The location of Adarna is a bit strange. Instead of situating itself nearer the more conspicuous and more frequented areas of QC, the restaurant seems to sit by its lonesome along Kalayaan in Diliman. The wonderful thing is that curious guests and repeat diners do come all the way here — maybe some, for the enigmatic ambience, some, for the different vibe, but all come for the delicious eats. Hmmm, but I’m getting ahead of the story.
The perpetual nip in the air is simply made for good eating.
One of the finer pleasures of Sagada is gustatory in nature. Everything — the weather, the elevation, the views — seem to inspire indulgence. Dunno but there’s something about hieing off to the boondocks that make even the mundane special, like ordinary coffee or instant noodles become a treat especially after a hike.
Perhaps, by stroke of serendipity, Happyfoodies found accommodation in the town outskirts some 1.5 kilometers from the sentro. Meaning yes, we’re away from where most of the eating places are but by luck, very, very close to Misty Lodge and Cafe. Our host, Derick, of Yabami Lodge recommended it as we were looking for somewhere closer to eat apart from Rock Inn’s Bodega Cafe some 350 meters away. Smoked out from the Panag-apoy rites, we decided to drop by at dinner time as the cafe was on our way home anyway. So, did we like the food? Well, we came back a second and third time during our three days in Sagada. It was that good.
I always pass by Bonchon at SM Megamall but never had the chance to try it before. One reason why? It’s always full and I somehow lack the patience to wait especially when I’m really hungry. Good thing your Happyfoodies were invited for a taste test at one of their newer branches at Bonifacio High Street. This time I got the chance to get to know what makes people go crazy about this Korean Chicken. As it turned out, Happyfoodies will discover there’s more to Bonchon than its popular crunchy chicken.
We came to Sagada on a weekday to explore the foodscape as much as the landscape. The weather, as always, was conducive not only for hiking but also for good eating. In the limited time we stayed, we found either newer places or newer offerings from the old reliables. Here we share some of our favorites.
Honestly, I was half-expecting the instant dinner to be, well, like the usual instant food stuff — tummy fillers that are short on flavor. So it came as a pleasant surprise to find Almost Gourmet tasty, hot off the microwave oven. Not a bad idea for home dinners especially for households that are short on cooking prep and time (what household still enjoy that luxury, anyway).
THE SETTING: Located in the heart of the Makati business district, just a few flights of stairs from Valero Street upwards to Fraser Place Building at Streetside. Le Bistro Vert is a welcoming place, with its high ceiling, cool colors and large windows lending a feeling of being inside a greenhouse. There is a loft for private dining and special occasions and tables outside for al fresco dining.
“I wanted the people to be revitalized after eating” said Chef Giney Villar, much like how the legendary bird Adarna, where the restaurant’s name came from, would revitalize and cure people of their illness. Chef Giney traveled around the country and brought back the historical and heirloom recipes that date back to the early 1900s and recreated them for people to enjoy now. Just the thought of trying out recipes that probably our lolas used to make was enough to feed my curiosity. And the interesting twist is that Chef Giney’s a vegan. So how would those meat dishes taste without her actually taste-testing it first?
When traveling to the north, making a stopover in Pampanga is always a sensible decision. And why not? Kapampangans are really known for their rich food tradition. But eating takes on a deeper, and should I say cultural, meaning when you make a stop at Bale Dutung. Tucked in a residential village, the place looks more like a house than a restaurant which it actually is, being the abode of chef/cook/artist Claude Tayag and his wife, Maryanne. That said, the treatment we got was more akin to dining in a friend’s house.