Birthday Lunch at Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

I’m blessed to have coworkers who like to celebrate milestones with a good meal.

An officemate’s birthday falls within a few weeks of mine so two of our former bosses decided to treat us out to a joint birthday lunch.

And for that, Lola Cafe is our best bet, considering its proximity to our workplace, its Instagrammable modern interiors and its menu of imaginatively prepared homey dishes.

Similar to other restaurants in the Tomas Morato area, Lola Cafe was built from a renovated house. It boasts of a sizeable parking area (a big plus in this vicinity), a high-ceilinged bar area, and a dining area that combines the old architectural layout with a modern black and white aesthetic and a refreshing view of the lush green space outside.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Lola Cafe serves Filipino food that makes use local ingredients in imaginative ways such as:

Crispy Tinapa (Php220 for solo). Tinapa, bits of ripe mango, kesong puti tossed in romaine lettuce and arugula with slightly sweet and citrusy honey dalandan dressing.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Baked Tahong Express (Php220).  Baked mussels generously topped with mozzarella, garlic, Bicol Express sauce and green chilis.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Tartufo (Php295 for solo).  Spaghetti noodles tossed in a cream sauce with truffle oil and portobello mushroom.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Shrimp Aligue (Php295 for solo). Spaghetti noodles tossed with plump shrimp in a rich  and decadent cream sauce of crab fat and kesong puti.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Lola Fried Chicken (Php310 for solo). Juicy pieces of chicken thighs in garlic butter sauce.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Prawns in Aligue (Php420 for solo). Succulent poached prawns in a spicy sauce of crab fat, chili garlic and lemon butter.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Mango Pavlova (Php160). Crunchy cashew meringue and bits of mango layered with chantilly cream.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Kesong Puti Cheesecake (Php220). A rich cheesecake made of kesong puti topped with bukayo (sweetened coconut strips) and salted latik (caramelized coconut cream).

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

These delicious dishes, Lola Cafe’s attentive staff and the awesome company helped to make that birthday lunch truly memorable.

Lola Cafe, Tomas Morato

Since Lola Cafe is a Zomato Gold partner establishment, and all four of us unlocked or Zomato Gold privilege, our group got some of our food orders for free!

Zomato Gold provides members with 1+1 (Buy 1 Get 1) deals on food or 2+2 (Buy 2 Get 2) deals on drinks. All you have to do is sign up for a Zomato Gold membership here. Use my code JELLYB to get 20% off the membership fee.

Lola Cafe is located at 99 Scout Lozano Street, Laging Handa, Quezon City, open Mondays to Thursdays from 11.30am to 10pm, Fridays to Saturdays from 11.30am to 11pm, and Sundays from 10.30am to 9pm. For inquiries and reservations, call +63 2 5012620 or +63 917 8176045.

Another branch recently opened at the Fifth Floor, The Podium, ADB Avenue, Ortigas Center, Mandaluyong City.

Lola Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other Filipino restaurants:

Chill sounds and good eats at Pied Piper Gastrolounge, Ermita

Like the fabled children of Hamelin, the denizens and passersby of Ermita, Manila’s Arquiza Street as well as guests of the Red Planet Hotel Manila Bay, will find themselves drawn to the bright lights, good music and chill vibe of the Pied Piper… Well, the Pied Piper Gastrolounge, that is.

For people who love to enjoy their favorite brews along with their meals, gatrolounges (also known as gastropubs) are the place to be. In these places, they are assured of a steady supply high end beers to satisfy their discerning tastes while still indulging themselves in hot dishes know as “pub grub.”

In contrast to the usual pub grubs, however, Pied Piper Gastrolounge’s menu features a fusion of Japanese and other cuisines, thanks to the input of Chef Mikel Aguirre. It also has some classic Pinoy-style grilled items courtesy of managing partner Carlo Religioso, the man behind Daddings Kitchenette.

Together with my fellow foodies from #WeLoveToEatPH, I was able to sample some of its offerings during its pre-anniversary concert.

These include:

Bacon Sushi Roll (Php250). Smoked pork is wrapped in nori and sushi rice and topped with torched bacon. Dipped into soy sauce with wasabi, this is a sure winner!

Pied Piper Gastrolounge, Manila

Crispy Spareribs (Php320). Meaty pieces of pork ribs are braised for three hours, grilled for a smokey flavor and then deep fried to get a crispy exterior. Dipped into the house barbecue sauce, it’s a must for every carnevore.

Pied Piper Gastrolounge, Manila

Baked Tahong (Php280). A Japanese version of the bar staple, this baked mussels dish make use of a special Japanese cheese sauce.

Pied Piper Gastrolounge, Manila

To accompany our food, we had our fill of Rhum Cokes (Php150/glass) and Vodka Sprites (Php150/glass).

Pied Piper Gastrolounge, Manila

Pied Piper Gastrolounge, Manila

Pied Piper Gastrolounge, Manila

This shindig was also marked by musical performances by Viva Hotabes Maricar dela Fuente and EB Babe Molly Baylon.

Pied Piper Gastrolounge, Manila

Pied Piper Gastrolounge, Manila

With the resto’s chill surroundings, friendly staff, good eats and cool sounds, it was a spirited night for me and my friends at the Pied Piper Gastrolounge.

Pied Piper Gastrolounge, Manila

Pied Piper Gastrolounge, Manila

Pied Piper Gastrolounge, Ermita

Pied Piper Gastrolounge is located at Ground Floor, Red Planet Hotel Manila Bay, Arquiza Corner Alhambra Street, Ermita, Manila. (Note: Parking may be a problem). It is open everyday from 10am to 1am. For reservations and inquiries, call +63 927 2915211.

Pied Piper Gastrolounge Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Together with other foodies, I was invited to join a foodie meetup held at this restaurant. Food items mentioned here were served to allow us to sample the fare and were not paid for by the attendees, including myself