Wednesday, January 4, 2012

The J's Top 11 for 2011

Wednesday, January 4, 2012
A great year has passed. Whew that was quick! So many great things and great food and great trips that we had. We thought of sharing our Top 11 for 2011. I hope you enjoy our picks!

Our first and last picture in 2011. What a great year it was!

The view from our hotel room. 

For our anniversary, Jeff planned an out of town trip. He booked a 2D1N stay in Sierra Madre Hotel and Resort, a hotel in Tanay. I've been bugging him to visit the place and he knew just when to do it. The food was just okay. They don't serve the most extraordinary venison or tapang usa, but.. wait, that's it, they actually serve tapang usa! Jeff ordered that while I ordered bacon. Both meals were served with fried rice and sunny side up egg.

Our breakfast. On the left is Jeff's tapang usa and on the right is my bacon. 

After breakfast, we drove to Pranjetto hills to try their zipline and other activities. I hate Jeff for forcing me to try the wall climbing because it chipped all my nails. I was screaming and complaining all the way to the top. Haha!



For our Tanay trip, the food wasn't very special. The thing is, Jeff did his best efforts to make this day extra special. Everyday is extra special when I'm with him. :)

We've always passed by but never stopped in this restaurant along C5-Ortigas area until one night from Jeff's basketball practice in Rocky's village. We were starving. 

Still wondering who's Mom and who's Tina in the their logo. 
Upon entering the place, it got me with the whole homey theme. It was like visiting your grandmother's house in the province. And it's all decorated for Christmas! 


All dressed up for Christmas!

I think we over-ordered thinking that we are very hungry. I ordered fish and chips while Jeff had turkey. We also had biscuits which is super yummy. I fell in love with it so much that I even tried to bake some at home a day after. Too bad it was a total disaster. 

Fish and chips, turkey with masked potato and cranberry sause, biscuits with butter and cranberry jam and kalamansi juice. 

One day in September, Jeff and I discovered a fast food chain in Eastwood that sells chicken. It is not your ordinary fast food. Located near Food Junction, Yummy Roast is da bomb of fast food chicken! Well, maybe second to Jollibee's which is my ultimate favorite. For the price of P99, you get a serving of their yummy chicken and unlimited yummy rice. Yes, they call it yummy rice. It's the same with the Hainanese rice I think. 

Jeff and I ordered six piece chicken wings and four rice. Yes, we're gluttons so sue us. 

8. Tootsie's Tagaytay and Enchanted Kingdom

And yet another surprise was in store for me on my birthday. My fiance brought me to Enchanted Kingdom. Yey! But before going there, I suggested we have lunch in Tagaytay. Our Twitter friend, Jel, suggested we try Tootsie's in Tagaytay. It's just along the highway, before the Starbucks area (I don't know what's the name of that area). 


We ordered two of their specialties -- Kansi Bulalo and Roasted Lamb with Potatoes. Yum!

Two happy campers!

Here are some photos of our trip in Enchanted Kingdom.

The magic stays with you. 

Last surprise for the night is flying sky lanterns! My Jeff knows me so well. Love!

This was not my first time in Lucban, but this is my first Pahiyas! Yay! The quiet place suddenly turns into a colorful town when Pahiyas comes. Celebrated during the 15th of May every year, Pahiyas Festival is the feast of St. Isidore and people decorate their houses with fruits, vegetable and most importantly, colorful kipings! Here are a few pictures that I took.

Buddy's is proudly made in Lucban. One of the owner, Tita Nadjie, happens to be Tita Letty's friend from high school. She's also going to be one of our ninangs on our wedding. 

Salud's Refreshment is a town favorite. Look at their halo-halo served in milk cans. 

Lucban is not Lucban without their famous longganisa. My mom is from Tarlac so we're used to the sweet longganisa but I can't help but fall in love with Lucban longganisa. It goes well with their vinegar. Next time you go to Lucban, do visit Eker and Ely for the best longganisa in town. 

Kiping is a leaf shaped Pahiyas decor that is made of rice paste. Comes in different colors and sizes, I discovered that kiping is not just for decorating but also for eating! Yay for colorful food! 

Me vs. Pancit Habhab. I wonder why Lucbanins put vinegar in everything that they eat? Haha!

I surprised Jeff with a birthday party in McDonald's. It's my dream to have a kiddie party in McDo but I never had one. So here's me channeling my frustration to my 'little boy'. I planned everything, I was in cahoots with his friends from Ateneo, from high school, from church and from his radio gig. It was a success! 

The poster that I made for my Sakuragi. 

My very surprised then boyfriend, now fiance. I'm such a ninja! 

Birthday boy and birthday cake. 

Yay everyone!

I'm happy we're already both 26!

We were supposed to do our traditional pamanhikan here in Laya but my dad wanted it at home. So what to do wit the reservation? Use it! Jeff booked us a dinner one day in July. Turns out that it was Laya's last month. They will be closing the place down for a while. 

Jeff reserved online and sent them the downpayment of Php1000 (which is 50% of the meal) through bank transfer. We paid the remaining half on the day itself. They sent him the menu to choose from. We chose two different sets, Antipolo Naming Mahal for Jeff and Laya Signatures for me.


Appetizer # 1. Server said it's cantaloupe (I say it's milon. Yep, milon with a hard Tagalog accent.) with cherry tomatoes and some spice. I think that's turmeric.

Joy's Appetizer # 2. Stir fried kaffir lime pork in lettuce wrap, shrimp and chicken wanton bag with thain sweet chili sauce and crabstick and cream cheese dumpling with spicy mango sauce. 
Jeff's Appetizer # 2: Nori shrimp and vegetable roll with mango papaya aioli. 

Joy's Soup: Thai-spiced pumpkin and cashew nut soup with coconut cream froth. 
Jeff's Soup: Thai tomato basil soup with cilantro foam. 

Joy's Salad: Grilled spice-crusted chicken strips and wanton crisps with mixed greens in ginger soy dressing.
Jeff's Salad: Fresh summer fruits with mixed greens in citrus mango vinaigrette. 

Joy's Sorbet: Fresh mango and lime.
Jeff's Sorbet: Kalamansi and wild honey.

Joy's Main Course: Grilled US hanging tender steak with spiced crushed potatoes in herb and red wine reduction. 
Jeff's Main Course: Prawn and mango curry with saffron-scented pumpkin basmati rice. 

Joy's Dessert: Dark chocolate and black pepper tart with candied ginger and basil-infused vanilla creme anglaise.
Jeff's Dessert: Suman rolls with caramelized mangoes, mantecado ice cream and latik sauce.

Tea was served after the delectable meal. 


This is my first trip outside Luzon. And my first time to ride the plane with my Jeff. Yay for two firsts! We went to Bacolod for the Azkals game. We sold scarves in Panaad Stadium. Business da best!

Bacolod is known for food. So here's a few, no not really few, but a lot of food that we ate. Yay for gluttony! 

First stop: We had breakfast in L' Fisher Hotel where the Azkals were staying not to stalk, but to avail of their awesome Php269 breakfast buffet. Angus tapa + dangit + adobong talong + omelet + fried rice + coffee + waffles = BREAKFAST OF CHAMPIONS. Lols. And that's Ikay nom-ming her favorite tapa. :D

Calea, the home of the awesomest cakes in the land. 

Aida's Chicken at Manokan Country. The authentic Bacolod Inasal!

Dinner at L' Fisher. 


Besides the fact that Adarna serves delicious Filipino food and the owner being THE Elizabeth Angsioco, this trip was extra special to me because this is the day I got engaged. Here in this quaint restaurant along Kalayaan Avenue in Quezon City, Jeff asked me to be his wife. I'm going to be a misis soon! 

Visit Adarna Food and Culture if you are in for some blast from the past experience.

Chicken Mole Soup, minanok na talong, sinanglay na tilapia, Adobong Batangas ala Adarna and Batanes Yellow Rice.

Looks like my fiance is ready to be a husband. So kilig!

I'm engaged!

2. Baguio

This is one of our sudden trips. I wanted a getaway because I've been sick three time since January and because March has been a tough month for me. I needed a breather. So I told Jeff I want to go to Baguio. The weekend after that conversation, we backpacked to Baguio. We stayed there for just a night but it was a very happy trip for me. It's like a detox for all the problems that I have. 


We arrived early morning of April 30. We went to our hotel, slept a little and went out to have breakfast at Cafe by the Ruins. It was not a very good experience for a first timer. They made us wait for an hour for our food. In fact, it wouldn't matter to them if we leave because THEY FORGOT OUR ORDERS. If I wasn't hungry, I would've dragged Jeff out of that place.

Jeff ordered bacon and I had longganisa. Yeah, weird longganisa.

Strawberry taho in Wright Park.

We had milkshake, fish and chips and cheeseburger for lunch in 50's Diner.

ODOCS or one day old chicks. We found them in the public market. 

My cousin suggested that we visit Mile Hi Center in Camp John Hay. It's near The Manor Hotel. We picked Little John's to have our dinner. It is owned by the late Juan Flavier's son. I ordered baby back ribs and Jeff had lamb chops. The chops were pretty small and Jeff was a little frustrated. 

We shopped for some stuff too. See our shopping experience here

I didn't know that Don Henrico's was a Baguio native. We visited the very first restaurant along Session Road.

The menu is as interesting as the place. 

Lumpia Salad and Itlog Sandwich.

Happiness is priceless. Looking forward to go back to Oh My Gulay!

1. Boracay

And the number trip and food trip of the year is Boracay. It was my first time to go there. That's one thing I love about Jeff, he loves surprising me and being with me on my firsts. He booked this flight on Christmas 2011 as his Christmas gift to me, and true enough, this was the best gift I received. 

Me and Jeff riding the paraw.

We stayed in Residencia Boracay in Station 1. 

We instantly looked for Carlo and Rocky when we came. They were a day ahead of us. They were supposed to go with us but Rocky's schedule changed. 

We had lunch at I Heart Backyard BBQ. This shop has a lot of funny signs. Haha!

Jeff had steak and prawn while I ordered bangus.

Our travel buddies, Carlo and Rocky and us. 

We later headed to the famous Jonas Milkshake. I personally think that the drink was overrated. Or maybe it's just me. 

The next day, we tried the ATV and I drove for the first time! We had lunch at Plato D' Boracay at D' Palengke after a little (mis)adventure.

Photo grabbed from Carlo who happened to be not in the photo and also not the one who took the picture. His ATV stopped in the middle of the road. Good thing the guide and Rocky went back to find him waiting for someone to save him. Poor Carlo!

Rocky and I did the buying while the boys wait. And I did the bargaining!


We were so hungry but we still didn't finish all of these. 

The next day, we went out after breakfast and headed to Real Coffee. They say Real Coffee has the best omelet in the island. Jeff ordered one calamansi muffin for us to try. I didn't like it but it tastes like lemon squares. So I'm weird, I know. Haha!

Calamansi muffin.

I told the staff not to put pesto on my omelet but she still did. I want my egg simple and saltless. Maybe I'll like it better without the pesto. 

We stayed in Boracay for four days and went to Epic Boracay three times. IKR? Haha! On our first night, we had dinner there with Carlo and Rocky. On our second night, Jeff and I went there to drink. And on our third day, we watched the Azkals game there. Suki!

Epic is in Station 2 near D' Mall.

Dinner with Carlo and Rocky. And foosball! 

I totally got drunk with all these. What happened to the young and drunkard me? Gone. :P

Nachos for our third visit watching the Azkals game. On the house! Thanks Epic!

And for our last dinner in the island, we had Mongolian buffet in The Sun Village. I was hesitant at first but after having my first bowl, I was pretty sure we will visit this place again when we go back to Boracay in May. 

We actually spotted Kitchie Nadal in the same restaurant. Good thing I'm not a fan or I will totally ask her force Jeff to take a picture of us. 

So in a nutshell, 2011 was a well traveled and well fed year. I also had so many firsts with the love of my life. It was a great year but I'm pretty sure 2012 will beat 2011 because we're getting married this year!

This was originally posted on Author decided to merge The Misis Outtakes and Nom-mage together. 


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