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Sunday, September 09, 2012

Sun, Sand, and Surf- Lunch at The Big Kahuna, San Juan, La Union

I was excited to try surfing in San Juan, La Union, but I was just as excited to see what kind of restaurants they had there. I’d been told that The Big Kahuna was a good place to try, so I had my first meal there (lunch). I was also warned that the restaurant had Manila prices, and I found that assessment to be spot on.

The place sits right by the beach, so you can watch surfers catching waves in the noonday sun. Perhaps this view is what justifies the relatively steep prices. The place itself was very cozy; definitely a good place to hang out to have a few beers and relax. The menu was similar to a lot of resto-grills in Manila. We ordered tuna belly and grilled squid with garlic rice. The squid was delicious, but the tuna was a bit overcooked and didn’t taste very fresh.

Grilled tuna belly

Grilled squid

To round out the meal, I ordered brownie a la mode, which in my opinion was grossly overpriced, even compared to the main courses. Thank goodness the brownie was warm and chewy. I wouldn’t say the price was worth it, but given limited choices as to desserts, at least the brownie itself was good.

Brownie ala mode
We ended up hanging out at the restaurant for a few hours. Staring at the beach, watching the surfers, and listening to the waves crashing made the time fly by very quickly. We stayed there so long I found that I had no time left for surfing lessons. Maybe tomorrow I’ll try not to be so mesmerized by the scenery.

The Big Kahuna Bar and Restaurant
Urbiztondo
San Juan, La Union
Philippines

Friday, September 07, 2012

A "light meal" at Cafe Breton

When I picked up Chi for lunch, she said she wanted to have a light meal. And when she says she wants to eat something light, that usually means she wants to eat at Cafe Breton. I, on the other hand, was famished and wanted to eat A LOT. I was thinking "carbs, carbs, carbs" (like rice or pasta), but I'm flexible. So I just decided to order more than I usually do.

I had a salad to start. I liked their "Salade Bretonne", which had a lot of mangoes, aside from some shrimp and crab. One thing I didn't like though was that it didn't have any arugula, as the menu said it would. The salad tasted fine. It's just that if you say there's going to be arugula in it, there should be some.

Salade Bretonne 
After that I had my usual Galette Bretonne, which also had shrimp and crab. I really like this crepe, but it seems too sinful to have two of it in one sitting.

Galette Bretonne
For dessert, I tried their "Funtastyc" for the first time. It had some banana, chocohazelnut spread, vanilla ice cream, and Grand Marnier flambee. If you don't like alcohol, this one's not for you. I don't fall in this category, though. The Grand Marnier added a kick to the dessert.

Funtastyc
I really like this place. Chi and I have been eating here for years, and it brings a lot of memories from the time we worked together. Some of our other fellow crepe-eaters from my former office no longer work in the area, but eating at Cafe Breton never fails to bring pleasant memories of meals with them.


Cafe Breton
Tomas Morato cor. Sct. De Guia
Laging Handa, Quezon City
Philippines
Tel. 63(2) 374.6334

Thursday, September 06, 2012

New favorite at Starbucks- "It's Just Cheese" sandwich

In my search for stable Internet, I decided to try Wi-tribe postpaid. I've tried their prepaid dongles, and they worked pretty well. So I went to their office along Commonwealth. I signed up for their service, thinking it was a "terminate anytime" arrangement. This was because I went to a Wi-tribe office a few months ago and the sales person advised me to get a postpaid account because it was a no-commitment, terminate-anytime arrangement.

Unfortunately, I was desperate for working Internet so I grudgingly accepted their one year contract which their salesperson said was their new policy for new subscribers, thinking that the speed of the Internet would be worth it. Sad to say, the connection is slower than I experienced with their prepaid service. BUT this blog entry is not supposed to be a rant, so...

 After I was done at the Wi-tribe office, I went to the Starbucks right beside it. I was happy to see they had the "It's Just Cheese" sandwich, which, as the name implies was simply a cheese sandwich. This was in contrast to what they call their "Ultimate Grilled Cheese" sandwich which had pepperoni. (Why would a grilled cheese sandwich have pepperoni, for heaven's sake? Actually, I already complained about this in a past post but can't resist complaining again since I'm already in that mood.)

Anyway, I was very happy with this newer sandwich, so cheesy and buttery and sinful. It didn't lack in cheese at all, as some similar sandwiches do. I'm glad that Starbucks has more pescetarian-friendly sandwiches now. There are several others I want to try, but I suspect I will be tempted to order the cheese sandwich whenever it's available.

It's Just Cheese
For dessert, I had their mocha silvana with cappuccino. The two went well, but the silvana was far from being as satisfying as their fudgy butterscotch bar, which is so hard to find nowadays.

Mocha Silvana
At any rate, the meal put me in a better mood after my encounter with Wi-tribe. It appears I have no choice but to stick with them for a whole year. I hope the service doesn't continue to deteriorate as it seems to have done over the past few months. If that turns out to be the case I would have to eat even more sandwiches and pastries to cope with Internet stress.


Starbucks
Diliman Commercial Comples
Commonwealth
Quezon City