Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Marikina Food Trip

What better thing is there to do on a holiday, than to go on a Food Trip? If you're not travelling, that is. I've seen quite a lot of posts recently on foodie places to visit in Marikina. I was quite intrigued since Marikina is close enough to where we live, yet it's not really a place we normally go to, so visiting it still brings about that adventurous feeling.

I've also had a good experience recently when we had brunch at Rustic Mornings, also in Marikina so I was keen to explore some more.

The articles I mentioned seeing about Food Places to visit in Marikina are from 8list.ph which you can visit here: http://8list.ph/marikina-restaurants/ and the looloo version which is more organized since they recommend places that can all be found on Lilac Street which you can read about here: http://insights.looloo.com/fearless-foodies-guide-lilac-street-marikina/. If you're not familiar with the area, I recommend following the looloo list, since everything can be found in Lilac Street, or you can follow my version of the Marikina Food Trip instead.

Since I love brunch, and I really really enjoyed our last visit to Rustic Mornings, which you can read about here, I decided it would be a good idea to start our food trip here. That way, we'd be assured of a great start, since there was no guarantee we'd like the food at the places we were visiting.

1. Rustic Mornings
We agreed to meet at Rustic Mornings for a light brunch at 11:30am. Since we came from the house, my friends arrived earlier and they had to line up for a table. I don't think the line was long, because they were already seated when we arrived, but the place continued to be busy the whole time that we were there. The challenge if you come for a "light" brunch is trying to control what you order, especially when you know everything is good, but I tried to be the voice of reason limiting everyone's orders to two dishes to be shared by three people. Hahaha.
The Marikina Food Trip Gang.
Me and Sof. We're glad that this time around, we got a table inside.
We ordered everything we had before, which was still excellent.
I didn't realize they serve the coffee with frothy milk, hahaha.
We also tried several new dishes.
The Meat Lovers Omelette was really good, and can be ordered again,
instead of the Country Omelette which comes with potatoes.
Vice ordered the bacon, eggs and freshly made hash browns.
Note to self, we can also order hash browns on the side for next time.
Yaya had the Longanisa meal which she said was just OK.

We were all happy with our light brunch, but we were rushing to get on with our food trip before we got full. Hahaha. We decided to each contribute Php1,000 to fund our food trip and just divide the change at the end of the day so we wouldn't have to keep on dividing the bill.
Our next stop was Lilac Street.

If you refer to the looloo map, you'll see that one end of Lilac Street has the burger place, while the other end has the burrito place.

2. Burrito Brothers
We started at the end of the street with Burrito Brothers.
Unfortunately, this is the only place on the list we visited with no aircon,
hahaha... so some of us could only stay for 5 minutes max!
In fairness to them, the place had fans and it wasn't really too hot.
Just enough time to order take out.
Clue, it's not me, Chipsy or Ady. Hahaha.
We had their Taco Pizza, which was pretty good, and would look better
if we didn't have it wrapped.
And the Super Beef Burrito with no beans, which was also pretty good.

3. Cupcake Bites Cafe
Our next stop was just a few doors down, since Cupcake Bites Cafe had air conditioning, this was where we brought out our Taco Pizza and Super Burrito. Hahaha.
The look and feel of the place is nice and cozy.
This place was approved for a longer than 5 minute stay.
We ordered the more interesting cupcakes:
Chocolate Yema (Php65), Lemon Rainbow (Php65) and Smores (Php70)
Then I divided everything into tasting portions to share. Viele liked
the chocolate yema and Sofia and I liked the lemon with the icing removed.
But the smores cupcake was the bomb!!! It tasted like Chocolate Mousse
topped with marshmallow on graham cracker crust! Really the best!
We needed to take our car to the next stop.
But it turns out that the next places we wanted to try were right beside
each other.

4. Mogu Tree Noodle House
We were deciding on whether to try Tamagoya (a recommended Ramen Place) or the Mogu Tree for noodles, but the cupcake bites lady told us that Tamagoya normally closed at 2:00pm so we decided to just go to Mogu Tree instead.
At Mogu Tree, you choose the noodles.
Then you choose the toppings (2 kinds of balls is counted as one topping),
though a bundle of mushroom already counts as one.
Since only four of us were eating, we chose one ball each, with the enoki
mushrooms and the recommended HK egg noodles to share.
Then you choose if you want plain broth, or laksa broth.
Similar to Yong Tau Foo places in Singapore.
Surprisingly, it was our younger foodies who really enjoyed this place.
Though I really really liked the Mozarella Cheese Balls.

5. Udderly Delicious Milkshakes
Right next door to Mogu Tree is the milkshake place which shares the same owner, so they can serve you your milkshake at Mogu Tree.
The instructions on how to order a milkshare is quite complicated.
It was easier to order from the bestsellers they have on the board.
Viele ordered a strawberry shake, Ady, Sof and I shared a Chocolate Espesso
Mint and Chipsy had the Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana.
Ours was a bit on the sweet side, but it was good and not too thick. 

6. Singlish Cafe
Our last meal stop was another few doors down because I was intrigued by the place serving Hainanese Chicken Rice and Laksa since Sofia always craves for Hainanese Chicken Rice. The people are really nice in this complex, because they also agreed to serve us our order in Mogu Tree even if this place had a different owner.
We were so full, we only planned to try the Chicken Rice, but when we saw
that the Laksa was recommended by Sandy Daza, we tried it as well.
They chicken serving is bigger than it looks in the photo, since it's
two layers of chicken breast slices. I think the rice could be tastier,
but they got their sauces right, which is the key to this dish.
The laksa was also very rich and tasty, though a bit on the spicy side,
so beware. But I agree that it's definitely above average.
Note to self, if we come back for Singlish Cafe next time, we can try their Milo Dinosaur.

Also in the same building, and owned by the same owners as Mogu Tree and Udderly Delicious, is Teaza which we didn't get to try because we were so stuffed.
This looked interesting, something to try next time.

7. Mylene's Ensaymada
The last place on my list which I really wanted to visit, was Mylene's Ensaymada since I saw it on both the 8list and looloo articles, and I love ensaymada.
Mylene's is a bit off Lilac Street, near Forget Me Not
Cafe but you'll see it anyway.
Their ensaymada is on the small side, but it's only Php30 each, cheaper
when you buy a box of 6 or box of 12. Flavored ensaymada also available.
I thought I was so full, I'll get to try it for breakfast tomorrow, but I got hungry and decided to try it while it was new so I could give it a fair review. The bread was soft and buttery, and it has just the right amount of sugar and cheese. It reminds me of the ensaymada my mom makes, so I think it's so much easier to buy it for Php30 when I'm craving for it, than to convince my mom to make a whole big batch if she's not in the mood. Hahaha.

That was quite a productive 3 and a half hour food trip. We paces ourselves well enough with our savory and sweet alternate by coincidence strategy. At the end, everyone was so full, and we still got Php370 change - not including the ensaymada, so the full experience only cost us less than Php650 (less than SG$20).

Sofia's food trip didn't end there.
She even had Potato Corner at the mall afterwards.
If we do this again next time, I will make it a point to visit Tamagoya to try their Ramen, Teaza (mentioned above), Forget Me Not Cafe which was mentioned for their desserts, and Barney's Burgers which was also mentioned on both lists. But I think I'll still want to start the food trip at Rustic Mornings. just saying.

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