Cocktales is the sister company of Fruitas, and seeing all the fruits displayed , one would be inclined to think that it is just a juice/ shake bar. But inspecting their menu proves otherwise. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that not only do they serve juices and shakes, but they serve sandwiches, meals and even dessert!


Part of their savory offerings is the Spanish dish callos. It’s something I am very familiar with as it’s somewhat of a staple in our household; once only cooked during holidays and celebrations by my mom, until eventually when ever we feel like having it. I even shared her recipe on my other blog (with her permission, of course) . Cocktales’ version has the requisite mix of ox tripe, garbanzos and chorizo, but unlike my mom’s recipe, is a bit sweet, maybe to adapt the taste to the Filipino palate. I liked how it tasted but found the serving rather small. But then again I am a big eater, hahahaha!

peach mango smoothie

To wash it down, I ordered a fruit shake. The menu boasts of a varied selection of fruit based shakes. From simple mixtures to one of a kind concoctions. Deciding to stay simple, I choose the Peach Mango Smoothie- a combination of peaches and sweet ripe mangoes blended to a cool, smooth drink. A very refreshing drink served in a slim tall glass.

I guess the small serving of the callos was actually a good thing because if it here as hefty as I wanted it, there wouldn’t be room for dessert! What meal would be complete without it? Cocktales’ dessert menu consists of fruit shake based desserts served with fresh fruits and sweet creamy desserts like panna cottas and tiramisu.

mango cosmo

To balance out the savory flavor of the callos, I chose something that looked light so I chose the Mango Cosmo. This stylishly-named dessert has a sweet mango shake base, topped with mango cubes, almond jelly and whole lychees. The sweetness of the mango is layered from top to bottom with the mango shake and the mango slices; and complimented by the light tart flavor of the lychee. The almond jelly finishes it off with it’s velvety -smooth texture.

The items on the menu are varied. Aside from what I’ve featured here, there are hot and cold drinks, more desserts and other dishes like pasta and sandwiches. The savory dishes also come as set meals. Included are drinks and a dessert. The prices vary depending on what you’d want to have. Drinks and shakes can ordered spiked with alcohol, for an additional fee.

Drinks and shakes start at Php 75.00. The Peach-Mango Smoothie is PHP 150.00 per order ; desserts like the panna cotta and tira misu are Php95.00 per order. The Mango Cosmo and other similar fruit bowls come in sizes: single and to share. Prices start at Php 120.00 for the single and Php180.00 for the to share bowl. The callos is Php 175.00 for the solo and Php 245.00.

3rd Level, TriNoma Mall
EDSA cor. North Avenue, Quezon City
Tel. No. (63 2) 290-5236

Crepes & Cream

Crepes and cream is a modern and trendy cafe that serves a wide choice of savory and sweet crepe creations, ranging from Asian to Western flavors. There are over 30 types of crepe creations to choose from– all prepared fresh upon order.

The savory crepe menu includes the Pork floss Chessy Omellette, Smoked Salmon, the classic Mushroom ham with Mozarella, and the Japanese cuisine inspired Kani Mango. There’s also a BLT– bacon, lettuce and tomato- crepe, which is what I ordered since I’m a BLT sandwhich lover. This take on the classic sandwich is a rerfreshing and novel approach which I liked so much.

kani-mango crepeKani Mango
Continue reading “Crepes & Cream”

Krispy Kreme Chocolate karnival

Krispy Kreme recently launched the Chocolate Karnival during a launch at it’s Bonifacio High Street branch. It’s latest offerings of chocolate glazed donuts were presented to the public with a show of stilt walkers, jesters, magicians, and games-truly a fun, carnival atmosphere.

KK Poster Choco Karnival
Continue reading “Krispy Kreme Chocolate karnival”

Conquering the Chocolate Buffet at the Peninsula

I’ve heard of this chocolate buffet before, and I remember I missed it because I was out of the country the whole time it was on going at the Manila Peninsula. Once I found out that it’s back again this year, I quickly made plans with friends to indulge in chocolate.

Chocolate Buffet at the Peninsula Manila

Like warriors going into battle, we made preparation. We read and memorized Lori’s Guide to Gorging on the Peninsula Chocolate Buffet. We kept dinner light and rather salty, and admittedly, cheap (for the Chocolate buffet is rather pricey). With tummies partially filled with fast food goodness, we drove to the Peninsula.

Chocolate Buffet at the Peninsula Manila

We arrived a couple of minutes past nine, and already, some of the plates were already empty. We surveyed they scene, planning our attack on the buffet tables. There were rich and moist chocolate cakes and cheesecakes, creamy mousse, smooth chocolate drinks, chocolate buttons, exquisite truffles and pralines, bread sticks dipped in chocolate, ice creams made with or laced with chocolates, puddings, brownies and cookies, assortment of nuts, fruits and marshmallows to be slathered with three different kinds of fondue. It was mind boggling, but once we got over the shock at seeing so much chocolate, we made our choices and converged back at the table.

Chocolate Buffet at the Peninsula Manila

Argee, Anna and I hungrily dug into our picks and paused for a nanosecond, savoring each orgasmic bite of chocolate. Everything tastes as good as they looked. Some desserts have a richer and fuller taste than the others, so to cleanse the palate, we tucked into pieces that doesn’t have as much chocolate in them. Unfortunately, (I’m not one for l33t talk, but this is one occasion that calls for it) the chocolate pwned us. We managed 5 or 6 trips back to the buffet before admitting defeat. By the end of the night, I was nibbling on marshmallows, strawberries and ice cream cone — without the chocolate fondue nor the ice cream. Nonetheless, it was a wonderful experience, all these chocolates. I would not hesitate to go back to this buffet.

Chocolate Buffet at the Manila Peninsula Lobby
Adults: Php 550+
Children (12 yrs & below): Php 225++
For inquiries and table reservations please call The Peninsula Manila at 887-2888, extensions 6757
and 6759 (The Lobby) or 6694 (Restaurant Reservations).
Corner of Ayala and Makati Avenues
1226 Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines

Chef Joey's Chocolate Mousse to die for

A month ago, members of the new and traditional media were invited to be a Chef for a Day at the Culinary Institute of Aristocrat. There, we met sibling chefs Joey and Gabby Prats. Chef Gabby taught us how to cook some French dishes, while Chef Joey shared a simple, yet rich dessert: Chocolate Mousse that he swears is to die for.

Chef Joey gave his consent to post the recipe in our blogs, to share with our readers.

Chef Joey’s Chocolate Mousse


Chopped chocolates


For the Mousse:
500 grams bittersweet chocolate couverture
300 grams heavy whipping cream
5 grams instant coffee powder dissolved in 10 grams hot water
800 grams heavy whipping cream, chilled

For the Assembly:
500 grams whipping cream, chilled
50 grams confectioner’s sugar, sifted
Bittersweet chocolate couverture shavings

Culinary Institute of Aristocrat 37
Chef Joey stirring the chocolate and hot cream mixture


For the Mousse:
1. Chop the bittersweet chocolate couverture and place in a large bowl.
2. Combine heavy whipping cream and coffee solution in a heavy saucepan and bring to boiling point over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
3. Pour hot cream mixture over chopped chocolate in a bowl. Allow to stand for a minute or two, then stir mixture until smooth and glossy. Cool to room temperature.
4. Place chilled heavy whipping cream in a mixer bowl. Using the wire whip attachment, whip cream to medium peak stage.
5. Gentle fold whipped cream into chocolate mixture
6. Spoon approximately 100 grams of mousse into each of sixteen dessert goblets. Chill for at least 4 hours to set the mousse.

Piping whipped cream on the Chocolate Mousse

For the Assembly:
1. Combine chilled heavy whipping cream and sifted confectioner’s sugar in mixer bowl. Using the wire whip attachment, whip mixture to stiff peak stage. Do not overwhip.
2. Transfer sweetened whipped cream to a pastry bag fitted with a large open star tip. Pipe a large rosette on each goblet of mousse and decorate with bittersweet chocolate couverture shavings.

Yield: Serves sixteen

Easy Chocolate Mousse Recipe

“The perfect dessert is a sensual experience that catapults you to a state of sheer pleasure, where mind, body and soul merge into paralyzing ectasy” — Chef Joey Prats

This recipe is copyrighted to the Culinary Institute of Aristocrat, and is intended for personal use. For more information about CIA, inquire at any branch of Aristocrat Restaurant or email The CIA is located at MH del Pilar cor. San Andres sts, in front of Remedios Church, Malate, Manila (right behind the huge Aristocrat restaurant along Roxas Boulevard).

Desserts at Chateau Hestia

After our delicious and hearty Vietnamese lunch, our troop headed down the road for dessert.

Just around the bend from Bawai’s is Chateau Hestia, a restaurant and B&B named after the Greek goddess of the hearth, which specializes in European cuisine. Johannes Zegethofer, one of the owners of Chateau Hestia, offers his favorite European dishes in a restaurant with an elegant country- style design that is surrounded by lush gardens filled with exotic tropicals.

A very interesting trivia I’ve learned about Chateau Hestia is that the frame of the structure is actually made from recycled cargo containers.

Chateau Hestia 09
Johannes Zegethofer


I am a self-confessed dessert lover. To me, dessert is the best part of any meal!

So when they brought out and served the dessert platter I got so exited I didn’t even bother to take any photos. We were served a trio of equally sinful desserts: Panna Cotta, Mousse Au Chocolat and , Ferrero chocolate ice cream.

Chateau Hestia 07
Dessert sampler, from left: Panna Cotta, Mousse Au Chocolat topped with Red Wine Poached Pear, and Ferrero Chocolate Ice Cream


The Mousse Au Chocolat is a chocolate ganache made from bittersweet Belgian chocolate, and topped with a slice of poached pear in red wine. It was so good! I love the taste of the bittersweet chocolate with just a hint of sweetness. I am a bit biased though because I love dark chocolate. =D

The 2nd dessert on the plate is the Ferrero Chocolate Ice Cream, a home-made treat made with Ferrero Rocher at Chateau Hestia.

Chateau Hestia 06
Panna Cotta with Orange Jam


The third dessert, which I really loved is the Panna Cotta. The soft and silky texture of this Italian dessert just melts in your mouth! The subtle tartness and sweetness of the orange jam on top gives a nice contrast and finish to it.

Chateau Hestia 08
Dalandancello and Vin de Orange


After having dessert, we were served a sampling of two of their signature house liqueurs : dalandancello- a limoncello made from dalandan; and the vin de orange- a wine wine made out of oranges.

For reservations or inquiries please call or text: +63 929 711-3289/ +63-918-930-5372 or visit their website:

Location map:
Map to Chateau Hestia Garden Restaurant, Tagaytay
Click on the map to see the larger version.

Thank you to Johannes Zegethofer for being such a graceful host; and also to Verdana Homes and Anton for inviting us to experience this awesome Tagaytay food tour. It truly was a wonderful experience.

Häagen-Dazs' Dark Chocolate Orange, Caramel Apple Crumble and Ice Cream Cakes

In a tropical country like the Philippines, ice cream is always a welcome treat on a hot day. Better still if the ice cream is as good as Häagen-Dazs.

Haagen Dazs Ice Cream 01
Dark Chocolate Orange Brownie

My friend Rey and I got to try their rich Dark Chocolate Orange Brownie and the luscious Waffle Dream, featuring their new ice cream flavors, Dark Chocolate Orange and Caramel Apple Crumble. Okay, so it was just glorified brownie and waffle ala mode, but it was glorious! In the words of Joey Tribbiani: the waffe? Good. Brownie? Good. Ice cream? Goooooood.

Haagen Dazs Ice Cream 02
Waffle Dream

Rey and I both loved the Caramel Apple Crumble ice cream. I actually thought it was mocha at first *slaps forehead* The flavor was subtle, making you wonder what exactly was in the ice cream. But at the same time, it was great excuse to keep on tasting this delectable ice cream. The Dark Chocolate Orange scoop, however, overwhelmed us. We loved the dark chocolatey taste of the ice cream, but the orange took us by surprise (specially when we keep on tasting the rind). As Ms. Vera of Häagen-Dazs say, it’s an acquired taste. The dark chocolate sauce that came with the brownie plate had a hint of orange as well, but it had a stronger chocolate taste, which suited me just fine.

Haagen Dazs Ice Cream Cake 01
Full of Bliss

The two new flavors aren’t the only thing Häagen-Dazs has in store for us this summer. Last week, Häagen-Dazs introduced their ice cream cakes, initially offered at their Mall of Asia branch. Teasing us with Strawberry Passion, a limited edition ice cream cake, Chocolate Royale and Full of Bliss, the sight of these cakes is enough to make one’s mouth water.

Haagen Dazs Ice Cream Cake 03
Chocolate Royale

Prices of Häagen-Dazs Ice Cream Cakes starts at Php 1,600 for a cake good for 8-12 people. You have a choice of ice cream bases for the cake: Macadamia Nut or Belgian Chocolate for Chocolate Royale, or Vanilla or Chocolate Ice cream for Full of Bliss.

Haagen Dazs Ice Cream Cake 02
Strawberry Passion

To Order a Häagen-Dazs Ice Cream Cake:

  • Call 357-2145 from 9am to 4pm Mondays through Fridays , or visit the Häagen-Dazs shop at the SM Mall of Asia (open daily from 10am – 10pm).
  • Place your order at least 2 days in advance.
  • Pay with cash or any major credit card upon ordering at the Häagen-Dazs shop or upon pick-up.

Häagen-Dazs Branches:
SM Mall of Asia
2nd Floor, Main Mall
Mall of Asia, Pasay City
+632 556-1111

Ground Level fronting Landmark
Glorietta 3, Ayala Center, Makati City
+632 752-7299 / +632 892-2873

Ground Level beside Max Brenner
Greenbelt 3, Ayala Center, Makati City
+632 757-7570

Level 2 near the escalator
Powerplant Mall, Rockwell, Makati City
+632 899-3274

Level 2 near Activity Area
Shangri-La Plaza Mall, Mandaluyong City
+632 634-8101

Ground Floor, fronting Lacoste
Alabang Town Center, Alabang, Muntinlupa City
+632 809-1996

The Dark Chocolate Orange Brownie costs Php 350, while the Waffle Dream costs Php 310.

All photos taken with Rey’s Nokia 6680 because this day was one of those rare moments when I went out the house without my camera.

Halo Halo Season

Summer in the Philippines is both an anticipated and dreaded season. Holidays, out of town trips and beach escapades are among the first thing that comes to mind when summer is mentioned, coupled with a surge of excitement of what’s to come. On the otherhand summer also means one thing: swealtering heat.

Halo halo!
How do you like your halo halo?

People living in this part of the world do whatever they can to cope with the heat. One of the more popular options is to indulge in snacks or desserts made with shaved ice. Japan has its Kakigori, Korea has it Bingsu, and China has Baobing or Chhoah-peng. Our South East Asian neighbors likewise have their own shaved ice snack: Singapore and Malaysia’s Ice kachang, and Thailand’s Nam Kang Sai. We in the Philippines, of course, have our Halo-halo.

Halo halo!
Mmmm, pinipig

Halo-halo gets its name from the mix of ingredients that make up this cool snack. Each halo-halo is different; it can have as little as three ingredients, or as much as 12. Ingredients for a halo-halo can either be one (or all!) of the following: minatamis na saging (sweetened bananas), kamote (sweet potatoes), mais (corn), kaong, nata de coco, macapuno, beans, pinipig, sago (tapioca), gulaman (jelly), ube, leche flan, sugar, evaporated milk, ice cream, and of course, shaved ice.

Personally, I’m happy with just the bananas, gulaman, sago, pinipig, ube and leche flan. Oh, and with two scoops of sugar, please. How do you like your halo-halo?

Halo-halo is available in most Filipino restaurants. Halo-halo stalls usually pop up in the neighborhood during summer. A glass of halo-halo can range from Php15 to Php80, depending on where you’re buying.