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

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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.

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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.

 

 

 

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Spicy Ramen

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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 )

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

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The chair hanging from upstairs.

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Some hedwig designs

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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.

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Their bestsellers and the such

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Drinks, food and pastries

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Bacon wrapped chicken, which tasted like honey ham.

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

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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 

Rib city, Maginhawa

Located right next to BPI along Maginhawa is this new restaurant called Rib City. First of all before I start, I would like to complain about the location. The place is fine, in fact it is designed very well and offers a cute concept of building legos and a menu mapped out like a subway station in a city. It’s very cute, but it was so hard to park that the first time that I even attempted to go here I just gave up on parking and went home. It might be convenient for the school right across them but for students from UP or those travelling by car, its not so easy to find a parking space especially around Maginhawa.

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Here’s the menu

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Quesadees Php, 188. What I loved about the quesadees is that it had a lot of vegetables.

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Twin towers Php 368, Ribs with a choice of 2 sides. So i wanted to try their Ribs with the mashed and the corn and vegetables. The ribs like I said earlier was a bit inconsistent and dry on some parts. The mashed was okay and the sides lacked seasoning. It was like eating raw vegetables sprinkled with a dash of pepper.

I expected a lot more from a place with the name “rib city”. Food is okay, not something you would want to go back for twice. My boyfriend and I would always ask restaurants for what the best seller is because well if thats your best then i would wonder what the other dishes would taste like. The ribs were just a little too sweet for my taste and the cook on the inside was inconsistent. Some parts were dry and some parts were good.

Here’s my issue about a lot of restaurants here in Metro Manila. The concept is always half there, what they are missing is probably to create something extra special for people to come back to. Its like Rodic’s Tapa or the bacon wrapped oreos I can’t stop thinking about at Burger company PH. All restaurants need to have that special something to create in order to stand out. But I’m not saying that the food here wasn’t good because i loved their quesadees. They just maybe have to get a little more creative for people to flock by and try their ribs as well with their specials. Then and only then would I probably go back again for some more.

Read more about them on: Rib City Facebook 

Location: right next to BPI, so if you’re coming from CP garcia and take a turn going to Maginhawa street, turn right instead of left. Then you’ll see BPI on the right side right across Holy Family school. Behind BPI is Rib City.

Eating around New York

I wish that we had the chance to eat more around New York, In fact we were just walking most of the time which is probably why I didn’t really gain any weight despite the giant cookies from Levain bakery I was having in the morning. I despise that cookie shop which we lived right on top of, every morning we could smell the sweet cookies being baked and you could see a whole line just right under the apartment all the way up to the street. I could”t resist buying a cookie once I would pass by and see no line during the busy hours of the day when everyone would be working. We really lived in an area where there was a lot of food and different food carts along central park especially.

1. Levain Bakery, 75th street

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Oh how can you resist a $6 cookie the size of your fist. Come here on a weekday and you won’t experience any long lines.

2. Luke’s Lobsters

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I was able to have some lobster rolls with Mariel, we just had to walk a few blocks down from the apartment and this was the first official meal i had in New York so I was so surprised with how good these things tasted. LOBSTER ROLLS MY GOD ❤

3. Loab boat house, Central Park

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Eating here to me was like a dream I mean I usually just see these places in movies. Especially this place I always saw in movies. It would be nice to get a seat near the lakeside, it is also very expensive but worth every penny.

4. Juniors Cheesecake, Times Square

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My friend Mariel loves sweets and she kept on telling me that this would be the BEST cheesecake I would taste in New York. She was right.

5. Lam Zhou Noodles, Chinatown

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It took us a while to find this place and I had to google maps it but totally worth it. Our apartment owner recommended this place and my mom and I loved it. If you’re looking for good hand tossed noodles around new york then this is the cheapest and best place to go to. People from all parts of town seem to go here.

6. Chelsea Market Lobsters from Maine, Chelsea Market

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My mom kept on bugging me on how we should go to Chelsea Market to eat the giant 2 pond lobster that she saw the last time she was here. Although it is not cheap to eat here at the Chelsea Market, the lobster was really amazing! They tasted like the lobster rolls that we had minus the bun.

7. Gray’s Papaya Hotdog, 72nd street

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If you’re looking for something cheap and good then this is a great place to eat because for $4 you will get to eat 2 hotdogs and this really good papaya juice. It was right next to our street so we had to pass by one time during breakfast, and its open 24 hours.

Of course there are a lot more things to eat around the city and I did want to do a lot more things too but 2 weeks isn’t enough to explore everything that New York has to offer. I just stuck to watching plenty of broadways and ballets, maybe someday again when I  get to stay there longer I will get to eat everything I want to try there. Till then, I cannot wait. For now this is all that I was able to eat.

ル ブルターニュ(LE BRETAGNE), Kagurazaka

I finally had the chance to go to Le Bretagne with my friend Solene. I was so excited to try this place with her because of course it is very rare for me to actually be going out in Japan of all places with a French girl to an authentic French restaurant.  I would not have even expected to know where the restaurant was if not for her because it is very well hidden between one of the small side streets along Kagurazaka. She can vouch for its authenticity as she was telling me the whole time that this is the real french food that you can only find around her province in Bretagne (ブルターニュ).  They also have other branches around Tokyo but she also tells me that this is probably her favorite branch because of the ambiance of the place.  (They have many branches of the place around France and soon in New york too check out their website)

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Here is the view from the outside. It is open area and very cozy just like around France as Solene tells me.

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You will see many paintings and postcards inside. It was very crowded today but you will feel right at home as soon as you walk in.

 

The main thing that they serve here are Galettes and she tells me that it is really simple and cheap food in france but I guess its a bit overpriced in Japan. I will not really complain though about the price since where can you really get a taste of real Galettes in Japan? I also had a taste of their Cider, and I bought a bottle to take home after since Solene taught me where I could buy the Cider. (My grandmother loved it)

How can something as simple taste so good? I guess the secret is in the chef and the owner of the restaurant. He is an actual french from the same region my friend comes from, and is now living in Japan. I was also very impressed with the service and ambiance the restaurant offered. The staff of the restaurant are required to speak in French with each other regardless of the fact that they are Japanese. So it was really interesting because you would hear a lot of French around the Kitchen as you are eating. The servers can also speak in Japanese of course and some can speak in English, it was really refreshing.

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Galette: Bretonne ( ブレトンヌ)Mushrooms, Bacon, Scrambled egg, cheese, fresh cream from Hokkaido, Espelette pepper

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Quimperoise(カンペロワーズ)Homemade stewed apples, salted butter caramel and vanilla ice cream.

I cannot wait to take a lot more friends here to the restaurant. Also my grandmother and I are planning to reserve for lunch at the restaurant this week. It gets pretty crowded around the weekend so it is best to make a reservation before you come here. I am sure that you will not regret coming, and if you don’t like the French Galettes you have the option to choose their other Galettes which were adjusted to the Japanese taste. Otherwise I will recommend these that my Solene recommended to try since she tells me that these are the usual Galettes that they have in her hometown.

Recommendations by Solene: For the Galletes she recommends the Bretonne ( ブレトンヌ)and the Broceliande(ブロッセリアンド)and for the dessert Crepes with ice cream she recommends the Quimperoise(カンペロワーズ)and of course do not forget to drink their Cider! They have alcoholic and non alcoholic ones.

Where to find the store: If you are familiar with Kagurazaka you will know that there is a red temple somewhere there. Right in front of the temple and a little to the right is an udon store (うどん) There is a street there, and if you walk straight inside till the end you will see it to the left. You will not miss it for sure. Here is their website in case you want to take an early reservation because they get crowded during the weekend: Kagurazaka, Le Bretagne