Saturday, February 1, 2014

Drool-worthy halo-halo and more at Razon's of Guagua

I know, I know.. Manila just chills these days, at times even on a sunny afternoon. Even then, it's no reason not to have halo-halo, specially if it's from Razon's of Guagua. Oh my, my heart melts just thinking of this heavenly cool dessert, which might as well be THE best halo-halo I could ever have in my lifetime. I know that sounds uber cheesy but really, that's how much I love Razon's halo-halo. Never mind that it has only three "halo" (ingredients) - macapuno, sweetened cardava banana (saba) and leche flan. It's the very finely shaved ice and lots (really lots) of milk that make all the difference.  It's smooth and very creamy, almost like ice cream! If you haven't tasted Razon's halo-halo, better do and prove me right in saying that it's heavenly and unforgettable.
Anyway, it's not only halo-halo that you can enjoy at this Pampanga-originated restaurant. There's of course the Kapampangan specialty pork sisig and all-day breakfast fares "tapsilog" ang "tocilog", plus the well-loved pancit luglug that's perfect for merienda cena. At least these are what I've tried at Razon's together with different companions on two occasions recently - one time at Robinson's Magnolia and another at SM San Lazaro. 
These were what we had: 

Halo-Halo, P100.
Pancit Luglug, P95.
Tapsilog, P148.
Sisig with rice, P165.
Tocilog, P140.

Razon's of Guagua at Robinson's Magnolia

I love Razon's and have added it to my list list of go-to places for Pinoy comfort food and of course, halo-halo. Truth be told, I'm not fond of eating this iced dessert and in fact, I rarely eat it and never get to finish a glass (I don't remember, the least to say). But halo-halo at Razon's is irresistible to me and the only one I would crave for. Even if you compare it with the versions of other restaurants that boast of a dozen "halo", Razon's is still the standout for me. My two sisters who went vacationing here in the Philippines from the US and Canada three years ago also went agog over this halo-halo. Well, can't blame 'em!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Be a brekkie gourmand at Kanto Freestyle Breakfast

My friend Chie just gave me the adrenaline rush yesterday with the mere mention of an all-day breakfast restaurant in her neighborhood in Pasig City. So even if I wasn't ready to go out of my comfort zone of Manila to venture into the "unknown" in Pasig (I rarely go there!), I said "yes" to my friend's urging. How could I say no to a craving good friend? Haha! Oh well, I love breakfast whether it's for lunch or dinner. (I hope that doesn't confuse you!) And I love my friend too. (aaww. .missed her and our chikahan). Anyway, I was super curious about this  place which, I understood, was unique, aside from the fact that it serves gourmet breakfast at affordable prices. What more could I ask for? I gotta see this, I thought as we talked over the phone. About three hours later, we were there, at Kanto Freestyle Breakfast in Kapitolyo, Pasig City. It's situated in a residential area, a garage converted into a restaurant. How clever! The owner doesn't have to pay rent. We checked out the menu and were even more impressed: gourmet breakfast at less than P100! After much contemplation (on my side), 
we ordered:  

Crispy Pork Belly, P90.
Vigan Longganisa, P90.
French Toast, P50.
Deep-fried Oreos, P50.
Scramble, P35.
This is taken when we arrived. By the time we left, the place was jam-packed.
Kanto Freestyle Breakfast in Kapitolyo, Pasig City

But while we were impressed by the food presentation and all, the same wasn't very true with some of what we ordered. Chie found out that her Crispy Pork Belly wasn't crispy at all and in fact was undercooked, with a piece still having some blood in it. And while I liked my Vigan longganisa, I think it was a bit undercooked, too. My Ilocos sausages would have been a lot more delish had they come close to a crisp. Well, that's just my personal preference, anyway. As for our desserts, my friend's was yummy. I knew, she shared it with me. Hehe.. Does French Toast come in the dessert category, by the way. Well, even if doesn't, that's how it served us. Haha! The triangular slices of bread were sweet and yummy with the butter-cream on top and a douse of syrup. 
My own dessert, the Deep Fried Oreos, failed to make me happy, though. Chie commented that it seemed they used "old" (used and reused) oil in frying the battered Oreos. There was one saving grace, ice scramble! Oh, didn't you just love that pink, cool dessert that you bought in the streets when you were little?! This time, I was having scramble not in a small, plastic cup but in a "sosy" wine glass! It was beautifully served, topped with marshmallows and candy sprinkles and chocolate syrup. Yummy too! I wish they have a bigger serving because it left me wanting for more. 
Oh, well..I so liked this place in spite of some disappointments. The ambiance is cool (no walls!) and the over-all concept is totally unique. Imagine having gourmet, fine dining-style  breakfast at a price you'll love and at a garage! As for their offers, many look so good in pictures like the eggs Benedict and blueberry pancakes. Do check out their Facebook page. I'm sure many of those are really delicious. Proof was the customers coming in droves just before we left - groups of friends and family. 
I promise to return here soon. Kanto Freestyle, BRB!