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Life News: Ocean Park Hong Kong Halloween Fest 2017 Invites Pinoys to Face Their Worst Nightmare

Sunday, October 22, 2017



Manila, Philippines | 6 October 2017 – Come one, come all! Ocean Park Hong Kong Halloween Fest 2017, the largest Halloween event in the region, is set to test the limits of fear with an intense nail-biting experience in unparalleled horror. This year’s celebration aims to take the bloodcurdling screams up several notches with 10 haunted attractions and 11 unique experiences, including the first-ever SAW themed attraction in Asia!

Lau Ming-wai, Deputy Chairman of Ocean Park, said, “Our signature seasonal event Halloween Fest is a key milestone in Ocean Park’s 40 years of history. As the pioneer in bringing the Halloween festivity into a theme park environment, we began with only one haunted attraction in our first year. Today, we have grown Halloween Fest to be the largest of its kind in Asia, and we are thrilled to partner with Lionsgate this year to create Asia’s first SAW-themed attraction, which resonates with our commitment to bringing the best Halloween experiences to the region.”

Immersing Guests in Terrifying Experiences from Lionsgate’s SAW
SAW, this year’s headline attraction, is bound to show guests their deepest fears and provide them with unique excitements as the powerhouse SAW film franchise comes to life at Ocean Park. The reverse bear trap, the twisted razor wire maze, and more fatal snares await to evoke psychological terrors for guests. The Jigsaw Killer has laid out his infamous traps for guests to experience firsthand, including a living preview from the long-awaited eighth installment, JIGSAW, which is scheduled to open in theaters on 26 October 2017. 

Joyful Festival by Day, Deadly Party by Night
Bringing the festive ambiance of Mexico's famous traditional celebration Day of the Dead to Ocean Park, this year's transforming attraction offers guests two unique Halloween experiences in Latin American style. In daytime, guests are invited to a jubilant party hosted at Festival of Souls presented by Yahoo! Hong Kong, where dead spirits dress up in colourful UV costumes and put on skull masks for their celebration. By donning a pair of 3D glasses, guests can check out the attraction’s festive decorations and stunning patterns in detail, including the Mexican village and church, while taking plenty of photos with the singing and dancing spirits. However, guests should be aware that the spirits will turn hellish as soon as the sun goes down at 5:30 p.m. during Night of the Dead.  Enraged spirits will spring out of the haunted cemetery in search of live human flesh. Guests will also be trapped by illusion hallway, a mirror maze and even a sinister banquet.

Spooky but Fun Celebrations for Adults and Kids
Ocean Park Halloween Fest has prepared light-hearted Halloween surprises for family guests. At Whiskers Harbour’s Whiskers & Friends Halloween Party, the Park’s beloved mascots will show up together in their brand-new Halloween costumes. Kids can also join a creative mask-making workshop to boost their Halloween look and take photos with all seven of the cute mascots at this fun-filled party. Elsewhere Spooky Candy Factory, the largest outdoor trick-or-treat trail in Hong Kong is returning again for guests to play mini games and win Chupa Chups, Mentos and Tim Tam chocolate biscuits. These two family-friendly attractions will be available daily from 5 to 31 October to spread the Halloween fun across the generations.

Among the 10 Halloween attractions and 11 unique experiences, horror aficionados will also experience other types of intense fear at Rise of the Ancient Evil and Kowloon Ghost City. For the first time ever, PHOBIA Experience, a cluster of haunting attractions including Phobia 17, Dark Maze and Down to Hell presented by Kraft Heinz, is staged to take guests' senses to the limits. More Halloween Fest favourites including Scaremonies – Hell’s Grand Finale and Scare Zone – Alley of the Dead, are also back with guaranteed scares for guests.

So gather up your squad, book a flight to Hong Kong and headline the fear factor challenge brought by Ocean Park Hong Kong! It’s time to put yourself to the test and see where your courage can take you this Halloween 2017!

For more details on Ocean Park Halloween Fest 2017, please visit http://www.oceanpark.com.hk.
*Individual Halloween attractions have different opening times.

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Everything On Sale at Landers Crazy Sale

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

6AM?! Whelp, it wasn't planned, but the Landers team ended up opening the store at 6AM because the queue was so crazy that cars were already piling up up to Quezon Avenue (and hey! this is Balintawak already!). People were already camping out since 3AM, and there were already so many people. They decided that since their cashier attendants had already reported for work, they might as well begin. Tomorrow, they seem to also plan to open at 6AM to accommodate the very warm reception of the public towards their sale. But well, it still depends. 

I understand why the hype was so extreme, as there were really so many good deals, especially that Halloween and Christmas are coming up. It was not a lukewarm sale, as plenty of items were at 50% off, with whole lot more at 25-30% off. This really matters as there are a lot of significant discounts placed on useful everyday items, like toiletries and food. I find it annoying to get to a sale only for the discounts to be on expensive sheds, playgrounds, and children's pools that I won't necessarily need. 

My Nescafé Gold Experience


During Lazada's Superbrands week this year, I got myself a Nescafé Red Mug machine, as well as Nescafé Gold in Latte Macchiato. Perhaps, to describe how good Nescafé Gold is, it tastes like the output off a Nescafé Red Mug machine. 

I recently learned so much about coffee foam. Apparently, foam in coffee is not just some fancy way to charge people more for coffee. In my simple way of understanding it, froth means bubbles, and bubbly liquid means more surface area touching the taste buds. The result is a more flavorful and aromatic experience. 

I couldn't understand at first why my Nescafé Red Mug machine could make any cheap coffee taste nice, even if it's basically just making use of creamer and coffee powder. Turns out, the jet that spews out a stream of hot water to froth the creamer on the mug is the key. I have tried using the machine to froth my milk tea, hot chocolate, and basically everything with creamer, and suddenly, the mundane becomes the extraordinary. 

That explains why this line is special, and how you can really taste the difference that it really is Nescafé Gold. The powder foams by itself as you add hot water, so it's really frothy and creamy, as if it had been made with the help of a milk frother. Or, as if it had been acquired from a fancy coffee shop. 

There are 3 Flavors right now: White Espresso, Latte Macchiato, and Cappuccino. 

Life News: Showcase your #PhotoGoals at the Canon PhotoMarathon 2017

Tuesday, October 10, 2017


Manila, Philippines – The photography community is all abuzz as the much-awaited, largest on-the-spot photography contest opens its doors to Filipinos once again! The Canon PhotoMarathon 2017 is set to happen on October 21 at the SMX Convention Center Hall 4, MOA Grounds, Pasay City, giving Filipinos a platform to showcase their photography prowess and masterpieces. Interested participants can register at http://bit.ly/CanonPhotoMarathonPreReg until October 17, Tuesday.  

Anybody who owns a Canon camera, whether a DSLR, mirrorless, or compact camera, are welcome to participate. The entries will be judged by esteemed Canon Brand Ambassadors according to the relevance to the theme of the entries (50%), creativity in theme interpretation (30%), and the composition of photography with the use of lighting, exposure, and focus (20%).

The photographer of the winning photo will enjoy an all-expense paid trip and will represent the Philippines at the Canon PhotoMarathon grand finals in Japan in 2018.

“We at Canon can’t contain our excitement as we near the date of the Canon PhotoMarathon here in Manila,” said Benny Yu, Director for Consumer Group of Canon Marketing Philippines, Inc (CMPI). “We expect no less from the Filipinos as they unleash their talent and creativity in capturing powerful photos with the help of their Canon cameras, and create a photography breakthrough as they’ve always shown in the past.”

Aside from the main photography contest, the participants will also get access to photography workshops and get their hands on the latest line-up of Canon’s imaging and printing devices.


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Food News: Appreciate the Difference in the New NESCAFÉ Gold Collection

Monday, October 9, 2017


MANILA, Philippines — People who have earned their success know what they want. They work as hard as they play and have developed a keen sense for things they deserve – and they deserve to enjoy nothing short of excellence.

Offering the signature smooth tastes and enticing aromas skillfully fashioned by NESCAFÉ’s coffee masters, the NESCAFÉ Gold Collection introduces itself as the new icon of premium quality coffee. Indulge in a deluxe blend of the finest, handpicked Arabica and Robusta coffee beans, perfectly roasted, finely ground, combined with exquisite milk, and layered with a rich, velvety café froth. Choose from three delicious flavors and discover which one satisfies your taste: Latte Macchiato, Cappuccino, and White Espresso.

Delightfully mild and milky with a creamy finish, the Latte Macchiato hits with just the right sweetness in one cup. Sip on balanced, creamy yet full-bodied flavor that the Cappuccino brings. For a more intense, richer coffee flavor with a pronounced and lingering roasted aftertaste, try the White Espresso. Immerse yourself in a multi-sensorial experience with every cup and instantly enjoy exceptional flavor profiles on-the-go.

Expertly crafted for those who desire a cup of coffee that fits their finer tastes, NESCAFÉ Gold is witness to moments of luxury. With unparalleled attention to details to ensure the gold standard in coffee, the NESCAFÉ Gold Collection provides an elevated coffee experience like no other.

See the difference. Smell the difference. Taste the difference. Appreciate the difference in the new
NESCAFÉ Gold Collection.
Now available for your drinking pleasure in supermarkets, large groceries, and select convenience stores.

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Food News: WIN A YEAR’S SUPPLY OF FINGER LICKIN’ GOOD KFC ON KFC DELIVERY FANS DAY

Friday, September 29, 2017


MANILA, Philippines, 29 September 2017 KFC Delivery Fans Day is an annual event of KFC Philippines that aims to celebrate and give back to its loyalists and delivery service enthusiast. First launched in 2015, it has become a yearly occasion KFC Delivery users look forward to where exciting promos, surprises, and free KFC treats await them.  Now on its third year of celebrating with its most loyal KFC Delivery fans, the #KFCDeliveryFansDay 2017 is back and bigger than ever! 

From September 29 to October 1, 2017, satisfy your cravings for a finger-lickin’ good meal via www.kfc.com.ph and get a chance to be one of the three (3) lucky winners of a one-year supply of KFC Original Recipe Chicken. Joining is simple: register or login to www.kfc.com.ph, select your orders, key in payment details, and wait for the order confirmation. KFC Online Delivery users from September 29 to October 1, 2017 are automatically part of the raffle, so plan your KFC meals with the family or barkada this payday weekend and order your way to an all-year KFC treat care of the Colonel himself! Special surprises and giveaways also await delivery fans in Cavite, Rizal, Cebu, Davao, and Pampanga, as well as select offices and villages in Metro Manila. Keep an eye out for Colonel Sanders and his band of KFC Delivery riders, and get your all-time KFC favorites for free.

As an added bonus, from September 30 to October 31, 2017, KFC Delivery users will also get to enjoy a FREE Coke (1.5L) with every minimum purchase of P500. Don’t miss out on a finger-lickin’ good meal and a chance to win big in this year’s KFC Delivery Fans Day celebration. Order up via www.kfc.com.ph or call 887-8888 (for Metro Manila only) and make today and everyday a so good day.

For more information, visit the KFC Delivery website or any of its official KFC Philippines social media pages.

Food News: Chef Dan Puga II Reigns Supreme with Octopus Sisig Dish at the First-ever Funlasang Pinoy Twist Fest

Sunday, September 10, 2017


After cutting through 160 entries and besting eight other Filipino chef finalists, Chef Danilo Puga II hails as the first-ever Funlasang Pinoy Twist Fest Champion with his original recipe of Octopus Sisig, a spin-off on the classic Pinoy favorite sisig dish. The culinary competition was initiated by Unilever Food Solutions (UFS) Philippines to provide an avenue for Filipino chefs and cooks to showcase their talents and creativity to reignite everyone’s love for Filipino food.


Knorr Funlasang PinoyFinals (August 26, 2017)

It's the final round!!! You may have seen the ads and the calls for entries for Unilever Food Solutions' Funlasang Pinoy competition awhile back. This day was the final challenge round for the contenders, wherein the first ever Funlasang Pinoy winner was born/crowned/lahat na!

Funlasang Pinoy basically is a recipe ideation contest, using Unilever Food Solutions products to give a twist to kaldereta, sisig, sinigang, tapa, and pansit. Out of soooo many recipe entries, they narrowed it down to the top 10 to compete on this day. Out of the 10, 1 was unfortunately unable to compete (though the reasons were not disclosed), hence 9 finalists who battled it out. Criteria for judging, of course, had a big chunk going to how creative the participants were in their recipe twists.

My Kushikatsu Daruma Experience (August 24, 2017)

Thursday, August 31, 2017


NOOOO DOUBLEEEEE DIPPINGGGGGGG!!!!! 

If the tissues, wall signages, menu reminders and all that still don't get to you, then wewwww!!! 

The "No Double Dipping" rule is enforced in Kushikatsu Daruma as it's a Japanese chain. In Japan, wherein shared seating is not unusual, sitting with strangers can and will happen. Traditionally, to prevent waste, Kushikatsu Daruma serves one big tub of sauce per table instead of 1 tub of sauce for each diner. One needs quite a big tub of sauce to be able to properly dip and coat the Kushikatsu, so serving one tub per diner is gonna be wasteful. Since there's just 1 tub per table, and in Japan, strangers could get seated together, which is why there is the practice of no double dipping. In Manila, there is no sharing of tables as far as I know, but this is a tradition that the Manila branch wishes to uphold. 

And now, what actually is Kushikatsu? 

Kushikatsu refers to delectable fried foods on sticks. It sounds so simple in theory, but the management of Kushikatsu Daruma had to send their chefs to Japan for a month to make sure they get the technique perfectly! Frying food seems so basic to us non-Japanese people, but to Japanese people, there is a lot of dynamics to frying. Japanese cooking will consider the batter, type of food being fried, type of fryer, and the things together in a fryer at a given time. Adding a new item to the fryer makes the oil a little bit cooler, so in Japanese philosophy, you'll need to know how to readjust the cooking time of all the other things in the oil with respect to the temperature change. AND I am perfectly sure there is still a much, much longer list of complexities I'll never know of hahahaha 


Food News: Happy Hour at Kushikatsu Daruma

Monday, August 28, 2017


You still can’t double dip your Kushikatsu skewers, the perfect beer chow, but you can now double down on your Chu Hais, our Japanese mixed drinks, while also enjoying a price drop for local beers at Kushikatsu Daruma.

From Mondays through Fridays at 4PM to 9PM, you, your friends, and your workmates can drop by our Uptown Mall restaurant to avail of our Buy 1 Take 1 happy hour promo as you dig into our world-famous Kushikatsu skewers.

San Miguel Light or San Miguel Pale Pilsen beers will cost you just P50 (from P65), while two Chu Hais will only set you back P280! Choose from favorites like Lychee, Kiwi, or Mango Blackberry.

See you soon and kanpai!
Enjoy Happy Hour at Kushikatsu Daruma at Uptown Place Mall (2nd floor), 36th Street Corner 9th Ave., Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City

Life News: CANON GEARS UP AMATEUR PHOTOGRAPHERS IN NEW SEASON OF HISTORY CHANNEL’S PHOTO FACE-OFF


Manila, Philippines – The new season of Southeast Asia’s first and top photography reality competition series Photo Face-off, is set to feature amateur photographers across the region equipped with Canon cameras and printers to deliver stunning and compelling images that capture the “lens-cape” of pop culture taken under pressure. A HISTORY® Asia original production and presented by Canon PhotoMarathon, Photo Face-off Season Four premiers on August 24, 9 pm on HISTORY®.

“In this day and age of compact cameras, camera-equipped smartphones, and instant photo-sharing behavior, it has become easy for anyone to easily take a nice picture, share it with the world, and be instantly recognized as a “photographer”. However, seasoned photographers know that it takes more than that to be really good in the art and craft of photography. Along with eye and talent, a good and fully-equipped camera helps capture a powerful subject that becomes even more interesting when printed with a printer that’s specifically built to bring out the beauty of images,” said Benny Yu, Consumer Group Director of Canon Marketing Philippines, Inc. “This is why Canon has partnered with the HISTORY® Asia, to ensure that the contestants have the right gear to up their game and deliver the best and compelling images they can take even if they are just starting out in photography. They have access to our point-and-shoot range, mirrorless cameras, EOS professional line, and even our specialty photo printers to help them all the way.”

The newly expanded six-part, 1-hour format program will follow the photography adventures of its largest crop of 23 contestants from eight territories who will overcome exhilarating challenges to capture stunning photo stories of popular, socially-trending and culturally-relevant subjects and interests of today.

The fourth successive season of Photo Face-off welcomes back Justin Mott, the resident chief judge and award-winning professional photographer that everyone loves to beat. With over 100 assignments for the New York Times and work featured on the BBC, the reputable photography authority also includes TIME, Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, and The Guardian among his clients. Over and above Justin’s massive internationally renowned photography portfolio, he also runs a studio in Vietnam specializing in commercial photography and video production.

Vibrant, fun and talented Singapore-based Kelly Latimer also returns to host the HISTORY Asia original fan favorite series, just months after welcoming her newborn. She is a popular personality who has hosted a range of programs from motorsports, football, gaming to current affairs.

The first five one-hour episodes of Photo Face-off Season 4 will sweep across Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, Indonesia, and Vietnam. In each of their respective home countries, four local amateurs compete against each other for the single country representative spot in the season’s grand finale.

Among the challenges that the contestants will have to go through include:

1.     thinking quickly on their feet in the “speed” challenges like shooting a bowl of shaved ice dessert before it melts under the hot noon sun;
2.     delivering on a client’s creative brief in “themed” challenges such as getting action shots for an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) ride while going on the bumpy journey themselves;
3.     going head-to-head on the “final face-off” for the two remaining contestants to determine who wins a ticket to Chiang Rai, Thailand for the finale. In this part, Mott also competes against them, and if he is outdone, the winner bags an additional cash prize and bragging rights for beating the award-winning professional;
4.     bracing themselves as wild cards jostle for an additional spot in the finals to join the competition.

The photography adventure will unfold against the backdrop of some surprising and colorful locales such as quaint Malacca in Malaysia, historical Intramuros in the Philippines, and idyllic Bintan in Indonesia – in addition to the bright lights, hustle and bustle of the capital cities.

Prizes at stake include a Canon DSLR, an all-expense-paid trip to participate in the esteemed Canon PhotoMarathon Asia Championship, as well as cash prizes. Together with Justin, local expert guest judges from each territory will judge the works of contestants.

Viewers can also pick up a fresh array of practical photography advice and handy tips from the judges that they can put into everyday use from Photo Face-off.

Food News: Get Ready for a Different Pinoy Gastronomic Experience at the UFS Funlasang Pinoy Twist Fest!

Sunday, August 20, 2017


Manila, Philippines – The thriving food scene in the Philippines has been aggressively growing with different food innovations popping out left and right. With this, Filipinos’ love for food continues to grow, too, together with their developing taste palates and knowledge about different cuisines. Unilever Food Solutions (UFS) Philippines—the maker of Knorr and Lady’s Choice—challenges Filipino chefs and cooks to innovate classic Filipino dishes with fun twists that will surely reignite the appetite of Pinoy diners for their local staples. The culinary showdown happens at the first-ever Funlasang Pinoy Twist Fest on August 26 at Eastwood Central Plaza!

“We have been very excited about this one-of-a-kind culinary competition, which we launched just May of this year. We’ve put this together to create an avenue for our Filipino chefs and cooks across the country to showcase their culinary ingenuity in making Filipino dishes a scene stealer in the dining scene,” said James Benedict Carreon, UFS Philippines Managing Director. “As soon as we saw the entries, we knew that there’s a lot of potential on those dishes and we can’t wait to share them with the Filipino diners and make them excited about their favorite Pinoy dishes like they’ve never felt before.”

After a rigorous selection of more than 160 entries, only ten Filipino chefs and cooks will battle it out at the grand culinary showdown that will start at noon on August 26, 2017 at the Eastwood Central Plaza. Filipino diners can witness firsthand how the finalist chefs unleash their creativity as they create their own take on the beloved and classic Filipino dishes such as sisig, caldereta, pansit, sinigang and tapa using Knorr® products and Lady’s Choice® Real Mayonnaise.

The chefs’ creations will be judged according to the following criteria: creativity of the twist, food presentation, and the use of Unilever Food Solutions products included in the competition. The first-ever Funlasang Pinoy Twist Fest champion will be taking home P100,000 cash prize, exclusive publicity features, and will have his recipe featured in the official Funlasang Pinoy Cookbook.

Aside from witnessing chefs in action, Filipinos from different walks of life and appetite are in for a gastronomic treat as the Funlasang Pinoy Twist Fest becomes a venue for everyone to try different Pinoy dishes that will surely ignite their passion for the Philippine cuisine.

Great tasting food, exciting promos, and special surprises await! Don’t miss out on this one of a kind culinary competition, and a chance to get your stomachs full this August 26.

To know more about UFS and Funlasang Pinoy, visit www.ufs.com.

Max's Tinapay Natin Year 2 Launch (July 20, 2017)

Friday, July 28, 2017


Now on its 2nd year!!! If you have a flair for breadmaking, then be sure to join Max's Tinapay Natin, in cooperation with Pilmico flour! 

Breads play an integral role in Filipino living. Pan de sal of course comes to mind as a Filipino breakfast staple. And then we have a lot of breads like ensaymada which we may not have invented  per se, but it's its own Filipino twist and it has its own place in our hearts. Max's aims to enrich the cultural appreciation for the place of bread in Filipino households, as well as to uphold Filipino traditions and values.  

Tinapay Natin basically is a recipe ideation and execution contest. Entrants are to create recipes for Filipino regional breads (or breads that reflect Filipino traditions in one's community), and a traditiona bread with a modern twist. Entrants not only create the recipes, as they should be able to prepare, ferment, bake, and display their breads within 4 hours. Of course, champions (since this competition will be in teams) will take home a cash prize, but the biggest reward is to have their recipes brought to life and sold in Max's Corner Bakery stores!!! 

Landers Super Crazy Sale (June 14-18, 2017)

Friday, June 16, 2017


Hear ye! Hear ye! From now till Sunday, it's Landers' Super Crazy Sale!!! 

Mom and I went to Landers yesterday so we can snag discounts on meat and frozen foods. In general we've been so busy lately, so I've been eyeing to buy chicken nuggets, dumplings, and other frozen foods that are easy to prepare. 

I thought I'd share some photos of the energy in the air at the sale. It was crowded, but thankfully they got rid of the surprise sales, so it's a lot more peaceful and orderly compared to what most would remember of past super sales. If I may say, there were plenty of guards and ushers making sure that lines are orderly, mobile, and that shoppers in line to pay were not a nuisance to shoppers still walking around. 

Baked Cheese Tart

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Bake Cheese Tarts have somehow become the default pasalubong from Hong Kong. They're expensive, hard to get, and delicious. I know cheese tarts here in Manila have also attracted long lines, but those lines basically were just inspired by the lines that Baked Cheese Tart caused. 

Located in Sogo mall, I remember vividly that in the starting days of this store, there was even a line to the line! Yes, there is a line to fall in line! There is a pre line area in a forlorn corridor in the grocery section, and only when the actual line in front of the Baked Cheese Tart store has shortened a bit will store staff allow people from the corridor line to move to the store line. So yes, there is a line to fall in line. Craaaay. 

#MondaysMadeBetter with Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf

Monday, June 5, 2017

Yes, I know, Mondays are horrible. I am so happy that UP doesn't hold classes on Mondays because Mondays are the most abominable thing of all. 

CBTL gets that, too, that's why they decided to make Mondays less horrible by having a discounted ice blended beverage every Monday at just Php100! Be sure to always follow their social media accounts because they choose a different flavor to highlight every week. The week I went, their Mango Ice Blended was discounted that day to Php100. 

Date With Mama At Nono's (May 10, 2017)

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Thank you so much again, Nono's!!! 

Mom and I were sooo pampered when they treated us to a Mother's Day date early this month! 

Nono's is now a UPTC favorite we'll always look forward to because of all the homestyle favorites they serve. Chef Baba's vision for this restaurant is to be the sanctuary of all our childhood favorites, reminiscent of the goodness of home. I guess the right word to describe the place is "kanlungan" when it comes to the concept of the food. I felt that the foods brought this feeling of safety and security, because of all the homey feels to them. 

This concept was also conceived by Chef Baba somehow as a tribute to her dad whom she fondly calls Nono. 

Food News: Time to Show Your Pinoy Dishes with a Twist through the ‘Funlasang Pinoy’ Culinary Cook-off

Monday, May 29, 2017




24 May 2017, Philippines – As a staple in dining tables, Filipino dishes rarely get their much-deserved appreciation from Filipino diners themselves. However, in other countries such as the United States, London, Canada, and Germany, our well-loved classics are gaining popularity. As such, Unilever Food Solutions (UFS) Philippines challenges chefs and cooks across the country to make classic Pinoy dishes more exciting by putting flavorful twists that will bring these dishes to the spotlight.

In a culinary competition dubbed as ‘Funlasang Pinoy’, Filipino chefs and cooks are invited to showcase their creativity by innovating the classic recipes of pansit, sinigang, kaldereta, tapa, and sisig with a different and creative twist they could think of. The competition runs until July 15, 2017.

“Our local cuisine is an amazing treasure that we Filipinos are proud of. However, as the dining scene gets more crowded with a variety of choices and evolving palate of diners for good food, there’s obviously a need to make our classic Pinoy dishes more current and interesting,” said James Benedict Carreon, Managing Director of UFS Philippines. “This is why we have launched this competition—to encourage more culinary experts to unleash their ingenuity in the kitchen and create fun and interesting Filipino dishes with a twist that will surely reignite and pique their diners’ interest for Filipino food.”

The Competition

To join the competition, cooks and chefs in the Philippines should come up with their recipes showing their own creative takes on the classic pansit, sinigang, kaldereta, tapa, and sisig dishes. The challenge? Think of a delicious twist and go as far as they can from the original dish to create exciting new recipes using Knorr® products and Lady’s Choice® Real Mayonnaise.

These recipes and their corresponding dish shots should be submitted to www.ufs.com/FunlasangPinoyPromo until July 15, 2017. All entries will be judged according to the following criteria: creativity of the twist, food presentation, and the use of Unilever Food Solutions products included in the competition.

The top 10 finalists to be announced on July 30 will be able to present their chosen recipes in a live cook-off in front of esteemed experts from the Philippine culinary industry and diners during the first ‘Funlasang Pinoy Twist Fest’ slated to happen in August 2017. Their recipes will also be featured in the official Funlasang Pinoy Cookbook to be published soon after.

In addition to this, the first-ever Funlasang Pinoy Twist Fest champion, who will have the most unique and delicious recipe among all dishes, will receive an additional P100,000 cash prize and exclusive publicity features.

The Bigger Cause

Aside from launching this competition for the Filipino chefs and cooks, UFS also hopes to use this as an avenue to create a bigger impact in the Philippine culinary scene.

“By initiating this endeavor, we hope to put the limelight back to Filipino cuisine and re-ignite the love of our fellowmen for our own local dishes. Through the talents of our genius culinary experts, and with the help of the right products, Pinoy dishes can be more fun, interesting, and keep up with the competitive landscape of the food industry,” added Carreon.

To know more about the UFS Funlasang Pinoy competition, visit www.ufs.com.

Nono's Menu

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Just thought I'd publish in this one post the menu of Nono's! Because I do have another post where I will focus on the food hehehe..

Food News: Chef Baba Ibazeta-Benedicto and the journey to Nono’s

Tuesday, May 16, 2017


Chef Baba Ibazeta-Benedicto has built a loyal following over the years, following the success of the desserts at Classic Confections. With her “classic with a twist” philosophy in the kitchen, she takes the simple, classic, and familiar, makes them with the best ingredients, and then adds her personal creative twist.

But before she became a popular patissier, Chef Baba Ibazeta-Benedicto was a kid with a flavorful childhood.

While most youngsters her age got their hands dirty from playing in the streets, young Baba made the kitchen her playground—a place where her hands rolled in flour and her clothes were stained with colorful frosting. Here, she found her true calling.

She owes her fondness of cooking to their family cook, Warlita. Baba recalls spending afternoons with Warlita baking cookies, brownies, and cupcakes. Baba’s mom, Sylvia, encouraged Baba by  enrolling her in summer baking programs that honed her skills at such a tender age.  After college, Baba decided to delve into the culinary arts seriously, so she studied at the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco, California.

Following her return to the Philippines and her success in the local pastry scene, Chef Baba felt that she was ready to move a step forward. But this time, she’s doing it by looking back.

Nono’s and the recipes from the good old days
With meals worth craving for, amidst inviting, pastel interiors that have the warmth of family diners, Nono’s is definitely the go-to place of people who constantly seek the tasty comfort that comes from the dishes of their young and carefree days. 

Located at the U.P Town Center, Nono’s was named after Chef Baba’s father and offers dishes that hark back to her childhood.

Nono’s is a personal journey into my childhood and home. As I began to dream of a restaurant and what type of food I would want to create, I was deeply drawn to—and inspired by—my favorite home-cooked childhood meals and snacks. To me, those meals are my comfort food and were the inspiration jumping point to establishing Nono’s. Comfort food is simple. It is heartwarming. It is nourishing. It is home --Nono’s  is home.” Chef Baba shares.
For Chef Baba, nothing brings her back to the fond memories of family celebrations like the Spaghetti Bolognese. Made using Warlita’s tried and tested recipe, it has a meaty goodness that’s called for during special occasions, or for when you’re just craving something good and hearty.

Nono’s also stays true to the classics with its Mac & Cheese that Chef Baba refers to as one of the dishes she first learned to cook as a child. It’s rich, creamy, and has a cheesy kick that reminds you of after-school merienda.

And while on the nostalgia train, one can’t help but savor the flashbacks of juvenile happiness as you bite into the crispiness and savor the tender goodness of Nono’s Homestyle Fried Chicken. According to Chef Baba, her team took least 20 trials just to perfect their Fried Chicken recipe–it’s definitely a must-try!

Comfort Food Done Right

Following a personal philosophy of classics with a twist is another specialty at Nono’s. Baba enjoys taking the simple, classic, and familiar, making them with the best ingredients, and then adding her personal creative twist.

Innovating on familiar flavors also works with Nono’s just as well as it did with Classic Confections. Chef Baba shares while they serve food that are familiar to the Filipino palate, they usually replace a common ingredient with a more premium choice.

For instance, Pork Belly Balsamic Adobo is a new take on the staple Filipino dish. Instead of using the regular vinegar, the pork was slow-cooked in soy sauce and balsamic vinegar for an hour, giving the meat a sweeter and less acidic character.

Missing those classic gooey cheese sticks? Nono’s takes them to different level with their Truffle Cheese Wontons. This  starter uses parmesan and mozzarella, and further elevates their flavors with drizzles of honey and earthy truffle oil.

Their French Onion Soup is crowned with a beautifully cheesy mess of gruyere, parmesan, and melted mozzarella artfully overflowing on the edges of the bowl. As you dig through molten cheese, the crunch of onions greets your spoon, while warm beef broth beckons you to dunk your sourdough bread.

The Sweet finish

Any meal this hearty deserves a sweet finish. Aside from serving a great selection of comfort food, Nono’s is also home to a wide variety of cakes and pastries. 

There is Chef Baba’s well-acclaimed Nono’s Chocolate Oblivion, which was hailed by critics as one of Manila’s finest. You'll also find classic desserts such as Red Velvet Cake, Meline’s Chocolate Cake, and Honey Crunch Cake. But if you prefer something fruity, your palate will be just fine with the familiar flavor of Lemon Torte, Banana Cream Pie, Calamansi Bars, and Sylvia’s Strawberry Shortcake.

Nono’s also serves Cookie Skillet a la mode. Here, you have a choice between chocolate chip or brownie cookie that is freshly baked and topped with Vanilla iced cream, salted caramel, and chocolate fudge sauce.

The restaurant also sells whole cakes, freshly baked breads, and cookies for customers to enjoy at home.

Food News: Kuya Tonipet's TIKIMystery Ep. 2

Monday, May 15, 2017


Episode 2 na! If last time it was Lechon Sinigang, it's Meatball Caldereta this time! And we learn from Ched Fernando Aracama why Pinoy fusion cuisine is all the rage nowadays. Find out more in Kuya Tonipet's new video!



Food News: Kuya Tonipet's TIKIMystery Ep. 1

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Hmmmm what's cooking?! Kuya Tonipet, a popular foodie, has a TIKIMystery challenge! What might be it about? Hmmmm... 

Kuya Tonipet has discovered that Pinoy dishes can be more exciting especially those cooked with a twist. He has launched a 3-part video series that challenges Pinoys to a TIKIMystery Challenge where they find out the twists in different classic Pinoy dishes. This video is part 1! 


Food News: Bien Bien Chi Meal Subscription

Sunday, March 5, 2017


If you are in San Juan and in nearby areas, do not fear of hunger as Bien Bien Chi's family subscription is here! Pay only Php380 for each "tiap tsay" subscription day to get two dishes of viands good for 3-4 persons. No MSG, just great food!

Check out their March menu:


Saga Wagyu At New World Manila Bay (February 23, 2017)

Friday, March 3, 2017

I used to think I knew what beef is about until I tried authentic high grade wagyu! 

Wagyu, sadly, I think, is a term that is over abused. Almost every single restaurant will advertise having wagyu beef, when a lot of times, the beef probably isn't wagyu. Like the cow could be Japanese but did not grow up with the techniques and diet used on what would count as a wagyu cow. And actually, who are we kidding? Oftentimes we see the meat already cooked, if not mostly cooked, that we never really get to see if the marbling is as nice as we'd hope it'd be. 

I am privileged to have been invited to New World Manila Hotel to see the wonders of Saga Wagyu beef for myself and taste what really is authentic wagyu. I used to think I knew wagyu with my tries before, but I realized that all the other times I've tried this, I was probably fooled because I don't remember my past experiences being as profoundly life changing as this. 

Food News: New World Manila Bay Hotel Brings the World’s Best Beef

Tuesday, February 28, 2017



Saga- beef cattle are raised using expert breeding techniques in the rich natural environs of Saga Perfecture. The calm climate, beautiful water and clean air form ideal conditions for cattle rearing. Raised through the careful management of local farmers, the processed meat is distinguished by a beautiful, fine-grained marbling known as tsuya-sashi, or glossy marbling. 


For the month of May, New World Manila Bay Hotel brings this glorious centerpiece that will surely define every meat lovers’ dining experience. To start off, plan a lunch buffet on a Saturday at Market Café, where the Japanese buffet section offers an enticing array of appetizers, sushi, and a build-your-own teppanyaki featuring saga beef with stir fry vegetables. For privacy, sophistication, and a deeper appreciation of saga beef, book a Steak and Sake dinner at The Fireplace on 6 May, Saturday. A sit-down dining affair featuring Saga beef is also complemented with sake from boutique producers across Japan led by guest Chef Shimoyama.


Japan is known for its premium meats, but with saga beef’s superior breeding technique that starts with a 9- month old calf, raised in a stress-free farm and fed only with saga- rice straw blended with grain- based feed, you certainly cannot go wrong with its high quality. Since Saga Perfecture is a world famous beef sensation that’s truly hard to find, why not make your move and place a booking today? After all, this is for a limited time only and the most delicious destination that is guaranteed to take you closer to Japan’s most iconic beef.


For reservations, call +63 2526888 or email dining.manilabay@newworldhotels.com About New World Manila Bay Hotel New World Manila Bay Hotel is a deluxe hotel located at the center of Manila business district with easy access to business and shopping areas, including Mall of Asia, the largest shopping mall in Metro Manila.The hotel is nearby historical attractions such as Intramuros and the Cultural Center of the Philippines.

The hotel features 376 guestrooms and suites, Residence Club executive floors, six dining options, an outdoor pool, a fitness center and a spa.  Meeting and event space includes a ballroom and four meeting rooms.  The hotel is part of a complex that includes a 150,000-square-foot casino.

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