Sweet Ecstasy (Jupiter Street, Makati City)

Poster wall

Burger restaurants have been around in Manila for the longest time. I remember when all these shops started popping up in the city almost a decade ago, each one trying to outweigh and to out top the competition. Recently, new burger shops popped up that offered higher quality cuts of beef in their patties and the now common topping combinations that can range anywhere from caramelized onions to bacon jam.

One new player in the burger scene, which has earned the top spot in my list of favourite burger places, is actually doing the exact opposite of what all these other burger shops have been doing. They offer no frills burgers that just focus on high quality ingredients prepared excellently.

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Persiana

Persiana-2

Kebab place staples: Garlic sauce and Chili sauce
Kebab place staples: Garlic sauce and Chili sauce

My officemate and I have this quarterly bet where the winner will get free meals or snacks every so often from the loser. For the first quarter of 2015, we have kebabs and me as the loser. Last Tuesday, we decided to check out Persiana, a Persian/Middle Eastern restaurant that we usually pass on the way back to Quezon City from work. The place was very simple and quite affordable. I forget the exact prices of the dishes but I’m sure that all the items we ordered were less than Php 200!

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Mushroom Risotto

The finished product topped with freshly grated parmesan.
The finished product topped with freshly grated parmesan.

Finally got back to the kitchen cooking one of my favourite dishes too! What I love about risottos is that there’s so much you can do with the basic process for the dish. You can come up with very different dishes just by picking a different stock or a different set of ingredients that you mix in at the end to get the taste that you’re looking for. For tonight’s dinner, I decided on a porcini mushroom risotto with a shrimp stock I made from some shrimp heads that we had left over from our lunch.

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Boon Tong Kee (U.P. Town Center)

U.P. Town Center bustling with activity.
U.P. Town Center bustling with activity.

My brother and I were left to fend for ourselves this Chinese New Year dinner. We decided to make the most of our short-lived independence and have our dinner in a relatively Chinese place. We decided to drive to U.P. Town Center due to larger number of options compared to other areas in Katipunan. Once there, we finally decided to go to Boon Tong Kee for some Singaporean food.

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Welcoming the Chinese New Year

Gong Xi Fa Cai! Hong Bao Na Lai!

Coffee meets Negroni
Coffee meets Negroni

Since there’s no work tomorrow, I made myself a cocktail inspired by one of the drinks that I order over at EDSA BDG. The original version of this is like a Negroni with a kick of coffee. I made mine with some Bacardi Black Rum, sweet vermouth, Campari, and a shot of espresso. Sweet, bitter, slightly nutty and delicious.

Valentine’s Day at EDSA Beverage Design Group (EDSA BDG)

One of the many machines that  get regular use in the shop.
One of the many machines that get regular use in the shop.

If you have ever chanced upon my Instagram (IG: kipaguirre) feed, you will know that I frequent EDSA BDG whenever I have a free weekend afternoon. The place is perfect for me to escape the hustle and bustle of the house and work on photos in peace. One of the reasons why I love going to the place (other than the fact that it is just a short drive from the house) is that the coffee is pretty cheap for the quality that you get.

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