Bag of Beans (Charito) in Tagaytay

I can't believe that we have been frequenting Tagaytay for more than a decade now and not once have I written about Bag of Beans! I tried searching all over this blog and I found..nothing. To think that not a single trip to Tagaytay, back then, would ever be complete without stopping by Bag of Beans for lunch or merienda. I must have been to engrossed with their coffee and bread that I wasn't able to take photos of the place and their food thus no blog entry. They, after all, have one of the best brewed coffee in Tagaytay and the yummiest bread to go with it too.

Bag of Beans has been an institution in Tagaytay. Just like us, other tourists and visitors would make sure to drop by in order to grab a bite or to take home some of their homemade goodies every time they find themselves in Tagaytay. Bag of Beans started with one branch along the Tagaytay-Nasugbu Main Road across Residence Inn Zoo and it wasn't even overlooking the Taal. While they may lack in having a scenic view, they made up by giving each customer a good experience with their good food, drinks and a relaxing, garden-feel ambiance. 

From one branch a decade back, Bag of Beans now has 5 branches located along the main road of Tagaytay which they have named -- Charito, Athena, Westlake, Summit and the Main Branch. During our recent staycation at Quest Hotel Tagaytay, I have included lunch at Bag of Beans in our itinerary for two reasons -- we miss their food and coffee already and I want to let the twins have an up close view of the Taal Volcano. They do not accept reservation so we just took it up to chance and luck to see if we'll be able to get a table since we got there at exactly 12nn. As I've mentioned that there are more Bag of Beans branches now, we decided to check out Bag of Beans Charito which is located right beside The Cliffhouse where you can find Buon Giorno and Fire Lake Grill. 

This Bag of Beans Charito branch is really pretty! It's definitely a renovated home but they manage to retain the structure and the rooms so you still get the homey feeling the moment you step inside the restaurant. A small door at the right side of the entrance will lead you to the bakery where you can buy some of their famous breads like their Raisin Loaf, Bread Sticks and a few more Tagaytay snacks that you might want to bring back to Manila with you. 

You may opt to be seated inside or if you want to enjoy the beautiful view of the Taal, do request for an outside sitting. Here's a tip though, ask to be seated at the 2nd floor if possible as the view there is really spectacular. The #AngTwins had so much fun exploring the restaurant and the space is quite large so we just let them walk around as they pleased provided they steer clear of the crowded parts so as not to disrupt the other guests and of course, to follow social distancing. As we went there for lunch, we opted to be seated inside as it was a relatively warm sunny day. 

Similar to the main branch, the menu is very simple yet it boasts of Bag of Beans' growing list of specialties. Since we were still semi-full from our heavy breakfast at the hotel, we just decided to order a few things to share. 

Hawaiian Pizza -- For some reason, the #AngTwins doesn't have much appetite whenever we're on a trip. I guess they're just so happy being in a new environment that they're busy soaking up their surroundings and all they want is to play and explore! To be honest, it's been a struggle getting them to eat whenever we travel because they would become extra picky. I know that ordering pizza will be a surefire way to get them to eat and I was right! After all, no kid will ever say no to pizza. I'm so happy that they have Hawaiian Pizza which was loaded with cheese, ham slices and sweet pineapple. It came fresh from the oven and it even has this amazing cheese pull that got Paul and I excited to try too. It was good! I love the crust which didn't had a bread-like texture, it has a nice crunch at the edge and the thickness was just right. 

Carbonara (Php. 410) -- another trick for all parents out there. Go with pasta. Spaghetti Bolognese or Carbonara, noodles will be your best friend. It's also a big big plus that Bag of Beans' Carbonara was so yummy. The serving was quite generous so we all got to try it too. I love the creaminess of the noodles that perfectly coats each pasta strand. It had bits of crunchy bacon and ham too. This is like your traditional Carbonara that your aunt would probably make whenever you visit her home. 

Chicken Teriyaki (Php. 450) -- This was a winning dish and I'm so sorry I wasn't able to take a photo of this as J was so quick to dug into the chicken strips. The taste was very close to those served in Japanese restaurants and I love that it came with stir-fried veggies similar to the traditional Yasai Itame. Very very good! 

Apple Pie (Php. 170) -- Paul really miss Bag of Beans' Pineapple Pie which he had and has been enjoying many years ago. Sadly, they have stopped making this and so he tried the Apple Pie instead. According to him, it was good, the sweetness was just right but his heart still belonged to the Pineapple Pie. Has anyone tried this too? 

You may have noticed how the dishes that we ordered were all very kid-friendly. This is how traveling with kids has been. Gone are the days when Paul and I would go all fancy and try things that are unique to just Tagaytay or Bag of Beans. Today, making sure that my kids are happily fed remains to be my top priority and well, we still enjoyed all the dishes that we ordered that day.  

The serving size was quite generous that we even managed to bring half of the pizza home. Service was as always superb. I have a feeling that Bag of Beans has really long time staff who has been with them since the original branch thus they get to maintain the same level of attention and service that they continue to give to their loyal patrons. It's no surprise why Bag of Beans remains to be one of Tagaytay's must-visit places and really, you just have to allocate time and pray for luck whenever you intend to dine there as the wait for a table can take a while especially during lunch and dinner time. My tip then is to go during off-peak hours to easily secure your table. 

Bag of Beans Charito is located at 150 Emilio Aguinaldo Highway, Tagaytay City. Check out their Facebook page to see the full list of branches.

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