3 Reasons to enjoy the creamiest halo-halo in the solar system from Bebang Halo-Halo

Just because we’ve entered the BER months, it doesn’t mean that it’s no longer the time to have halo-halo.

This shaved ice confection is considered the unofficial national dessert of the Philippines.

Its beginnings is said to be traced back to the pre-war Japanese-Filipinos in Quiapo who introduced a version of the Japanese kakigori called mongo-ya. It was made with minatamis na munggo (boiled and sweetened mung beans) served on top of crushed ice with milk and sugar. Over time, more native ingredients such as ube jam, sweetened kidney beans, rice crispies and leche flan were added, resulting in the development of the modern halo-halo.

The halo-halo got its name from the action needed to bring about its best qualities: it needs to be mixed (“halo“) again and again (‘halo-halo”) to bring various ingredients together with the sweetened and milky shaved ice in every spoonful.

Bebang Halo-Halo
Bebang Halo-Halo
Bebang Halo-Halo
Bebang Halo-Halo

Being an icy dessert, one would think that it is most popular during the hot summer months. However, I would beg to differ: any time is a great time to enjoy halo-halo, especially if its a Bebang Halo-halo.

Here are three reasons why:

1. “Ang iniiiiiit pa rin dito!” (It’s still hot in here!)

The hot summer season actually lasts year round in this country. We just get to experience a few bouts of rainy and windy weather in between sweltering heat spells. With the heightened temperature comes heightened tempers, don’t they?

We definitely need something cold to refresh us and take our minds of the heat, as well as something sweet to sweeten our mood.

Bebang Halo-Halo
Halo-Halo Special (Php138/16oz). There’s nothing ordinary with this icy dessert made with frozen milk, leche flan, pandan jelly, sago, mais, nata, banana cinnamon, ube halaya and rice crispies.
Bebang Halo-Halo
Halukay Ube (Php158/160z). Our favorite purple yam dessert takes centerstage with this halo-halo made with ube-flavored frozen milk, leche flan, pandan jelly, ube halaya, sago, mais, nata, banana cinnamon, langka, special macapauno and rice crispies.

A couple of Bebang Halo-halo can surely cool down our temperaments despite the hot weather!

2. “Maiba naman!” (It’s time for a change!)

If we want a break from the usual dayuhan desserts that abound in so many eateries and go back to our roots, why not do it in a yummy way with a icy cup of Bebang Halo-halo?

Given the Pinoy penchant for sweets, it’s no wonder that many versions of halo-halo exist. We keep on finding ways to make a good thing even greater, don’t we?

Bebang Halo-Halo
Banana Cinnamon con Yelo (Php158/16oz). The kusilba or minatamis na saging gets an upgrade with this halo-halo made with frozen milk, leche flan, vanilla jelly, sago, banana, caramel syrup and rice crispies.
Bebang Halo-Halo
Mango Graham (Php158/16oz). Your go-to refrigerator cake is now in halo-halo form: made with frozen milk, leche flan, caramel syrup, fresh mango and crushed grahams.

Just like Bebang Halo-halo: it has a menu of fifteen halo-halo variants so that every one can always go back to a halo-halo fave or switch to a new flavor, anytime!

You can also pair your icy dessert with one of Bebang Halo-halo’s hotdogs and fries. You can even switch it up again by trying one of its Taho (silken tofu with tapioca pearls and sugar syrup) series.

So many delicious possibilities, so little time. Sigh!

3. “Dasurb ko ito e!” (I deserve this!)

We have been through a lot, haven’t we?

With all the worries, anxiety and frustration that we have lived through in the past two years, we have certainly earned ourselves a respite.

Let’s make it a delicious one with the creamiest halo-halo in the solar system from Bebang’s Halo-halo.

Bebang Halo-Halo
Halo-Halo Presidential (Php168/160z). This halo-halo made with frozen milk, leche flan, pandan jelly, sago, mais, nata, langka, banana cinnamon, special macapauno and rice crispies deserves its place at the top.
Bebang Halo-Halo
Limited Edition Royal Halo-Halo (Php498).
Go all-out luxe on this halo-halo made with frozen milk, leche flan, pandan jelly, strawberry/peach/blueberry/mango sago, ube halaya, special macapuno, pistachio, cashew and mallow fluff topped with edible 24-karat gold leaf… if you think you deserve the royal treatment.

So don’t worry if it’s a good time for halo-halo, because any time is a good time for it. Go ahead and treat yourself and your loved ones with a Bebang Halo-halo, just like I did.

Bebang Halo-Halo
Bebang Halo-Halo
Bebang Halo-Halo
Bebang Halo-Halo

Bebang Halo-halo is a homegrown brand which offers leveled-up versions of the classic Pinoy dessert: the halo-halo. It recently trended on social media, thanks to its news-making Limited Edition Royal Halo-halo.

You can enjoy your Bebang Halo-halo right in the comforts of your home, or wherever you are in the metro (especially if you’re RTO – returning to the office – you would need one to cool down after a long commute or a heated meeting). It delivers to most Metro Manila areas through its in-house delivery service or via GrabFood and Lalamove. To make sure your orders will arrive as fresh and icy as you like them, opt to get an insulated bag packed with ice for an additional Php60.

You may also opt to pick up your halo-halo from the Bebang Halo-halo store at the Wack-Wack Royal Mansion, 574 Shaw Blvd, Mandaluyong City in front of PCSO.

Message your orders to Bebang Halo-halo today. To stay updated on its offers, follow it on Facebook and Instagram.

Disclosure: Product samples were provided to facilitate this feature.

Fab foodie possibilities at Timberland Highland Resort’s Ridge Cafe

Whether you’re a guest at Timberland Highlands Resort, or you’re simply in the area (being so near great bike and nature trails which work up quite an appetite), you won’t have to stress yourself over where to eat.

At the Ridge Cafe, you can dine in comfort and style inside the restaurant, or take a spot in its al fresco dining area to take in the view as you eat.

Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Ridge Cafe at Daytime
Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Ridge Cafe at Night
Timberland Highlands Resort
Elegant and comfy interiors
Timberland Highlands Resort
Al fresco dining with a view

I’ve shared in my previous blog posts about its buffet offers here and here, but a new question arises: what to eat when you’re not keen on an all-you-can-eat setup?

Don’t worry: Ridge Cafe’s got you well-covered with its ala carte offerings, such as:

Sandwiches and Burgers

Snack on these sammies, all served with your choice between homemade potato fries or mixed greens.

Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Chicken Quesadilla (Php350). Chicken fajitas, cheddar cheese, pico de gallo and sour cream encased in a toasted tortilla.
Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Club Sandwich (Php400). Grilled chicken, sliced tomatoes, cheddar cheese, bacon and egg in between layers of white bread.
Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Beef Burger (Php400). Angus beef burger topped with bacon, Emmenthal cheese, lettuce. caramelized onions and pickles in a sesame seed brioche bun
Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Pumped Up (Php500). Angus beef burger topped with jalapeno cream cheese, lettuce, sliced tomatoes, crispy onion rings, cheddar cheese and bacon, then drizzled with BBQ sauce and encased in a sesame seed brioche bun.

Pasta, Noodles and Salads

Sate your hunger with filling noodle dishes, from pastas served with garlic bread to Pinoy merienda classics, or go for a helping of healthy greens.

Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Spaghetti & Meatballs (Php350). The popular spaghetti variant among kids.
Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Pesto (Php300). Fettuccini noodles tossed in freshly made pesto sauce made with bail, garlic, pine nuts and parmesan cheese.
Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Beef Mami (Php300). A rainy day staple made with beef brisket, boiled egg, Chinese cabbage and carrot sticks on a bed of egg noodles and beef broth.
Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Caesar Salad(Php350). Romaine lettuce tossed with grilled chicken, bacon, tomatoes and croutons then doused with Caesar salad dressing.

Sushi

Don’t miss the chance to munch on some freshly made sushi rolls.

Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
California Maki (Php250). Crabstick, mango and cucumber slivers wrapped in rice- and tobiko-covered nori.
Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Torched Salmon (Php300). Nigiri made crabstick, spring onions, tempura flakes topped with torched salmon doused in goma dare sauce.

Mains

Choose from a wide variety of viands – which include Pinoy ulams and international dishes – for your lunch or dinner

Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Deep-fried Chicken Cutlets (Php350). Breaded fillet of chicken served with white rice, Asian slaw and tonkatsu sauce.
Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Kare-Kare (Php500). Ox-tail and tripe stewed with veggies in peanut sauce and served with shrimp paste.
Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Salmon Steak (Php550). Grilled salmon steak with seasonal veggies on a bed of lemon butter sauce.
Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Chicken Tenders (Php300). Breaded chicken breast served with French fries and honey mustard sauce.

Desserts

Cap your meal with these sweet delights!

Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Moist Chocolate Cake (Php200).
Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Strawberry Cheesecake (Php230).
Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Halo-Halo (Php130).

As you can see, there’s no need to worry about how to soothe your hunger pangs as you embark on your mountain adventure in San Mateo, Rizal. Simply hie yourself off to Ridge Cafe!

Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort
Ridge Cafe - Timberland Highlands Resort

Ridge Cafe also offers buffet meals including:

  • Top of the Morning Buffet: intercontinental breakfast menu and classic Pinoy almusal at Php650 net per person (weekends from 7am to 10am)
  • Arabic Dinner Buffet: an exciting curation of Arabic, Mediterranean and South Asian cuisines with free-flowing iced tea at Php980+ per person (Saturdays, from 6pm to 9pm)
  • Filipino Buffet: favorite Filipino dishes with free-flowing iced tea at Php980+ per person (lunch from 11.30am to .30pm | dinner from 6pm to 9pm)

To reserve a table, email timberlandfbm@timberlandresort.com or message 0999-889-2659 | 0995-840-3206 | 8891-8288 local 1030 and 1032.

Ridge Cafe is located at Timberland Highlands Resort, inside Timberland Heights, Barangay Guitnang Bayan II, San Mateo, Rizal 1850 Philippines.

To know more about Timberland Highlands Resorts latest updates and offers, follow it on Facebook and Instagram.

Check out my previous posts about Timberland Highlands Resort:

Merienda meetup at Bench Cafe, BGC

Merienda – or minindal – is a time-honored tradition in this country. A light meal or snack in the afternoon often figures as highlights in our childhood, and carries on to our adulthood in the form of coffee breaks.

During a recent meetup with my OFW friend, Tina, I revisited this childhood experience with classic merienda fare at Bench Cafe in BGC.

Bench Cafe? BGC
Bench Cafe? BGC
Bench Cafe? BGC
Bench Cafe? BGC

Bench Cafe is an offshoot of the top Filipino clothing brand Bench in partnership with restaurant developer Foodee Global Concepts. This restaurant brand centers around its concept of combining traditional and modern takes on Filipino food.

Its flagship store in BGC also provides a posh yet comfortable background in which diners can fully enjoy its Pinoy dishes. Tables and chairs are amply spaced in a spacious floor space brightly lit with both natural light and pendant lighting and tastefully highlighted with wall art.

This well-appointed eatery served as our venue for a long-awaited get-together. Due to quarantine restrictions, Tina was unable to come home to the Philippines for two years so I jumped at the chance to check out Bench Cafe’s OG branch for our meetup.

Our merienda included:

Pancit Guisado (Php259 good for two | Php420 good for four).

Bench Cafe? BGC
Bench Cafe? BGC

A hearty dish of stir-fried noodles mixed with meat, shrimp and vegetables, and topped with pork rind, this dish is usually a highlight for many of my afternoon snack times at home.

Flan B (Php219).

Bench Cafe? BGC
Bench Cafe? BGC

Bench Cafe’s version of the Pinoy classic custard and caramel dessert topped with macapuno, always a sweet and creamy indulgence!

Classic Turon ala Mode (Php55).

A crispy fritter made with banana encased in lumpia wrapper with caramelized sugar topped with ube ice cream, another merienda staple.

Bench Cafe? BGC
Bench Cafe? BGC

Ube Halo Halo (Php99/12oz | Php145/16oz).

A thirst quenching dessert and icy beverage made with coconut shaved ice with garbanzos, caramelized banana, leche flan and nata de coco topped with ube ice cream and rice krispies.

Bench Cafe? BGC
Bench Cafe? BGC

These Pinoy favorites on the table and my dear friend to catch up with made my merienda experience at Bench Cafe so special.

Bench Cafe? BGC
Bench Cafe? BGC
Bench Cafe? BGC
Bench Cafe? BGC

Check it out! Drop by this branch at the second floor of Bench’s flagship store at 9th Avenue corner Lane O Bonifacio High Street, Bonifacio Global Citt, Taguig, open daily from 10am to 7pm.

Other branches are located at:

  • Level 2, Greenbelt 3, Ayala Center, Greenbelt, Makati City
  • Ground Floor, Padre Faura Wing, Robinsons Place Manila, Ermita, Manila

You may also order for delivery via GrabFood.

Stay updated on Bench Cafe’s offers and promos by following it on Facebook and Instagram.

The Jelly List: Yummy national flavors to stoke your Pinoy Pride via GrabFood

With the Philippine Independence Day just around the corner, it’s definitely time to look back on some of the things that we can be proud of as a nation.

Being a foodie, I consider the sheer wondrous variety and flavor of Filipino cuisine as a definite achievement. Using our local ingredients and culinary traditions from our forbears as well as influences from foreigners and we produced a highly diverse, down-home yet flavorful array of dishes that are close to our hearts and appeal to our tastebuds.

Despite enjoying Filipino food in our hapag-kainan at home, we also go out and dine at Filipino restaurants because we simply can’t get enough of these flavors and we appreciate the unique spins that local chefs apply to our classic dishes.

And with the restrictions on dining out still in effect because of the pandemic, we are lucky that we can still have our Pinoy food cravings satisfied by our suking Filipino restaurants by having our favorite dishes delivered via GrabFood.

Check out latest #JellyList of Filipino dishes that you can enjoy at home:

Bulalong Lugaw by Soleras

Soleras, Banawe

The hearty rice porridge which serves as our go-to comfort food during rainy days just got a decadent makeover with the addition of hefty pieces of beef shanks (complete with bone marrow!).

More on Soleras here.

Pancit Lucban by Buddy’s

Buddy’s Mother’s Day

I’m ever so glad that Lucban, Quezon’s famous pancit habhab is readily available for us Metro Manila denizens to enjoy.

More on Buddy’s here.

Pares Tendon by Pares Retiro

Pares Retiro, Tomas Morato

The flavorful slow-braised beef dish paired with garlic fried rice made even more awesome with the addition of melt-in-your-mouth pieces of litid (tendon).

More on Pares Retiro here.

Tomarrow Never Dies by Recovery Food

Recovery Food, SM Megamall

Feeling fearless? Then check out this dish made with roasted bone marrow topped with roasted garlic and served sizzling with rice and juicy morsels of beef.

More on Recovery Food here.

Kesong Puti Grilled Cheese Sandwich by Almusal Cafe

Almusal Cafe, Katipunan

This is a fancy take on the kesong puti (soft and un-aged white cheese made from carabao’s milk) which is partnered with sundried tomato pesto on sourdough bread and served with potato crisps on the side.

More on Almusal Cafe here.

Tres Leches Halo Halo by Ombu Kusina

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Cool down and chill out with this refreshing summer fave: crushed ice flavored with three kinds if milk and topped with a rich and creamy slice of leche flan.

More on Ombu Kusina here.

Looking for more reasons to order in?

With its GrabFood Signatures program, Grab users can enjoy Php100 off for every minumum order of Php550 from its partners such as these Filipino restaurants:

Adsilog by Sinangag Express

Sinangag Express Eastwood

Waking up to the smell of garlic rice partnered with flaked pork adobo and fried egg will surely give you a great start for the day.

More on Sinangag Express here.

Litson Manok by Andoks

Andok’s, Tagaytay

Whether as ulam or pulutan, the tender, juicy and smokey goodness of litson manok is a welcome addition to the dinner table.

More on Andoks here.

Ensaimada by Cafe Mary Grace

Cafe Mary Grace, SM East Ortigas

Made with 100% real butter and eggs as well as topped with grated Edam cheese, these soft and fluffy pastries have that combination of sweet and salty flavors we Pinoys so adore with a premium and delicate mouthfeel.

More on Cafe Mary Grace here.

So let’s all dig in to our rich culinary heritage and show our pride for lutong-Pinoy by ordering our faves and fresh finds via GrabFood!

About Grab

Grab is the leading super app in Southeast Asia, providing everyday services that matter most to consumers. Today, the Grab app has been downloaded onto over 185 million mobile devices, giving users access to over 9 million drivers, merchants and agents. Grab offers the widest range of on-demand transport services in the region, in addition to food, package, grocery delivery services, mobile payments and financial services across 339 cities in eight countries.

About GrabFood

Operating under the Grab super app, GrabFood is an online food delivery service that connects local food businesses to people. GrabFood presents a variety of food based on what’s available around consumers: Filipino, Western, Asian, European, Fusion and so on. Today, GrabFood’s services are available in areas of Metro Manila, Rizal, Cavite, Laguna, Pampanga, and Cebu, with plans to continue expanding to reach more areas in the country.

Download the Grab app here.

Bench Cafe opens newest branch in Trinoma

The clothing brand Bench has been around for as long as I can remember. One of the “proudly Filipino” enterprise success stories, it has been a major player in local fashion and has even expanded its sphere of influence to that of a lifestyle brand with its personal care producrs, skin care services and hair salons.

It even ventured into the food business, notably with the opening of the first branch of its eponymous restaurant Bench Cafe last year.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Fast forward to today and Bench Cafe has already opened its fifth branch at Trinoma Mall in Quezon City. Such speedy growth is proof that its concept of combining traditional and modern takes on Filipino food works and has found its place in Metro Manila’s highly competitive food scene.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

The cafe held a special preview for bloggers the day before its Grand Opening. Together with my fellow foodies from #WeLoveToEatPH, I got a taste of how Bench Cafe’s Chef Carlo Miguel melds local flavors together and updates classic Pinoy favorites such as:

Binagoongan Ceasar (Php149). Romaine lettuce with dilis and croutons tossed in a creamy dressing made with bagoong (shrimp paste) and queso de bola.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Tinapa Cones (Php129). Homemade lumpia wrappers formed into crispy cones and filled with tinapa (smoked fish) mousse and salsa.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Gising Gising (Php195). A spicy dish of chopped beans cooked in coconut milk and chilis.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Sisig Skillet (Php249). Pork cheeks and belly cooked in two ways and served topped with calamansi foam.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Fried Chicken (Php480). Whole spring chicken fried to a golden brown with crispy flavorful skin and juicy meat served with a honey patis sauce.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Dancing Fish (Php400). Crispy butterfly tilapia doused in escabeche sauce.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Pancit Guisado (Php239). Stir-fried noodles with shrimp, meat and chopped vegetables.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Silogs (from sinangag or “garlic rice” and itlog “egg”) are breakfast staples for many Filipinos. Bench Cafe serves these with garlic rice, fried egg and homemade atsara. The silog variation we’ve tasted here is the Tendon Silog (Php199) made with melt-in-your-mouth beef tendon in pares sauce.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bongalmusal (Php349). If you’re ever at a loss on what to have for brekkie, this hyped-up silog meal serves up everything you could want! Spam, US beef tapa, tocino, daing (dried fish) and corned beef. Best of all, this dish is good for two so do share it with someone special.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe also introduced Bench-Tos which are glamourized takes on the fare available at a Pinoy turo-turo. This small roadside eatery is where diners point out the food they want and a serving is placed on their plates. Bench Cafe updates this concept by merging it with the Japanese bento – the chosen viand is served on a tray along with vegetables, homemade salsa and atsara as well as steamed Ifugao rice. Variations of this offering that we tasted include the Bagnet Kare Kare (Php339) which has a rich peanutty sauce that has no need for bagoong to have flavor, and the Inasal Liempo (Php299) which is Bench Cafe’s take on the Visayan grilled pork belly.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

To cap out meal, Bench Cafe serves up its own takes on dessert classics with the smooth and creamy leche flan it dubbed Flan B (Php185) topped with macapuno and Classic Turon ala Mode (Php49).

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench also applied its own twists on the popular dessert called Halo-Halo, which consists of sweetened fruits and other fixings topped with shaved ice and served with milk. Its variations include White (Php85 for 12oz | Php129 for 16oz) made with coconut shaved ice with garbanzos, caramelized banana, leche flan, nata de coco and coconut ice cream; Mango Otap (Php90 for 12oz | Php109 for 16oz), mango shaved ice with crushed otap, mango puree, cream and fresh mango cubes; Ube (Php95 for 12oz | Php149 for 16oz), ube halaya and palm beans added to the White Halo Halo; and Mais con Hielo (Php60 for 12oz | Php100 for 16oz), corn- flavored shaved ice with milk and kernels of sweetcorn.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

I had a great time discovering fresh ways to enjoy the food that I grew up with at Bench Cafe.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Many thanks to the management and staff of Bench Cafe for having us and to EJ of #ILoveToEatPH for extending the invitation.

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

Bench Cafe, Trinoma

This Bench Cafe branch is located at Ground Floor, MRT Wing, Trinoma Mall, Bagong Pagasa, Quezon City, open daily from 10am to 9pm.

Other branches are located at:

  • Second Floor, Bench Flagship Store, Bonifacio High Street, 9th Avenue, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig
  • Level 2, Greenbelt 3, Ayala Center, Greenbelt, Makati City
  • Ground Floor, Padre Faura Wing, Robinsons Place Manila, Ermita, Manila

Bench Café Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Together with other foodies, I attended a foodie meetup held here wherein food and 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 Filipino restaurants:

Buy One Dish, Get One at 50% Off at Tres

From ‪August 13-16‬, buy 1 dish and get another at 50 per cent off at Tres located on the 2nd Level, The Annex, SM North EDSA and along Rufino Street corner Ayala Avenue, Salcedo Village, Makati.

The offer includes all the menu items and is available all day everyday from ‪August 13-16‬ only. The discounted dish must be equal or of a lesser value than the 1st dish. Only 1 redemption is allowed per single transaction. No minimum purchase is required. The offer is good only for dine in and cannot be used with other existing promos, discount and gift check.

Tres Promo

Tres is home to good old home Filipino cooking serving the original dishes and those inspired by the late culinary figure Chef Ed Quimzon.

Some of the bestsellers include Kare-Kare-Kare served 4 ways – Classic Beef with flank steak and tripe; Seafood with prawns, squid, fish, shellfish, and clams; Crispy Beef Tadyang, Crispy Pata and Crispy which is a combination of chuck, flank steak, and tripe. The Kare-Kare-Kare Platter is a big order of beef ribs, pork knuckles, prawns and vegetables.

TRES coined the term Kare-Kare-Kare because they give you extra sauce to pour, peanuts to top, and the original TRES bagoong as an accompaniment.

The TRES Crispy Pata is another bestseller. It is soaked in a secret marinade and fried twice for that double delicious crispy crackling goodness. The meat is tender and steeped with flavor. It is served with thinly sliced sweet potato crisps and a sweet and spicy soy sauce and vinegar dip.

Binagoongang Lechon Kawali combines the crispiness of lechon and the spiciness of the Bicol Express sauce. Sizzling Crispy Beef Tadyang is simmered in soy sauce with garlic, onion, laurel leaf and pepper.

For dishes with Spanish and English influence, there is Lengua con Setas, Hickory Baby Back Ribs and Lamb Adobo. Roast Iberian Chicken is the Spanish version of the more familiar roast chicken but this time, the whole chicken is slow roasted in olive oil and spices. There is also Gambas Al Ajillo with fresh prawns sautéed in garlic, green peppers and olive oil. Classic Beef Salpicao is beef tenderloin sautéed in olive oil, chili, roasted minced garlic and then grilled to coax the natural sweet flavor of the meat to come out.

If you are looking for hot delicious soup, there is Beef Bulalo, slow cooked beef marrow until its almost fall-off the bone tender and made more flavorful with corn, green beans, cabbage and potatoes.

The Sinigang comes in 4 variants. Sinigang na Salmon sa Miso, Sinigang na Spareribs, Sinigang na Bangus and Sinigang na Hipon.

There is more. Sugpo at Aligue is fresh prawns sautéed in crab roe, garlic and chili. TRES Bagnet Sampler comes with 3 slices each of Classic, Kare-Kare-Kare and Mantecado with matching sauces. Sizzling Adobo Belly, Lumpiang Shanghai, Bangus ala Pobre, Calamares, Crispy Tilapia, Crispy Ginataang Hito are some of the other choices.

For vegetable dishes, the Gising-Gising is a crowd favorite with ground pork sautéed with Baguio beans, chili and coconut milk. You decide if you want it real spicy. Pinakbet is more decadent with Bagnet, Ampalaya Ensalada has no bitter taste with crispy dried shrimp and a light dressing. Ensaladang Talong, Laing and Monggo round up the choices.

Of course a Filipino table will not be complete without rice. There is the standard Pandan Rice with an aromatic smell, Kalkag Rice with crispy dried shrimp and Lechon Rice with crispy lechon skin and sauce.

There is Halo-Halo that is super thick and creamy and overflowing with macapuno, beans, milk, leche flan, ube and grated ice. For more desserts, try the Ube Macapuno Royale Cake Chocolate Lava Cake, Leche Flan, Biko and Banana-Ube Turon.

For reservations, catering and other inquiries, visit TRES on the 2nd floor, The Annex, SM City North EDSA or call ‪352-7032‬ or ‪0917-529-0837‬; and TRES on the ground floor of Keyland Ayala SLC Building, Rufino near the corner of Ayala Avenue, Salcedo Village, Makati or call ‪0927-791-5489‬. You may also visit facebook.com/trescuisineph.

Say hello to a great summer with Ombu Kusina’s Flavored Ice Halo-Halo

Summers are for great times with great food, and spent with great friends.

Together with my fellow foodies, I experienced what certainly seems to be the start of a great summer.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

In a recent Foodie Event hosted by Ombu Kusina, it launched its newest and coolest offerings: three new scrumptious halo-halo flavors!

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

The halo-halo is a favorite Pinoy dessert made of crushed ice, evaporated milk and other sweet ingredients such as nata de coco, beans and coconut strips, served layered on top of each other, but then mixed together so that each spoonful is a mixture of sweet ingredients and the crushed ice. Ombu does its own take on this classic icy treat, with three flavors, available only during the summer, at only Php160 each. These include:

Milk Tea. The milk tea craze has surely hit the country and how! Now this exotic drink which originated from Taiwan flavors the Pinoy halo-halo through the use of brewed Earl Grey black tea.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Mango. Fresh ripe mango are pureed, mixed with milk then frozen to create mango-flavored crushed ice, served with the usual halo-halo ingredients and toppped with succulent mango cubes.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Tres Leches. As the name implies, the crushed ice is flavored with three kinds of milk and topped with creamy leche flan. This is my favorite among the new halo-halo variants.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu’s Chef Griffin Oraiz explained that what sets Ombu’s halo-halo treats apart from similar offerings from other restaurants is the use of flavored ice: the flavors are infused into the ice, resulting to a more intense taste and creamier mouthfeel.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu also showcased some its signature dishes which are well-suited for the summer, such as:

Suzi Wong Sandwich (Php270). A three-layered sandwich made of ham, cheese and pickles between four slices of butter-toasted crusted bread and served with house-made deep-fried purple camote chips.

Ombu, Tomas Morato

Tinapa Croquettes (Php240). Tinapa (smoked milkfish) is combined with a creamy bechamel sauce and sauteed onions, then coated with breadcrumbs, deep-fried to a crisp golden brown and served with a house-blend special garlic mayo dip.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Three-Cheese Pizza (Php420). Mozzarella and cheddar cheeses are combined with the local kesong puti, a home-grown cheese made of carabao’s milk, on top of a crisp oven-baked pizza crust.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Tokwa’t Baboy (Php260). Tokwa (tofu) are cut into cubes, fried and served with hearty pork chunks in a house-blended spicy soy vinegar sauce. This is actually a great complement and a traditional companion to the next dish which is the…

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Arroz Caldo (Php130). The traditional Pinoy version of rice porridge with chicken pieces, it is highlighted by the use of cured, soft-boiled “ramen-style” eggs that adds a different dimension of flavor to the Pinoy merienda staple.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

These dishes and the seasonal halo-halo flavors all adhere to Ombu Kusina’s modern take on Filipino cuisine: infusing classic Pinoy dishes with new and exciting cooking styles and influences. These help to make Pinoy cuisine fresher and more relevant to a growing number of foodies, who are looking for their next food adventure.

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

Ombu Kusina, Tomas Morato

And if that isn’t reason enough for you to hie on over to Ombu for a taste of its innovative and flavorful dishes, how about this: use my code – VIPBeingJellybeans – when you dine in and get 10% off your food bill!

Check it out and let me know what you think!

Ombu Kusina is located at the Ground Floor, Sequioa Hotel, Mother Ignacia corner Timog Avenue, South Triangle, Quezon City, open daily from 6.30am to 10.30am. For inquiries and reservations, call +63 2 441179.

Read my review of a previous visit to Ombu Kusina here.

Ombu Kusina 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.

Check out my reviews of other Filipino restaurants:

A quick merienda at Razon’s, SM East Ortigas

After a bout of errands at SM East Ortigas, we decided to have merienda here. (Note: For some reason, getting a table at the burger joint at the next stall was taking too long despite the empty seats. Go figure.)

We ordered items that Razon’s of Guagua is famous for: Halo-Halo (Php85 for the junior size) and Pancit Luglog (Php118 for the single size).  The halo-halo is notable for its simplicity: just the sweetened saba bananas, macapuno and leche flan, all flavors that we grew up with as our household pahimagas (dessert).  As for the pancit, I found its portion size too small given its price.

Razons, SM East Ortigas

Razons, SM East Ortigas

Fortunately, we also ordered Dinuguan with Puto (Php170) and Pritong Lumpiang Toge (Php35) so we were at least able to sate our hunger.

Razons, SM East Ortigas

Food took quite a while getting to our table, and, while the service staff were accommodating, there were no efforts to anticipate our needs or queries.

All in all, other than the halo-halo, there is no compelling reason to return here.

Razon's of Guagua Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other Filipino restaurants:

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Bingsu treat at Hobing Korean Dessert, BGC Stopover

Bingsu treats have grown in popularity in the metro, especially now with the searing summer heat.  Bingsu is a Korean dessert characterized by shaved ice sweetened with condensed milk and topped with fresh fruits, yogurt, ice cream and bits of yummy baked goods.

While the fam is exploring options for lunch in Bonifacio Global City during a particularly hot summer day, we came across this branch of Hobing Korean Dessert and couldn’t resist having our dessert here.  After eating our lunch at nearby Tenya Tempura Tendon, and, eager for something cool and sweet to counter the hot and humid weather, we proceeded Hobing.

Despite being billed as the Korean halo-halo, bingsu is best enjoyed when the shaved ice and toppings are not all mixed together.  This allows you to enjoy the varying textures and flavors that went into the bingsu.

We ordered a large serving of Mango Cheese Bingsu (Php320), thinking that a regular serving will not satisfy all of us.  What we got was a delectable and prettily presented confection: finely shaved ice  flavored with mango syrup, surrounded by huge cubes of ripe mango and topped with rich New York Cheesecake bits, vanilla ice cream and slices of roasted almonds.

We are definitely eager to try Hobing’s other bingsu offerings soon.

This branch of Hobing Korean Dessert is located at the 3rd Floor of BGC Stopover Pavilion, Rizal Drive cor 31st Street, Bonifacio Global City. Other branches of Hobing Korean Dessert are located at:

  • Lucky Chinatown Mall in Binondo
  • SM Megamall in Mandaluyong
  • Glorietta 4 in Makati
  • Jupiter Street in Makati
  • Eastwood City Walk in Quezon City
  • SM Aura Premier in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig
  • Ayala Malls the 30th in Ortigas Center, Pasig
  • SM North in Quezon City
  • Banawe Lifestyle Center in Quezon City
  • SM City Marikina in Marikina City
  • U.P Town Center in Quezon City
  • SM San Lazaro in Manila
  • Ayala Fairview Terrace, Fairview Quezon City

Check out my rundown of bingsu treats in the metro.

Hobing Korean Dessert Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato