Taal Vista Lodge, Tagaytay City, Philippines


Savor the best in center table offerings amidst shivery atmosphere,
crisp refreshing inhales of oxygen, atop views of world acclaimed Taal lake, greeneries
and hmmmmm re-invigorating breeze.
Join me as we delve into their “bragging rights”.
One sunday, was in my usual “alone again naturally” state,
my legs and driving acumen led me to, once more, dive into adventure and gear up to Tagaytay City,
the fave destination of many for food, sights and weather.
About 80-90 kms from Manila and 15-18 kms from my place.
Lunch time that was and found me seated by the buffet area.
Oh OK go for it…murmured to myself.



Create Your Own FIA Salad

Create Your Pinoy Salad


Sisig Area


First Batch

My second take post salad.

My 2nd batch



That’s about all. Am full. I am just the “tikim guy” anyway and shelled out Php1,300++ for such.
BTW, “tikim” means mainly savouring/taste test to find out whether outstanding
or should be delegated outside the mess hall for their ain’t appropriateness
…due to rancidity or blandness or toughness to wrong process utilization plus the other heck of criteria.
Seriously, for the food preps, I will rate Veranda 8 out of 10.
More so the overnight marination of grilled boneless chicken in honey, lots of honey,
soy sauce, brown sugar, ground black pepper, chili powder,
very subdued acidity of lemon (I think) or vinegar though gas grilled bit well done is a “must try”.
That prep caught my attention.
Did not show here the shot of roasted beef as some non-rare to mid-rare eater readers
might be horrified in sight of leaking off reddish-pink blood when sliced
…but they do welcome roasting further to medium-well to well-done.

Ham’s curved pork skin-brown seared to simulate “Hawaiian Style” was really tough.
Lean tasted sugar sweetened with hints of I don’t know. But “curing” is well attained.

The views worth staring at to re-charge:




Rooms to stay-perfect site, function and event halls-ideal
and wide play ground awaits kids’ run and about.

Did not take shots of rooms and other facilities as I was not on pre-approved blog writing visit.
Anyway, here’s their link:

Thumbs up.
Highly recommended to visit.

Soon…an austere new “burger” chomp-up is to be a catchword.

Burgasm Slutty Burger

One of the 2 requests ( an infant burger joint at Kamias and a native resto at Novaliches both in QC)
to drop by and savour their magnum opus 
then issue comments, positive & constructively negative, for the better.
As always, wouldn’t agree to free tasting as I do not wish to be beholden
thereby spelling out ONLY positive sides.
Further, would like to gear-in at an “unexpected” day & hour to catch them off-guard
that authentic site movements are evident thus remarks will be truthful.
Above is from BURGASM.
135-A Kamias Street, Quezon City, Philippines.
New, un-assuming, austere place.
Home made patties are  “electric grilled/griddled”
 where serrated pan is used to simulate grill marks. 
No basting at all.
When I got in, approached the counter and asked for their best seller,
Marc, cashier/prep & grill guy, was astounded of the way I ordered their SLUTTY JOE (2 patties):
buns separate, patties left un-topped of whatever their toppings/garnishings are, no sauce, no spreads…
just plain patties-ALL others are on the side, and a knife + fork.
This is the way we can really taste and deconstruct “the burger”.
How will you know the truthfulness of the patty if the toppings
(ham , bacon, lettuce, cheese(s), ek-ek, etc) are towering. 
This takes the attention of eater AWAY from the patty.
Given such, may I ask, what are you hiding in your patty?
Are they truly as you claim?
My head-mate (both bald nyahahaha) and shooting buddy, Shihan,
got an Orgy Cheese, a 3-cheese presentation.

STEAMY CARBONARA is A-OK. Priced at ONLY Php60.00 per serving, this is a great buy. Creamy. Simple prep. For me, will drizzle a bit (very very little) of salt.

SLUTTY JOE ( a bit high priced at Php190.00)
PATTIES lack the “ango” of beef. Whether it is local or imported, when grilled it gives out this ango” aroma and taste…more so if beef comes from USA, Australia, Canada and New Zealand. I do believe local or NONE at all was used. This is OK though but infusing a lot of extenders like flour, TVPs, chicken MDM and ground pork could have been abundantly utilized that end taste is mashed-up. Not starch. For if it was used-then patty won’t break when grilled/griddled. On breaking up-binders could have solve it. Can’t seem to bite on onion and celery that are endemic to burgers. Boost up a bit on salt and pepper that it may be good to go. Patties are hand formed that thin edges go up to thick middle part-then rounded. This maybe a pleasant sales appeal (being hand formed) but let’s flatten them a bit (this ensures even cooking). Very cheap patty formers are available at cook-stores in major malls. Lastly, but very vital, NO BASTING was utilized. Basting solutions, more so if oil is incorporated, aside from rendering good taste, protect patties from initial burst of heat & flame. Evident are the burnt outskirts. Suggesting for “char-grilled” item.Better aroma. Greater tasting. Will expound more on this Kendrick when  we meet.

SIDES…for me they’re all JUST sides, incidental to burger. Should you offer good tasting patty-no need for mountainous ek-ek.




Above comments are meant to improve, in my honest opinion, the flight of BURGASM
in this world of technological food business endeavours.
No harm is intended unto this young, new, budding MAGNATE.
All  done in the spirit of:
BURGASM’s FB page: https://www.facebook.com/search/top/?q=burgasm%20avenue



(Parboiled Pork Belly Butter Fried-Sprinkled with Texan Meat Rub)

Pork belly is one of the most modifiable parts of pig meat.
Be it roasted, grilled, fried, BBQed, be processed into bacon strips, “sinigang” (tamarind soup base with veggies), “nilaga” (plain boiled and dumped with vegetables different from “sinigang”) and countless more divergence.
A friend’s firm, BAI’s, technologically and methodically preps imported “liempo”
into “Lechon Cebu-Style”.
Note my word imported.
Fact is, they only utilize pork belly either from:
Canada, USA, France or Germany.
The best tasting, well rounded-off ingredients’ mix and lingering skin crispness I’ve munched in my life.
The packaging presentation is the height of marketing proficiency which is why blogger-clients never miss featuring it A.&.A. (again and again)
Those in Metro Manila, Philippines, you may wish to try this “magnum opus”.
And I dare you to do so.
Click here:
For now, we’ll do some easy-stepped offering for your family’s
center table dish, lunch or dinner.
Parboiled then butter fried and sprinkled with my own
“Texan Meat Rub”
…which we’ll generously dust unto still hot newly fried slices.
Note on this procedure: because when you sprinkle it before frying
desired flavour is un-attainable.
Spices-herbs mix will just slip out to hot oil.

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes
Total time: 55 minutes
Cooking media: boiling & frying pans, kitchen turner or flat laddle (“siyanse”)
stainless bowl, wire whisk

½ kilo liempo”, sliced ½ inch thick

1 liter tap water
10 grams salt (any)
5 grams ground black pepper

1/8 bar butter
80-100 ml. palm oil

15 grams salt (any)
6 grams sugar
2 grams ground black pepper
2 grams chili powder
2 grams paprika powder
3 grams ground nutmeg
2 grams ground coriander
3 grams ground thyme


  1. Pour all ingredients of Texan Meat Rub unto bowl and tumble well with wire whisk until fully blended. Set aside.
  1. Into boiling pan, add Parboiling Mix. Toss well. Dump in “liempo” slices.
  2. Bring to boil until meat are to your desired tenderness. Scoop out and set aside.
  1. In oil, melt butter. Start frying “liempo” by batches to your preferred done-ness.
  1. Upon retrieving, while still hot, lay unto serving plate nicely. Using fingers, sprinkle on both sides enough Texan Meat Rub.
  1. Garnish should you wish. Serve your eye-popping different “liempo”.

DISCLAIMER: Above are test kitchen and household-produced dishes. All ingredients utilized are of food grade quality passing international and domestic sanitary standards. While we find the results highly acceptable, no guarantee nor explicit assurance is hereby issued when recipe is performed by readers. For one, although of similar breed, spices, herbs and other ingredients vary from country to country/region to region that possibility of affecting end taste, aroma & bite-feel is great. Further thereto, mentioned sensory evaluation (aroma, taste, mouth-feel) is subjective.

AVILES…the Original House of “Bulalo”

Aviles Original Bulalo

AVILES…the Original House of “Bulalo”

In this aged life of mine, I’ve tasted different types of Bulalo (boiled beef shank).
From the very bountiful addition of cabbage, pechay, Baguio beans and corn to
mega affluent pouring of beef flavored cubes or powder.
Overall taste is apparently doused with combination of the above
enticing clients that their prep is “authentic” or “original” or “the best”.
You exclaim WOW when they flood you with lorry loads of extra soup
clearly dumped with whole black peppercorns.

Sorry. Not for me.
I go for the real taste of beef.
This I found with Aviles’ Bulalo.
No veggies. Plain boiled beef and I love it.
A bit cured, I supposed, as lean meat is evidently pinkish.
Still the same aroma, taste and presentation the first time I went here in 2006.
Soup, also aplenty and refillable, has that authentic “lasa” of boiled beef in a gigantic
vat, with abundant beef bones, and done over and over again.
This gives its prep genuine aftertaste.
Haven’t you witnessed this in side streets of Hongkong
where souped noodles are heavenly?

No more adjectives here.
I urge you to visit the place and scan for yourselves.





SInaing Na Tuna

“Sinaing Na Tuna”

Our Ulam

And we decided to stay in the air conditioned area.

Aircon Area2

Bought some “Pasalubong” before stepping out.


Highly recommended. 
Bring your loved ones and friends. You won’t regret the experience despite the travel.

National Highway, Real, Calamba City, Laguna
Tel: (049)545 2772

Dancing Crab (Singapore)


Our last day of visit that my daughter, Cha, spouse Anton, plus a friend…Jigger of the famous Casa Marcos treated us to an array of fresh sea food down at The Grandstand, Singapore…DANCING CRAB.



Big table is well covered with pristine white paper (type of “greaseproof” or “sulphite” paper used to line burger patties to prevent sticking to each other during storage, biscuits, butter etc.). Each is handed plastic disposable apron and lots of tissues.

At entrance we chose these:




Served. Bare hands…must.




My balding head perspired a lot. Sign that I’d loved the food. More so after generous drops of Sriracha and 2 bottles of cold beer.

Price? Pricey but worth it.

Service? Not so fast.

Overall taste of food? I prefer the simple approach for seafood…blanched…dip in garlic-vinegar-salt mix.

I strongly recommend.

Check their site: http://www.dancingcrab.com.sg/index.php#3