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Crystal Dragon at Nuwa, City of Dreams Manila

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Gone are the days when we can list off all the best and authentic Chinese restaurants available in town. Lately, it seems like they have dwindled in number and what's left are really just a handful of the tried and tested, best of the best, true blue authentic Chinese restaurants. It could probably be due to the pandemic where most Cantonese chefs decided to head home or it can also be the affected F&B industry where we saw a number of really good restaurants bade us goodbye.  Therefore, should you come across a really good restaurant, let's give our all-out support and dine there as often as we can. A few months ago, we discovered Crystal Dragon  upon an invite from my cousin-in-law M. He's such a certified foodie whose recommendations I fully trust. He has been frequenting Crystal Dragon at Nuwa Hotel and after enjoying our first meal there, I instantly knew why M loves it so much.  First of all, the service is top notch. Servers were so attentive and they're ve

Tomo Japanese Dining and Verse Cafe in San Juan City

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It's no big secret how much I love Japanese food. I just can't live without my sashimi and sushi. In fact, I dined and celebrated my 40th birthday at a Japanese restaurant TWICE this year. I think, it's one of those cuisines that I'll never get tired off. Well, the choices are endless as there are just a lot of ways to enjoy your Japanese food. You can have it done in various ways -- teppanyaki, yakitori, teriyaki, deep-fried, raw, with broth, mixed into your noodles or rice and the list goes on and on.  One of our family's favorite Japanese restaurants in the neighborhood is Tomo Japanese Dining . We love this restaurant so much for it's extensive menu options and they also have a coffee shop called Verse Cafe  that's adjacent to it that serves superb coffee and tea drinks. Here's actually a compilation of dishes that we have enjoyed throughout the multiple visits that we have made to these two establishments. The good thing is, you can order from Tomo

Thai SELECT : Mango Tree Manila in Bonifacio Global City

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During my early days of blogging, I used to keep a running list of restaurants that I wanted to try. In fact, it was a dream of mine to dine in all of the new restaurants in town. It sounded possible then albeit rather idealistic but I kept that list for more than decade or so. I even have a Singapore version of the same list when we relocated to the Lion City almost 10 years ago. Was I able to cross off all the restaurants in my list? Almost. It was an expensive activity but Paul and I had fun discovering new restaurants and treating our taste buds to a wide variety of flavors. Majority of these restaurants you can read about in this blog.  Now that I'm now a mom though, not only am I not able to go out as much anymore, my priorities have began to shift. Our family's budget focuses more on our needs vs. our wants and the things that would be for the kids vs. ours. Dining out or ordering food is still something that we love to do but we would focus more on family-friendly estab

Authentically Filipino at Tatatito in Legazpi Village, Makati

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With a number of restaurants offering fusion cuisine or those that aims to inject more creativity into their dishes, rarely do we get to find one nowadays that offers dishes that stay as true and authentic as possible to the original version. After a tearful check out from  Somerset Millennium Makati , we decided to still stay in the area for lunch and that's how we got to discover  Tatatito.   You may wonder why were there tears upon checking out. Well, the twins enjoyed their overnight staycation at  Somerset Millennium Makati   so much that they refused to check out and bid the hotel goodbye. We then had to lure them that we're not heading home yet and we will be checking a new restaurant out in the area instead. That somehow stopped the tears from falling. Oh my staycation-loving babies.  Tatatito was just located a stone's throw away from the hotel. Since we went to dine on a Monday, parking was a bit challenging since the streets were all lined with cars parked by t

Abuela's in Somerset Millennium Makati

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We have this habit of making the most out of our staycation so instead of dining out while having our staycation at a hotel, we normally try to check out the restaurants inside the hotel. This is staycation tip #1 when travelling with toddlers. We just wanted to do away from any logistical nightmare of having to travel far, waiting in line and ending up with two restless and super hangry kids. The best way is to make a reservation at any of the hotel's food establishments and you can just go down just in time for your meal. Our recent stay at Somerset Millennium Makati  was no different. We had our dinner at Abuela's  the only restaurant establishment available in the hotel but while it may be the only in-house dining option, we had no idea that we were in for a delightful FEAST!  Come to think of it, there's a bar available in the hotel but for families like us, you will most likely focus more on Abuela's . Don't be fooled by the name. I initially thought it was

The Suite Life of the #AngTwins : Somerset Millennium Makati

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 "When are we going to the hotel?" This is a common statement heard from our two little kulits here at home. At such a young age, they sure love going on staycations and well I don't blame them. A quick weekend R&R is one that we all need once in a while, right? A month ago, we celebrated Labor Day at Somerset Millennium Makati . It was perfect that we decided to check in on a Sunday so we were able to check out the Legazpi Sunday Market  and were reunited with some of our favorite market finds.  The hotel is located along Aguirre street which is part of Makati's busy business district during weekdays. Weekends, you get a different way chill vibe that I love. I grew up walking around this area as my parents' office was just around the corner and a lot of things have changed since then. I love that some restaurants allow al fresco dining during the weekends making it the perfect place to hang out, having a drink or two and enjoy a good catch up with friends an

Birthday Post: Turning 40 and a look back at my 30s #frannyat40

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Today I celebrate a milestone. Turning 40.  It seems like my 30s was so eventful and packed with so much changes and adventures that somehow it flew by so fast. I still remember celebrating my 30th birthday with family and my bestest friends . It was at a nice cozy restaurant in Quezon City and I even had lechon flown in from Davao! How cool was that?! Who would have thought that months after that, Paul and I would be packing our bags and bidding our lives in Manila temporarily goodbye as we relocated to Singapore . We spent the next 4 years of our 30s living abroad and would just fly in and out of Manila for quick weekend trips to see the family. My 30s was also when I have experienced my two biggest heartbreaks -- the death of my Ama and Kongkong who both have played very important roles in my life. Somehow, not having them around feels like missing two very important puzzle pieces that I'll never ever be able to have back.  As they say though, at the end of a thunderstorm or r