DAY 2 – The Other Bloggers Food Crawl: Your Itinerary for a Day of Bonding Over Great Food in Baguio

DAY 2 – The Other Bloggers Food Crawl: Your Itinerary for a Day of Bonding Over Great Food in Baguio

Bay Leaf Restaurant by Cris d’ Cuisine:  Chef Maricris Salinas-Agas never fails to impress! Bay leaf still holds a special place in everyone’s hearts and taste buds especially with their amazing Beef Pho, Eats in Baguio would surely give their Pho- a five star “pho-nomenal” rating! It is the best ever!

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Bay Leaf Baguio’s Pho Noodles

Bangus Sisig: Delicious, “meaty” and savory! Wonderful bits of Bangus in just the right size! Strangely enough this even tops the taste of famous classic Sisigs out there…and its Bangus! How healthy can we get?

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Bay Leaf Baguio’s Bangus Sisig

RIBS: Melts in your mouth! Soft and absolutely delicious! They have their own amazing version of this, probably a percent better than a famous restaurant who serves ribs. Somehow this has extra OOMPH!

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Bay Leaf Baguio’s Ribs

Duck Curry: It is always tricky to prepare duck, but one can quack with joy when they taste this, bay leaf aced the duck!

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Bay Leaf Baguio’s Duck Curry

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Session Café is actually a misnomer – the quaint, homey place is actually a short walk away from Session on Calderon Street.  It is the sister café of Sessions Gallery which you can read about here.

Sessions Café is a student-friendly hangout.  They serve rice meals and cakes by the slice, but the main attraction is their wide selection of drinks and cold desserts.

If you have a date or even a few friends, plan on sharing one of their monster shakes.  You can choose from caramel, strawberry, and ube.  The shakes are thick and creamy and overloaded with wafers and candies and all kinds of toppings.  They’re delicious and will also look fabulous on your Instagram feed.  If you’re ordering solo, they have plenty of hot and cold drinks to choose from.  Their bestseller is the strawberry mocha latte.

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Sessions Cafe Grand Frappe

Another must-try is their fruit and yogurt salad.  It’s a good assortment of – you guessed it – sliced fruits mixed into yogurt.  If the shakes are a little too sweet for you, the fruit and yogurt salad is a refreshing alternative.

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For a snack or light meal to go with your drink, try their embutido or another dish from their all-day breakfast menu.  As of the time of the food crawl, the owners said they plan to add pastas to the menu as well.

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Calle Uno doubles as a shared working space and a food hub – all around, just a great place for creativity and collaboration.  We were graciously given a full tour of the facilities from the long- and short-term for-rent office spaces to the library to the shared pantry.  Our purpose for going there, however, was to sample the bestsellers from the food trucks in their little park.

The food trucks on site are Munchiez Food Truck, Binge Beetle, Road Grille, Pendong Food Bug, Cheat Day and Live Long.  We encourage you to mix and match food choices and try something from every truck that catches your eye – maybe even one from each place, if you’re hungry enough.

Each truck offers something different, but here are a few of our favorites: Road Grill’s simple but flavorful ribs, smoky, grilled-just-right kebab from Pendong Food Bug, and for dessert, Binge Beetle’s deep fried cheesecake spring rolls.

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That said, one trip to the Calle Uno food hub probably won’t suffice to get a sampling of all of their best stuff. It wouldn’t hurt to come back after your first encounter with them to order a different combination of dishes…and a third time, and a fourth, and a fifth – however many it takes.

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IPIATTI: Their Italian inspired cuisine is a revelation to those who miss this quaint little place along Nevada Square, it’s a must stop before you enter Camp John Hay or Loakan. Chef Elly a long time cruise ship chef has finally anchored himself and his talents right here in Baguio City, that’s world class talent cooking for you, and he did not disappoint!

Chicken Ceasar Salad Wrap
A filling size of a meal, comes with veggies and fries, tasty inside and out!

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Spicy Tahong
A huge favorite, soft mussels infused with this delicious spicy concoction, this is best eaten with rice, it is quite spicy, mind you, but absolutely delicious!

Osso Bucco
Their Beef Shank in special sauce is as beefy as it gets, you have to try this for yourself! Beeftastiko!

Chef Salad in Tortilla Basket
They have a delicious secret recipe for their vinaigrette, that alone says a lot! Plus it’s curiously packed in a delicious bread basket!

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Primavera and Puttanesca
They have a lot of Pasta in their menu but these are NEW and AMAZING big numbers you can sink your teeth into. saucy and exquisitely tasty, we suggest you share this if your on a diet…it packs A LOT of servings

Sausage and Sauerkraut:
No one can resist premium sausage with a healthy serving of fresh saurkraut and mashed potato.

Fried Ice Cream:
How do you fry Ice Cream? Curiosity will be your guide to this pistaccio perfection, this delicious concoction is something you must experience!
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Twisted Chef by Cafe Angelo: Everyone makes it a point to keep Cafe Angelo in their itinerary whenever they come to Baguio, and one will find themselves coming back for more surprise meals in Cafe Angelo’s newest venture: Twisted Chef!

The re branding of the second branch has brought more vegetarian meals into Baguio’s first ever Yoga-Cafe studio and owner Chef Ro Quintos, who finds amazing ways to “Twist up” a recipe in an absolutely delicious way still serves your favorite Cafe Angelo meals aptly placed under “Cheat day specials”, don’t worry even their cheat day specials are as healthy as can be, for one thing everything is ORGANIC.


TOFU CHEESEBALLS:
These are literally balls of protein mainly because it’s packed with parmesan cheese and tofu, all delectably fried up with a crisp outer shell… dip it their special garlic sauce.. you have the perfect post yoga/workout meal there.

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SPICY SHRIMP:
The name says it all, delicious juicy spicy shrimp over a steaming bowl of Masala rice.

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GARDEN BURGER:
Touted as one of the best burgers in Baguio mainly because this burger’s meat is 100 percent pure organic Beef patty, and it boasts a garden of veggies under slices of delicious high quality bread, did we say, the sauce in this is one of a kind!

Eggplant Parmesana:
It has the right kind of spicy, enough to satisfy your spicy cravings. and the blending of flavors in this dish is something you shouldn’t miss, oh and it’s vegetarian! Again, a great dish after working out

Joie de Vivre is a resto-café with a chill, artsy vibe.  They offer sweet twists on familiar savory dishes.  Their choco fries makes for a nice balance of hot and cold, sweet and salty.  Most people prefer ketchup or gravy on their fries, but don’t dis this combination until you’ve tasted it yourself.  Their strawberry margarita pizza is another sweet-and-savory combination you’ll want to try while you’re there.

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If you aren’t feeling so adventurous, they also offer tender sirloin steak served alongside a baked potato.  The potato is topped with sour cream that they make themselves in the restaurant.  It’s a heavy meal served on a chopping board – a cute little feature that adds to Joie de Vivre’s artsy feel.

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We also enjoyed Joie de Vivre’s shakes served in light bulb-shaped glasses.  The chocado – an amalgamation of chocolate and avocado – was a big hit, as well as the lighter, more refreshing cucumber crush, which combines cucumber (of course), mint, and lime flavors.

Although we didn’t witness it on the evening we were there, Joie de Vivre sometimes complements their food and drinks with live music acts.  All in all, it’s a good place to bring your friends and family to just kick back and chill.

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BZA Home Arts Café is both a café and a supplier of craft materials like rhinestone art, paint-by-number kits and furniture.  The place is a large old house converted into a restaurant whose walls are decorated with the glittering finished products.  You’ll want to take a few minutes to look around and get the full effect before settling down to eat.  After the meal, we were treated to a short demo of the rhinestone art by one of the staff members.

There are menu items to suit every taste.  Some of the ones we enjoyed best were the lamb chop served with their special sauce and the marinara pasta.  We also had our fill of canapes.  If you order them for an appetizer, be careful not to have too many (no matter how tempting) or you’ll be full already by the time your meal is served.  You can also enjoy after-dinner (or after-lunch, as the case may be) coffee in the same big, comfortable space.

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Dates, small groups, and even large groups can be accommodated at BZA as they offer plenty of seating both inside and outdoors.  It’s a sit-down dinner kind of place – perhaps not the best option if you’re in a rush or looking for just a light meal.  We recommend it for your big and little celebrations.

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The establishments mentioned in this post were all participants in The Other Bloggers Baguio Food Crawl 2017.  For more information on the restaurants and the crawl, check the hashtag #TOBBaguioFoodCrawl or #TheOtherBloggers or see our press release here.

Check out the map for directions:

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Fine Dining at Le Monet

Le Monet Hotel at Camp John Hay is popular not only for its fabulous accommodation but also for its unique fine dining experience. In the blog entry, we give you a rundown of our favorite dishes from start to finish.

Le Monet has a wide selection of appetizers to begin your meal with. The choice is especially difficult if you’re a seafood lover. But if you’re sharing — and especially if you’re hungry! — there’s no reason to stop at just one. We couldn’t pick a favorite, so here are our top two:

The Le Monet shrimp cocktail is a serving of butterfly-cut shrimp with three different sauces on the side. For the full experience, take a piece and dip it in all three sauces. Living in Baguio, we tend to be very critical of seafood, particularly its freshness. With the shrimp cocktail as well as the other seafood dishes we enjoyed, we did not feel the need to worry about it.

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We also loved their selection of tarts. Le Monet offers a shitake, chanterelle and asparagus tart, a four cheese tart, and a cherry tomatoes, ricotta, and herbs tart. The most savory and filling of the three is the shitake, chanterelle, and asparagus tart, because of the mushrooms; for a milder appetizer we recommend going for the four cheese or the tomatoes and herbs. All of the tarts, however, have good flavor and texture and are safe options for vegetarians.

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The sandwiches at Le Monet are enormous. Our favorite is the super indulgent grilled cheese sandwich served with a side of tomato soup. Despite being a fairly straightforward grilled cheese — some vegetable on the side but nothing extra in the sandwich itself — it’s filling and flavorful. We would definitely put it in the category of “comfort food”. If you’re dieting, keep it in mind when you’re planning your cheat day.

Our favorite pasta is the spinach and ricotta ravioli. The raviolis are quite large and packed with spinach and cheese, served in tomato sauce with more cheese on top. Fans of Italian cuisine will enjoy this one in particular. For those who can’t get enough of every manner of serving shrimp, Le Monet also offers shrimp scampi linguine.

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As we mentioned above, the Le Monet menu includes a good variety of seafood. One specific dish that caught our attention is the almond-crusted salmon. Upon ordering, you can ask that it be served according to your preference of temperature or rawness. The almond flavor is not terribly prominent, but the flaked nuts do make for an interesting texture. They also contribute to the gorgeous presentation of the dish.

When it comes to salads, Le Monet bypasses the common, run-of-the-mill styles of preparation. The shrimp and watermelon salad offers an interesting combination of flavors. If you opted for a shrimp appetizer and would like to try for some variety, we recommend the Oriental chicken almond salad. It’s heavy enough to stand alone as a meal, but works well for sharing in small groups as well. In any case, be sure to get a forkful that includes a Mandarin orange slice, as the sweetness complements the chicken nicely.

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In true Filipino fashion, we know that a meal would not be complete without some form of succulent pork. The twice-cooked pork knuckles cover this nicely. Though it may sound like an odd combination, one of the sauces provided with this is chocolate sauce. Forgo the predictable gravy and vinegar and try the chocolate sauce at least once. We did, and we were pleasantly surprised.

Overall, we had no major complaints about the Le Monet menu. Each dish is carefully, thoughtfully prepared. There is also a lot to be said about the service and the atmosphere.

Seeing as Le Monet offers fine dining, their prices are not necessarily budget-friendly or student-friendly. That said, you certainly get what you pay for, and we highly recommend it for a romantic date night or for special celebrations with the family.