Saturday, February 15, 2014

My Top 10 at Pinoy Eats World's Romantic Eats

I had been wanting to check out JJ Yulo's Pinoy Eats World since it first launched last year, but the thought of schlepping over to Podium for an afternoon of perusing food, food, and more food, was enough to make me snuggle even deeper into my duvet in a pseudo food coma.

But when I was told that Irene from my foodie fambam would be selling her delectable cheesecakes at Pinoy Eats World's Romantic Eats this weekend, Jericho and I made the effort to go over to Podium Mall so support her as well as our good friend Cecille Chang's Silk Road.

The second floor of Podium was set up with flowers and a big sign, ushering curious customers in to take a peek at what everyone had to offer (there were a whole lot!). From everything to organic cotton candy to  classic Thai favorites with a twist, there was a little bit of everything for everyone that weekend.

Here are my top 10 vendors from the weekend's Romantic Eats:

1. Blue Bell Ice Cream

I was as giddy as a school girl when I saw Blue Bell Ice Cream had a stall at Romantic Eats. I used to consume pint after pint of this when I was in Houston, and to have the Texan brand now in Manila made me very, very happy.

You could buy them in a Pint (P250) or Half Pint (P140) or by the scoop at the weekend bazaar, and they came in flavors like Butter Crunch, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Krazy Cookie Dough, Moo-llennium Crunch, Red Velvet Crunch, and Banana Split.

I went home with half a pint of their Mint Chocolate Chip that didn't even last the ride out of the parking lot. Blue Bell Ice Cream will be available at Robinsons, Rustan's and a few other select supermarkets, so keep your eyes peeled for them!

2. Mister Fluffies

I love the name!!! The all-natural gourmet cotton candy cart was dressed in hot pink making it a real stand out from the rest of the surrounding stalls.

Made out of organic sugar, you can get your ball of All-Natural Gourmet Cotton Candy (P60) in various unique flavors: Banana, Apple, Almond, Orange Punch, Black Forest, French Vanilla, Chocolate, Raspberry, Cherry, Chocolate, Caramel, Custard, Bubble Gum, Key Lime, Lemon, Mango, Pineapple, Lychee, Strawberry, Cheesecake, Peppermint, Blueberry, Rum, Rose, Watermelon, Grapes, Kiwi, Coconut, Hazelnut, and Peach.

3. Good Karma/ VL Farms

Jericho liked Good Karma for their selection of craft beers, especially the Hitachino Ales (P250) that came in Classic, White, and Red Ale. Jericho likes the fresh-tasting white ale, brewed in the tradition of Belgian style beer with coriander, nutmeg, orange peel and orange juice.

I was more interested in the Sweet Chili Salt as it went really well when sprinkled on pomelo slices, enhancing the tart flavors with a spicy aftertaste.

4. Homemade Treasures

My friends have been raving about Homemade Treasures' ensaymadas all year last year, and this was the first time I got to try Chona's delectable, buttery creations. Believe the craze, people. Her shiz's legit!

Get the Classic 1930s, Chili Pimiento, or Pistachio Ensaimadas. 4 pieces (P425), 6 pieces (P600), 9 pieces (P900), 12 pieces (P1,200)

Ube Ensaimadas. 4 pieces (P465), 6 pieces (P660), 9 pieces (P990), 12 pieces (P1,320)

Greek Ensaimadas. 4 pieces (P545), 6 pieces (P780), 9 pieces (P1,170), 12 pieces (P1,560)

Calamansi, Guava, Mango, or Honey Mamons (P350 for 6 pieces)

5. Swell Sweets

For cute, novelty and kitschy sweets, Swell Sweets has Cake Pops (P45), Meringue Canisters (P150), Statement Cookies (P60), and Heart Cookies (P60) that are perfect for sweethearts, friends, coworkers, and family members with a sweet tooth, The best part is, they're easy on the pocket, too!

6. Scarsdale Artisanal Delights

The guys that came up with Go Nuts Donuts have recently put up Scarsdale Artisanal Delights over by S&R Shaw, who also have savory-filled donuts and Cronuts along with their other offerings.

Jumping on the cookie butter trend, they also sell different cookie butter spreads that are small enough to stash in your bag for you to snack on during breaks.

7. Bucky's

Reading about Bucky's on left me wondering what was so good about these brown slabs of chunky chocolate. As it turns out, there's a lot to rave about when it comes to Bucky's! Not quite fudge, not quite a brownie, Bucky's is what you get after these two come together for a night of drunken debauchery.

Bucky's comes in different flavors: Original (1 Slab - P220; 2 Slab -P300), Spiced (1 Slab - P220; 2 Slab -P300), Chunky Blonde (1 Slab - P250; 2 Slab -P350), Buckies n' Cream (1 Slab - P250; 2 Slab -P350), Super (1 Slab - P350; 2 Slab -P550), Big Poppa (1 Slab - P350; 2 Slab -P550), Coco Loco Goji (1 Slab - P320; 2 Slab -P600), Grumpy's (1 Slab - P2280; 2 Slab -P400), and Redhead (1 Slab - P250; 2 Slab -P350).

My favorites were Spiced (naturally) and Big Poppa - made with chia seeds.

8. Risa Chocolates

You cannot pass by Risa Chocolates without admiring the Crave Bars. They come in Davao Chocolate, 70% South Cotabato, Roasted Milk with Pili, Valenzuela Milk Chocolate (Plain/ with Roasted Hazelnut), Coffee Chocolate, Seventy One, and Let's Rocky Road.

If little morsels of rich chocolate are more your thing, Risa Chocolates also has a decent selection of Truffles & Pralines. They come in Classic, Cerveza Negra, Cookie Dough, Orange, Dark Rum, Hot Cocoa, Salted Caramel, Quezo de Bola, Salted Caramel,, Earl Gray, Dark Mint, Crispy Hazelnut, and Tiramisu.

9. Indulgence by Irene

Of course, my list won't be complete without Indulgence by Irene. Irene is coincidentally the wife of food blogger, Richard Co, of Tales from the Tummy. She introduced two new cheesecake flavors last year, using tablea from Davao and ube from Homemade Treasures.

Choose from her classic Queso de Bola (P220), the chocoholic's favorite Tablea (P220), and a rich Ube (P250).

Big ups to good ol' JJ Yulo for organizing the whole thing! And for sharing his coconut-flavored cotton candy!

10. L.E.S. Bagels

Lastly, chef Cuit Kaufman doesn't disappoint with his Bagels and Cream Cheese. Choose your cream cheese flavor: Plain (P140), Strawberry (P180), Scallion (P140), Bacon & Cheddar (P180), Sundried Tomato with Olives (P180), Sundried Tomato with Basil (P180), Truffled Cream Cheese (P280), Caviar (P320), Passion Fruit (P220).

L.E.S. Bagels also now has Donuts (P40) in Lemon Lime, Lavender Glaze, and Vanilla Bean. I made a mental note to visit the shop in McKinley Hill for more of these uniquely flavored New York sweets.

While mucking around Manila, keep your eye out for the next Pinoy Eats World event at Podium and discover the newest, hippest food trends in the metro! There's always something new to discover, I'm very glad I went!

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