where good deeds are rewarded with apples & the bad with lemons

Food makes the better lover…

… it gets sweeter with every encounter, loves you unconditionally through thick (read: fat) and thin, and it never disappoints you, ever, not unless it isn’t prepared right. In which case, the chef will always give you a replacement and/or not let you pay for the whole meal.

Forever favorite- Tricie’s (of Cellar de Boca) Strawberry Shortcake

This Valentine’s week seems to prove my point why food is the best company (aside from good friends) in singledom (by choice), at least from my point of view.

I just have re-embarked in an exercise regimen and diet program. For three consistent days, it was successful. Then came the weekend, the designated cheat day. From then on, I have been cheating, shamelessly, against my diet.

That makes me a philanderer, when it comes to food that is. I love so many that sticking to one is impossible, how else should you enjoy the world’s diverse cuisine? This philandering, though, applies only to food and not to human relationships, not unless I want trouble, BIG trouble.

So I came face to face with my “forever lovers” and met a few new ones this week. Call it “isang linggong pag-ibig” for they conveniently showed up a day after each other. Its Seemingly choreographed appearance drove me deeper and deeper into the abyss of sin and farther from my target weight (which involves a – and not a +).

The plummeting started when the Havaianas captain hollered “All aboard!”….

It was my first visit to Cellar de Boca it and I got the wonderful retro vibe of the defunct Saluti—the company and the food. Making it back to the menu is a favorite— the Spicy Aglio Olio Pasta….

Aglio Olio Pasta

plus a new to-die-for savory— the Angus Beef Belly Sisig. I don’t fancy sisig but this one sang in my mouth.
US Angus Beef Belly Sisig
Light appetizer- Eggplant Frito with zesty Alioli Sauce

Culinary sailing at Havaianas nautical themed luncheon
with Maya Padillo, Tricie Arcenas, Marga Nograles & Kenneth Ong.

Then the snake (in the Chinese calendar) was ushered in. Lotus Court at the Marco Polo Hotel whipped up one fine, wide spread. In this “House of Buchi”, all my meals start and end with the golden ball and in between, I feast on the other favorites—the Peking duck and Ha Kao dumpling among others. For me, it is always a celebration to dine in this restaurant.

Lotus Court’s all-powerful Buchi
The Peking Duck
Ha Kao Dumpling
Dragon Dancing on the Snake year with Kenneth Ong, Patty Tan, Anavi Ramos & Stella Estremera

The affordable Japanese feast came next. Where else can you have an eat-all-you-can sushi (at P 269 until the end of the month) in town but in Teriyaki Boy in Abreeza Mall. While I was umami-ing over my Gyoza, I met three more lovely dishes— the Tempura Tuna Sashimi Tartare, the Tofu Steak and the Tebasaki (Japanese-style double fried chicken wigs), three entries more in my must-have list from the menu (funny how my choices starts with the letter T).

Tofu Steak
Tebasaki
Tempura Tuna Sashimi Tartare
Umami-ing over Teriyaki Boy’s sushi fare with Nikki Tan & Ian Garcia

When there is a scheduled trip to Paradise Island Beach Resort, I have to be there real early for the following reasons—catch as much sun, soak in the cool clear waters and feast on their food.

Food & service in this resort is A-1.

This resort’s food and service I rank A-1, I dare say even surpassing the fancy resorts in the island, which is not surprising why it is the most popular destination in Samal. There I was introduced to a new lover— the Vegetable Omelet, it’s heavenly.

Surprisingly delicious- the Vegetable Omelet
Weekday splashing with Jin & Jenny at Paradise Island Beach Resort in Samal  Island

On the day of the hearts, my “other lovers” (read: good friends) met up at Casa Josefina (a private place) for the group’s annual “I don’t do Valentine’s” Dessert Party. Can Valentine’s Day get any sweeter than this? The most popular for the group is the Apple Pie, and the Nutella Pie coming in second. But I had my eye (and taste buds) for the Carrot-Banana Cake and the Dark Choco Nutella Cookies. If one piece of the latter is better than sex, imagine what a jarful is.

Naked loaf. The Carrot-Banana Cake sans the Cream Cheese topping
Better than sex- the Dark Choco Nutella Cookies

If I made it to Mandaya Hotel, Mesa Grill and Dong Juan, it would really be a sin-full week for me. It’s a blessing in disguise that I didn’t. I saved myself from possibly adding an inch or two around the waist. But the month is not over yet and as each food-filled day passes, I am beginning to think that Elizabeth Browning’s Sonnet 43 must be dedicated to food. Food, after all, does make a better lover.

For more lifestyle & travel stories, visit http://apples-and-lemons.blogspot.com/ and http://jeepneyjinggoy.blogspot.com/



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