Foster the People Live in Manila

Image taken from http://liveconcertmanila.blogspot.com

It’s official! Mark Foster, Cubbie Fink, and Mark Pontius are coming over to the Philippines on October 6. I’ve been a Foster the People fan ever since I heard a friend’s band do a cover of their song, Pumped Up Kicks. I loved it so much I even wrote about it in one of my earlier posts. Which led me to find the original, which made me fall in love with it even more, and which, eventually, led me to fall in love with the band and their music. And yeah, they’ve got these awesome music videos, too.

Seriously stoked! Gotta buy tickets soon. 🙂

Magic Hour Sunday

Last Sunday was spent having lunch at The Chocolate Kiss Cafe with our cousin, RC. He attended the Chemical Engineering Inter-University Quiz Show which, incidentally, is hosted annually by my college org. Are we a bunch of smartypants or what? Haha. Kidding!

I missed UP so much that my sister and I spent a few hours walking around, taking artsy shots around the campus.

What I love about this place is you can literally get a good photo spot in every nook and cranny. Every wall, graffiti, and building frame becomes an instant backdrop.

We were also lucky that the weather was perfect. We were able to get a shot during the magic hour and I really love it!

A Piece of Italy in Mandaluyong

My roomie, Mils, had a sudden craving for Italian last Tuesday. When she mentioned Galileo, I did not hesitate for a second. I’m scheduled to work from home that time so I have more hours to spare. We went there in our just-out-of-bed state for a late lunch and were crossing our fingers that they let us in. Kidding on that part. The people in Galileo are so friendly, they wouldn’t really mind if we looked a bit frazzled.

Galileo Enoteca is this hole-in-wall Italian place just a block away from us, which serves authentic Italian food and houses one of the biggest wine cellar that I’ve ever seen. This is my third time to dine in this place and it’s a good thing that I managed to take some pictures (blurry as they may). The first and second time, I was just oohs and aahs at how cozy the place was and how good their food were.

I love this appetizer because of the chicken liver dip. I know that most are not into chicken liver but it’s on of the best I’ve tasted. Not bitter at all!
When you order a pizza, you can opt to have 2 separate flavors. We ordered the Tutta Carne (mix of ham, Italian sausage, and pepperoni, and pomodoro) and Margherita. I’m not into pepperoni but the Italian sausage made up for it. 
For the pasta, we ordered the Penne con Funghi Porcini and Tartufo Bianco (Mushroom and white truffle oil). Honestly, I was quite disappointed with this. Aside from the penne not being al dente, the sauce was too salty for my taste.
I was not disappointed with the wine that we ordered. It was sweet with just a slight hint and aroma of alcohol, not the type that would make you wrinkle your nose when you waft it from the glass. We ordered a bottle and took home what was left.

I read somewhere that Enoteca means wine bar, which explains the appearance of the resto. It’s dimly lit with brick walls and rows of cupboards of wines like any typical wine cellar. You can even see some boxes by the corner which will make you feel that you’re just having drinks in your friend’s basement.

The cheese, cold cuts, and assorted canned products are strategically displayed by the main door so diners will be much tempted to take some Galileo piece home . As for me, I had fun just watching the display; it made me feel like I’m in a real Italian store.

Mils said that she’ll be hoarding some products here before moving out to another city. I might do, too. After all, this is one of the things that I will miss much in Mandaluyong. 🙂

Weekend Starter

Had an awesome weekend (!) and it all started with this bottle of wine. After work, me and my friends headed over to the Old Swiss Inn and bonded over Cabernet Sauvignon. It’s not our usual take on weekend starter/after-shift drinking session being the beer/mojito-drinking people that we are, but I enjoyed it. We had this with a bowl of cheese fondue and a plate of cold cuts. Not the best fondue and cold cuts in the planet, though. I’m lucky that they served a basket of warm bread. They are so soft and tasty, I had about 3 or 4. If I was the only one on the table who did, I would’ve felt ashamed but Dan had the same so…

Anyway, it’s true what they say. Drinking wine has this certain tinge of sophistication. Or is it the other way around with us? Made us act sillier than usual? A bottle of Caajfdkljfsdhfeorewndnceney Saigsdfhdighrothvnon, please? 😀

Boracay Bummin’

Our Boracay vacation last July has been the ultimate beach bumming activity that I had in a long time. Having buffet breakfast by the cabanas, enjoying the early morning and afternoon sun, reading novels by the beachfront, and waking up at your own leisure without worrying about the day’s itinerary was great! We just simply went through our vacation days appreciating the great beach and sand, and enjoying each other’s company over card games, good food, beers, and cocktails.

Speaking of cocktails we immensely enjoyed Loco Frio. They offer frozen cocktails to go and it comes with these adorable insulated tumblers. You can buy a refill at a much cheaper prize if you already have a tumbler so it’s really cool. Totally perfect for the hot, beach weather.

As for the food, we ALL fell in love with Sur Burger. It was one of the biggest and tastiest burger I have ever tasted. Not exaggerating! This is a Boracay must-try. Some other dishes that I love is the baby back ribs from Hawaiian Bar-B-Que and the lechon kawali from Jonah’s. If you’ve got money to spare, is willing to wait for a table, and willing to wait to be served of sumptuous ribs, then go to HBBQ. But if you’re on a tight budget, Jonah’s Kawali is not too bad. One serving (PHP 300) is good enough for three. It was also my first time to have a go at the infamous lobster. We went over to the wet market in D*Talipapa, get ourselves some live lobsters, and have them cooked in one of the restaurants along the area. It was served to us in spicy coconut sauce and it was delicious!

We were blessed with a very nice weather during our 5-day stay (considering that it’s already the rainy season here in the Philippines). It was perfect for walking along the sandy shores, taking pictures, and just breathing in the beauty of the place. I have to thank Christian for some of these gorgeous shots.

But being the adventure freaks  that we are, it was not exactly ‘all bum, no play’. We did have fun trying out the club scene (a little), going skimboarding, driving ATVs to reach the highest point of the island, fly-fishing, and paraw sailing.  I’ll tell you all about them next time. 😉

Rainy Sunday. Chill fun.

Last weekend’s weather was terrible but it didn’t stop me and some of my friends to go out and have a chill fun. I miss spontaneous hangouts like this. Reminds me of my younger days when everyone is still very much willing to trade sleep for escapades. Oh well, I think we’re just getting old. But not that day! 😀

Meeting up with Char and Jing for the movie

We started by catching one of the entries in Cinemalaya Film Fest at Greenbelt, Mga Mumunting Lihim. Stellar cast, great director, and good plot. And have I mentioned that we watched this with the beautiful Mylene Dizon? Yes! We did! She was sitting 5 rows behind us. Haha!

Christian, give your friend some corndog!

After the movie, we went to Chili’s for dinner, where we had a round of superb Mexican food. We were joined by another friend, Maryann, whom we fondly call Ermengarde. If you’ve been an avid fan of the Princess Sarah TV series shown in one of our local TV channels, you’ll know why. 😉

Ermengarde is the cutest!

We ordered the Bottomless Tostada Chips for appetizer. They were perfectly crisp and were served warm. It tastes good even without the salsa. We had 3 or 4 rounds of this so our 330 PHP was put into good spending.

We also ordered Triple Play which consists of Southwestern egg rolls, Buffalo wings, and Chicken Crispers. I’m not a big fan of the SWER but it comes with a yummy guacamole dip that goes well with the other entrees on the plate.

For our main dish we had Fish ‘n Chips and Fajita Trio. The Fajita Trio is special because it has a little bit of everything: marinated steak, grilled chicken, spicy garlic and lime grilled shrimp, onions, and bell peppers. I would have liked my pita bread to be softer, though, rather than crispy.

Before heading home, we went to UCC Cafe for coffee. I ordered their iced cocoa which I’m not getting again because it did “wonders” to my stomach. >_< We just passed the time taking about exclusive schools, religion (we were not drunk, I swear!), and Australia. Quite diverse topics but somehow they got interconnected. 😉

Overall, I’m glad that we pushed through with our hangout despite the red warnings and flood alerts. And yes, I’m also glad that we all got home safe. 🙂

Paraws and Sunsets

One of my favorite moments during our Boracay vacation. On our last day, we decided to go paraw sailing to catch the sunset. A paraw is a typical sailboat here in the Philippines, and like any other sailboat, it gets its speed and direction from the wind and waves that carries it. The paraw travel has been exciting and super fun because of the big waves splashing at us while we were busy getting our afternoon fill of beer and margarita.

In the middle of the sea, the boatmen threw down the anchor and let us marvel on the golden sky while the waves below rocked us. Nothing beats the beauty of the sunset when you’re one with nature. Whether you’re atop a mountain peak or just bummin’ by the beach, sunsets are always a magical experience.

Defining the Abstract

Earlier today, I happened to pass by an interesting art exhibit in SM Megamall. It featured beautiful abstract paintings by Ronaldo Ruiz. What I love about his works is how they seem to suck you into the canvas and get stuck in a world of shapes, colors, and brush strokes. I was having a field day roaming around the gallery, being mesmerized by the paintings, and imagining which of them will be perfect in this wall or that wall of my room.

Here are some of my favorites:

I didn’t know the artist and had to Google him. Apparently, he’s been making noise in the art scene for quite some time now, both here and abroad.

If you’d like to check out his other works, go visit his Multiply site and be fascinated. 🙂

Weekend Discoveries

This weekend has been full of new discoveries!

Let me start with Saturday. Christian and I were both craving for Japanese (no surprise there, really) and we magically stumbled upon Rai Rai Ken. OK, to be perfectly honest, we were lured by their “50% discount on ALL Ramen” ad. Turned out that you have to order a plate of appetizer and any Pepsi product to avail of the discount.

It proved to be a very good thing actually because without it I wouldn’t have discovered their delicious Fish Fingers with Cheese. The wasabi sauce goes really well with it and the salad is a good side dish compliment. Christian ordered a plate of maki (as usual) and for the ramen, we opted for a fusion of Japanese and Filipino: Batchoy Ramen. It’s one of the store’s best seller but it was a little too salty for me.

This overhanging lamp is my favorite decoration in the resto. I wanted to take it down and bring it home! 😀

Come Sunday, Christian’s sister, Cati, took us all to The Collective in Makati to have lunch at Wingman. I’m crazy about chicken wings so I was really, really excited to visit the place.

And I was not disappointed! Wingman serves one of the best and most affordable chicken wings in the area. They are also relatively big in size compared to what the other restos are serving so a dozen of this is good enough for three. You can also opt to order two different flavors for your chicken wing dozen. That way, you can have more flavor variety for a lesser price.

And true to all chicken wing dining, it never hurts to order a plate of fries or onion rings to pair with your meat. 😉

After lunch, we went around the compound to check out some of the stores. But because it was a Sunday, most of them were closed. I’m planning to go back there to visit the Polaroid store which sells Instax Mini cases. It’s high time that I give my Choco a face lift.

Anyway, the compound trip would have been a shame if it weren’t for this:

The walls were lined with amazing graffiti. I’ve always been fascinated with them. There’s something interesting about the colors and the chaos of graffiti art. It makes me think of what the artist was thinking while sketching these. If ever reincarnation is true, I would work my ass off just to be a kick-ass artist in my next life.

As for my personal discovery, I fell in love with the dress-and-sneakers porma once again. It’s funny how I used to dress up like this every single day when I was in grade school and the early part of my high school. I’ve always been sort of a tomboy growing up but wasn’t really into jeans. Plus, my mom always buys me these cute dresses whenever she can. So there. What I probably love most about this style is it is girly and totally laidback at the same time.

Anyway, I’ve been blabbing on forever. I should really get my act together and start a daily blogging thing. Wrapping a weekend over one post can be lengthy.

Or maybe my weekend was really just a blast. Or I talk too much. Whatever. 😛