Mother-and-Son Lunch Date at Caffe Bene

Because I still had a lot of Caffe Bene GCs from previous writing gigs, I decided to use all of them in their Makati branch last month.

Our last visit was in December, and because we enjoyed what we ordered then, we went back and ordered mostly the same items but tried new ones, too.

Carbonara, Php195

Carbonara is my son’s current favorite pasta dish. While it’s not as creamy-looking as La Bella Teodora’s, it still has the basic Carbonara ingredients that Justin looks for: spaghetti, bacon, cream and yes, cheese!

Asado Pandesal, Php80

Justin paired his Carbonara with Asado Pandesal. We both agree that this Asado Pandesal is so much better than most Asado Siopaos we’ve tried. It’s big and soft but fuller than the usual pandesal which makes it more filling, plus there’s enough (not too little or too much) pork asado inside to enjoy.

Beef Bolognese, Php195

This Beef Bolognese, with a hint of sweetness most likely from the fresh tomatoes used, is okay.

Mocha Frappe (Large), Php180 and Iced Blueberry Latte (Regular), Php190

Justin and I both enjoyed our cold drinks. He got the large Mocha Frappe which he said tasted like Starbucks’ while I tried the Iced Blueberry Latte which was quite refreshing. I loved the sweet, tangy and milky blend!

Cream Cheese and Strawberry Gelato (1 scoop), Php125 each

We also tried two gelato flavors from Caffe Bene, and we both favor the Strawberry Gelato over Cream Cheese Gelato.

Mango Cake, Php150

We had additional orders of Mango Cake and Mom’s Chocolate Cake to go that we ate for later as after-dinner desserts. Hubby and I loved the not-so-sweet Mango Cake and its oh, so lovely presentation!

Mom’s Chocolate Cake, Php150

Mom’s Chocolate Cake is rich and moist, but it has wine in it which wasn’t really to our liking, so only hubby ate it.

It was a pleasant experience overall at Caffe Bene. The place is really nice with its relaxed and cozy ambience. We mostly enjoyed their sandwiches and drinks. We will try their Bingsu next time.

Caffe Bene
Multinational Bancorp Center
Valero Access Road 4
Makati City
Telephone No.: (02) 511 1435

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Posted in Caffe Bene, Korean Cuisine, Lunch Date, Mother and Son

Share What’s Good and Discover What’s Real with Welch’s 100% Grape Juice

It was a refreshing afternoon of learning and discovery as media people and other guests attended the relaunch of Welch’s 100% Grape Juice at Ayala Malls The 30th last Saturday.

It’s been ages since I’ve attended a blog event, but I was glad I came because I went home with a happy heart, literally and figuratively. Well, after having gone into hibernation, I got reconnected with blogger friends, plus I carried with me a treasure trove of information on how to make the right choices for a healthy heart and a healthy life.

The event kick-started with a panel discussion with two moms who shared their Welch’s experience, Dr. Gia Sison and Mommy Louisa Mercado. Dr. Gia is a cancer survivor and a Makati Medical Center consultant while Mommy Louisa is a mom and fitness blogger and one of the founders of Mommy Bloggers Philippines.

Dr. Gia and Mommy Louisa talked about when they discovered Welch’s, why they remain loyal to the brand through the years, and their Welch’s bonding moments with their families.

After the panel discussion, Ms. Paz Sales of the Nutritionists-Dietitians Association of the Philippines gave an informative talk on the health benefits of Welch’s 100% Grape Juice. Made from Concord grapes, Welch’s 100% Grape Juice helps promote a healthy heart. It has no sugar added, no cholesterol and no preservatives.

Grapes contain polyphenols. These are compounds found in plant-based foods that act as antioxidants. Antioxidants help protect the body against free radical damage that may lead to cancer and other health conditions. Purple grapes, like the ones used in Welch’s 100% Grape Juice, have the highest total antioxidant capacity, which makes it a healthy choice for the whole family.

Chef Trisha Ocampo of CCA, Manila also demonstrated easy-to-prepare healthy snacks for the family.

All the snack recipes included one special ingredient: Welch’s 100% Grape Juice.

Don’t these Grape Berry Crunch Muffins look tempting?

Despite the many food choices we have today, it is quite surprising that many families are not meeting their daily nutrient requirements to help ward off chronic ailments. The latest Food Consumption Survey by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology in 2013 revealed that 69.3% of Filipino households did not fulfill their dietary energy requirements – higher by 2.4% than the previous survey in 2008.

Further, Filipinos are only able to meet 39% of the daily 400 grams of fruits and vegetables suggested by the World Health Organization. With less of the important naturally occurring nutrients from fruits, like polyphenols from grapes that help the heart – many of us are exposed to risks of lifestyle diseases such as cardiovascular disorders.

Believe it or not, there’s a convenient, nutritious and delicious way to stay healthy that matches our busy lifestyle, and that’s drinking 100% fruit juices. Admittedly, whole fruits are a great source of fiber, but 100% fruit juice also contains essential vitamins and minerals needed by the body to function properly and prevent diseases. As a matter of fact, drinking 8 ounces of pure fruit juice, such as Welch’s 100% grape juice, is equivalent to a whole cup serving of fruit.

What’s more? Drinking 100% fruit juice from grapes may actually give us more polyphenols than eating the fruit, without weight gain. That’s because making pure grape juice involves crushing the fruit, together with the seeds and dark purple skin, which releases more polyphenols. Research likewise suggests that 100% grape juice can help support a healthy heart.

Welch’s advocates for better nutrition for Filipino families by providing a wide range of juice products that are refreshing, delightful and healthy.

“At Welch’s, we value what’s REAL, we value family, we value health and wellness and we value in sharing what’s good. For over 140 years, Welch’s has been providing families around the world with products that bring a happy balance of goodness and deliciousness,” says Erika Evaristo Rodriguez, VP Marketing of Welch’s Philippines.

Welch’s 100% juice drinks are available in retail outlets nationwide.

To know more about the science behind 100% grape juice, visit and follow Welch’s PH in Facebook and IG. #ShareWhatsGood #DiscoverWhatsReal

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Posted in #DiscoverWhatsReal, #ShareWhatsGood, Ayala Malls The 30th, Heart Health, Polyphenols, Vonvord Grapes, Welch's, Welch's Philippines, Welch’s 100% Grape Juice

La Bella Teodora at Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar

We had an overnight stay at Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar (Las Casas) in Bagac, Bataan last weekend. Las Casas is not only a beach resort but a heritage community as well. Las Casas is most notable for its casas or restored Spanish-Filipino homes. Its period-themed accommodations and skillfully crafted architectural designs allow the guests to travel back in time to catch a glimpse of 18th century Philippines.

Of the six dining places in Las Casas, we were only able to try La Bella Teodora, a restaurant that offers authentic Italian cuisine. Located at the romantic Casa Biñan, La Bella Teodora can accommodate up to 100 guests. And because the weather was good when we were at Las Casas, we were able to experience a candle-lit dinner by the Umagol River.

Complimentary bread

Our appetizer consisted of a small basket of white, soft and warm complimentary bread with olive oil and balsamic vinegar dip. This was good!

Marinara, Php520

Guests have a choice of spaghetti, fettuccini or penne for their pasta dishes. We opted for spaghetti for both of our pasta orders. This Marinara pasta has tomatoes, white wine sauce and assorted seafood. Everything about this pasta dish is heavenly; the squid was tender, springy (not chewy) and you could actually taste the freshness of the ingredients in every bite. The price of Php520 for the pasta items on their menu is quite stiff, though, for a serving that’s good for only one person.

Carbonara, Php520

Our young man requested for his ultimate favorite Carbonara. He truly enjoyed this because there’s no ingredient here that he doesn’t like, just pasta, cream and bacon. Other restaurants include green peas in their Carbonara recipes, and Justin doesn’t like that. The sauce of this Carbonara is thick and creamy, it had generous amount of bacon bits and the taste was just right, not bland or salty. It’s simply delightful!

Quattro Formaggi Pizza, Php680

Baked in a wood-fired oven, this Quattro Fomaggi is a thin-crust pizza with four Italian cheeses. It took a while before this could be served on our table, and we actually wondered why, so we asked. Our server told us that they had to redo the pizza because the first one was not perfectly done. That to me means they only give their customers the best, so the longer waiting time was okay with us. We relished this pizza’s crispy crust and soft and slightly chewy dough that’s oozing with cheesy goodness.

Our tummies were happy and content when we left La Bella Teodora. We didn’t even crave for desserts anymore.

La Bella Teodora
Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar
Brgy. Ibaba, Bagac, Bataan
Manila Sales and Reservation Office
Telephone Nos.: 332-5338/332-5286/355-3032
Mobile No.: 0917-8729361

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Posted in Al Fresco Dining, Candle-Lit Dinner, Carbonara, Italian Cuisine, La Bella Teodora, Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar, Marinara, Quattro Formaggi