-mind watering hole through the years. Its wide food selection is considered the holy grail of pulutans (hors d’oeuvres) that is perfect for inumans (benders).

Bert Santos, an engineer, waxed nostalgic when he said that he literally grew up with Gerry’s Grill as his tambayan (bar/beer joint) for unwinding during his college years. Today, Gerry’s is a favorite lunch place for his family after hearing Sunday mass. While Buddy Sanchez, a doctor, said Gerry’s holds a special place in his heart because this was where he bonded with his work buddies after a stressful day and where he eventually met his future wife, Sally.

Gerry’s has recently opened its branches in San Diego, California and Houston, Texas, a good addition to its overseas chain which includes branches in Singapore, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates. Avenida, a modern Filipino restaurant and bar, inspired by the Avenida Rizal (Rizal Avenue) of the post-war era, is another Gerry’s Grill-owned restaurant that opened in San Mateo, California. With these developments, our overseas kababayans have every reason to celebrate Gerry’s 23 years of great food and great service.

Craving for sumptuous food after reading this? Go to the nearest Gerry’s Restaurant and Bar branch; visit www.gerrysgrill.com.ph to view the complete list of their branches, as well as all the food entries on their 2020 menu. You can also visit their Facebook page, @gerrysgrill.com.ph for more info.

Details and images provided in a recent press release.