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28 November 2011

Danne: The Iscreamist

Every now and then I'd like to post about 'novel' resto finds. This week I post about The Iscreamist store in UP Village, which is one of those must-try places.

From the outside, I'd like to think that this store is outer space-inspired. You know, galactic robots, scientific things, yeah! The font's very telling.

The store's unique selling proposition is that they use liquid nitrogen in bringing the best out of their food. From what I know, liquid nitrogen is nitrogen in liquid form (yes, haha), which means it's at a very low temperature, in contrast to atmospheric nitrogen which is in gas form. So once you dip your food into liquid nitrogen, it becomes cold and crunchy! And the coolest part is that it releases smoke since it evaporates very quickly. So when you eat smores that are just dipped in liquid nitrogen (you'll see later on), smoke comes out not only from your mouth but also from your nostrils.

Upon entry, you'll see their periodic table menu. The treats are actually cheap and student-friendly-- the reason being is their proximity to UP Diliman.

They have dragon's breath snacks. Once you dip and eat them, you'll see smoke coming out. We got smores. They serve 4 sticks per order + a cup of liquid nitrogen (PhP 48).

They also have ice cream which they make from cream + liquid nitrogen. It's actually good!

Besides eating, I suggest you watch how they mix up and do the food. It's actually something you'd like to see to be entertained.

The area's quite small but the overall experience was quite interesting.

The Iscreamist is located at 46D Magiting Street, Teacher's Village, QC (beside the smaller Moonleaf, in the vicinity of Maginhawa Street). Open Monday-Saturday 5:00PM-10:30PM.

I'm all for trying out new things!

27 November 2011

Save Palawan Movement

299549_10150273729740892_596240891_7949538_5628475_nTiffy | Save Palawan Movement
November 21, 2011
Press Event

You've probably heard about it before: people have been trying to stop mining in Palawan.

According to their press release, Save Palawan Movement is not against all mining but that they believe that key biodiversity sites--especially island ecosystems--should be off-limits.

So why Palawan?

As the "Last Ecological Frontier of the Philippines", Palawan boasts of mangroves, coral reefs, 17 "Key Biodiversity Areas, 2 UNESCO World Heritage sites, and 8 declared protected areas.

Part of the concerns that were raised was how it negatively affects the food supply of the surrounding areas. They cited mining company Citinickel's mining activities in Narra, a rice granary in Palawan, as a culprit in the demise of farmers and fishermen alike in the area. 

Gina Lopez, the managing director of ABS-CBN, added that fingers are usually pointed at small-scale miners for most of the negative effects of mining but that large-scale mining companies are the ones who have major accidents that result to really bad situations. 

If it's any consolation, however, I personally think that at the very least--large-scale mining companies are easier to regulate than small-scale miners and are more accountable for whatever mishaps that they are at fault of. 

Gina Lopez, managing director of ABS-CBN

Also in attendance was Dr. Antonio La Viña, who gave a talk on a draft report on the background and overview on the future of mining in the Philippines. 

Of course, two hours is not enough to cover all the different aspects of the issue. And, especially for PR events such as this, the aim is to pique human interest in the issue, not to give a comprehensive talk on mining and its impacts.

In one of my classes in the university, my professor briefly shared her thoughts on mining. The demand for mining is there, but how can we regulate the activity in such a way that we gain from it? And what of the communities surrounding the different mining sites? Surely they have the right to live in an unpolluted area without fear for their health due to the contamination of their environment. 

But is there such a thing as sustainable mining? 

As one of the audience, I didn't feel that they were just trying to stop mining in Palawan. Most, if not all, of the audience wanted to stop mining, period. We have more to lose from it: data from an economic study shows that people in the mining industry are getting poorer and the economic divide within this industry is increasing. 

As it is now, I think that the movement has already won in a way--it opens up the issue for discourse. 

So if you agree with the movement's aim, feel free to drop by to sign the petition. 

Also an interesting read:

25 November 2011

Manila Foodistas: A Month Before Christmas

It's a month before Christmas and most of us are either preparing to gain those extra pounds over the holiday or slaving over our jobs (or student life) just to earn some extra cash for that Christmas shopping.

With all the vacation time we get over the holidays, it's definitely one of our favorite seasons of the year. And after mulling over what to do with all that time we now suddenly have, we take the time to reminisce: What's our fondest Christmas memory?

Danne | Manila FoodistasDanne
My fondest memory has to be opening gifts, not for the gifts themselves but for the fuzzy feeling of Christmas midnight. The thought that almost everyone are in awake, in their homes, and spending quality time with family is so heartwarming. Also, during Christmas season (especially just before Christmas break), everyone's nice-- nicer than usual.

It was definitely the day I understood what Christmas is really all about. It's way beyond all those celebrations, get-together and of course eating! :)) Christmas is not just a one day event that happens once a year but it is that one thing we should be very grateful for every single day. :)

I didn't want to think very far back so I would have to say that my fondest Christmas memory is that of last year's (2010). For some reason, it was especially cold that Christmas break, and I was able to spend it with family and friends. I even remember going to Tagaytay with my relatives on the 26th of December, having dinner at Alfredo's and having dessert at Bag of Beans. It was simple but for me, it was fun! :)

All I remember of past Christmases are the food. Lots and lots of food. And the guilt right after. Of writing down, "Go on a diet." on New Year's Eve. But oh all those food! It was worth it. The best Christmases are those when I have nothing to do--I just curl up with a book (or probably my laptop) and read to my heart's content.

About those "extra pounds"... What food are you willing to earn those pounds on? Any favorite Christmas treat?

Danne | Manila FoodistasDanne
I'd be willing to gain some pounds for sweets! Leche flan is one of my most favorite Christmas treats. I also love home-baked cookies friends give during the season. Plus cake, pastries, food for the gods, I can go on and on!

Christmas dinner or not, hands down to my mother's lasagna! I have not yet eaten the lasagna better than my mom's! My favorite is her vegetable version - with spinach, zucchini, and lots of tomatoes! YUUUM!

And as for my favorite Christmas treat, bibingka is the one! There are so many types of bibingka here in the Philippines and what we have in Antipolo every Christmas season is what I call the "pancake" type. I remember two years ago, I was at our city's town plaza almost every night just to buy this bibingka from my suki! :D

Ingredients: Rice flour, egg, cheese, salted egg, and margarine

Something I look forward to on Christmas (aside from the usual treats) is Christmas ham! I don't normally eat it but because we always receive some, it has become somewhat of a seasonal food for me. Another thing I only get to eat during Christmastime is puto bumbong - a Filipino sticky rice dish. It's a bit sweet and it's topped with coconut flakes.

Puto bumbong

I remember my first Christmas in Japan, and I had work. My good friend Karen was making eggnog (she usually uses rum) that night and told me that she'd save me some. But she didn't--she drank it all. A few days after, I was hanging out at her dorm room and she made some again (under my close watch this time lest she drinks it off again). I'll get her recipe and tell you about it some time!

Christmas wish lists aren't really about others but taking a peek at wish lists not our own help some of us add some more to our list. So... What's on your wish list?

Danne | Manila FoodistasDanne
Number 1 on my wish list would be to get a chance to travel somewhere interesting. Then, I could take really nice pictures and be part of people's stories. Then again, if I should wish for something tangible, it would be to have a pretty camera strap. It needs some replacing!

World peace. . . ha ha ha! Seriously, I'd like to have a replica of the Noli Me Tangere manuscript, Lang Lang's newest CDs, and C.S. Lewis' book collection (excluding the Narnia series) =))

Since we're talking material here, I would love to have an Apple iPhone4S!

I would love to suddenly have the will to be a vegetarian. Seriously. I've tried (and failed) so many times it's ridiculous! But some stuff off my wishlist would be: a new bicycle, something I can read PDF files with (an iPad or something similar), and nice make-brushes (and maybe some make-up as well)!

What about you?

The Venice Piazza: Alemente Nightmarket

Word's out that the Venice Piazza will be holding the Alemente Nightmarket this December. It will be on December 6-8, 20-22, 27-29, 2011, from 11:00 PM-6:00 AM.

Do you plan on going?

23 November 2011

Earle's Delicatessen

Earle's Delicatessen
by Nicole

Ever since I've been stuck in Ortigas (har har!) I've been complaining about not finding decent food. Recently, I finally decided to go to Earle's Delicatessen.

I first tasted Earle's food a few weeks ago. Some of my bosses ordered different types of deli meats, sausages, and cheeses from Earle's and boy, they sure reminded me of Spanish tapas! (Vino por favor ja ja! - Wine please, ha ha!)

Since I'm not really a meat-eater, I just tasted some and to my surprise, I liked them. They were really good! Oh, the cheese and the meats! I can't believe I liked the meats! :))

Smoked honey ham, honey ham, black forest ham, capicollo ham, maple ham, smoked farmer's ham, roast beef, smoked chicken roast, double smoked bacon, Canadian back bacon, beer sausage (They sell by gram.)

Different cheeses! ♥ - perorino romano, gruyere, brie

Hungarian, Bavarian cheese smokies, European wiener, cheese Frankfurte, Bavarian smokies, pepperoni, frankfurter

I have finally found something really good to eat for lunch since I started my first ever full time job! It took me a while to order because as usual, I wanted to see all my choices before choosing. I finally decided on the sandwich with the longest name - Smoked Chicken Roast with Canadian Back Bacon.

Smoked Chicken Roast with Canadian Back Bacon
(Php 141.00)

I just loved how the flavours complemented each other. 
Totally not your ordinary sandwich!  

Their sandwiches range from PhP 120 to PhP 160. It may seem a bit expensive for a sandwich, but trust me, you'll get your money's worth! SULIT! Really yummy and satisfying! I can't believe the sandwich that I ate is better than my mother's turkey sandwich! HA HA!

My logic is: if it's better than my mother's food, it means that it's REALLY GOOD! I am definitely buying another one soon and will be taking some home for my folks. Hooray, I've finally found yummy food near our office!

Aside from meats, they also have green salads, breads, coffee, and juices. If you're craving for something European, Earle's is one of the best food shops to visit!

Earle's Delicatessen
G1-C Wynsum Corporate Plaza
22F Ortigas Jr, Road Ortigas Center
(632) 687-4415 / 687-4425 / 687-4430 Local 114 or 115

21 November 2011

Danne: Midnight Mercato

Last Saturday, I had a chance to revisit Midnight Mercato and check out the food stalls they had that night.
The website says it opens at 10PM, but we arrived at the place at around 9:40PM and the tables and chairs were already almost fully-occupied then. The trick is actually to arrive there before 9:30PM so that you'd end up eating sitting down rather than standing up.
They had unique food finds and prices were reasonable. You could get a full meal at around PhP 200-PhP 250. Most were cooked upon order, so there was an appetizing aroma all around.
I haven’t had the chance to eat from all stalls but here were some of the interesting finds:

Johnny Steams (Steamed burger)

Taclings (Bite-sized tacos in egg cartons)
PhP 60/carton or PhP 100 for 2 cartons
I got the chance to try these and they were delicious. The rule is to eat one whole piece in one bite. It's not date food since you'd have a difficult time stuffing this all in, but the better part comes once you chew on them.

There was also a stall that had Krispy Kreme-burger patty-Krispy Kreme. Isn't that sinful?

And then there were spuds. Remember me telling you how much I love potatoes in any size, shape or color?
One order of Cheesy Potatoes costs PhP 50. They were soaked in cheese and really tasted good.

Manang's Chicken (Double deep-fried crispy chicken goodness)
This stall that sold this chicken had one of the longest lines that night.

I wish they had more chairs, or even just standing tables to accommodate people. The crowd began to thicken at around 10:30, so it’s a lot better to arrive earlier or a lot later.
You can always check out the layouts of the food stalls (just in case you want to rush in once you arrive) at their official website.
Mercato has recently moved to its new location (but still inside The Fort) at 34th Street and 8th Avenue (across MC Home Depot), Bonifacio Global City. Food bazaar starts at 10PM and ends at 3AM.
The next time your tummy begins to grumble on a Friday or Saturday night, you know where to head to!


18 November 2011

Tiffy in Japan: Tokyo DisneySea

299549_10150273729740892_596240891_7949538_5628475_nTokyo DisneySea
October 27, 2011
Tiffy in Japan

Now I've always wanted to go to Disneyland since I was a little girl watching the Disney channel. I don't know why: is it fun?

Last year, I was supposed to go to Disneyland but ended up in Sanrio Puroland instead. This year, I still didn't end up in Tokyo Disneyland but I ended up in Tokyo DisneySea. When we were trying to decide where to go, my boyfriend asked his friends which one's a better place to go to and they said that DisneySea is more romantic while Disneyland is more family-oriented.

That, and one of my friends playfully warned me about the Disneyland curse. She said that couples who go to Disneyland break up because of the long lines--they run out of things to talk about. She wasn't sure if that was only during summer or if it happens all throughout the year. The existence of this curse was echoed by my boyfriend's friend when I asked him if it were true.

So off we went to Tokyo DisneySea.

Thank you, boyfriend's dad, for the tickets! 

We were there a few minutes before it opened and already, there was a long line. I was told that the line would be much much much longer had it been a weekend and had it been Disneyland. 

Trying to figure out where to go to first.

In DisneySea, as with Disneyland, there are two lines: the normal one and the fast pass one. So usually what is done is, you go to a ride you want to go to (that probably has a long line), go to the fast pass ticket booth beside it, put your ticket beneath the scanner and let it read the bar code and then get a fast pass ticket for the ride a couple of hours after you get the fast pass ticket. 

For example, we got a fast pass for Journey to the Center of the Earth at 10 AM and we can go through the fast pass lane at 11:15 AM--going ahead of everyone else lined up in the normal lane. I didn't know all this until I was already there to which my boyfriend asked, "Why didn't you check it out online before we got here?!"

We did have breakfast before we got here but already I wanted something to eat. There are various stalls all around and it's easy to find in the map. 

We got the Black Pepper Pork Rib (¥420, Php 231) and Mickey Churro (Maple) (¥300, Php 165) and coffee (¥270, Php 149). They have different-flavored churros at different areas. We also had the pumpkin-flavored one. There are also different-flavored popcorn (we had chocolate and strawberry, although he wanted to have the milktea one--I tried milktea ice cream in Korea and I wasn't impressed).

Black Pepper Pork Rib

Mickey Churro

Pocahontas--her face was pretty scary since it seemed frozen that way.

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