A big Italian Family Lunch at New York Slice by Motorino, SM Pasig

Lately, I’ve had little time to spend with my extended family.  My parents just moved in to their newly renovated house over the weekend and with all the general hustle and bustle, my mom was not up to cooking the usual Sunday lunch.

I ended up recommending New York Slice by Motorino in SM Hypermarket Pasig as it was very accessible to us and has a sweet Metrodeal offer (more on that later).

It is located along the row of restaurants near the SM Hypermarket’s main entrance facing Tiendesitas.  The seating inside the store proper is quite limited but there are extra seats outside the store that can seat larger groups, particularly our party of seven.

New York Slice by Motorino, SM Hypermart

New York Slice by Motorino, SM Hypermart

New York Slice by Motorino, SM Hypermart

I took advantage of a Metro deal offer that entitles me to Php500 worth of food orders at only Php299, with the option to buy and use more than one Metrodeal voucher. With this awesome deal, I admit we went a little crazy with the sheer volume of our orders, which included:


Motorino Special (Php135/slice).  Pepperoni, Italian sausage, olives, bell pepper, onions and mushrooms.  This was the preferred pizza of Hubby and my brother who wanted their pizzas to have meat and lots of toppings.

Honey & 3-Cheese (Php135/slice). Honey, cream cheese, mozzarella and parmesan.  This pizza was for me and my little boy to satisfy our cravings for cheese and something sweet, all in one go.

Veggie Special (Php135/slice). Mushroom, onions, bell pepper, olives, oregano and olive oil.  This was the preferred pizza for the older folks, a healthier option than the others.

New York Slice by Motorino, SM Hypermart


Spaghetti Bolognese (Php169).  A classic choice for the party members who are not as adventurous, food-wise.

New York Slice by Motorino, SM Hypermart

Alfredo with Bacon (Php169). A meatier take on carbonara but a little to sauce-y for me.

New York Slice by Motorino, SM Hypermart

Alfredo with Shrimp (Php189). The preference of my dad who likes seafood.

New York Slice by Motorino, SM Hypermart

Creamy Mushroom (Php159). A lighter and more vegetarian option than the other pastas we ordered.

New York Slice by Motorino, SM Hypermart

Krunchy Krispy Wings

Garlic Parmesan (Php269/6pcs).

New York Slice by Motorino, SM Hypermart

BBQ Glaze (Php439/10pcs).

New York Slice by Motorino, SM Hypermart

Both wings are quite tasty and went well with our pizzas and pastas.

Thanks to the Metrodeal vouchers I availed of, I ended up paying only Php2,200+ for Php3,600+ worth of orders.

This New York Slice by Motorino branch is located inside SM Hypermarket, Frontera Verde Drive, Ugong, Pasig City, open daily from 10am to 9pm.  Other branches are located at:

  • Ground Floor, South Parking Building, SM Mall of Asia, Mall of Asia Complex (MOA), Pasay City (open daily from 10am to 10pm)
  • Rockwell Business Center, Ground Floor, Sheridan Corner United, Highway Hills, Mandaluyong City (open daily from 10am to 8pm)
  • Eton Towers Makati, 128 Dela Rosa Street, Legaspi Village, Makati City (open Mondays to Fridays 11am to 10pm and Saturdays to Sundays 11am to 9pm)
  • Ground Floor, Market! Market!, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City (open daily from 10am to 10pm)
  • 2A-2 Ground Floor, ATC Corporate Center, Alabang, Muntinlupa City (open daily from 11am to 10pm)

New York Slice by Motorino Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Italian lunch at Amici, Ayala Triangle

After taking care of my morning errands in Makati around lunchtime, I was faced with the challenge of finding somewhere to eat. Fortunately, I espied the branch of Amici among the eateries inside the Ayala Triangle Gardens.

Amici started out as a canteen that caters to the employees of the Don Bosco Printing Press. At that time, it was called Amici di Don Bosco (Friends of Don Bosco). Its menu then consisted of coffee and gelato which later expanded to include wood-fire oven baked pizzas and homemade pastas. The reputation of this restaurant serving tasty and authentic Italian food prepared by priests grew and attracted more and more customers. Today, Amici has 9 branches in Metro Manila, a recognized institution when it comes to authentic Italian pizza, pasta and gelato.

For my lunch today, I opted to munch on two flavors I have been craving for: truffle pasta and chocolate.

Linguine al Prosciutto e Tartufo (Php370)

One of Amici’s best-sellers, this is the resto’s version of a truffle pasta. Linguini pasta are cooked al dente then drenched in a masterful blend of prosciutto, truffle oil, porcini and shitake mushrooms. The smell of truffle oil may be overpowering to some but I didn’t mind it one bit. I found the serving portion a bit too large so I left half to take home to my daughter #ExhibitA; Amici’s dishes are #BestWhenShared anyway.

Turtle Pie Gelato (Php95 per scoop) by Cara Mia

Rich dark chocolate with drizzles of caramel and studded with pecans. I found the scoop a bit small but, well, as a wise woman once told me, quality is never cheap. I treat getting myself a gelato at Amici as a sort of indulgence or reward for myself.

The place is clean and well-lit and has a busy and energetic vibe given the lunchtime crowd. That said, I found the service very warm and accommodating: I was seated very quickly, and given garlic bread to munch on while waiting for my order.  Also, my water was refilled without my having to request for it and my request to have half of my pasta wrapped for takeout was immediately done.

This Amici branch is located at Ayala Triangle Gardens, Salcedo Village, Makati City and is open weekdays from 10am to 10pm and weekends from 12nn to 8pm.  For reservations and inquiries, call + 63 2 6216111 or +63 977 4596625.

Other branches are located at:

  • Don Bosco School, A. Arnaiz Avenue, San Lorenzo, Makati City (Tel: +63 2 8221111, +63 916 9227972 or +63 906 1234456)
  • Second Floor, Alabang Town Center, Alabang, Muntinlupa City (Tel: +63 2 4039373, +63 917 8946897 or +63 917 8218988)
  • Third Floor, Mega Atrium, SM Megamall, Ortigas, Mandaluyong City (Tel: +63 2 6361340, +63 2 6361341, + 63 947 2998417 or +63 906 8463051)
  • Ground Floor, 101 Missouri Square, Missouri Corner Connecticut Street, Greenhills, San Juan City (Tel: +63 2 724 4804, +63 2 724 4806, +63 936 7190592, or +63 908 9901506)
  • Bellagio Square, Tomas MoratoAvenue, Laging Handa, Quezon City (Tel: +63 2 3766458, +63 915 6272060 or +63 905 1958506)
  • Ground Floor, The Block, SM City North EDSA, Bago Bantay, Quezon City (Tel: +63 2 709 5545, +63 906 7243019 or +63 916 7890754)
  • Ground Floor, UP Ayala Technohub, Commonwealth Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City (Tel: +63 2 709 0999, +63 995 1693154 or +63 936 2935257)
  • Ground Floor, The Oracle Hotel & Residences, 317 Katipunan Avenue, Loyola Heights, Quezon City (Tel: +63 956 6031048 or +63 935 4402663)

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

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An array of brick oven-baked Neapolitan pizza at Amare la Cucina in Baguio

Pizza Napoletana, better known as Neapolitan Pizza, originated from Naples, Italy, hence the name. Its preparation involves fresh ingredients: basic flatbread dough, tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, olive oil and fresh basil. It is normally sized at 10-12 inches, making it closer to a personal pizza.

During our weekend getaway in the City of Pines, the fam met up with relatives at Amare La Cucina. Its claim to fame is its wood fire brick oven Neapolitan-style pizza made with fresh dough.

Its name translates to “love the kitchen” – the same passion for food and experimentation that drove owner Edmark Bustos to open his own restaurant which is now the default destination for extraordinarily good pizza in Baguio.

Our group consisted of two families with kids ages 5 to 18 years so finding dinner choices that will satisfy everyone was a challenge. Fortunately, Hubby, with the help of his cousin, chose a winning menu:

Beef Carpaccio (Php300).  Thinly sliced raw Beef Tenderloin with extra virgin olive, finished with shavings of Parmigiano-Reggiano and salt and pepper. This was more for the adults in the group. It went particularly well with the beer that the dads in the group ordered.

Mozzarella Dip. Melted seasoned mozzarella cheese served in heated pans where you can dip thin slices of flatbread. This was very enjoyable for the kids, especially my little boy who loves cheese.

Chicken Skewers (Php350). Grilled chicken pieces served with a tangy sauce. This served as our main protein for the meal.

Margherita Pizza (Php325). Pizza made with plum tomatoes, mozzarella, extra virgin olive oil and basil.

Tre Formaggi (Php440). Pizza made plum tomatoes topped with herbs and three types of cheeses – mozzarella, cheddar and parmigiano reggiano.

White Pizza (Php405). Pizza made with mozzarella, bacon, garlic, extra virgin olive oil and a dash of oregano.

Foie Gras (Php595). Pizza made with mozarella, basil, white truffle oil and foie gras (duck liver).

Mint Iced Tea (Php85). Refreshing blend iced team infused with fresh mint.

After dinner, we stopped by the all-women art exhibit we chanced upon earlier, and admired the artworks by local contemporary female artists.

Amare La Cucina is located at EGI Albergo Hotel, No 1 Villamor Drive, Brgy. Lualhati, Baguio City. For reservations, call + 63 916 3321522.

For Manilans who want to sample its offerings without leaving the metro, the resto opened a branch located at 91 East Capito Drive, Brgy. Kapitolyo, Pasig City. For reservations, call + 63 929 8237313.

Trivia: Did you know that until the 1700s, pizzas were not topped with tomatoes? When tomatoes first arrived in Italy, they were mainly grown and used as ornaments. They were also thought to be toxic until Italian peasants started putting them on top of their flatbreads.

To learn more about Italian cuisine, check out these books on Amazon.com!

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A happier lunch experience at the new Friuli Trattoria

A trattoria is an Italian-style eating establishment, a happy medium between a ristorante and an osteria in terms of formality. Friuli Trattoria, named after a region in Northeastern Italy, serves signature Italian dishes such as pastas and brick-oven pizzas.

I already tried out Friuli Trattoria’s Maginhawa branch but was not terribly impressed with the service nor with the food so when my daughter was hankering for Italian food for our Saturdate lunch at UP Town Center, I had some misgivings before agreeing to eat here. I was won over by the relatively lower prices in this joint compared to the other Italian restaurant in the area (Cheapskate Mommy strikes again!).

We were lucky to find a table for two given the sizeable lunch time crowd. I was also pleasantly surprised by the friendly and relatively fast service of the wait staff. We didn’t have to wait long for our order:

  • Pesto Spaghetti (Php175)
  • Mushroom Pizza (Php220)
  • 2 cans of A&W Cream Soda (Php60 each)

The combination of flavors was just right and the meal was satisfying for the both of us (although we did save some room for dessert elsewhere;-)). The total bill amounting to just Php515.

I had a better experience here compared to the Maginhawa branch and I wouldn’t mind bringing my family for a quick Italian lunch of we’re in the area.

Friuli Trattoria branches are located at:

  • 2nd Floor, UP Town Center, Katipunan Avenue, Diliman, QC
  • 79-A Maginhawa Street, Teacher’s Village, Quezon City

Friuli Trattoria Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Italian Food Trip at Friuli Trattoria

My coworkers and I decided to take advantage of the relatively lighter traffic and held one of our (in)famous happy lunches in Maginhawa Street. We opted for Friuli the consensus among the group was in favor of Italian food. We ordered Bacon and Egg Carbonara, Tuna Carbonara, Puttanesca, Mushroom Pizza and Cheesesteak Pizza. IMHO, the pizzas are ok but I’ve tasted homemade pasta better than those served here. Plus, I can’t believe they charge P10 for 2 tablespoons of parmesan cheese!


Check it out on Zomato!