Monday, April 22, 2013

The Search for the Best Empanada

Everyone I know who has toured Vigan told me to try Vigan's famous Empanada.  The best place to get them, they added is at Irene's located along the well photographed Calle Crisologo.
So there I was, 5th or was it 6th in line with all the other first timers of Vigan Empanada.  When it was my turn, I ordered the best seller.  It would take another 30+ minutes to finish my order and since the house was packed (and it was too hot to eat there anyway) we decided to do takeout  (and eat elsewhere with airconditioning) and go on pasalubong hunting as we wait for our order.

I ordered six (6) pieces of empanada for 2 kids and 2 adults.  Vigan's empanda is indeed different and special.  It is nothing like the empanada we have in Manila. Filling is quite heavy and a lot more oily.  Taste is unique.
My family finished all six empanada in one sitting, so I would say they liked it. However, I am not sure I would go as far as to rave about it and keep coming back for more. 
I think..., I love that I was in Vigan and I was able to try their premier empanada more, than I did in the actual eating.

Isdaan sa Gerona Tarlac ~ fish sighting :P

 Isdaan in Gerona Tarlac is a perfect family breakfast-stopover for a North Luzon road trip.   Skip the NLEX fast food and treat your kids to a fine meal at Isdaan Floating Restaurant for a change. 

Isdaan is huge and has just about everything you look for in a local restaurant.

(1) Bahay kubo on stilts. Plenty of koi fishes in the pond and uniquely decorated restaurant -  to feast your eyes on or take pictures as you wait for your order. 

(2) Singing waiters and waitresses in Filipiniana costume. Balikbayan and foreign tourist are sure to enjoy. 

We were led a kubo that stands on stilts over

(3) Cool photo opps with manong guard...
the Hulk...

some... huge monkey statues...

a couple of carabaos! 


and famous personalities - statues (such as Michelle Obama, Barrack Obama, Cory Aquino, Erap Estrada) - sure feels like we were in a museum!

(4) freebies for the kids (balloons, goody bag filled with candies and fish food to feed the Koi fishes)
 (5) fish feeding was the highlight of this stop over!

Kids were asked to wear life vest, for safety pre-caution.
The pond as we were told is about 10 feet deep...
(6) an innovative activity at Isdaan is the Tacsiyapo wall - cool way to release stress and anger!
(7)  good food 

Food is great and price reasonable,  we ordered their traveller's meal and budbod (rice toppings). 
The experience was like a step in a theme park.  My kids absolutely love Isdaan and while they would normally hurry us (my husband and me) with our meal, we had to beg them to go, when it was finally time to leave. 

Verdict:  A+

(04593) 12196

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

What happened to my CHOCO-LATE Batirol?

I was so excited, when I finally saw the signage heading to my favorite choco-late shop in Baguio ~ CHOCO-LATE de Batirol. 

I remembered the first time I went there as a newly wed (with my hubby)... I so LOVE the old fashioned way they make their choco-late! 

It was an absolute MUST in our agenda, in our last Baguio visit.

We were led into a semi-private seating and I began going through the menu, as I try to recall my favorite orders from our past visits.

On the top of our order list is the famous cocoa drink for my hubby and myself and choco-banana for the kids.  Since it was almost dinner, we ordered an all-day tocino breakfast meal for my eldest son and chopsuey meal with steamed rice for sharing for hubby and me.

The chocolate was exactly as I remembered - rich and creamy (delicious)! Unfortunately, I can't say the same about the chopsuey and breakfast meal I ordered.   The chopsuey was overcooked and the breakfast tocino tasted like an over the counter tocino bought from SM.    As for the choco-banana, my kids sipped a little and left the rest. I was so disappointed.

I was more shocked to learn, we have to shell out P1000 for 4 drinks, an all day breakfast meal, chopsuey and steamed rice.  Really not worth it. 

I so wonder what went it me?  Maybe I've set the bar too high! Haizz...

Next time,  I will just order the hot choco!  For a decent meal for half the price, I would simply head straight to Mile Hi just a few blocks away.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Cafe' Sabel - Feed your Senses...

Once inside, it is simply impossible not to stay and dine!~
Paintings that decorate Cafe Sabel's walls are sure to keep your eyes busy, if not inspire you to start an art attack yourself!

Something to feed your eyes!
Food choices are plenty and would say quite healthy.

We had a fish fillet, a pork ribs and a mushroom chicken meal, plus extra order of the vegetable lumpia.    Followed by halo-halo (which was a bit too sweet for my taste) for dessert.

"Sarap" we finished everything!
With my youngest hagging the fish fillet meal (ang takaw!)

The restaurant's windows invite you to beautiful garden below and a scenic view a mountain across.


Wow - Speechless!  A pond with tens of swimming ducks surround a kubo!   It would sure be nice to have a view like this in my backyard (wishing)...

There is just no stopping my youngest from conquering the grounds below...


My boys love these ducks!  They were sad they couldn't take one home...

Peace and quite :)
Move away from your usual Baguio itinerary and try something different.
Visit Cafe' Sabel.
Cafe' Sabel is located at BenCab's Museum 
(refer to my related Blog about BenCab Museum).