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It was still drizzling when we finished our late lunch and after roaming around Sonya's Garden
. Since we love trying out new restaurants, we headed back to Bag of Beans which we passed on the way to Sonya's Garden. We heard that they had great coffee, desserts as well as a nice ambiance. Read on to see what the fuss is all about Bag of Beans
is not just a coffee shop and bakery but a garden restaurant, too. They serve all-day breakfast, rice meals, pastas, a variety of baked goods and desserts. They also offer a wedding package for newlyweds who want to have their reception here. It's along Aguinaldo Highway and is easy to spot.
Once you enter the bakery, the aroma of coffee and freshly baked good greets you, as well as a glass display of some of their delicious desserts. You'd then be ushered in a small open space, much like a balcony, overseeing the garden below. You can either choose to stay inside the small cafe or outside the garden. They have ample seating areas and each uniquely designed.GARDEN RESTAURANT
Al fresco dining
The garden downstairs was spacious and so relaxing! There were odd flowering plants all around that bring color to the place. By the corner is a birdcage with a myna bird which sadly was quiet that time. Hehe! It probably was not in the mood because of the rain?! We wanted to stay out but the rain didn't let up.INDOOR DINING
The indoor restaurant was simple and didn't have any elaborate decorations. The room was dimly lit, perfect for a relaxing afternoon tea -- or coffee.
They had simple wooden chairs and tables, good for a couple or for groups of 4 to 8. In keeping up with the garden theme, the centerpieces were small vases with fresh flowers. There were also white drapes and lanterns that give the room a yellowish glow.
On the far wall is a uniquely shaped table coupled with round stools, all seemed to be carved from a tree. At the center of the table is a basket with balls of varying sizes and design. There's also an area with a traditional Filipino bench with soft, white throw pillows -- a nice area for reading or for simply laying back.THE MENU
We like the variety of food they serve! They have all-day breakfast which includes bacon or sausage and egg, omelette, and meals called Sunrise breakfast, Country breakfast and breakfast sampler (combo of pancakes, hash brown, omelette). They also serve Pinoy breakfast: the different -silog's! Grilled meat and fish are also available served with steamed veggies, and choice of mashed potato, garlic fried rice, fries and salad. If you want a lighter meal, they have a myriad of pasta you can choose from: lasagna, seafood pasta, pasta with cream sauce, one with garlic and mushroom, even veggie pasta!
To go with these yummy sounding meals, they offer hot beverages like freshly brewed coffee, barako coffee, cappuccino and the like, as well as cold ones like iced tea, fruit and milk shakes and cold versions of their hot beverages. For dessert, you can have a banana split, cheesecakes, chocolate mousee or panacotta. Oh and different kinds of pies are also available for those who don't want too much carbs. THE FOOD
Since we were already full from our hearty meal at Sonya's Garden, we had Banana Walnut pancake, blueberry cheesecake and house blend coffee. Pius wanted to eat rice so he ordered tapsilog.
The tapsilog was served with veggies on the side as well as atsara to go with the tapa. We liked how tender and flavorful the tapa was! We thought that it would be a little tough since it was not cut thinly but it really was tender, juicy too!
Banana Walnut Pancake
Three huge pancakes, with a big dollop of butter, soft banana slices, crunchy, crushed walnuts with maple syrup on the side. We were surprised at how big the serving was! We probably were used to the size of panckaes from fast foods. Haha!
The pancakes were so soft, the bananas sweet and the walnuts added texture to the otherwise plain pancake. The two of us had a hard time finishing this since we were already so full.
We really liked this dessert! It was so cold and smooth. The heaps of blueberry on top complemented the sour cream cheese and sweet graham well. Every bite was a delight! Wish we could have had more, if we weren't so full, that is!
BOB Hot Chocolate
We got their hot chocolate which tasted really good. It was rich and creamy, not too sweet -- just the way we like it. Having hot choco on a cold, rainy (and foggy!) afternoon was great! We also loved the mugs their hot beverages were served in! BAG OF BEANS EXPERIENCE
We hope we can go here when it's not raining so we can experience dining out at the garden. We still had fun, though! The service was great, the ambiance was relaxing and the food -- sumptuous! We'd love to try their baked goods and other bestsellers the next time we go there!
Banana Walnut Pancake,Blueberry Cheesecake
Spending per head: Approximately ₱200+Other Ratings:
One of a king garden
comes to mind whenever the freshest ingredients are used. And what better way to experience a healthy diet than at Sonya's Garden
. We've been wanting to dine here and the plan finally pushed through.
The clouds were gloomy and the cold breeze seems to invite rain. But as usual, we don't let the rain ruin our day. Our umbrellas to the rescue!
Sonya's Garden is a restaurant, cafe as well as a bed & breakfast. It used to be a private garden, then the owner decided to have it opened to the public after being convinced by her family and friends. And thanks to them, we were able to share in their lovely experience at this place.
They also have a Panaderia
serving freshly baked bread and other goodies like cookies, and traditional Pinoy snacks such as monay, putok and ogoy-ogoy. The smell of these baked goods hits you once you enter the simple panaderia and invites you to try them!
On the far end of the garden is Sonyas's Sensuous Spa
surrounded by luscious greens and an earthy fountain. The great looking landscape and serenity completes your spa experience! You'd surely feel relaxed after a good massage and a refreshing environment! Near the spa is the souvenir shop with items like oils, handicrafts and various trinkets the owner got from her travels around the world.
From the entrance is a pathway leading to the greenhouse-like restaurant. Plants are also scattered around the place that make the space cool and refreshing. By the door to the dining hall is a small pool with bright red and yellow flowers, as well as different colored, house-shaped mini lanterns which make for a vibrant walkway!
The other pathway leads to more function rooms and the cottages / bed and breakfast. There's a nice daybed with drapes around it and surrounded by vine -- feels like you're in a magical forest!
The garden is just so rich! with various kinds and colors of flowers, big and small plants and trees.SONYA'S SECRET COTTAGE RESTAURANT
If you want to try the restaurant, make a reservation. The offer a sit-down type of buffet and serve all-natural, healthy meals which includes bottomless fresh dalandan juice, salad, bread, pasta and desserts. It costs 610php per person.
Unique and fun-looking chandeliers, along with white drapes, hang on the ceiling which makes the restaurant a bit more interesting. On the right wall are wooden panels with capiz -- showcasing traditional Pinoy woodwork. The whole area is just so conducive for quiet, as well as healthy dining.
There's a waiting area near the comfort rooms with this large, wooden daybed with nice, intricate carvings. Instead of male and female signs, they used paintings to indicate which comfort room is for boys and girls. THE FOOD
Almost all the ingredients are home grown, straight from their garden! You know that everything's fresh. It's a sit down type of buffet. You can ask to refill the toppings for the salad, bread and pasta. The meal comes with bottomless, freshly squeezed dalandan juice which is not only healthy but so delicious, too!
For starters, you'll be served with a bowl of fresh green leaves with a myriad of toppings to choose from placed in ceramic cups. Toppings include mangoes, cubed melon, eggs, cucumber, broad beans and pineapples. We especially liked the sweet mangoes, melon and crunchy broad beans. The dressing is Sonya's Garden's secret.
Next is freshly baked bread from the panaderia. To go with the bread, they have basil pesto, anchovies, white cheese, mushroom pate and black olive tapinade. We loved the mushroom pate, and the flavorful basil pesto! The texture and taste were perfect with the whole wheat sesame bread!
Do your own pasta
Next on the menu is the pasta, served in a glass bowl with a wooden, pineapple shaped fork! We loved this concept! Made the dining experience more fun! You can either have the white sauce: chicken cream with mango, or the red sauce: sun dried tomatoes. Toppings include salmon belly, shiitake mushrooms, capers, black olives, ratatouille and grated parmesan cheese. We were already full so we were only able to grab a few bites.
Lastly, the desserts! We had a small slice of homemade chocolate cake -- which wasn't enough so we got another. Haha!
And a plate of banana rolls with sesame and jackfruit and glazed sweet potato. The cake was nice and moist, the chocolate on top was just divine! It looked and tasted great! The banana rolls were not crispy anymore but still tasted ok.
They served us with tarragon tea after the desserts. The tea was nothing like we've tasted before - really refreshing and kind of minty. Tarragon tea helps in digestion and also enhances the mood! What a perfect ending to our hearty meal! DINING EXPERIENCE
We had an amazing time at this wonderful, not-so-secret garden. The food, though not our usual food choice was great! We never thought we'd enjoy healthy food this much! We were able to taste new flavors which we enjoyed! The rain can't dampen our mood right?
We hope we could try the whole Sonya's Garden experience, with the spa and bed and breakfast! That would be a perfect, relaxing weekend getaway!
Spending per head: Approximately ₱610Other Ratings:
We were already in Trinoma when we decided to eat at Kanin Club
instead. We were always in Trinoma anyways and we wanted to try something different. Good thing it wasn't that far!
It was only 4pm and there were already a lot at the restaurant. We immediately ordered after being seated -- what else but the famous crispy dinuguan
! But before that, on to the place first.
The restaurant's ambiance was relaxing, with the dim lights, warm, rich colors of the wooden chairs and tables, typical of Pinoy restaurants. It felt like we were dining at an old Spanish/Pinoy house. There were wooden shutters, colorful oil paintings as well as nice decors - felt just like home.
The servers were nice and friendly, too with their smiling and inviting faces.
Now about the Food
Crispy Dinuguan (261php)
The Crispy Dinuguan
was a sure hit! Our friend who does not eat dinuguan liked it after trying a bite. She eventually got the last serving. Haha! It was crunchy, much like chicharon and just had the right flavor, not too salty. The sauce was also good, complemented the crispy pork bits well -- all perfect with rice!
Bistek Pinoy (187php)
We also tried the Bistek Pinoy
. The beef was tender and not tough at all to cut. The sauce was delicious, perfect to put over the rice - a viand in itself hehe!
We also had Ripe Mango Shake (97php) which was sweet, cool and refreshing - great with our flavorful Pinoy viands! The four of us had a great time at Kanin Club! great ambiance, servers, and the best Pinoy dishes!
Spending per head: Approximately ₱250+Other Ratings:
We just had lunch at The Real Thing Diner at the nearby Il Terrazzo and did not have any desserts there. So we decided to have some at Fleur De Lys
, a quaint patisserie we saw on our way to Il Terrazzo.
Patisserie & Cafe
This patisserie and cafe at Tomas Morato is owned by Chef Jackie Ang Po
who hosted the TV shows True Confections and Delicioso on QTV. She won a bronze for the country at the Food and Hotel Asia Singapore competition.
The cafe is open from 10.30am-12mn from Monday to Thursday, from 10am-1am on Fridays and Saturdays, and from 2pm-10pm on Sundays. THE AMBIANCE
Warm and cozy
The ambiance is warm and cozy, with blue-green walls, simple wooden tables and light, silver chairs. Colorful works of art are displayed on the wall as well as photos of enticing, mouth-watering desserts! We love the silver designs on the walls that seemed like decoupage!
The cafe also has their pastries available for take-out. They put the delectable pastries in cute boxes tied with a bright green ribbon - perfect for gifts! They also have unique cookie jars, also a good gift idea! THE MENU
Aside from the desserts, they also serve soups, salads, rice meals, pasta dishes and grilled paninis. With that, you have fruit juices, shakes, coffee, and tea to choose from! What we love are the uniquely named cakes and pastries like Dulce and Gabanana, Build me up Buttercrunch, A River Rums Through, and Nuts About you, to name a few. THE FOOD
We chose The Next Best Thing, Best Kept C-kret and Dulce and Gabanana.
The Next Best Thing (128php)
Chocolate cake with caramel filling served with vanilla ice cream. The cake was soft and the inside was just lovely, sweet and creamy. Wish the ice cream was served really cold, though - it melted too quickly. Hehe! The chocoalte cake and vanilla ice cream was a good combination, perfect for the sweet tooth!
Best Kept C-kret (115php)
A light chiffon cake with 3 creams: yema custard, caramel and chocolate. The cake was light and refreshing! The different kinds of cream complemented each other well, sweet yet not overpowering. The texture was great - smooth, thick, creamy.
Dulce and Gabanana (120php)
Fresh banana tart with chocolate dulce de leche filling on gingersnap crust topped with whipped cream, caramel and chocolate. What we loved about this are the fresh bananas. The crust was okay, too-really crispy and flavorful. We also liked the chocolate and caramel syrup on top. FLEUR DE LYS EXPERIENCE
From the Chef / Owner
We're glad to have had our desserts here! The place looked great even if it was small, the servers all had smiling faces and the cakes and pastries were good! We'd love to try the other bestsellers we've read so much about like the Pavlova Picasso and the Strawberry Pie with big chunks of fresh strawberries with a layer of chocolate! Ooooh can't wait!
The Next Best Thing,Dulce and Gabanana
Spending per head: Approximately ₱150(Tea)Other Ratings:
The Real Thing Diner
We've been to Il Terrazzo
a couple of times and have yet to try this fairly new restaurant. We decided to go there with our friend Yani to taste some Coca-cola infused dishes. ^_^ The Real Thing Diner
is owned by singer, songwriter, harpist Noelle Cassandra and singer, events host KV Golamco. The retro themed diner have Coca-Cola memorabilia collected by Mr. Golamco from his stint at the Coca-Cola Company displayed around. The place looks fun and inviting with all the red and white Coke inspired items!
The place is open everyday from 11am to 2.30pm and from 5.30pm to 10pm. They're open til 11pm on Fridays and Saturdays.THE AMBIANCE
Red and White
The diner is eye-catching with the red and white interiors, truly Coca-Cola inspired! They have simple white tables, red, soft chairs as well as black couches shaped like the Coke waves. On the walls are bubbles with some of the owners collection like cans, bottles, and the famous Coca-Cola polar bear. There's also a big, colorful mural on the wall, giving the place a fun feel!
Through the Years
On the far right is a very long shelf showcasing the various designs of Coke cans throughout the years. There's also a rack shaped like a Coke bottle where diners can appreciate the unique Coke-inspired items like drinking bottles, bottle caps, stuffed polar bear and more Coke cans/bottles.
There are also framed newspaper clippings, reviews, articles about the Diner and its owners.THE MENU
On their menu are Coca-cola infused dishes like Royal Pumpkin Soup, Sarsi wings, Sprite Calamari, Coke Zero Fish Fingers and a lot more! It really is the Real Thing! Their unique meals had us confused on what to get. THE FOOD
We finally decided on their Coca-Cola Seafood Jambalaya, Sarsi Fish 'n Chips and Coca-Cola BBQ Burger.
Coca-Cola Seafood Jambalaya. A delicious medley of Coca-cola, rice, celery & bell peppers, topped with diced shrimps and fish fillet.
Coca-Cola Seafood Jambalaya (229php)
We liked how this dish had a lot on it! The shrimps were plump and juicy while the fish fillet was soft and flavorful. It was a little too spicy though. Nevertheless, we enjoyed it and finished the whole dish!
Coca-Cola BBQ Burger. Cheesy backyard burger cooked to perfection in our signature Coca-Cola BBQ sauce.
Coca-Cola BBQ Burger (199php)
This was a sure hit! The beef patty was big, juicy, well-cooked and flavorful! The veggies were crisp and the sauce was just great! The combo of flavors was just right, add to that the fat chunks of fries. It was a real tummy filler! Great on the taste buds, too!
Sarsi Fish 'n Chips. Sarsi-coated fish 'n chips coated with our original Sarsi sauce.
Sarsi Fish 'n Chips (179php)
It was unlike anything we've tasted before -- really original. Hehe! The sauce was great with the mildly flavored fish fillet. The texture was good, too- crispy on the outside yet soft and juicy on the inside! It was served with big a heap of potato fries which were also yummy!THE REAL THING DINER EXPERIENCE
We had a great time at this fun and interesting diner! The server was so helpful, putting in his 2cents on what we should get. He also told us a little about the owners and how the diner started. The food did not only looked enticing, but tasted scrumptious as well! We had a blast looking at the memorabilia and reminiscing the Coke advertisements from when we were younger. Hehe!
Coca-Cola BBQ Burger,Coca-Cola Seafood Jambalaya.
Spending per head: Approximately ₱200+Other Ratings: