I’ve gotten used to traveling all over the metro to try out new places to dine in that I sometimes get surprised when an interesting resto pops up right in my neck of the woods.
During my recent (harrowingly traffic-jammed) drives going to work, a newly opened cafe just outside my subdivision caught my eye. From the outside, it seemed like a clean and quiet place to hang out in. I admit: it seemed as if during the time I was stuck in mind-numbing traffic, that little cafe called to me, promising peace, quiet and respite.
So when my friend Sasha of Sashimakes (do check out her handcrafted stuff!) invited me to meet up with her at Loraine’s Coffee and Pastry Shop, I jumped at the chance to check the place out while catching up with her.
Upon entering the cafe, I was amazed at the nature-themed decor. Dark wood chairs, tables and shelves frame the lovely potted plants scattered all over the cafe. The overall effect is one of serenity: here, you can grab a bite or sip on your favorite brew in peace, as you watch the urban madness outside the door.
Feeling a bit adventurous, we decided to split between ourselves the cafe’s Pinangat Pasta (Php180). The dish combined elements from two of Bicol’s classic dishes: Pinangat, basically laing, and Adobong Bicol, also known as “adobo sa asin.” I like the complex flavors of the dish – garlicky, savory and a bit spicy – as it is a welcome deviation from the usual pasta dishes that are usually included in the menu of other cafes.
And wouldn’t you know it, the dish has a rice meal version at Php150! I will be definitely trying that the next time I’m here.
We enjoyed our pasta dish with our handcrafted drinks: a Passion Fruit Smoothie (Php120 for 16oz | Php135 for 22oz), a zesty ice-blended drink made from fresh passionfruit, and a mug of off-menu, made-by-request Hot Chocolate.
We capped off our snack with a slice of Strawberry Roll (Php65) and an Almond Bar (Php45). I would have liked the roll better if it used a lighter chiffon cake, though.
By the way, I also took home Cookies ‘n Cream, Vanilla and Red Velvet flavors for my babies at home.
On my next visit, I’d like to try out the other desserts that incorporate pili nuts.
And if all the mention of pinangat and pili nuts got you wondering, the cafe’s owner, Sly Natividad, was raised in Legazpi, Albay and wanted to feature some of the flavors he grew up with in his cafe.
He even gave us some salted pili nuts and mazapan de pili!
So the next time you’re traversing the traffic-jammed Ortigas Avenue Extension, ask yourself if the place you’re going to is worth letting the opportunity for respite and relaxation with handcrafted drinks and savory dishes and desserts that feature regional flavors at Loraine’s Coffee and Pastry Shop pass you by.
Loraine’s Coffee and Pastry Shop is located at Ground Floor, Choice Market Ortigas, 58 Ortigas Ave, Pasig, 1600 Metro Manila. For inquiries and reservations, call +63 917 7157635.
Check out my reviews of other dessert places in the metro:
- Hui Lau Shan, SM North EDSA
- Coffee Time, Santolan
- Taki Taki, Century City Mall
- Aqua S, SM North EDSA
- BLK 513, SM North EDSA
- Hui Lau Shan, Greenhills
- Affojeans, SM North
- Gelato Lab, Tomas Morato
- Hobing, BGC Stopover
- The Lost Bread, SM East Ortigas
- LlaoLlao, Glorietta
- Sugarhouse, Glorietta
- BLK 513, SM Megamall
- BLK 513, Glorietta
- Elait, Tomas Morato
- Elait, Eastwood Mall
- Cold Stone Creamery, BGC
- Chocolatier, Tomas Morato
- Jang Da Bang Cafe, Ortigas
- Auntie Anne’s, SM Hypermart
- Sugar Fix, Tomas Morato
- Coreon Gate, Metrowalk
- Indulge, Cubao
- Le Reve Patisserie, Ugong
- Hui Lau Shan, SM Megamall
- Hobing, SM Marikina