Friday, January 31, 2014

Tagaytay Series (Things to do, Attractions in Tagaytay area etc.)

Para lang organized ang Tagaytay area posts ko kagaya nitong Ilocos ko. Link: here.

Just like a game wherein you're supposed to unlock different levels/stages, I've been "unlocking" Tagaytay for the past two years. And since I'm knowledgeable or better yet, I've been to most tourist attractions in Tagaytay, I'm eligible to post this here.


November 2015 EDIT: "Where to eat?"


Just click on the links and they'll open a new tab. :)

If you're passing by SLEX and exiting Sta. Rosa:

You may stop-over at

Paseo de. Sta Rosa
- outlet stores such as Nike, Adidas, Bench etc.

Solenad, Nuvali
-aside from restaurants, they have fish feeding area and water taxi that will tour you around their man-made lake.


Tagaytay area

Some attractions along Aguinaldo Highway:

Palace in the Sky a.k.a People's Park in the Sky
- the highest point of Cavite

Picnic Grove
-well-known picnic place overlooking Taal Lake and Volcano


Sky Ranch
- highest Ferris Wheel in the country and don't forget to ride Super Vikings!!


Residence Inn Mini-zoo
-photo ops with a tiger, zipline and cable car.


Paradizoo
- feel what it's like to be in a farm. A petting zoo is also available.



Churches:

Pink Sister's Chapel
-write your petitions and gratitude letter

Chapel on the Hill and Caleruega (these are already in Batangas area though)

Monte Maria Chapel
Our Lady of Lourdes Church


Restaurants:

Aozora Japanese Cafe + Bistro

-First authentic Japanese Restaurant (Must try!)
First



Pasalubong:

Mazapan Sweets
-Along Sta.Rosa Highway, don't forget to try their Blueberry tarts!

Mahogany Market
- Tagaytay beef, plants, bulalo etc.



Other suggestions? :))

Paradizoo, Tagaytay


Nasa dulo ng mundo. Hahaha. Mej malayo sa highway eh.

For an entrance fee of 150.00, you get to roam around the whole zoo/farm. 
Is it worth it?

I'd like a fish spa too but when you look at the state of the water.. nah.
Wasn't able to look inside this cafe so I don't know what their offerings are.
Pet Cemetery
Siguro meron 10 pet na nakalibing diyan.
Bee Farm
It's not the honey harvest period yet.
This is how they roll. hahaha
Honeybees busy making honeys. DUH
Caution
Was it a wrong season? A wrong day? A wrong time?
Hindi ito 'yung Paradizoo na nakikita ko sa pictures before.

Or kaka-harvest lang nila.. IDK. 


It's not like the whole place is unkempt but there are spots like these (below and above pictures) where you'll think it is. 
This must be the "inifinity pool of positivism"
How can you disappoint me this much?



Akala ko may ducks but I only saw a frog that was so busy sunbathing.
Sibuyas, kamatis, bawang at luya...

Meron silang kubo then mga posters ng mga gulay na kasama sa kantang bahay kubo.


But then we arrived in this part of the place where you can experience milking a goat for free.
After some instructions from Ate, you're allowed to try it too. Kawawa nga lang 'yung goat but ate assured that it hurt them more if you're not going to milk them. May ganun palang breed?

Also, they sell bottles of fresh goat milk.
And this dog na gusto ko ng i-dognap!!
Apir hindi dila.
Shhh. Kukunin na kita, doggy!!

For people who like a rural/quiet place where you can freely roam around, look at farm animals, plants and flowers, you might want to visit Paradizoo too. It's not bad for P 150.00 though there is definitely a lot room for improvement para hindi nadi-disappoint ang mga visitors or I just had high expectations based on the pictures I saw before.


Then, who's going to have the most fun there? It's the kids. What can be more fun and interesting than experiential/adventure learning? Let them experience the farm. For us adults kasi, seeing fields of pineapple and other veggies is not extraordinary but for kids, they can really learn a lot from Paradizoo. Hindi lang sa 'yung sa Hay Day application sila nakakakita ng farm (ako ata 'yun ah. haha) There's also a petting zoo where they can feed rabbits, deers, goats and pigs. Also, look for guides there because they are knowledgeable enough and  are able explain well. We've only talked to two though, 'yung nag-explain sa bees and 'yung nasa goat milking station.


They have a promo with Residence Inn Mini-Zoo. You'll be getting tickets for both attractions a discounted price. Nakalimutan ko lang 'yung presyo. 

Len's Kitchen in Mahogany Market, Tagaytay

Some say that no trip to Tagaytay is complete without eating Bulalo. 

And if you don't mind sipping your unlimited soup of Bulalo in a place not overlooking Taal Volcano, well, go to Mahogany Market! In there you can find delicious and the real catch, affordable canteens/kitchenettes/eateries whatever you call them that serve bulalo soups and other Tagaytay specialties. 

Len's Kitchen's bulalo tastes a lot better than the restaurant we visited last year. Link: here. Yep, lamang 'yung isa sa view but hindi mo naman kakainin 'yung view eh. Ano gagawin mo dun sa view? HAHAHA. Mas malinamnam na 'yung soup, mas mura pa. 

Along Aguinaldo Hi-Way in Tagaytay, (Nasugbu Bound, right side) you'd see Petron Gasoline Station and papasok dun sa daan dun. Pag merong LTO Tagaytay, hindi ka naliligaw. 

Their menu written on the board.
Condiments
Bulalo
P 300.00
Good for 3-4 persons.


Due to financial constraints, hindi na kami nagdagdag ng ulam and nag-order na lang kami ng rice and drinks pero busog na!



'Yung Mahogany Market is not only for food but they also have a covered court like space for Tagaytay beef. I remember my Mom saying that beef in Tagaytay costs less than beef in Manila. Mas fresh and mas masarap daw. They also sell plants, fruit trees etc. sa may bandang labas.


2 annoying things:

1.Walang paid parking. So iisipin mo na kahit saan na vacant part e pwede kang mag-park then we parked somewhere bandang dulo and when we got down of the car and decided na iikot muna before mag-decide kung saan kakain. May lalake na lumapit sa'min.

"Humarang pa sila. Dito kayo nag-park, di naman pala kayo dito kakain. Hinarangan niyo pa kami."

Dahil dyan, hindi na talaga kami kumain sakanila at hindi inalis 'yung pag-park sa harap nila.

Hindi ba pwedeng,

"For customers lang po ang parking chuchuchu."  Ang rude lang talaga ni Kuya. Sa may bandang dulo to nung stretch ng eateries.


2. Vendors were persistent in selling that they were already annoying.
As in Kuya/Ate, bawal kami magpahinga???

But then, I bought espasol and a plastic of raw pinipig for pasalubong.

Masarap 'yung espasol sabi nung mga kumain. Sabi kasi nung ate e bagong luto raw 'yun. Buti na lang napilit ako.

And masarap din 'yung pinipig, bitin pa nga eh.

So hindi pala gaanong annoying 'yung 2nd. If you're looking for pasalubong then go to Mahogany Market. Haggle haggle din. The espasols were 3 for 100 at first but I was able to make it 4 for 100 then meron pa kong isang libre.

People's Park in the Sky, Tagaytay

a.k.a Rocky. Joke.
a.k.a Palace in the Sky

Is one of the must-visits when your in Tagaytay area. It is an unfinished presidential mansion/ guest house of the Marcos family. They where overthrown before completing the construction that's why.

Okay so this place is the highest point of Tagaytay (built in Mt. Sungay a.k.a ulit Mount Gonzales) and it's near Tagaytay Highlands. One of the "signs" of this place is the Pag-asa Doppler Station. "Ahh dun tayo? Sa may mataas na tower din?" 

 If you like to see the view that is also visible from Tagaytay Eye but afraid of  riding a Ferris Wheel, you may go here and see similar landscapes even higher and better actually but apart from seeing the impressive landscapes... IDK. Na-disappoint kasi ako sa state ng park mismo eh.

The entrance fee to this park is P 30.00/person. You may ride a jeepney for P 5.00 from the gate to the palace or you may just walk. Mind you, the walk uphill is not easy. 

 "Pano pa ko magpu-Pulag nito? Ito palang pagoda naaa."
"Training 'to!"


The Lady Mother of Fair Love
Strolling under the scorching heat of the sun.
Rather than a palace, the whole place looks like Tagaytay Ruins.

What mountain is that?
A lot of souvenirs are for sale.
Unfinished ampitheater.

People's Park Selfie

Unlike the chilly weather we're having these days, that one fated day, the sun decided that it was going to be a hot day and the winds decided not to blow too.
 Grabe, pagbalik ng Quezon City, mas malamig at mas mahangin pa dito. 
Aside from it being an unfinished park, it's also an unkempt and unmaintained park for crying out loud. Paid pa 'yan ah!!!! Di nga nila maayos 'yung sign. Ugh, ano 'to? Eoples K?

Or maybe it's because this place mirrors the Government of the Philippines, nagbabayad ka naman (ng tax) pero parang wala pa rin nangyayari. San napupunta 'yung entrance fee? Saka 'yung perang binabayad pang-renta ng mga nagtitinda sa loob? Uyyyyyy. hahahaha. Pero kagaya ng parati rin naman nating reaksyon dyan eh, at least maganda 'yung view ng paligid wala naman tayong magagawa (?). Hindi talaga mapipigilan isama ang usapin ng government sa post na 'to.


Also, maybe we would have appreciated it more siguro kung malamig and foggy nung nagpunta kami. Para lang kasing nags-stroll sa Luneta ganyan.


Related posts:

Malacanang of the North 
Marcos Museum

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Japanese Treats: Pocky Midi (Matcha)

I was supposed to post this last December but it's almost the end of January. Omg, time.  

Okay so last month while doing grocery, I found these matcha treats on the shelf (the other one was Meiji Kyo-Matcha Chocolate) and even though two boxes would cost more or less P 300.00, I still bought them. This on impulse overspending habit I have. -_-

I forgot the price.
12 sticks divided into 3 packets.

Notice that each stick has a "fat" coating of matcha chocolate which I prefer than the thin coating a regular-sized Pocky stick has. Although for 12 pieces per box? BITIN talaga. I remember getting a pack and telling myself to eat the two other packs after an hour or so but guess what? I ate everything in one sitting. Effort pa sa pagtatago.
Soon.
I shall be able to read you soon, Japanese characters.

As for the taste, it doesn't taste strong. It's a creamy version of matcha which is preferred by most people I know. Although I love anything matcha, I'm more satisfied whenever I eat "strong" variants that leave a bitter aftertaste. HAHAHAHA. Kyo-matcha Chocolate tastes like that and I'll be posting it here too... soon. :))


P.S.

I bought this in Cherry Foodarama in Congressional Avenue. I just don't know if they've restocked 'cause the last time I checked, all of their matcha (this, kitkat and meiji) were already out of stock.


Matcha treats were definitely cheaper in Cherry but if you're a little impatient, really want to satisfy your matcha cravings, or no Cherry branch is nearby, Family Mart is  selling these matcha treats too. Also, don't forget to try their ice cream if you're going there!  I wish it's a matcha day for you since they now have dark chocolate and white chocolate ice creams which they serve alternately if I'm not mistaken. 


Other matcha posts link: here.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

La Creperie, EDSA Shangri-la

And it's French cuisine for dessert this time!


I've seen their branch at Eastwood Mall before though I never got the chance to try. But wanting to eat dessert (particulary gelato) while strolling around Shang yet not seeing any, La Creperie was like heaven-sent. 

Banana Foster
P 165.00

Crepe with bananas stewed in rum, butter, and sugar topped with vanilla ice cream

There was a subtle taste of cinnamon in this and good thing it wasn't like an in-your-face cinnamon taste because I wouldn't have enjoyed it if it was. The sweetness was okay, it's wasn't overly sweet, the crepe was soft and chewy and the vanilla ice cream on top balanced and put all the flavors together.


For some an order would be enough to be shared by two people but I ate this alone.

Yabu: House of Katsu at Robinson's Magnolia

Unlike my Ginza Bairin post, these Yabu pictures are taken while I'm on my smartphone pictures "era" so bear with them. Iba pa rin talaga pag kuha ng camera ehhhhhhh kaso nakakalimutan ko dalhin ehhhhhhh.

At akin na po 'yung bagong camera ko, fairy godmother. hahaha. 

Condiments on the table for preparing your tonkatsu sauce, dressing for your cabbage etc.
Hot tea and sesame seeds

Time to grind those sesame seeds once again!
My 2nd time.
Hire
3/4 inch thick, flaky pork cutlet with no fat

In nakakaiyak 150g for P 420.00


(Naalala ko lang si Ryzza Mae nung nanood ako ng My Little Bossings nung nakita ko 'yung yellow wasabi. Naluha rin ako nung first time ko nyan. hahahaha. Hirap talaga pag pinagana ang katakawan bago ang utak eh.)
Rice, miso soup, pickles, cabbage and fruits are all unlimited.
Okay na, right?


Being "unlimited' is I think one of the reasons why Filipinos love these Tonkatsu Houses, ang hilig talaga natin sa unli! Mas appealing na lalo pag nalaman na unli eh. Mas worth it din.


And I have two reasons why I said nakakaiyak,

1. The meat was very tender and the coating was crunchy. Delicious, of course.
2. The meat was too much for me! I over ordered. Maybe I should have just settled with 100 grams because with the unlimited cabbage and Japanese rice, over na over lang talaga.

P 420.00 was definitely worth it because this was the only meal I had for that day.


The only thing I noticed with the Robinson's Magnolia branch (service-wise) was it was hard to catch their servers attention even if the restaurant wasn't that full. Yes, they were polite and looked like they were more than happy to serve but hiring more waiters/waitresses to attend to the customers needs wouldn't hurt.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

It's a "Planned 2014" with an SB Planner

My December was a matcha-filled month which was mainly because my sister wanted to collect all the stickers needed to redeem an SB planner which I now use (when I remember). Someone teach me how to use a planner 'cause apparently, I don't know how to plan my days. hahahaha. I've had planners in the past which were never maximized but this time, I shall try my best to keep it updated with plans and all. Ang mahal nun para hindi gamitin!


I ordered donuts and waffles to go with my drinks. 
Ugh, more calories, anyone?
More expenses, anyone? haha. 

I like matcha latte more compared to matcha frap.
It has more matcha taste to it probably because there's no ice to dilute the taste. DUH

That's it. So long splurge month December because you were more than unsustainable.

Let's meet again in 11 months!

Right now,
I have to say goodbye to Starbucks for a while because I've "invested" a lot of money on it last month. I mean, it's not normal for me to be in Starbucks for two times a week.. OMG. Di lang ako 'yung mabigat eh, mabigat din 'yung presyo. 

Not to mention that there were days when I felt like I needed a Starbucks fix. Yes, this was after I got the planner so alam mo 'yun, medyo na adik lang. Goodbye muna until my wallet recovers from its sickness. Malnourished na siya. :(

Please be 2014's lucky charm!!!!



P.S. December has this ability to make it feel that it's okay to spend a lot, doesn't it?

Gifts, dinners, parties, my phone etc. made a serious dent on my savings that I have no choice but to recuperate these coming days/weeks/months. So help me, God! Kase ano, nawala 'yung savings ata naging puro dent. hahahahaha! I know that it's impossible that I stop spending but I have to try saving more by reducing mindless spending or the much better: "earn" more so I can save more. 
Rakets, where are you na? 


I am not complaining that I've spent a lot though because there's enough money in this world for everyone and there's enough time to recover given na wala ng madadagdag na unnecessary expense. And I also believe in the saying that when you give something away, more will come back! Medyo pang beauty queen lang. hahahaha


But seriously, I really really really have to fix that dent for the meantime so I can dent it again four months from now! Ganun lang naman ang buhay, para bang to live is to save then consume and spend. huhuhu.


Whatever's going to cause the next dent is definitely worth the sacrifice, so PUSH! 




EDIT: Sabi ko, ayoko na muna pero since nung sinulat ko 'to. Nakakadalawang balik na ko SB para mag extra hot matcha latte, 'yung totoooooooo!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Marks and Spencer's End of Season Sale!

Aside from the two days I spent buying some Christmas gifts, I kind of avoided going to malls to shop last December because it was soooo crowded! I was actually wondering where all those people and cars came from. haha!

 Last year's Christmas rush was really frustrating because everywhere had long lines and all other things Christmas rush comes with that I wasn't able to buy anything for myself. I mean, I'd also love a gift for me of course. hehehe. It's a good thing that post-Holiday month/season can also be synonymous for sale season so aside from lesser crowd, there are also lots and lots of discounts! Who wouldn't like that, right?

And, here's one from Marks and Spencer that have started last January 3.


  


Whether it's a gift for yourself (you deserve it!) or for your loved ones even, check out Marks and Spencer stores for their End of Season Sale. They have as much as 50% off on selected items.



Disclosure: This is a sponsored post.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Slappy Cakes, SM North EDSA

I've always been intrigued by this new all day breakfast restaurant eversince I saw its Eastwood branch several months back. For experience, sabi nga. 

SM North is becoming a haven for foodies too. Dami na nilang resto! 


MAKE YOUR OWN PANCAKES!

For the pancakes, they have their choices of batter, fixins and toppings. 
There's a griddle in each table so you can cook and design your own pancakes, isn't that cool?

 Theirs is non-stick so you need not to put butter while cooking. 
Each table has non-stick spatulas, knives, forks and spoons.
Regular pancake syrup and mango syrup are also available.
You can choose to create sweet or savory pancakes and I preferred the former.

What we had were:

One buttermilk batter (8 oz.) P 225.00
Chocolate Chips P 45.00
Whipped Cream P 40.00
 Below are the products of my side of the griddle:
The interesting part of this meal is also the bummer part for me!

I couldn't even think of a good pancake shape. OMG where are you, creative juices? How can you leave me hanging all the time?

But I made a star, a circle and our favorite emoticon; the grumpy, whatever and bored -_-
This was my first batch of creations in a very very very appetizing plating.
 I just used the whipped cream and chocolate chips as toppings.
According to the person I was with, this is the proper way to cook the chocolate chips and the pancake batter. 

Wait, how can there be a proper way when you are allowed to customize your own pancakes? Tsktsk.

But I liked this better because of the melted chocolate so I made the rest of my pancakes this way.
Only true love can thaw a frozen heart...

Only heat can melt a chocolate chip and cook a pancake batter.
Nye. -_-

Chocolate overload!
Perfect combination for a sweet toothed. 
See, I am so creative.
 My "5" in 15 looked like an "S" and my smiley face which is like one of the easiest design of all looked like a crazy face.

Needless to say, 
Slappy Cakes has brought pancakes to a different level. There's really an added fun factor when you get to cook them on your own plus it's not as expensive as one may think.


An 8 oz. bottle was enough to feed the both of us.

P 310.00 + 10% Service Charge =  P 341.00


Aside from do-it-yourself pancakes they also have varieties of  breakfast meals such as tapa, bacon meals that is available all day long.
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