6 Refreshing Ways to Enjoy Hoegaarden Witbier this Summer

Summer’s almost here and one thing that will be in everyone’s mind is how to stay cool despite the hot weather.

How about a sipping on a cold glass of Hoegaarden Witbier?

Hoegaarden Witbier
Hoegaarden Witbier

Witbier, also known as “white beer,” is a style of beer that originated in Belgium wherein a large proportion of unmalted wheat, along with malted barley, are brewed, producing a beverage that has a cloudy appearance due to the presence of yeast and wheat proteins.

Known for its light, refreshing taste and its characteristic spiciness, which comes from the addition of coriander and other herbs and spices, witbier often has a low to moderate alcohol content and is typically served unfiltered, which gives it a hazy appearance.

Hoegaarden Witbier
Hoegaarden Witbier

In addition to its distinctive taste and appearance, witbier is also known for its long and interesting history. It dates back to the Middle Ages, when monks in Belgium brewed beer using wheat, which was more abundant than barley at the time. The style went through a decline in popularity in the 20th century but was revived in the 1960s and 1970s by Belgian brewer Pierre Celis, who created the now world-famous Hoegaarden Witbier.

Hoegaarden Witbier
Hoegaarden Witbier

This summer, you can enjoy your Hoegaarden Witbier in a variety of ways:

  1. Serve it chilled. Of course, Hoegaarden Witbier is best enjoyed when it is chilled. Store the beer in the fridge or in your beverage cooler for at least a few hours before serving to ensure that it is cool and refreshing. To get that perfectly refreshing and foamy drink, pour two-thirds of the bottle into a chilled glass, swirl what’s left in the bottle, then top off and enjoy!
  2. Add an orange slice. Enhance the citrus notes of the Hoegaarden by garnishing with a slice of orange. Simply slice a small piece of orange and place it on the rim of your glass before pouring the beer.
  3. Pair it with your favorite dish. Hoegaarden Witbier goes well with a variety of foods, including salads, seafood, and spicy dishes. Try pairing it with a fresh summer salad or some grilled shrimp for a light and refreshing meal.
  4. Enjoy it outdoors. Hoegaarden Witbier is the perfect beer for warm weather and outdoor activities. Grab a few bottles and head to the park, beach, or to your backyard for a picnic or barbecue.
  5. Experiment with glassware. While Hoegaarden Witbier is traditionally served in a tall, slender glass, you can experiment with different glassware to enhance the beer’s flavor and aroma. Try serving it in a tulip glass to capture the beer’s aromas or in a wide-mouthed goblet to enhance its creamy texture.
  6. Use it in breadmaking. Hoegaarden Witbier can be used to add flavor and texture to homemade bread. Its unique blend of wheat, barley, and spices can add a subtle sweetness and depth of flavor to your bread, while the carbonation can help the bread rise.
Hoegaarden Witbier
Hoegaarden Witbier

Thanks to its sheer versatility, Hoegaarden Witbier is the perfect summer companion. Its light, refreshing taste and distinctive spiciness make it perfect for hot summer days, whether you’re enjoying it on its own or using it in cocktails or beer-based recipes.

Shop for your Hoegaarden Witbier and more from S&R online through MetroMart. Sign up for a MetroMart account here and enjoy Php200 grocery credit.


4 Things to Like About The Pallet, Poblacion

The area of Makati called Poblacion, previously known as the city’s red light district, has evolved into a pretty happening place. It has given rise to concept restaurants, quick chows and bars that offer Makati workers and residents alternative choices for dining, hanging out and entertainment away from the usual malls.

One such place is The Pallet.

The Pallet, Poblacion

A food park located at the corner of Dona Carmen and Jacobo Streets in Poblacion, backroads to Kalayaan Avenue, The Pallet is an off-the-beaten track venue.

For my first-ever Looloo Rendezvoos, I was invited to check this place out and experience the various possibilities it affords to its patrons. I found a lot to like about it so I summarized them down to a list which will hopefully help fellow foodies discover a new favorite place to hang out and dine.

No. 1: Ample parking space and helpful security guard.

Having braved the rush hour all the way from QC, I was relieved I didn’t have to worry about where to park my car. Manong guard was quick to assist me in finding a spot and guiding me while I park.

No. 2: Chill surroundings.

Being located in backstreets away from all the hustle and bustle of Makati’s busy streets and surrounded by a residential area, The Pallet has a chill and relaxed atmosphere that distanced me from the usual stresses of work and traffic.

The Pallet, Poblacion

The Pallet, Poblacion

The Pallet, Poblacion

No. 3: Lots of food choices!

Given its relatively small area, I’m surprised at the number and variety of dining choices available. I’ll blog about them in more detail later but suffice to say that the foodie in me got quite excited with The Pallet’s tenants and their offerings. These include:

Mang Jose’s Ihaw Ihaw – for yummy and fuss-free grilled meats and pulutans

The Pallet, Poblacion

Antojitos – for a taste of Mexico from cheese-filled nachos and quesadillas to filling burritos and more

The Pallet, Poblacion

Asian Hawker – for a taste of Singaporean street food from the Char Kwai Teoh rice dish to the creamy Laksa

The Pallet, Poblacion

Uncle Moe’s Shawarma Hub – for a taste of Middle Eastern cuisine from the flavorful kababs to hefty shawarmas

The Pallet, Poblacion

Takohub – it was my first time to see takoyaki balls this huge!

The Pallet, Poblacion

Heath Burger – because healthy cam be tasty too, especially those mushrooms masquerading as chicken nuggets

The Pallet, Poblacion

Ramen Attack – that Tantanmen was a revelation! And the Steak & Rice got me craving for more!

The Pallet, Poblacion

Creamco Creamery – rolled ice cream that’s as pretty as it was sweet and yummy

The Pallet, Poblacion

Inum Bar – cocktails for that relaxed after-work buzz

The Pallet, Poblacion

No. 4: Live music!

On Wednesday nights this November, enjoy live music from up-and-coming artists such as DJ Aryan (90’s Night) on November 21 and DJ SP (Hiphop Throwback) on November 29.

These are just some of the reasons why The Pallet appeals to me. Check it out and see if it might grow to be your favorite place too!

The Pallet is located at 5804 Dona Carmen corner Jacobo Streets, Poblacion, Makati City. For inquiries, email thepalletpark@gmail.com.

Disclosure: Together with other Looloo users, I was invited to join a Looloo Rendezvoos held at this venue.  All the food items mentioned here were served to allow us to sample the fare and were not paid for by the attendees, including myself.

Chillin’ with chums at Chili’s, Tomas Morato

Fans of hearty Southwestern and Tex-Mex cuisine will not be disappointed with the fare offered at Chili’s.  It is well-known for burgers, ribs and fajitas – basically items that go well together with beer and barkadas (friends).

In a recent dinner/get-together with friends held at this chain’s Tomas Morato branch, I was able to sample its offerings after nearly fifteen since my last visit to the exact same branch albeit with a different group of friends.

At first, I had trouble finding parking space as all the ones directly in front of the resto were occupied.  I had to circle the block again to find parking space some distance away.  I was supposed to call the resto to inquire about parking space (yes, in this area, this is a valid concern) but the number listed on Zomato was not working.

The resto has a casual, chill and cheery vibe, lots of seating room, with friendly staff who are quick to assist with our requests.

Of course we ordered Tostada Chips (Php395) which were crisp, fun to nibble on while chatting and, best of all, refillable. We partnered it with Skillet Queso (Php295), a rich and velvety cheese dip that went absolutely perfect with our chips and salsa.

Our hearty dinner consisted of Craft Burger Bites (Php495). These are four mini-cheeseburgers with flavorful American smoked beef bacon, sauteed onions and ranch sauce.l, which the group divided among ourselves. Also for sharing is an order of the Ultimate Dipper (Php750), a sumptious sampler of Chili’s best-selling appetizers – chicken fingers, buffalo wings, egg rolls, calamares and onion rings – served with five dipping sauces.

The most health-conscious in our group ordered a Buffalo Chicken Salad (Php295), chicken strips tossed in Buffalo Sauce (so you know this dish has quite a kick!), with bacon bits, bits of bleu cheese and ranch dressing.

For dessert, we shared a Skillet Cookie (Php385), a confection consisting of a warm, enormous chocolate chip cookie topped with vanilla ice cream and chocolate fudge.

The whole meal was a feast of fresh and hearty flavors that complemented our group’s long talks and frequent laughter.

This Chili’s branch is located at the corner of Tomas Morato Ave and Scout Fernandez in Quezon City.

Chili's Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Unwinding at Manila Hotel’s Tap Room

Taking advantage of a credit card promo, my mother-in-law treated us to dinner at Manila Hotel’s Tap Room to celebrate my sister-in-law’s birthday.

Manila Hotel is a historic 5-star hotel located along Manila Bay. Built in 1909, it is the oldest premiere hotel in the Philippines.

The Tap Room is Manila Hotel’s English pub-inspired bar. Its dim lighting, dark wood interiors, plush seating and soothing jazz music from live performers make it an appropriate place to unwind in with your favorite drink.

While waiting for our orders, we were served with salted peanuts and green peas to go with our drinks (mine was, of course, a double shot of Bailey’s).

Our food orders included:

  • Pizza Manila Hotel (Php550). A thin-crust pizza topped with tomato, mozzarella, Laguna cheese and olives.
  • Slider (Php550). Two cheese-stuffed mini burgers with guacamole and barbecue sauce.
  • Chicken Shawarma Wrap (Php450). Roasted chicken wrapped in a toasted flour tortilla and served with tahina dip, garlic sauce, pickles and French fries.
  • Fried Fish and Chips (Php750). Battered fish fried to a crispy golden brown and served with large cut fries.
  • Deep-fried Calamares (Php450).
  • Buffalo Chicken Wings (Php450).
  • Sizzling Pork Sisig (Php450).

Being located in a 5-star hotel, the Tap Room’s service was top-notch.  The wait staff was elegantly dressed, very accommodating and helpful.  They even brought out a slice of chocolate mousse as a birthday treat for my sister-in-law.

The food was well-presented and well-flavored.  However, given the pricing, hanging out at the Tap Room for dining or drinks is not something I can do too often.

Tap Room - Manila Hotel Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Great flavors at Vitto’s Wine Bar & Restaurant

I’m not much of a drinker. Actually, I’m not a drinker. Period.

You would think a non-tippler would have found little to appreciate in Vitto’s Wine Bar & Restaurant, but there I was with my officemates during lunchtime, marveling at the resto’s Instagrammable minimalist organic-themed aesthetic and its unusual and yet comforting food offerings.

This hole-in-the-wall establishment may seem small but its warmly lit and quite cozy. It’s unique style manifested in the old Latin saying prominently displayed in one of its walls – “In vino veritas; in cervesio felisitas” or “In wine there is truth; in beer there is happiness,” definitely a mantra among its patrons who have high regard for their spirits.

Our group of four were the only ones there. Our lone wait staff – RJ – was attentive, prompt in assisting requests and knowledgeable about the resto’s food choices.

I ordered a Salted Egg Pasta (Php250), spaghetti noodles with a creamy salted egg sauce and topped with bacon bits. It was a hit among our group but I would suggest splitting this order with someone; the sauce is quite rich and strongly flavored, and the dish is heavy on the tummy.

I was also able to try out my companions’ orders:

  • The Grilled Meat Chop (Php290), one of Vitto’s All Day Brunch meals, consisted of two hefty pork chops, well-seasoned to bring out their smoky taste, and well complemented by garlic rice and sautéed veggies. I will order this on my next visit.
  • The Potato Croquettes with Blue Cheese Mayo (Php190), on the other hand, had the problem of having a bland-tasting mashed potato base, we needed to further season it with salt.
  • Lastly, the Citrus Fish Fillet (Php220) consisted of two fillets of baked cream dory marinated in lemon. Its light taste and mild texture were well complemented by its rich butter sauce. It went well with the garlic rice my officemate requested as a replacement to its usual side of mashed potato.

While its wine list wouldn’t really appeal to me, Vitto’s food menu is definitely something I wouldn’t mind exploring.

Vitto’s Wine Bar & Restaurant is located at 114 Scout Lozano Street, Laging Handa, QC.

Vitto's Wine Bar & Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other wine bars:

Want to profess your love of vino to the world?  Check out these wine-themed items on Amazon.com!

Primitives By Kathy Single Wine Bottle Holder – Whimsical Wine Box Sign

VinoPlease 4 Wine Coasters – Wine Gifts Accessory for Any Wine Enthusiast

5 Wine Stoppers + Gift Box – Perfect Wine Gift Accessory, Set of 5 Funny Silicone Wine Reusable Caps Stoppers for Wine and Beer Bottles – Vinaka Wine Stoppers


Late Night Drinks at Alchemy

Hubby and I attended a Saturday afternoon event here which extended to late night drinks with his friends and officemates. The place has an open-air veranda upstairs conducive to drinks and chats.

Alchemy is the ancient practice of mixing elixirs and potions to either come up with gold or the key to eternal life. Here, the elixirs are mixed for the patrons to have a good time. It has an extensive liquor list which include local and imported beers, wines from France, Italy, Australia, New Zealand, Chile and Argentina, as well as other potions such as vodkas, rums, whiskies, liquers, etc. Also mixed in are lively music from the DJ upstairs or the live band downstairs.

Since I’m not much of a drinker, Hubby got me 2 double shots of Bailey’s Irish Cream (Php180/shot) and sampled their thick cut French Fries (Php110) and Hummus (Php200).

We stayed here until almost midnight (clearly my limit given we’ve been there since afternoon and I already consider myself a tita) but I had a fun time Hubby and some new friends.

Alchemy Bistro Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other wine bars:

Want to profess your love of vino to the world?  Check out these wine-themed items on Amazon.com!

Primitives By Kathy Single Wine Bottle Holder – Whimsical Wine Box Sign

VinoPlease 4 Wine Coasters – Wine Gifts Accessory for Any Wine Enthusiast

5 Wine Stoppers + Gift Box – Perfect Wine Gift Accessory, Set of 5 Funny Silicone Wine Reusable Caps Stoppers for Wine and Beer Bottles – Vinaka Wine Stoppers