Creamy Goodness From Kumori Japanese Bakery

1:53 AM Lee 0 Comments

Growing up as a kid, our bakery provided me a convincing sense of bread & pastry goodness. Joseph Bakery, a family business owned by my late Chinese grandfather taught me the experience of simple baking, the appreciation of handmade bread. It was my father who showed me the importance of exact measurements and the right mantra of pressing or shaping the dough. (Hongkong bread is my personal favorite)

We’re all familiar with our usual bakery that we all love, but Japanese bakery is just starting to mark its charisma here in the Philippines. 

Located at the basement of SM Makati and Landmark is Kumori Japanese Bakery. Kumori is a Japanese term for “cloudy” (). The bakery offers a new level of craving for fresh breads, cakes and pastries. There’s no “pan de coco” or “tinapay na putok” here, rather a quality taste and texture of products. 

My friend Mary told me about Kumori, I ordered two of their products to try. As recommended by her, I had Hanjuku Cheese & Namachoco Sand Chocolate

First impression, the packaging has its own charm combined with elegance. Only Japanese can do that, making it cute and simple but goes with a class. 

The Signature Hanjuku Cheese is made with premium cream cheese, their version of cheesecake in soft and moist texture. Not similar to a “blueberry cheesecake”, the Hanjuku Cheese is fluffy, it has its particular subtlety yet creamy that you’ll crave for more.

Hanjuku Cheese is made in finesse that needs to be eaten with finesse. 

Namachoco Sand Chocolate is a sponge cake with cocoa cream. These small blocks of mini cakes are light and soft with a mouth-watering chocolate cream glancing on the sides. It has the perfect level of creaminess, neither too sweet nor bitter. An easy winner for my taste.  

A box of Namachoco is a sweet gift for special events like Mother’s Day. Can be a small token to someone or a take home surprise for your love ones. Maybe Namachoco is the key to someone’s heart who you always endear. :)

Kumori Japanese Bakery is unquestionably a store to visit. There are more products to try like the fuwa-fuwa cream buns, soft matcha bun, salmon bonito or maybe try their croissant. It’s the bakeshop that offers a one-stop shop of “heavenly goodness”. Quality always deliver a strong impression, Kumori has a great one. For my first try, it was never a regret. Know the experience and visit their store today.

Taste & Food Quality (4/5)
Value for Money (3/5)

Kumori Japanese Bakery
Lower Ground Floor, Landmark and SM Makati
Ayala Center, Makati City
Facebook: Kumori PH
Instagram: @kumoriph
Mobile: +63.917.828.5012

Have you tried Kumori? Leave a comment below and share your experience! 


Find Your Peace In Malvar Batangas

7:43 AM Lee 0 Comments

Recently, I visited Lima Park Hotel in Malvar, Batangas. It was for a product planning and as they say when you’re not in the office your brain sets out of the box. Being creative and critical, those are the essentials of a good mindset. 

It took 1.5hrs to reach the hotel via SLEX. Similar to SBMA or UP Techno Hub, the hotel was situated in Lima Technology Center currently under development.  
Lima Park Hotel Batangas
Lima Park Hotel (facade)
Lima Park Hotel Batangas
Lima Park Hotel (driveway)
Lima Park Hotel Batangas
Lima Park Hotel (Pavilion)

We opted not to eat lunch in the hotel, there is a Japanese restaurant and Big 30 pizza just across it. But a crave for "bulalo" takes about thirty minutes drive to Tanauan City. Metrobank and RCBC are also accessible within the vicinity of Lima Technology Center.

Lima Park Hotel Batangas
Lunch at Big 30 pizza
Lima Park Hotel Batangas
Restaurants nearby
Lima Park Hotel Batangas
Lima Park Hotel (Reception)

The hotel is currently under renovation for some interior enhancements. Its modern upgrade gives a fresh blend with the landscape. Also furnished with function roomsswimming poolgardenin-house gym, and a restaurant.  According to their receptionist, kids and adults can enjoy biking in the community which we didn’t have the chance because there was a heavy downpour. (Note: they require wearing shoes to use their bikes)  

Lima Park Hotel Batangas
Hotel Hallway
Lima Park Hotel Batangas
Lima Park Hotel (landscape)
Lima Park Hotel Batangas
Swimming Pool
Lima Park Hotel Batangas
Slingshot Team
Lima Park Hotel Batangas
Pool at night
Lima Park Hotel Batangas
Tabs & Jesus 
Lima Park Hotel Batangas
Pool at night

Weekday work gives a lot of mental weight so if you're up for a quiet staycation on a long weekend break, give this hotel a visit.

Lima Park Hotel
Lima Technology Center, Malvar, Batangas, Philippines
Website: Lima Park Hotel
Telephone: +63.43.981.1555
Mobile: +63.917.504.2385


Your Imaginary Friend Bing Bong

7:47 PM Lee 0 Comments

Bing Bong is a character of Inside Out movie. He is a cotton candy, an elephant-cat hybrid which also according to him, a dolphin! (That part when he squeals like a dolphin is really funny!) He has the ability to cry candies and the perfect personality of a best friend.

Little did we know, Bing Bong became the iconic character when he said his last words to Joy,

"Take her to the moon for me, okay?"
All tears. *sobs* 

I never had an imaginary friend, so here's my vector art of Bing Bong who will never be forgotten.

(Related Story: Meet Sadness of Inside Out)

Inside Out Bing Bong


Meet Sadness of Inside Out

3:35 AM Lee 0 Comments

I've been waiting for Pixar's Inside Out for months and I finally get to watch it. It was a very heart-melting story. I caught myself weeping especially when Bing Bong vanished from Riley's memory. Sad. Really Sad. (*sob*)

I love all the characters but it was Sadness that made me realise things. To feel it, you have to accept and let it out because in life, you may choose to be happy at all times but there are emotions that will make you feel better only when you don't deny it.

To Sadness, I feel your importance. Here's my vector art of her.

Inside Out Sadness


A Locavore Lunch at Brixton Street

4:38 AM Lee 0 Comments

We’re most familiar with the terms carnivore, herbivore and omnivore. I think most of us consider ourselves as omnivore – a person who eats meat and fruits/vegetables.  I know a few who consider themselves as carnivore for they never eat a single veggie, but as for an herbivore who eats vegan diet, I never had an encounter. 

A friend suggested to eat at Locavore Kitchen & Drinks at Kapitolyo in Pasig City. I keep enunciating it as LOCA-VO-REH but I was corrected that it’s LOCA-VOR /ˈlōkəˌvôr/. A locavore is a person who eats locally produced foods, as the name implies. 

I had the time to visit Locavore Kitchen & Drinks last weekend to meet my friends for a catch up lunch. An almost full seat at lunch was a surprise but we had a good table inside for four. The ambience and industrial interior was great! The feel of having a lot of eaters entices you to really try what’s on their menu. The crowd gives you the curiosity and excitement to eat! 

Having Joanna and Wendell around was a no pork option. They don’t eat pork and I don’t eat most seafoods, we all have our own preference. To choose a must-try, we had a good help from their staff to narrow down our choices. 

Street Food Platter
Served first was the Street Food Platter. Who doesn’t love fishballs in a sweet sauce? As a Filipino, most of us grew up having this in the afternoon waiting for “manong fishball” to pass by our homes. That P5.00 of yours can buy 10pcs. of fishballs on a stick! Pretty nostalgic! It was a great pick particularly dipping it in their manong’s sauce or sweet chili sauce. 

Kinilaw Platter
Kinilaw Platter in three kinds: Fresh River Shrimp, Kalibo Oyster and Tanigue. Presented in three small bottles on a wooden board that makes it unique. It was a standout according to my friends (I’m allergic to this so I can’t eat). Ron even asked for a “pinakurat” vinegar to mix it on the kinilaw, and definitely enjoyed every bit of it.

Mac's Boneless Fried Chicken
Recommended by the staff as their bestseller, Mac’s boneless chicken is richly glazed similar to common Korean fried chickens. The chili of the glaze makes the chicken interesting but the problem I had with it was the excessive breading and thick skin, making it too fatty. It needs improvement to be honest.

Pho Lalo
Pho Lalo, a take on Vietnamese Pho and Filipino Bulalo. I was a little not so sure with it, because bulalo is “bulalo, nothing more. I’m a guy who loves dishes with “sabaw” so it made me think twice to judge Pho Lalo. It was actually good having the rice noodles, beef was so tender, it has fresh bean sprouts and a generous peeking bone marrow. Make it beefier in taste then this makes a perfect dish! 

Gising Gising
And of course, Gising Gising! One I must say an Instagram-worthy dish having the harmonious colours of sigarilyas, french beans, shallot & garlic confit in a great coconut sauce.

Add a refreshing drink to your meals, Cucumber Lime
Joanna, Ron, Me & Wendell
Overall, Locavore is definitely a must-try restaurant that offers one of the best Filipino cuisines. I’m very satisfied and glad to experience what’s on their menu. Congrats to their team!

Healthiness (4/5)
Taste & Food Quality (4/5)
Value for Money (3/5)

Locavore PH
10 Brixton Street, Kapitolyo, Pasig City
Telephone: +632.632.9600
Mobile: +63.923.588.9419

Thanks to my friend Wendell for providing the photos.

Wendell Viloria Photography
Flickr: wendell.viloria
Facebook Page: Wendell Viloria

Have you tried Locavore? Leave a comment below and share your experience! 


Dinner Buffet at Chef Laudico Guevarra's

7:33 AM Lee 0 Comments

Having buffet lunch or dinner is one of the most popular kinds of get together events especially to Filipino families. We have the Japanese, Western, or Filipino cuisine. The good thing about buffet is the vast selection of cuisine, from appetizers, main course, to desserts. 

After seeing Guevarra’s on Kris TV, we’ve decided to celebrate Ron’s birthday there. It is not located on the likes of Capitol Commons or High Street, but in a subdivision at Addition Hills in San Juan City. A little help from Waze app is what you need if you’re not familiar in San Juan. 

Arriving at the place, a beautiful (ancestral) house will welcome you with a sociable garden for waiting customers and enough parking spaces for guests. 

I’m not really prepared for a feast, so here’s what my plate looks like.
Salad w/ Guava Jelly dressing, Angus Tapa, Baby Back Ribs
I had salad (singkamas, carrots, bell pepper, mango, lettuce) in guava jelly dressing, Angus tapa, baby back ribs, and a small dessert. The guava jelly dressing on my salad was delivering fireworks on my taste palette. Delish! That I had to ignore the meat on my plate. All others were also good.
Tablea Champorado & Kalabasa Pastillas
The tablea champorado is highly commendable that comes in small portions, which looks neat rather than having it in a big container. The serving amount was a good choice.

Of course on special occasions, there’s a complimentary cake for the celebrant with the singing waiters! I love when they sang the birthday song with the lyric “Tumatanda ka na pero cute ka pa rin!

Overall my dining experience is okay. Some tables are in a room-type area, so it would be better if there were waiters stationed in each areas of the house. It was frustrating at first to ask someone to clean up being in a corner table, we had to go out of the room just to get the attention of the staff. An alternative would be having a dish station so as for the customers to just bring the plates there. The staff are very polite and accommodating, a good point for their customer service. Chandeliers, wooden floors and walls give it a homey feel, it reminds me of my lola’s house in the province. 

For first timers, I’d say give it a try! :)

Healthiness (3/5)
Taste & Food Quality (3/5)
Value for Money (4/5)
Chef Laudico Guevarra's
387 P. Guevarra St, San Juan, 1500 Metro Manila
Telephone: (02) 705 1811
FacebookChef Laudico Guevarra's

Operating hours: 
11:00 am- 2:00 pm (Lunch)
7:30 pm- 10:30 pm (Dinner)

Buffet Rates: 
Monday to Friday - Lunch P399 (+12%VAT)/ Dinner P499 (+12%VAT)
Friday to Saturday - Lunch or Dinner P599 (+12%VAT)

Have you tried Chef Laudico Guevarra's Buffet? Leave a comment below and share your experience! 


How to Cook Eggs Without Oil in 3 Easy Steps

8:07 AM Lee 0 Comments

A typical accompanying meal for breakfast would be scrambled egg or sunny side up. I’m a little weird when it comes to eggs. I love scrambled eggs, for the sunny side up I only eat the white part, and I don’t eat hard-boiled eggs. (Is it just me?

Frying and boiling are the common procedures on how we want to cook the eggs. There’s also “poach”, to cook in simmering liquid, a better way of cooking your eggs than frying. So here’s another way of cooking eggs without oil, by steaming it



Dragon Fruit, A Surprisingly Healthy Snack

9:14 PM Lee 0 Comments

There’s a fruit called Dragon! Pitaya, also known as Dragon Fruit is becoming popular in most Asian markets. I first noticed it at Market Market in Bonifacio Global City because of its vibrant pinkish color, looking like a scale of a mythical dragon. What makes it more interesting is the plant itself. When I visited Davao, I saw an unexpected cactus-type plant, very unlikely to bear fruits but a caretaker confirmed to me that it is the actual plant of pitaya.

Dragon fruit plant

The texture and small black seeds are similar to that type of a kiwi fruit. The taste varies from blunt to slightly sweet. I don’t normally buy the dragon fruit when I do my grocery, just the typical fruits with cheaper tags. With curiosity, I wanted to know if it’s just another “meh” fruit in a basket, but contrary, the dragon fruit is believed to have good benefits to our body. 

Low in calories
A fruit that is good for the waistline with just 60 calories (small size dragon fruit)

Strengthen immune system
Rich in Vitamin C that helps improve your body

Good for bones & blood
Has calcium and iron content needed for proper function throughout your body 

Remedy for constipation
The fruit seeds have good laxatives to help stimulate bowel movements

Helps protect against cancer & heart disease
Contains lycopene similar to other red fruits