Hi! Sorry for the late follow-up—(not-so)Super Typhoon Mario caused us to have no electricity yesterday when I was scheduled to write this post. Anyway, here’s the continuation of my eLBi favorites. This time, I’m featuring my favorite establishments to satisfy my ka-cheap-an cravings. As I ever so carefully cultivate that I have a touch of class, truth still is that I crave for kwek-kwek and isaw more often than i crave for caviar. Oh wait, I’ve never craved for caviar pa nga pala. Hihihi. So, let’s begin?
(Note: This is NOT an advertorial. The restaurants I am featuring did not ask me to write about them, nor did/will I ask something in return for this. I just really want to share their yummy foods to my readers)
The Best Isaw
As a child, I was forbidden from eating this because of the obvious reasons (Salmonella, anyone?). But when I entered college, there was no stopping me from buying isaw during tipid days that I wanted to have heart-to-heart talks with my best friends. And so began my isaw-hopping. After tasting them all (this includes out-of-LB isaw), it seems that no one could still beat the isaw of Ferd’s. Ferd’s used to have a small, mobile puwesto in front of the now-defunct Agrix (that’s now Los Banos Centtro for you youngsters) by the street. Randy and I used to call him “Isaw Man”, because his isaw is really the best-tasting isaw we’ve ever had! Randy thinks that that his isaw is expensive because they’re a lot smaller that the other isaws sold, but I remain loyal. I guess I’m not alone because business seemed great for him—Ferd’s now has at least two isaw carts! O diba?!?
The Best Kwek-kwek
Preparing kwek-kwek is not exactly rocket science. The procedure of cooking and its ingredients aren’t also a secret. However, I’m a kwek-kwek snob—that is, I’m difficult to please when it comes to kwek-kwek, because my suki at Vega Arcade (near UP Gate) set the bar high. Whenever I buy kwek-kwek at other kwek-kwek-ans, including the ones inside malls, I would often complain and can’t help but compare it to my suki at Vega Arcade. The Vega Arcade kwek-kwekan’s kwek-kwek is always freshly cooked, unlike the others’ obviously cooked and recooked and recooked kwek-kwek.
The Best Siomai
I’m sure my choice would raise a lot of eyebrows among eLBizens. Because ladies and gentlemen, Papu’s is only second on my list. My favorite siomai is the siomai of Siomai Snack Haus, whose branch is also along Grove. I can’t explain its difference from Papu’s, but all I know is that I prefer Siomai Snack (or is it Food?) Haus’s siomais.
The Best Pearl Milk Tea
Disclaimer muna: Of course, there are a lot of gourmet gong chas out there. But what I’m featuring is my favorite Los Banos-born milk tea. And for me, that’s Super Cup. ‘Di ba I have established that I’m super kuripot? And proof of that is the fact that I never got addicted to expensive drinks: I never was addicted to Starbucks, pearl shakes, etc. For me, water is the way to go, since liquids are just to wash down what I’ve eaten, right? Wrong. Turns out that I am just not a coffee or pearl shakes person, but I’m a milk tea person! I love, love, love pearl milk teas! However, I am often discouraged because they’re really expensive—a “glass” (in plastic) would average P70-P120 na agad! And then about a year ago, I kept on seeing the people drinking Super Cup milk teas. I got intrigued and tried. And tried again. And again. Before I knew it, I was addicted. Gaaaah!!! I was so addicted that there were days I could not start working without having a liter (I remember begging them more than twice to please open earlier so I could start working agad—they open at 10 pa kasi, hmpft).
Yeah, a liter, because Super Cup’s size used to be just a liter (now they 400ml). How much for a liter? A liter of pearl milk tea just costs P70. O diba?!? For 400 ml, it’s P50. But I guess what I love most about Super Cup is that it doesn’t have bells and whistles that just complicate things: no more machines, timpla-timpla, etc. You just order, they just dispense the prepared liquid, add ice and pearls, that’s it. No queue whatsoever!
The Best Chocolate Cake
Guys, kelangan pa bang i-memorize ‘yan? We all know what the answer to this is. I know that true-blue eLBizens would probably wrinkle their noses—ako rin, honestly, umay na umay na dito—but there’s no denying that Mernel’s cakes are our pride.
Actually, I tell the people that the reason why the big Goldilock’s pwesto at Vega closed (youngsters, Chowking st Vega Center used to be Goldilock’s) and just opted for a small corner beaside Vega is because of Mernel’s. Almost all LB occasions demand a Mernel’s cake—birthdays, anniversaries, Valentine’s, Christmas, may bisita, and wala lang—Mernel’s is a staple. I get that we eLBizens are already umay, but when we taste it again after a long time, we realize once again why Mernel’s is so popular. In all my workplaces before, they would always request me to bring Mernel’s cakes. Yes, even when I worked in Makati with all my shoshal officemates. Apparently, Mernel’s cakes’ erm, “decor” (kumusta naman ang roses with leaves and pink and aqua blue icing? Hehehe) was not enough to turn them away. Moral lesson: Don’t judge a cake by its icing decor. Hihihi.
The last leg of this series will be up soon!
Missed the first two parts? You’re in luck!