EXPLORING TOKYO: Harinezumi Cafe (Hedgehog cafe), Harajuku

Hello Everyone!

This last short trip of mine back home was quite a rush. I wasn’t able to do anything other than watch a ballet, go to the ballet store and to see my good friend Rei in Harajuku. I got to do something quite fun this time, we got to got to the hedgehog cafe and to enjoy the company of these creatures.

Harajuku is quite known for its strange cafes, they have a bunch of owl and otter cafes around the Takeshita dori area. If you walk around I am sure you will always find something to do here. Harajuku is a place that is quite alive and an escape for a lot of young people, like myself (haha). Kidding aside, I decided to turn this into a VLOG instead to explain better and show more about the cafe.

Leaving you the link to the cafe here, in case you are interested in such Cafes. HARRY Harajuku

Till next time!

Getting around Tokyo: Tsukiji Fish Market

For the 25 years I have been going back and forth and or living in Japan, i have never been to the Tsukiji fish market until this trip. My boyfriend initially wanted to go here early morning to see the auctioning of the fish. As we all know, the Tsukiji fish market will not be here anymore by the 2020 Tokyo Olympics as they are building something there for the Olympics. If you live in Japan orare planning to come here anytime soon, i think it is about time that you come to the fish market just to see the varieties of fish they are selling or just to eat some good sushi.

You will see a large array of things to taste and to eat, it kind of reminds me of Asakusa, The Japanese have that talent of making their culture into some kind of an attraction without losing their own culture. Unlike in certain countries where you visit tourist spots and you wouldn’t really feel like you were in their country, Japanese tourists spots are very much supported by not only the tourists but also by the locals as well.

Where and what did we eat? 

We didn’t wait so long, we ate at the oldest restaurant there in Tsukiji, which is called Tsukiji Sushisei Honten (築地寿司清 本店)You can probably just head on the Information centre to ask them for a map of the restaurant. The restaurant was opened in 1889, long before the actual Tsukiji fish market was opened in 1935. I followed this long list of suggested places to eat on this website PIC CRUMB (link click here) we decided though in the end to follow the suggestion of the information centre to eat at this restaurant. I read a lot of good reviews on this place AFTER eating here, so I assume it is also one of the best.

I also saw a lot of people eating tamagoyaki on the streets and sushi, but personally I would not suggest eating at those small places. As I have heard a lot of comments about disappointments on the small size of the sushi or the quality wasn’t so special. If you are a very particular eater you should just stick to the good restaurants.


This was the chefs special which cost, 3500 Yen, a bit pricey for sushi but it was really good. It was the first time I tasted anything so good, I mean I’ve been eating good sushi for years but this was really good.

What time should you go there? 

If you want to see the auction happen we were told that we should have been there by 5am or even before that, I guess if you are willing to wake up as early as that then by all means I am sure it would be a great experience. (take note that trains don’t open till 5am) If not I would suggest you would go on an off time, we were there at around 9:30am and it was perfect because there weren’t a lot of people. By the time we got out of the restaurant there was a long line outside of the restaurant to eat there.

What will you see? 

You will see a lot of fish of course, and a lot of food, if you love food you will definitely love this place. All kinds of sushi and fish everywhere. My obaachan (grandmother) particularly loved the Ichigo daifuku with an ichigo on top. Ichigo is Strawberry in Japanese, so inside the Strawberry filled mocha ball is a strawberry on top. There are a lot of things to explore around the area. It is a short walk from Tsukiji station, make sure you get out of the Tsukiji fish market gate to avoid any confusion of where to walk.


Here is a picture of the Ichiko ga nokatteru Ichigo daifuku, it was my first time to see and eat this here at Tsukiji

Zoo Coffee, Alphaland Makati

Alphaland is that new establishment built across the Makati Fire station. I would have never gone here if not for my friend who lives right near Alphaland. I didn’t know what to expect until we got to the actual place.

I don’t know which photo to be sharing first, Its actually just a cafe with stuffed toys but I enjoyed it so much because of the company I was with. I really think that its a great Idea to have stuffed toys around the cafe, except that I wish they do wash the toys. But the drinks were good for the price we paid, for the small drink it was only Php 125 and that small size was already pretty big.


I think this is a good place to meet up with friends and I would definitely go back here not only for the coffee but also for the ambiance. It really gives a cool and relaxing feel, from the color of the cafe to the actual aesthetics of the place. It would be great to come here with friends, maybe not little kids? I did see a few little kids torturing the stuffed animals and although it was cute. This is a place that serves coffee, GIANT desserts and a few sandwiches. It would be great to come here with a few good friends.

Budget: Php 200-300 per person

Recommendations: The vanilla latte was really good, I would have loved to have tried one of the big shaved ice desserts. If you are ever with 3-4 or more friends you could give that korean shaved ice dessert a try. As it looks pretty great!

Facebook page: Zoo Coffee Philippines

Guisados, Congressional Ave.

I’ve been driving past this place every week and I finally found the time to stop by. Guisados, the place where all the pretty motorbikes are lined up everyday.

The place feels a bit claustrophobic, its like being in the car. Parking space would only accomodate about 4 cars at most. But the food would compensate for that. We had the sample taste of the soft tacos, sisig appetizer and an extra corn on th side.



Here’s what it would look like from the outside.



This would be the inside of the place. The place is very small and would accommodate only a few number of families and friends.


Sizzling Sisig Php 150 which came with soft tacos and a spicy sauce. I ordered an extra sour cream sauce on the side.


5 sampler tacos Php 239. It may look small but it is VERY filling.

Budget: At most your budget would probably be Php 500 for 2 persons. The price ranges from about 100-300 per meal. Orders are just the right serving size.

Recommendation: I really loved the sisig. They told us that the soft tacos were the best sellers. But we tried all of the soft tacos and I still say that the sisig should be a best seller.

I would definitely come back here for a quick merienda meal. The location and parking is probably the only downside to this place, but then again Congressional is a booming place for food parks and new restaurants. I hope to see more in their menu next time! Would definitely come back for more of that Sisig and next time I’d like to try their Quesadillas when I finally can stomach cheese after this stomach flu.

Todd English Food Hall, SM Aura

Whenever I get invited to these blog events I always have second thoughts especially if it is about food. Because well, Im a ballerina and… Technically I don’t really eat so much and being in the Philippines where it is a predominantly carb eating community. It is especially difficult to find anything that I can eat to fit into my diet.

And Although I was not able to eat the rice and the bread. I was able to try a lot of their salads and sashimi dishes. I Also had a little slice of each of their special cakes and desserts which a lot of people I know would rave about. Originally from New York, Their menu was nothing like the Menu in New York but was suited to the Filipino taste. I was expecting really steep prices on their dishes but most ranged from a budget of about Php 600-800 pesos per person. (Not bad for the serving portion size)

Recommendations: Sous Vide Duck breast, Tuna Slider, Simple Salad and for Dessert the Betty white was my favourite of all of the three desserts.

Not sure if it is a thing yet in Manila to be eating healthy or having a weird diet such as mine but I would like to start blogging about what kind of food I would prefer or eat over other kinds of food. Just because I got used to eating a good amount of each kind of thing. If you’re ever in SM aura, I would really recommend coming here. I think most people wouldn’t enter Todd English thinking of the amount they’d have to spend because of how it looks like from the outside. But i would recommend looking at their menu and considering this place to eat out on for Family days and dates.

Marcia Adams’ restaurant, Tagaytay city

The ambiance in Marcia Adams is hard to beat.  The location isn’t difficult to find if you have waze. Otherwise I would suggest you download waze and find your way to this beautiful location. Its a great place if you don’t mind spending a bit more than your usual budget, plus the food is great. They home grow their own vegetables and serve their own home made bread.

Price: The price to pay is Php 700 which comes with an appetizer, a main course and one dessert. For other extras such as ginger beer or starters and some special deserts and meals you just have to add over that.


Starters: The Tzatziki with Pita or Tortilla is the one on the right and the Hummus with Tortilla is the one of the left. Both were really good but I preferred the Hummus with the Tortilla.

Main Course: We went for three very different dishes. The one on the upper left hand corner is the Ai Funghi (Pasta with mixed fresh mushrooms, basil and garlic), To its left is the Chicken Kebab in Cumin and Yoghurt and the one below was the Grilled aromatic pork.

Recommendations: The pork chop was DELICIOUS, but was it big! Too big that we all had to share the rest of it.

Dessert: And for dessert heres what we had, The panna cotta with lemon jelly, josh had an ice cream and below is the Fried bananas with dark chocolate dip.

For a full food list you could check out Munchpunch Marcia Adams Tuscany.

I think that this would be a great place for prenups and photoshoots as well as its good food and great ambiance. First you see it you won’t even recognise that it is a restaurant rather it just looks like a very beautiful garden with a very nice view. Inside is where all the magic unfolds. The beautiful seats, interiors and arrangements, it was as if Pinterest blew up in the place and created Marcia Adams. Every corner and every nook was designed with something simple and pretty.

After our late lunch we went for a little walk around the location. We also got to meet the husband of Marcia Adams.

If you’re looking for a more budget friendly place than Antonios here in Tagaytay. Marcia Adams will be a good reason to come up to the city in the sky. I would suggest you text for a reservation if you are coming on a weekend. ❤ Enjoy the view and the food!

Agape, Chimes Square Congressional Ave.

Congressional avenue has been booming lately of new restaurants. Chimes is one of the places i like to go to there as it is more quiet and secluded. Plenty of families come here and it is less crowded as compared to Box park or Urban Eats, which is right next to the establishment. If theres a new place you want to try around Quezon City, Chimes and well Congressional Avenue in general is a good place to come to. A bit of a hassle with parking space but its worth it to come and eat here.

Agape, meaning selfless or maybe surprise. Depending on how you use it, was what the owner of the restaurant named it because it reminded her of her journey with her daughter when she got sick. She wanted to put up that restaurant after their journey together when they went to New York. When they were there, they would always eat in the Le Pain restaurant along 1st avenue. That is where she got most of her inspiration for her first restaurant, Agape.

An owner with plenty of heart, she handles her business with a lot of passion. Most of her chefs are from Benilde or Endurun which she tells us are very well off, but she likes to hire these types of people because many of them are inspired by the story of why she opened her restaurant. Her menu is composed of recipes mostly done by her husband or some of her family members.

Personal Recommendations: From the Salads I loved the Spicy Prawn with Honey Lemon Papaya sauce Php 150, The Four Cheese pizza Php320, Beer Battered Fish Tartine Php 250 and the Sardines in Oil Pasta, Php 200. Their dessert tart is also AMAZING. They are very proud of their tartine selection as not many restaurants serve tartines in Manila. The beer battered tartine was my favourite among all the tartines.

Really nice place to come for quiet dates with friends and family. Chimes is a nice family friendly place. There are three restaurants that I could recommend here and the other one is also owned by the owner of Agape which is Ciano. The other burger restaurant beside Agape, sells amazing burgers, and those are probably the only three restaurants that I come here for but its definitely worth a try. Chimes Square is not really that mainstream YET as it looks a bit more expensive and intimidating, but give it a little more time and I know that it will be swamped with people soon enough.

Urban Eats, Congressional avenue QC

Located along Congressional avenue is Urban Eats, the new restaurant craze right next to Box park and across Guisados the make your own taco place. What was once an empty and dark highway is turning out to be a parking lot. Everyday plenty of cars park along Congressional avenue to eat here or at Box Park which is right next to Urban Eats.

I got to the place around 7 but it took me about 10 mins to find parking and another 5 mins to walk to the place, because I had to park all the way to the end. Its pretty tricky to find parking spots along the highway not unless someone will leave and you get lucky to find a spot.

First thought was, What do i eat? There are so many options in this food park. From Japanese, Korean, Italian and some other Fusions of food. Plenty of startup businesses come here and try their luck. Our friends and I could not decide nor did we know where to start. Luckily the staff around Urban eats were very accommodating and the owners even personally came to our table to explain what food they offered.

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We started with some kind of Japanese fusion food and Korean food and we ended with A LOT of dessert. Needless to say, I arrived with an empty stomach and I went home with a food baby. If you’re looking for a new place to hangout with your Barkada, this is a good place to start. They have some live bands play every Saturday to make things better. Bring some off lotion if you are going to wear shorts as this is an outdoor location.


Hanamaruken Ramen, The grove


Im not such a fan of Ramen but Miguel is and his family really love eating Ramen. I heard about Hanamaruken ramen on a local Japanese magazine here in Manila. It was rated as one of the best Ramen restaurants here in Manila and we decided to give it a go.


What we had, Spicy Ramen and the Salary man Ramen. I wanted to have a try of something that was not on their best seller list and the idea of a Salary man ramen sounded different and interesting.





Spicy Ramen


Salary Man ramen

Price Ranges from about 200-400 pesos. I wanted to try their gyoza side dish but they were out of it. I would come back here if I were a fan of Ramen, which I am not. But as compared to many of the different Ramen dishes that I have tasted this is probably one of the more generous of servings for about the same value as Ramen Nagi.

Compared to other ramen joints like Ramen Nagi, Hanamaruken’s simplicity enables one to have a full and immersive experience. Without the complexity of having to choose noodle hardness, spice levels, etc., one may be able to appreciate ramen as it was truly meant to be served.

The Nook (Harry Potter themed cafe) , Maginhawa

When I heard about the cafe, I immediately wanted to go just to try the butterbeer. I used to be a big Harry Potter fan when I was younger, I used to have a wand set and I probably knew almost everything about Daniel Radcliffe. ( I had a big crush on him back then )


This is how it looks like from the outside. I would suggest that you come early.


The chair hanging from upstairs.


Some hedwig designs


The daily prophet on the post

The cafe itself had a great concept, the cupboard under the stairs where you could see Harry’s old room, A Quidditch broom hanging above the ceiling, the daily prophet posted outside. Im sure that Harry Potter fans would love the actual concept. I wasn’t so impressed however with their service. I do understand that right now they are dealing with the small space and the volume of people trying to go there but Its such a shame since I saw about almost 10 different customers or so leaving just because they had no place to sit down. Also maybe since they just recently opened they are still very understaffed and service was quite slow.

The menu was very simple, nothing so special yet. I just really went there to try the butterbeer. They had other things on their menu but nothing as special as the butter beer. I found the Goya Zilla quite odd, it was a drink crushed in with goya cookies and mint i think? Im not so sure actually, it was more of crushed ice and mint chocolate. I also had the upsized butter beer but I finished it in a few sips. It tasted kind of like cream soda and popcorn butter for Php 150. The regular sized one will cost Php 100 but I didn’t see much difference with the cup sizes.


Their bestsellers and the such


Drinks, food and pastries


Bacon wrapped chicken, which tasted like honey ham.


This was the goya zilla. Im still not sure how I should feel about this.


Here’s the famous upsized butterbeer. Php 150

Im still not sure what to feel about the place, maybe I would come back. I don’t find the butterbeer reasonably priced despite the fact that it tasted like popcorn butter and cream soda.

The Nook

164 A Maginhawa St., Sikatuna Village, Quezon City

Opening Time: 1pm to 10pm

Facebook: The nook