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My 2011 At A Glance

JANUARY

  • What a way to start the year! I agreed to a dare that I will change my relationship status of being in a relationship with this certain person. They even had to make a fake facebook account to make it realistic. I had to forfeit after a day because I simply couldn’t stand all the greetings and well wishes when everything was just a hoax.
  • But the best part of this month is my HK business trip. It’s my second time to go an a business trip to HK but this time it’s for 3 weeks instead of 2. I was with L, who was my team lead at HYC. We stayed at the Rambler Hotel in Tsing Yi. I was able to visit places I hadn’t been to in 2008. I went to Disneyland! I loved it that it was really cold expecially when we went to Macau. We wore coats, bonnets, scarves, and boots.
  • While in HK, I was able to reunite with A whom I haven’t seen for a year since she was on a business to Atlanta for a year. We also reunited with RJ whom I haven’t seen since my HK trip in 2008. Reunions, gotta love ’em.

FEBRUARY

  • It was the 10th year anniversary celebration with my A2 friends which also coincided with T’s house blessing the next day. It’s so cool he already had his own house.
  • After being estranged from the ogre for a long time, he sent me a message asking me out on Valentine’s Day. Of course I didn’t go.
  • As in the past year, I spent my Valentine’s Day with dear friends. We had dinner at Mesa in Greenbelt. It was actually spontaneous but we were surprised that the boys were still able to give us girls some presents.
  • We celebrated A’s birthday at Kanin Club and videoke at Music 21. Another one of those super fun times with my A2 friends. We always have a blast together.
  • On the downside, this is when trouble started with a friend.

MARCH

  • Boracay Trip! Finally, I was able to go to Boracay. This trip’s been booked for a year so imagine the anticipation. Haha. I’m no longer a Bora virgin. No longer a loser, feeling like I was the only one who hasn’t been there. Our last night was epic. And I had an epic hangover the next day. I thought I was gonna die.
  • We celebrated T’s brother’s passing the Nursing board exam. Then a spontaneous night out with my A2 friends at Music Bank and Central Makati. We were able to meet M’s “almost” boyfriend. Haha. ‘Twas another super fun night.
  • Made up with that friend I was having trouble with.

APRIL

  • Met Johnoy Danao for the first and I was in love! Got his autographed CD too.
  • R’s celebration of happiness. A happiness we all share with her.
  • That mess with R and E that I’d rather not go back to.
  • HYC team building at Clarkfield, Pampanga. Super fun and super heartbreaking at the same time.
  • Visita Iglesia again with my favorite people.
  • Took R to G15C where he was able to meet with my friends W, E, and J.

MAY

  • That Reese’s incident with R that made me believe in something that wasn’t really there in the first place.
  • M’s birthday celebration at their house where that mess with R and E exploded into an even bigger mess. *shudder*
  • Bid a temporary goodbye to Y and C who were bound for Australia for 6 long months.
  • Met Patron, and Captain Morgan. For that 3rd time this year, I was in love! Yes, 3rd.

JUNE

  • E and R left HYC. It was a sad day for the team and for me especially. I have only started to get close to them and then they suddenly leave.
  • Met A’s twin nieces.
  • 1st Year Anniversary at HYC. Not that I celebrated it. It’s jsut good to note.

JULY

  • T’s birthday celebration at Zong. Then drinking/laughing ’til early morning with R, E, and L at 410.
  • The start of the Photo Booth addiction.

AUGUST

  • First time at Manor in Eastwood.
  • Finally had my lomo pictures from way back 2008 and 2009 processed.
  • BM left HYC. We will surely miss the lunch outs he sponsors.
  • First time at Mercato Centrale Night Market.
  • Wii Party at L’s. It was my first time to go to her house.
  • Epic drinking session at T’s house. No pictures and videos were posted.
  • I lost my job at HYC. It was so sudden I was really caught by surprise. I wasn’t terminated per se. I was retrenched due to redundancy. Or so they said. VFI bought HYC and so life changed for almost everyone of us.

SEPTEMBER

  • AA Reunion which caused quite a brouhaha.
  • R’s birthday where I bought him a very expensive gift he didn’t really deserve. Not that I knew it at that time.
  • Epic pictorial at BGC. So fun. Haha.
  • Another Tagaytay trip with my favorite people.
  • Met some of R’s friends including his ex and had dinner with them at Min Sok.
  • EK with NEMEA Test Team and Teriyaki Boy dinner with my girls.

OCTOBER

  • My birthday, which has got to be the saddest one from as far as I can remember. I was broke and wasn’t able to properly celebrate it. On the day itself, I had lunch with my girls which sadly was KKB. But I love that they wanted to be with me on that day even if I couldn’t shell out money for everyone. Then dinner with my parents courtesy or dad.
  • Attended HYC’s Halloween Party.
  • I had a rude awakening regarding R’s true self.
  • M’s despidada. She was bound for Malaysia to work.

NOVEMBER

  • Got offered a job at HP. I took it and the rest is history.
  • R and V’s wedding with lots of memorable moments. The scenes at Portofino, and GoodAh!
  • Got in touch with a former bestfriend.

DECEMBER

  • Started work with HP thus ending my 3-month bum life.
  • A and E’s wedding. I was the lady of the night. Sign that I’d be in a relationship soon? Hahaha!
  • First time to eat at Shangri-La’s Circles. It was my Christmas lunch with the girlies. That started the misunderstanding with E.
  • My first HP Christmas Party. Add to that my first QS Christmas Party and first DW Team Christmas Party.
  • Made up with G and was reunited with my Parañaque Girls after a very long time.
  • Another fun Christmas get-together with my A2 friends.
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Bag of Beans

The first time I was here, we ate actual meals, like porkchop with rice, pasta, and burgers. Although we heard they were actually famous for their desserts and coffee, but at that time, we just wanted a place to eat dinner. Last Wednesday, after a filling lunch at Bawai’s Vietnamese Kitchen, we decided to have dessert at Bag of Beans and some coffee to ward off the sleepiness.

From what I heard, their cheesecake is one of the best so it was our chance to sample it. E and I shared an order of Strawberry Cheesecake. And whoa, it’s a huge serving and topped with thick strawberry sauce and fruit. The cheesecake itself has got a nice consistency. It’s real thick and creamy but not too sweet nor sour. The others got the Blueberry variant.

Strawberry Cheesecake, Php 145
Blueberry Cheesecake, Php 145

For the drinks, A got the house blend Freshly Brewed Coffee. I took a sip and it’s really strong. It’s too bitter for my taste. I’m not sure though if that is the normal taste of it or A just didn’t add enough sugar. I liked their hot cups though.

House Blend Freshly Brewed Coffee, Php 95

Since it was really hot on that day, most of us opted to get cold drinks. I ordered the Iced Caramel Macchiato with high hopes. When it was brought to our table, I immediately took a sip after a few stirs. My drink was still hot and the few ice cubes in it failed to make it cold fast. The ice actually melted even before my drink got to a decent level of coldness. And I’m not so sure if its being a little bland is because it is already being countered by the sweetness of the cheesecake or if that is how it normally tastes.

Iced Caramel Macchiato, Php 110

R and E each got the Frozen Chocolate. I think they used blended ice for this. I was able to taste it and I didn’t like it all. There’s something off about the chocolate taste.

Frozen Chocolate, Php 110

R, T, and J got the Mocha Frappe. Tasted it too and also think that it lacks in taste. Again, I’m not sure if that is how it normally tastes or the cheesecake I’ve previously consumed is having that effect.

Mocha Frappe, Php 110

My point of comparison is always Starbucks and all our drinks didn’t meet the mark. They all fell short. I’d give their cheesecake a 9/10 though.

Here’s their menu, in case you want to check it out:

 

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Bawai’s Vietnamese Kitchen

My college friends and I always go to Tagaytay to eat bulalo at RSM. But for our Christmas get-together, we tried something new. T told us about this Vietnamese restaurant he went to with this officemates. Since it’s a special occasion, we decided to try it. To get there, we took the Sta. Rosa route and after taking the right turn on the national road, we took the first right turn to Lagusan Drive. It’s the same road you will take to get to the Dominican House of Prayer. There are signs along the way so you shouldn’t get lost.

Bawai’s Vietnamese Kitchen

I wasn’t able to get a picture from the outside but when you get there, you’ll see it’s actually a house with like a 6-car parking space on the ground floor. The eating area is on the second floor. Here are some pictures from the inside:

If you decide to go, it’s best to make a reservation. The dining area is quite small so it can only accommodate a few small groups. You can call 09209722924. I also recommend that you order in advance or else you have to wait really long for the food to cook. Here’s their menu for reference:

For our appetizer, we ordered Cha Gio which are Vietnamese Fried Lumpia. The wrapper’s not too thick so they’re just the right crunch. Their sauce is really good too, not too sour.

Chai Gio, Php 165

We also ordered Nem Nuong which are grilled Vietnamese sausages. They’re like a cross between longganisa and hotdog. But the taste is different. A good kind of different though.

Nem Nuong, Php 275

For the soup, we got the Pho Bo, which is the regular beef noodle soup. I wasn’t able to taste this though so I don’t know if it’s the same or if it’s better than the ones in Pho Hoa or Pho Bac.

Pho Bo, Php 235

The second one is the Ho Tieu, which is the pork and seafood soup. For the seafood they have shrimps, cuttlefish, and crabsticks. I was able to taste this and I fell in love at first sip. It’s way better than those in Pho Hoa and Pho Bac. There is really something different in the soup. I can’t quite place it but man, I really love it.

Ho Tieu, Php 245

For the entrees, the Ca Nuong Xa Ot arrived first. This is grilled Dory fillet which was served with rice and salad. The salad tasted like Pad Thai. The fish was cooked right and tasted like lemon butter.

Ca Nuong Xa Ot, Php 380

Next is the Curry Ga. This is chicken curry but it seems it is not cooked with coconut milk, just curry powder. Nonetheless it still tastes really good. The curry is not overwhelming so I think even those who don’t enjoy curry will be able to appreciate this.

Curry Ga, Php 285

Next is the Bo Kho or Vietnamese Beef Stew. I’ve always loved beef stew at this store at the SM and Shang food court, Kimchi. Bawai’s version is a little different though. The taste of the beef has been subdued. How exactly, I do not know. But we all just noticed that the taste of the beef is a little watered down.

Bo Kho, Php 305

Last for the entrees is the Com Suon Cha which is grilled pork rib with omelet and served with rice too. I wasn’t able to taste the omelet but at a glance it looked delicious. It was thick like a cheesecake and it is specked with green which I assume are herbs. The pork rib is soft enough and tastes char grilled.

Com Suon Cha, Php 295

To end the meal, we had Ban Da Lon which was pandan and yellow mung bean cake. It’s like their version of the sapin-sapin. It is topped with a white cream that tasted like glutinous rice and coconut milk. It has white sesame seeds too.

Ban Da Lon, Php 25

A and I tried the Pandan Iced Tea and we were majorly disappointed. It is the same as the house tea that they serve only that it’s cold. It was bland so I didn’t like it. And yes, I did stir it.

Pandan Iced Tea, Php 55
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Krazy Garlic

It’s been a Sunday ritual with my housemates that we go for groceries and dine out. Quite an expensive habit but we enjoy it immensely. One Sunday, we wanted to eat at Flapjacks since we still had an appetizer voucher we wanted to claim. Unfortunately, the branch at Greenbelt 2 is no longer there. So we decided to go back to Krazy Garlic in Greenbelt 5.

Krazy Garlic, Greenbelt 5

It’s one of our favorite restaurants mainly because of its Crispy Pata. It’s a little on the expensive side but the taste is really better than the  others. Even the skin is brimming with flavor. The meat is not dry too. Their dipping sauce is also a winner.

Garlicky Crispy Pata, Php 695

On this visit, we first ordered the Spinach and Cream Cheese appetizer.  This is deep fried wantons filled with spinach and cream cheese with a side of lettuce in vinaigrette. I was hesitant at first with the dipping sauce because it smelled of soy sauce with vinegar. It seemed weird but found out it actually works when I did try it.

Spinach and Cream Cheese, Php 225

For our other viand, we ordered the Rouge Seafood Coconut Curry. On the menu, the description was Thai style sauteed shrimps with red coconut curry sauce. However, it wasn’t purely shrimp. It also had squid and fish, which I’m guessing was Cream Dory. It was the perfect blend of coconut milk and curry. On the downside, the serving was rather small for its price.

Rouge Seafood Coconut Curry, Php 415

For the rice, we always get the Hara-Kiri to share. It has chili, squid, shrimp, and bacon. It’s awesome when you mash the chili to make it hot. Yum. But this serving is not enough for 3 of us so we always order and extra cup of plain rice. Haha.

Hara-Kiri (To Share), Php 365

On a previous visit, we got the Baba Ghanoush for free since I had the Ayala Malls A Card. It is sesame paste with roasted eggplant, cumin, garlic, and served with flat bread. I never liked Baba Ghanoush in Persia Grill but this one here, it’s a winner. I’m not sure if it’s the garlic but I have to say I liked it.

Baba Ghanoush, Php 255

On the same visit, we also tried the Mushroom Matsuri, which was a festival of mushrooms sauteed Japanese style. And that’s according to the menu. I cannot describe the taste now but what I do remember was that I loved this dish and that’s not jsut because I love mushrooms in general.

Mushroom Matsuri, Php 350

We have yet to taste their pizza and pasta so I guess we still have reason to come back other than the Crispy Pata. Maybe on another Sunday.

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Uncle Cheffy

Because R is home for the holidays, he invited us for a late dinner (late because T and I have work until 10PM) at Uncle Cheffy at the Burgos Circle in the Fort.

Uncle Cheffy, Forbes Town Center Rizal Drive cor. Burgos Circle Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City

For our appetizer, we had the Grilled Oysters. Big mistake. We didn’t like them. They had this ginger and green mango relish that should’ve been okay but I didn’t like. Or maybe I’m just partial to the baked variety with cheese on top.

Grilled Oysters, Php 295

We had a panizza that’s half All Meat Barbecued and half East Meets West. The All Meat Barbecued consisted of beef teriyaki, pork, chicken barbecue, onions, chili flakes, and 3-cheese. The East Meets West consisted of parmaham, salami, kesong puti, salted egg, tomatoes, mango, and 3-cheese. It’s served with salsa, some greens, and alfalfa. The panizza was too oily but still, it was really very good. I especially liked the East Meets West. It’s something new and the ingredients don’t overwhelm.

Panizza: Half All Meat Barbecued and Half East Meets West Php 495

The star of the dinner table was the Surf ‘N Turf Platter, which was a combination of Chicken Leg, Lamb Breast, Beef and Pork Ribs, Cream Dory, Salmon, Tuna Belly, and Garoupa. The platter was served with a salad and a bowl of plain rice. It also had baby potatoes in the middle. It came with 6 different kinds of sauces, some of which I cannot identify but they all tasted good nonetheless. I love everything in this platter. They were cooked perfectly. Especially the meat, they weren’t tough and you can easily separate them from the bones.

Surf 'N Turf Platter, Php 1750+

The place is upscale pricey, and I never would have eaten there if it weren’t free. Haha. But I guess good taste really comes with a price.  You get your money’s worth anyway since they serve food that’s really delicious. Oh, and there was 5 of us but we didn’t finish everything, even the rice.

On the downside, even if they serve great food, I’m a little skeptical about their sanitation. While we were eating, since we were seated in a corner table, we were next to the wall with a wooden art work. We witnessed a cockroach party. We have seen approximately 3 cockroaches running around on the wall and on the art work. Not good at all.

I also have an issue with one of the waiters. Halfway through our meal, I felt really cold and I noticed that the air conditioning unit above us was directed right at me. Since I had colds, I couldn’t breathe normally so I asked him to please tinker with it so that the cold air will not directly hit my back. He did. And for a while I was relieved. Then after a few minutes, we noticed that we were perspiring. When we looked up, the waiter turned up the thermostat to 27 degrees Celsius! Whatdahell!!! He turned the place into a sauna! It’s either he didn’t understand my request or he was being a jerk on purpose. Too bad I didn’t get his name.