Japan’s taiyaki is now here at Taki Taki, Century City Mall

Do you know what a taiyaki is?

It is a Japanese yaki (baked) dessert which follows the shape of the tai (Japanese red seabream). A classic street vendor fare in Japan, it has now reached our shores when the first store of Taki Taki opened a few weeks ago at Century City Mall in Makati.

Walk around the mall’s Hole in the Wall food hall and you will find a quaint little shop decorated with fish images (the servers even wear cute fish hats), and anime-like drawings. The smell of baking taiyaki might even lead you there, hmm?

Taki Taki, Poblacion

Taki Taki, Poblacion

So how are taiyaki made?

Waffle batter is poured into hot fish-shaped molds (each side poured separately) with the filling placed in one side. Before the batter is cooked through, the molds are closed for up to three minutes until the batter is golden brown and the filling is sealed inside inside the taiyaki.

Taki Taki, Poblacion

Taki Taki, Poblacion

Taki Taki, Poblacion

Taki Taki, Poblacion

Taki Taki, Poblacion

The taiyaki is a actually quite versatile in the sense that it can suit almost any filling, whether sweet (Php100) such as red bean, Nutelle/Peanutbutter, apple cinnamon and cream cheese with strawberries, or savory (Php120) such as cheese, tuna/corn/mayo, bacon egg and cheese and curry cheese.

Being a sweet tooth, my choices in taiyaki include one with the traditional filling of anko (sweet red bean paste) and another with cream cheese and strawberries. The red bean taiyaki has that sweet and light taste while the cream cheese taiyaki has a nice contrast of saltiness from the cheese and tart sweetness from the berries.

Taki Taki, Poblacion

Taki Taki, Poblacion

Taiyaki also make for tasty frozen treats. Soft-serve ice cream made with premium Hokkaido milk is twirled into open taiyaki cones then topped with candies, crunchies, fruits and drizzles.

Taki Taki, Poblacion

Taki Taki, Poblacion

Taki Taki, Poblacion

Taki Taki, Poblacion

Taki Taki, Poblacion

I got myself an I Love Taki (Php200), made with Vanilla Milk ice cream topped with marshmallows and strawberry sprinkles and strawberry syrup syringe, and a Grizzly’s Chocolate Overload (Php200), made with Chocolate Milk ice cream topped with toast crunch, cinnamon, marshmallows and a milk chocolate lollipop.

Taki Taki, Poblacion

Taki Taki, Poblacion

Well, this is another case of sugar high for me.

Taki Taki, Poblacion

Taki Taki, Century City Mall

These taiyaki treats are a welcome addition to the dessert and snack choices available in the metro. If you want a taste of this popular Japanese street food, head to Taki Taki today!

Taki Taki is located at the Hole in the Wall, Fourth Floor, Century City Mall, Kalayaan Avenue, Poblacion, Makati City, open Mondays to Thursdays from 11am to 9pm, Fridays to Saturdays from 10am to 10pm and Sundays from 10am to 9pm.

Taki Taki Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: I was invited to visit Taki Taki where I was served food items mentioned here for free for me to sample the fare in exchange for an honest review.

Check out my reviews of other dessert places in the metro:

Great drinks and great times at Good Good, Tomas Morato

So the workday is done and you and your friends are on the lookout for a reason to get together to relax and catch up.

Well, here’s an idea!

Good Good, Tomas Morato

Why not hang out at the newly opened maiden store of Taiwanese tea brand Good Good in Tomas Morato?

This shop located along Scout Tobias Street boasts of comfy and Instagrammable interiors, great for chilling out in or getting those great photo opps, as well as a wide selection of beverage options. My friends from #SaanSaPH and I discovered these when it opened its doors to us the day before its Grand Opening.

Good Good, Tomas Morato

Good Good, Tomas Morato

Good Good, Tomas Morato

What treats await you when you enter the shop? Here are some of the Good Good’s extensive selections for your beverage of choice:

Fruit Teas (prices range from Php120 to Php160). Made with fresh and locally sourced fruit, these teas light, refreshing and quite healthy.

Good Good, Tomas Morato

Classic Milk Teas (prices range from Php95 to Php140). With options that include the Black Bubble Milk Tea (and its intensified versions called Double B and Triple B), as well as those known milk tea variants such as Hokkaido, Okinawa and Wintermelon, you can be sure your milk tea cravings will be satisfied.

Good Good, Tomas Morato

Good Good, Tomas Morato

Cream Cheese (prices range from Php120 to Php220). What is it about cream cheese milk teas that make me go crazy? Is it the richness of the cream cheese foam topping the contrasts against the light tea? Is it the slightly salty flavor that makes a great foil for the drink’s sweetness? Whatever it is, my drinks of choice here are the Berry Brilliant with Cream Cheese (Php220) made with fresh strawberries and raspberries and the Chocolate Milk with Cream Cheese (Php150).

Good Good, Tomas Morato

Good Good, Tomas Morato

Good Good, Tomas Morato

Smoothies (prices range from Php180 to Php220). If you want to go the full fruit shake route, Good Good has fruit smoothie selections for you to soothe your craving. Choices incorporate fresh fruits such as banana, papaya, strawberries and mango among others.

Good Good, Tomas Morato

If you think that going to a tea place means you’ll be starved for choice, think again, dearies. As Good Good has shown us #SaanSaPH foodies, choices abound and while you can always come back to enjoy your favorites, there’s nothing stopping you from trying out new drink options.

Many thanks to #SaanSaPH for the invite and to the wonderful folks of Good Good Philippines for the great time and the great drinks we had there!

Good Good, Tomas Morato

Good Good is located at 49-C Scout Tobias Street, Laging Handa, Quezon City.

Good Good Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Together with other food bloggers of #SaanSaPH, I was invited to attend a foodie meetup held here wherein in drink items were served to allow us to sample the fare. These were not paid for by the attendees, including myself.

Check out my reviews of other milk tea joints:

Something new brewing at Caffe Freddo, BGC

For a coffee lover like me, that morning cuppa signals the start of a new day, and that mug in the afternoon is all I need to pick me up from the post-lunch slump.

I also look forward to trying out new brews and coffee concoctions. It’s actually amazing how coffee is versatile enough to be mixed and matched with new ingredients to come up with an exciting new beverage.

Last night, together with my fellow foodies, I trooped over to Caffe Freddo in Bonifacio High Street to find out what the cafe has been brewing as part of its Philippine Independence Day offering.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

The new Ube Freddo (Php150) localizes Caffe Freddo’s coffee experience by adding the very Pinoy flavor of ube (purple yam) to the Freddo, the cafe’s signature iced coffee drink which contains a double shot of espresso and sweetened frothed milk. The resulting purple concoction makes for a pretty and Instagrammable drink. It joins the cafe’s roster of imaginative Freddo flavors which already include Mocha, Chai, Matcha and Coco starting June 12.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Along with the Ube Freddo, we also got a taste of the cafe’s carefully curated Modern European brunch menu which included:

Appetizers

Crunchy Calamari (Php240). Crispy battered squid rings served with basil and lime mayo.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Spring Rolls (Php260). Shrimp and corn-filled spring rolls served with coriander tomato dip.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Dried Figs Burrata Flat Bread (Php380). The dried figs add a sweet element that complements the savory flavors from burrata cheese, caramelized onions and the arugula in this flatbread.

Caffe Freddo,BGC

Panzanella Salad (Php290). Fresh flavors abound in this mixture of kale, watermelon, cherry tomatoes and croutons tossed in a balsamic vinaigrette.

Caffe Freddo,BGC

Mains.

Nasi Goreng (Php330). Chicken satay served with Indonesian spiced shrimp, vegetable fried rice and fried egg.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Beef Tagliatelle (Php350). Pasta tossed in beefy tomato ragu and basil.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Aglio Olio (Php350). Spaghetti tossed in virgin olive oil, garlic and spiced bacon.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Soy Grilled Salmon (Php480). Salmon topped with wabiko cream and served with wasabi mashed potato.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Fried Chicken Confit (Php320). Crispy fried chicken served with cole slaw.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Croque Madame (Php320). Smoked ham over a brioche toast and a layer of gruyere cheese, topped with a fried egg and mornay sauce.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Desserts.

Mango Granita (Php220). Succulent cubes of mango mixed in strips of fresh coconut, crumbled macaroons and coconut milk.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Greek Yogurt Panna Cotta (Php220). Light and tangy panna cotta served with blueberries in a pinot syrup.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Sans Rival (Php220). The classic Pinoy cake made of decadent layers of buttercream, meringue and chopped nuts.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Choco Paradise (Php190).This rich chocolatey confection is perfect for those craving for chocolate after a meal.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

With its slew of dishes, coffee offerings and cozy atmosphere, it’s easy to see why Caffe Freddo has become a prime foodie destination.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Thanks to Pat of ThePatKidInside for extending the invitation!

About Caffe Freddo

Caffe Freddo prides itself in offering a very unique selection of coffee, not found anywhere else in the metro. The coffee selection is all specially brewed from premium coffee beans of Bluestone Lane from New York City. Strategically located in the busy commercial business district of Bonifacio High Street, Caffe Freddo has refreshingly inviting interiors, with its off-white distressed brick walls, ample seating good for 50 people, and columns with hand-painted coffee plants in vibrant hues of green and red. Caffe Freddo is cozy enough for group meet-ups and family dining.

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Caffe Freddo, BGC

Caffe Freddo is located at The Spa Building, 9th Avenue, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City, open Sundays to Thursdays from 7am to 11pm and Fridays to Saturdays from 7am to 12 midnight.  For inquiries, call +63 9988479410.

Caffe Freddo Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - ZomatoDisclosure: Together with my fellow 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.

Check out my blog posts on breakfast joints around the metro:

 

 

A special place for happiness at Elait, Eastwood Mall

There’s a special place for every kid’s heart for ice cream. Its cool feel inside the mouth, the burst of sweetness on the tongue and the added tastes and textures from yummy add-ons make this a perfect summer treat for the young ones (and yeah, the not-so-young ones too!)

Elait, Eastwood Mall

For my little boy and the kid in me, our ice cream craving was satisfied when we headed off to Elait in Eastwood Mall after dinner.

It is a small stall shared with cookie store Overdoughs, and similar to other Elait outlets, it is manned by rolled ice cream artisans and servers who also happen to be deaf.

Elait, Eastwood Mall

Elait, Eastwood Mall

Established by the Caravan Food Group, Inc., Elait supported its owner’s advocacy to raise awareness for social causes and provide employment and training for persons with hearing disability.

So how would you go about ordering and interacting with the store’s servers then?

An order form is conveniently provided where you can indicate your preferred flavor (either a custard or yogurt base plus mix-ins and toppings to flavor the ice cream). Signs containing basic sign language are also posted in strategic areas around the store. I think this is a good way to expose kids to diverse kinds of people and a fun incentive to learn sign language. It also a way to show kids that sometimes, a language barrier can be easily overcome.

Using a spatula, the mixture that will form your rolled ice cream is blended then evenly spread as it hardens on a sub-zero metal plate. This then scraped off the plate to form rolls which are then placed in a cup along with toppings before being served.

Elait, Eastwood Mall

Elait, Eastwood Mall

Elait, Eastwood Mall

My son ordered a cup of Chocolate Overload (Php140). Chocolate shreds, brownie bits and chocolate vermicelli are mixed into a sweet and creamy custard base, with the resulting rolled ice cream topped with a Pocky stick and drizzled with chocolate syrup. From the way it looks to the way it tastes, it’s a kid’s summer dream come true.

For me, I got a Chocnut Dinosaur (Php140). Milo powder is blended with a yogurt base with, with the resulting ice cream rolls topped with Chocnut bits and drizzled with chocolate syrup. I just love how the tangy taste of the yogurt interacts with my favorite flavors from my childhood.

Elait, Eastwood Mall

Elait, Eastwood Mall

Elait is definitely a place for happiness: there is joy found in a cup, the joy found in making new friends and the joy of spending time, leisurely eating your favorite frozen treat with someone you love.

Elait, Eastwood Mall

Elait, Eastwood Mall

This Elait kiosk is located at Second Floor, Eastwood Mall, Libis, Quezon City.  Other Elait locations include:

  • The Caf Food Hall, Second Floor, UP Town Center, Katipunan Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City
  • Ground Floor, North Towers, SM City North EDSA, Bago Bantay, Quezon City
  • M Place, Panay Avenue, South Triangle, Quezon City
  • Upper Ground Floor, SM City San Lazaro, Santa Cruz, Manila
  • Lower Ground Floor, SM City Manila, Ermita, Manila
  • Third Floor, Santolan Town Plaza, Col Bonny Serrano Avenue, Little Baguio, San Juan City
  • Second Floor, North Wing, SM Mall of Asia, Mall of Asia Complex (MOA), Pasay City
  • Third Floor, Ayala Malls The 30th, Meralco Avenue, Ugong, Pasig City
  • Second Floor, Century City Mall, Kalayaan Avenue, Poblacion, Makati City
  • Second Floor, Promenade, Greenhills Shopping Centre, Greenhills, San Juan

Elait Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other dessert places:

Melo Foods’ Dreamcake-style Chocolate Cake is a sweet surprise

I’m seldom lucky enough to win games of chance but when I came across Melo Foods‘ giveaway contest on Facebook involving its Dreamcake-style Chocolate Cake, I knew I just had to try my luck.

And wouldn’t you know it; a few weeks’ later, I received a notification on Facebook that I won!

Tin can chocolate cakes such as this are making the rounds in social media, and no wonder: these are deliciously decadent and great to give to friends and family as gifts or as your contribution to the office potluck party.

Melo Foods’ Dreamstyle Chocolate Cake is composed of five layers of pure chocolate goodness. At the very bottom is the moist chocolate cake, the base of the whole confection. The next layer is a thick chocolate ganache – a rich mixture of cream and chocolate ordinarily used for icing and glazing cakes. Then comes the chocolate pudding topped by a shard of chocolate dusted with cocoa powder. Melo Foods’ recipe makes use of Dutch processed chocolates and Hersheys chocolates, giving the cake a premium taste.

Unfortunately, I couldn’t go to Melo Foods’ designated pick-up place at Robinsons Fairview. However, the people at Melo’s were kind enough to arrange to have it delivered by Lalamove so long as I shoulder the delivery costs (which I am more than willing to do… actually, I’m willing to do a lot for chocolate, hehehe!)

By the next day, my Dreamcake-style Chocolate Cake was delivered to my office. And since at the time, the holidays were nearing and we all deserved a little bit of sweetness, I shared my cake with my officemates.

Melo Foods

First of all, I love the way the chocolate shard crackled when I broke it with a spoon. Also, the layers are distinct from each other in taste and appearance but come together in one very tasty confection.

Melo Foods

Melo Foods

Melo Foods

Thanks to Melo Foods for making my holidays even sweeter!

This cake fills a 6″ x 2″ tin can and sells for Php350. To order, send a private message to Melo Foods via its Facebook Page or contact +63 923 1068534.

Check out my reviews of other Chocolate Dreamcakes here:

Gelato Treat at Morelli’s, Powerplant Mall

We Pinoys love sweets, and with a tropical climate such as ours, we won’t say no to frozen treats even in December.

While ice cream is more prevalent, gelato desserts are also growing in popularity in the country.

Gelato is a frozen dessert which originated in Italy. It has a much creamier and silkier texture than ice cream, given its increased use of milk rather than cream compared to ice cream. Gelato also does not make use of eggs, unlike ice cream, and is usually served using a small spade instead of a scoop.

That’s what I treated my family to over the holidays. After Christmas lunch at nearby Fireside by Kettle in Rockwell, we headed straight to Morelli’s Gelato for dessert. (Thanks to Jen of SandUnderMyFeet.com for sharing her GCs!)

The Morelli’s gelato brand started in Scotland in 1907 when father-and-son Giuseppe and Mario started selling the ice cream prevalent in their native Italy. The brand expanded to UK in 1932, and then went on to establish its presence in other countries, where its gelato offerings are made fresh everyday using natural ingredients.

My kids, mother-in-law and I enjoyed our scoops of truffle, chocolate, pistachio and vanilla gelato which served as a great cap to our Christmas lunch.

Morelli’s Rockwell

Morelli’s Rockwell

Morelli’s Rockwell

This Morelli’s Gelato branch is located at Second Floor, Power Plant Mall, Rockwell, Makati City. Another branch is located at Level 3, East Wing, Shangri-La Plaza, Ortigas, Mandaluyong City.

Morelli's Gelato Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other dessert places:

Delicious Holiday Food Finds at Ilustrado

Make your holiday gatherings and gift giving more special with unique and delicious finds from Ilustrado Restaurant.

Ilustrado’s Holiday Tienda offers something for everyone. The cheese lover will surely love homemade cheese wheels in Boursin, Pimiento (a sure kids’ favourite!), Spicy Cheese – Edam with garlic and spices, varieties. You cannot go wrong with bottled Atsara, Bagoong, Moringga Pesto, Gourmet Tuyo and Chimichurri.

Ilustrado Holiday

Ilustrado Holiday

Ilustrado Holiday

Tea Cookies come in boxes of 12 cookies in flavors of Double Chocolate, Coconut, Matcha Chocolate, Peanut Butter and Snickerdoodles. Brownies come in boxes of 4 bars with Cashew, S’mores, Salted Caramel, Pretzel and Cream Cheese flavors. Ready to serve for a party are Cake Squares in a box with these delectable selections – Baked Cheesecake, Chocolate Fudge and Sans Rival. Cheese Pimiento Wreath and Quezo de Bola Ensaimada Tree are both unique, festive and appetizing.

Ilustrado Holiday

Ilustrado Holiday

A new addition to their lineup are fun Artisan Holiday Boxes dubbed “Christmas Morning” – a selection of cookies, brownies, loose leaf tea and tablea chocolate while “Holiday Cheer” is a Graze Box with Jamon Serrano, Chorizo, Stuffed Lychee with Roquefort and Pistachio, Chorizo Puffs, Spicy Cheeseball, Boursin Cheeseball, Chocolate Dipped Dried Mangoes, Crostini and Pretzels, Mandarin Oranges, Marinated Tomatoes and Olives. These are the perfect hostess gifts to bring to a party or as gifts in themselves to those you hold dear.

Ilustrado Holiday

To spruce up your Noche Buena table, choose from a long list of mouthwatering selections: the stellar Twice Cooked Angus Beef Short Plate is a must order along with Adobong Bagnet with Taba ng Talangka, Callos Madrilena, Kalderetang Kambing, Lengua con Setas, Hamon de Hacienda, Stuffed Chicken Ilustrado (ala Relleno), Pineapple Glazed Leg of Ham and U.S. Prime Rib.

Ilustrado Holiday

Your meal will not be complete without Ilustrado’s Signature Paella. Choose from Paella Ilustrado (Meat and Seafood), Paella Marinara (All Seafood), Paella Negra (Squid Ink)or Paella Bacalao.

Ilustrado Holiday

Those who like pasta and noodles can pick from Classic Carbonara, Espanyola (Spanish Sardines, sun-dried tomatoes in extra virgin olive oil) Filipino Spaghetti, Ilustrado (Shrimp, olive oil, Paprika) Machito (Tenderloin Bits and Mushroom) Palabok with Bagnet and Pata Pancit.

Ilustrado Holiday

To know more offerings and other details visit Ilustrado at ‪744 General Luna Road‬, Intramuros, Manila (‪527-3674‬, ‪527-2345‬); Café Ilustrado, 4th Level SM Makati (‪818-6760‬) or Pasteleria Ilustrado, 2nd level, Alabang Town Center (‪0919-845-9503‬) or email caterings@ilustradorestaurant.com.ph or log on to www.facebook.com/ilustradorestaurant/.

Disclosure: Menu details and images provided by Ilustrado Restaurant in a recent press release.

Check out my previous post about Ilustrado Restaurant’s Degustation Menu here.