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Let's Play!

Midori: Let's play Char Siew!

Char Siew:  I thought you'd never ask.  I've been waiting for you to start it.

Midori: Char Siew - it seems like you're still growing.  I don't remember you being this tall.

Char Siew:  Yes - I'm still growing.  Which means - I might win our wrestling match this time.

Midori: That's what you think.  Since I'm older - I have some tricks up my sleeve.

Char Siew: Gotcha!

Midori: NO Char Siew.  I gotcha!

Char Siew:  BAWL.  I think I hurt my nose.

Midori:  That was tiring.
Char Siew:  Yeah - but it was fun.

Char Siew:  I think I'm so tired - that I need to sleep now.  Till next time Midori.

Kanin Club

Kanin is the Filipino word for Rice.  It's actually very close to the word Kain - which is the Filipino word for eat.  I think that's very appropriate since without kanin - a lot of us Filipinos do not feel like eating.   So - I guess - having a restaurant which revolves around rice - is bound to be a hit for the Filipino foodie.

This is Green Mango Salad.  It's similar to the Thai version.  Kanin Club's version is good.  They used pickled mango - which works because it lessens the sourness of the mango.

What goes well with Kanin?  Bagoong ( or Shrimp Paste ).  The Bagoong is good.  However, the pork is between crispy and soft - which I think could be remedied by having smaller pieces of pork.

I don't eat this dish.  This is Dinuguan ( or Blood Stew ).  It is literally made out of Blood.  Kanin club's version uses Crispy Pork.

I'm happy that they serve brown rice.

Am I the only one who likes eating dessert while having the main course?   I think this Halo-Halo is one of the best Halo-Halo in town.  Its not just beans and jelly.  It actually has banana, camote, ube, and all other ingredients that Halo-Halo should have.

Dog Talk at Bonifacio High St.

Midori: Char Siew, aren't you happy we're back at Bonifacio High st.?

Char Siew:  IKR ( I know right).  Look at all those dogs and their humans.   There are a lot of beagles.  But I still don't see other Shar Pei.   So - I think I'll get a lot of attention again.

Midori:  Yeah - there's not a lot of Shar Pei.  And I do think they like looking at you.  But - you should freshen your breath first.  You have fish breath.

Char Siew:  But don't you like Fish Breath?

Midori:  I do like Fish Breath.  But humans don't like that smell.  To be honest - I don't know why they don't like that smell.  It's an awesome smell.

Char Siew:  Yes it is.  I actually don't know why I have fish breath when I just brushed my teeth with Chicken Flavored Toothpaste.  I should have Chicken Breath.

Midori:  Ei --- look at those people.  They just came out of Krispy Kreme.  Let's go there and be cute.  Maybe they will give us doughnuts.

Char Siew: Wait,  I'll practice my cute look.

Midori:  You're cute enough  Char Siew.   Let's go.

Glorious Dining at Tin Hau

For the queens, Mandarin Oriental is the hotel to go when we want to indulge in really good food.  Tivoli restaurant is definitely our first choice.  However - the other restaurants - especially the Chinese Restaurant Tin Hau is a close second.   Last weekend - we had a great treat since Mandarin Oriental brought a Michelin Star chef to Tin Hau.  I am referring to Chef Takase of Mandarin Oriental Tokyo's Sense restaurant.

We opted for the seven course meal.  It is a glorious meal that definitely ranks pretty high in our ranking of dining experience around the world.  

Chef Takase of Mandarin Oriental Tokyo's Sense restaurant.

This is a combination of many oriental dishes.  Cantonese style roast pork, Hainanese Chicken, Shanghainese style Abalone, and Indian Style Acar.

This Roast Pork is wonderful.  Great texture and unforgettable flavor.

The Abalone dish is refreshing.

Shark's Fin soup.   For me - what made it better than your typical Shark's Fin soup is the Egg Tofu which you can find at the bottom of the cup.

This is our first time to taste Yuzu pepper sauce.  The scallops go really well with the Yuzu pepper sauce.

This is my least favorite dish.  The Steamed Grouper Fillet.   However - I must come clean and confess that I'm not fond of steamed fish.

This is a very inventive dish.  You see that white gravy?  It's Taro potato.  Mixing the beef, pepper and the Taro Potato is heavenly.

Of course - a Chinese inspired meal is not complete without the Rice served at the end of the meal.   This is salmon fried rice.

This is the refreshing dessert made of Watermelon Puree with Basil Seeds Gel-o and Mint.

Complimentary Japanese sweets to end the meal.  Mochi and Azuki Beans anyone?  I was full by this time but I wolfed these down.  They were yummy.

Complimentary Starter Drink.  This is Gel-O with a hint of lemon.  Definitely opened our palate at the start of the meal.

Ain't Too Proud to Beg

I love treats.  I will do anything for treats.  If I see them on the table, I will grab it when nobody's looking.  When Daddy opens the cupboard where the treats are stored I immediately follow him till he gives me treats.  My favorite way of getting treats is when I turn on my puppy dog look - and beg.  Look at these photos - how can you resist giving me treats when i turn on my puppy charm.

Blogger's Note: A guest post from Midori the Beagle

Revisiting O' Sonho ( Portuguese Cuisine )

We have been to O' Sonho before - that was a while back. So visiting the restaurant again was really like it's a new experience. I remember loving their Chorizo Sisig so we had that. Since we were having Portuguese food, we also ordered Peri-Peri Chicken.

If you are looking for good Portuguese food - and have no time to go to Macau, Portugal or Brazil - I totally recomment visiting O' Sonho.  They have a number of branches in Metro Manila.  My favorite destination is Jupiter St. in Makati.

O'Sonho Portuguese Cuisine

Chorizo Sisig

Peri Peri Chicken

Battling the Salagubang

After a tiring day at the beach, the queens were ready to turn in.  The sun has just set.   We entered our cottage and found insects on the cottage floor.  They looked like cockroaches - but they're not.  I thought they looked like salagubang  or june beetles.  I used to play with them when I was a kid.  Now that I'm all grown up - I can't even hold them.    We were actually fine with them on the floor ... then one of them started whizzing next to us and we were officially scared of them.

Light Attracts the Salagubang. 
So we asked the care takers of the resort if they can help us.  Maybe use an insecticide to kill them.  They said - that the insecticide might work but the best way of dealing with them is to switch the lights off.  Apparently - salagubangs are attracted to light.  They are also found in mango trees ( and there were a lot of them around the area ).  I checked the internet - and they were right.

It's common to find them on Mango Trees.

We actually wanted to continue the night by catching up on our readings --- but the salagubangs were really freaking us out - so we switched off the lights - and went to bed.  Before going to sleep - I said a little prayer - praying that the salagubangs do not come onto my bed while I was sleeping.

They were tiny salagubang. And yet - they freak us out. What if they fly into our ears or mouth?

I'm just happy there are none of these in the city.

Dining Before Super 8

Saturday was a really rainy day in Manila.  Nothing much you can do during rainy days but stay indoors.  So we decided to watch Super 8.  I told the queens that I read somewhere that it's a "heart-warming" movie.  They gave me strange looks and asked - how a suspense-thriller can be "heart-warming".  After the movie - they will not agree with me when I said - "See - it is a heart-warming movie."   Of course I'm strange like that.  I almost cried in the Predator vs. Alien Movie -- when the Predator acknowledged the human soldier as a warrior and spared her life.

Back to Super 8 - I told the other queens that watching Super 8 seems like watching tidbits of old movies like: "ET", "Close Encounters of the Third Kind", "Men In Black", and other Steven Spielberg movies.  Don't you think that scene when the boy let go of his locket is a mashed up version of ET and CE3K?  Again - the other queens look at me as if I'm speaking a foreign language.

Anyways - I'm not here to talk about Super 8.  I'm here to talk about what I ate before we went to the cinema.  I wanted comfort food on this rainy day so we went to Kitchen.  We noticed that Kitchen seems to be the new Se-gay-fredo.   For those who can recall - the coffee shop Segafredo used to have gay men hanging out and having dinner before they head out to the clubs.  Kitchen - that night - seems to be like that.   Almost all of the patrons of the restaurant are gay.

So what did I order?  I had fried ribs.  We also had that banana-pie-thingy.   After eating what we ordered - I felt comfort  Which was good.  Being comfortable before the suspense-filled Super 8 movie helped a lot to get through the scary and frightening scenes of the movie.

Laiya Coco Grove

LaiyaMidori in the CountryBasketRural Food DogTeaching Char Siew how to Swim
TreeReflectionTired FeetCoconut GroveInto the Woods
Dark CottageTree HouseDeep in ThoughtTired MidoriCrossing the Bridge
Teaching Midori how to SwimMidori SwimmingLife Savers Anyone?Mango
Follow the Path

Laiya, a set on Flickr.

Coco Grove in Laiya Batangas is one of our best discoveries this summer. It is actually the result of our search for a resort that will allow us to take our two dogs on a beach vacation.   Coco Grove is a Pet Friendly resort in the Philippines.

The resort has access to the beach, a pool, a nature trail, and a zip line. 

There are three choices for your accommodation: the poolside rooms, the beach side tree houses, and if you feel like roughing it - the tents. We opted for the poolside room. The rooms had air conditioning. However - they don't have TV. There is wi-fi at the dining area.

Part of the package are breakfast, lunch and dinner. The food was not great but it was ok. We paid 2700++ per person.

All in all - it was a good resort. I'd recommend it for families and groups of friends ( and those with dogs ) to check it out.