Thursday, July 21, 2016

AMPR Digital Appreciation Night at Cuore Bistro and Social Lounge

Makati's Jupiter Street is known to be one of the busiest streets in the city where KTV bars and restaurants serving different cuisines are found open even in wee hours as they cater to customers that just want to relax and chill after a stressful day at work. I am not really familiar with the establishments in that area but I was able to visit a few to cover events. 

Last June 23, I get to wander Jupiter Street once more as I look for a newly opened restaurant, the Cuore Bistro and Social Lounge, which will be the venue for the AMPR Digital Appreciation Night. Located at 1-C Valdelcon Bldg, 20 Jupiter St. Bel-air, Makati City, the place is a bit hard to find so make sure to be on the look out for their facade shown below:

photo grabbed from Spot PH
I am very thankful to be invited by AMPR to be part of their Food and Travel Bloggers' Meet-Up event as they introduce one of their newest client, Gardenia, get to know other bloggers that have the same blog niche as mine and of course, to try out what Cuore Bistro and Social Lounge has in store for all its customers.



To give you a little background of the bistro, it is actually the first restaurant of Col Cuore Corporation (established in 2016) founded by Mau Aguasin and Rudolph Leonor and was later joined by their friends Kate So and Jeff Mariano. Cuore, which means "heart" in Italian, opened last February 2016 and is now getting popular in the area for serving international cuisines that are deliciously curated to please a Filipino's palate. 

During the event, I was able to try out Cuore's best sellers from their pass-around appetizer, main dishes and dessert samplers. For starters, they served "The One Who Got Away" - Cuore's Fries Nachos, "When Our Eyes Met" - Best Baby Squid Calamari, "Chix n' Chips - Sweet and Spicy Chicken Wings and "Savory Bites" composed of Cuore's Beef Salpicao, Pinoy Pride's Beef Tapa and Spinach and Cream.

The One Who Got Away - Cuore's Fries Nachos
Since "Cuore" means Heart, some of their dishes' names seems heartfelt like it's reminiscing a great love story. Although their Cuore's Fries Nachos was named "The one who got away" which is like a failed relationship, it would make anyone who taste this appetizer feel really happy and contented. I really like my fries cheesy so I enjoyed this dish rather than the usual nacho chips. 

When Our Eyes Met - Best Baby Squid Calamari w/ Marinara and Garlic Aioli Dip
This can be very addictive. The bite-sized calamari is very flavorful even before you dip it in the sauce provided. The breading is still crisp which is really good unlike other calamari with mushy breading and I love that it is not too oily. Enjoyed every piece of this deliciously fried baby squid.

Chix n' Chips - Sweet and Spicy Chicken Wings
Suckers for hot and spicy wings, this is the dish for you. With a hint of sweetness and dipped in a creamy sauce on the side, you will surely want more. The perfectly cooked fries are of course, a plus.

Savory Bites - Cuore's Beef Salpicao, Pinoy Pride's Beef Tapa and Spinach and Cream
I just wish that I was able to try this when they served it fresh out of the oven but since I was a bit late, I ended up trying these when it was already cold. The bread was already chewy but I still loved the toppings especially the Beef Tapa. So make sure that when this is served, grab it while it's hot! 

Now off to the main dishes! They served quite a lot of tummy filling dishes which includes the "First Date" - Pesto Linguini, "Fab Mama's Fave" - Shrimp and Veggies Linguini, "All My Love" - Cuore's Best-selling Roasted Chicken with Side Salad, "Childhood Sweetheart" - Cuore's 3 Cheese Brick Oven Pizza and "Spanish Seduction" - Chorizo and Egg Brick Oven Pizza.

First Date - Pesto Linguini
The pesto sauce is not too strong which I actually liked and the Sole Fillet is seasoned well.



The pasta is cooked well and the vegetable aglio olio is just perfect to give it a light flavor. The shrimps were seasoned nicely too.


All My Love - Cuore's Best-Selling Roasted Chicken with Side Salad
The mushroom and leak cream sauce made this dish my favorite. It just works really well with the perfectly roasted chicken. It is served with a generous amount of fresh salad on the side splashed with vinaigrette. 


Childhood Sweetheart - Cuore's 3 Cheese Brick Oven Pizza
Spanish Seduction - Chorizo and Egg Brick Oven Pizza
Who wouldn't love a brick oven pizza? Both the 3 Cheese and their Chorizo and Egg Pizza are must tries when you visit Cuore. But personally, I like the 3 Cheese better simply because, I love anything with cheese and this has a combination of 3

Thirst quenchers that night were Homemade Iced Tea and The Best Sangria.


Both refreshing but I think I'll stick to the Homemade Iced Tea. Not too sweet and it doesn't have that weird aftertaste. The Sangria would be perfect for those who love to taste cocktails and wants a bit of alcohol on their drink.

Now for the finale, desserts! We were able to try their "Deep Lover" - Espresso Muscovado Panna Cota, "Summer Camp Fling" - Pudding + Smores Hybrid and "Dolce Maria" - Cuore's Best-selling Churros.


The Espresso Muscovado Panna Cota is surprisingly delicious. It's not too sweet and I like how the muscovado gives the gooey panna cota a bit of texture. I could definitely finish 2-3 glasses of this dessert.


I love marshmallows but when it's burnt and turned into a smore, I tend to pass. I just don't want to eat to taste the bitterness of the burnt part. But the puddings were actually good.


My favorite out of the three desserts. Their churros were served warm, soft and chewy and tastes even better when dipped in the salted caramel ice cream on the side. This serving is good for 2 persons but I bet I could finish one order while having a chitchat with a friend.

Check out their menu for a wide range of international dishes that you might want to try during your visit at Cuore:


Menu photos grabbed from Zomato
So if you are in the area and you just want to relax and unwind after a stressful and tiring day from work while you munch on amazingly good food, Cuore is a restaurant that I am very pleased to recommend. To know more about Cuore Bistro and Social Lounge, you can visit their Facebook Page and you can also follow them on their Instagram Account to get updates and promos.

Again, I would like to thank sir Richard of AMPR for the invitation and hope to have more campaigns and events with you and your team soon. ^^
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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Halili-Cruz School Of Ballet - 30 years of Excellence

Ballet is a type of performance dance that originated in the Italian Renaissance courts of the 15th century and later developed into a concert dance form in France and Russia. It has been globally influential and has defined as a foundation used in other dance genres. 

In our country, The Halili-Cruz School of Ballet is one of the best dance school and has been awarded as the “Most Outstanding Ballet School in Asia” from 2000 up to the present. The school has successfully represented the Philippines in prestigious international festivals and competitions in Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, China, Brunei, South Korea, Russia, England and the USA.



Located at 1227 Quezon Avenue, Quezon City, the Halili-Cruz School of Ballet is composed of 5 studios with a total dance floor of 550 square meters and a vast quadrangle. They also have branches in Saint Pedro Poveda College, Miriam College, Saint Mary's College and Alabang Country Club.

The achievements of the Halili-Cruz School of Ballet are under the leadership of its founder, multi-awarded Artistic Director, Shirley Halili-Cruz and with the strong support of the equally outstanding members of the Artistic Team who are passionately teaching and guiding the students. They are Grace Garalde-Perez, Anna Kathrina Halili Cruz-Bueno.


To date the Halili-Cruz School of Ballet has garnered more than 300 national and international awards and prizes, among them are: 

· Hall of Fame,  Aliw Award  as Best Classical Dance Company in the Philippines

· 8- time Ani ng Dangal Awardee for its international achievements

· People’s Choice as the Most Outstanding Performing Group

· Grand Prize Winner in the Asia Pacific Dance Competition in Thailand, Singapore, Hong Kong and the Philippines

· Grand Prize Winner in the 21st Century International Dance and Arts Festival and Competition in Genting Highlands, Malaysia

· First Prize in the Dance Excellence in Los Angeles, California, USA

· Global Excellence Award in Bangkok, Thailand

· Best Performance in classical and contemporary dance in the Bauhinia Cup International Dance Competition in Hongkong

· Global Pinoy Award  

Becoming a ballet dancer requires years of training. Ballet has been taught in various schools around the world, which have historically incorporated their own cultures to evolve the art.


For more information, you may contact 09178880102, 3724607 or 4130804 or email them at halilicruzballet@gmail.com. You can also visit their Website to learn more about the Ballet School and follow them on their Social Media Accounts: Instagram and Facebook to get updates on their upcoming events. 
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Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Have a well spent weekend at Cafe Lupe Hostel and Restaurant

My regular weekend is spent at home to play with the kids, relax after a stressful 5-day office works and finish blog articles. But last July 9-10, 2016 I was invited to join the Antipolo Bloggers' Getaway with my Pinoy Blogger friends. It was my first time to be part of this exciting event to explore different tourist destinations at Antipolo City and to revisit one of the restaurants where I regularly perform with my band years ago, Cafe Lupe Hostel and Restaurant. I'm sure this is going to be so much fun!



We were scheduled to visit Antipolo Cathedral and Hinulugang Taktak, Mystical Cave and Mt. Purro Nature Reserve but because of the rain, we weren't able to visit Mt. Purro Nature Reserve. Here are some of the photos I took during the tour: Check out "A trip to Antipolo's popular tourist spots" for a more detailed article about our tour.


Antipolo Cathedral
Hinulugang Taktak
Mystical Cave
We then headed to Cafe Lupe Hostel and Restaurant located at Lot 2B and 2C, Sumulong Highway, Brgy. Mambugan, Antipolo Rizal. Back in 2003, owner Mr. Alvin Carranza opened up their first ever branch along Guadalupe bridge and within the Guadalupe Seminary. It is specifically found under the biggest billboard structure in our country which they own as well. But due to some issues, they had to close down the restaurant. Currently, their Antipolo branch is the only existing Cafe Lupe which has been upgraded to a Hostel, Restaurant and KTV. 




Cafe Lupe is known to serve Filipino dishes with a Mexican twist. They are open from 10am to 2am serving breakfast, lunch, snacks, dinner and alcoholic beverages. Check out their menu below:



During our whole stay, here are the dishes that we were able to taste. According to Chef Albright Carranza, son of owner Mr. Alvin Carranza and currently managing Cafe Lupe, their best sellers are their Nachos Muchos and their Ilonggo dish, Kadyos:


Fresh Fruits
Grilled Liempo
My favorite dish during our stay. This Grilled Liempo is tender and flavorful and surely, you'll be needing an extra rice for this.
Tinola Soup
This Filipino favorite dish is perfect for the rainy season and I really like the hint of spiciness in every sip.


Chopsuey
This healthy dish composed of cabbage, bell pepper, cauliflower, peas and carrots would be great to balance out all the pork and chicken in a meal.

Carbonara
Chicken Sandwich
Nachos Muchos
Fried Chicken
Pork Sisig with Egg
 Love their Pork Sisig! Perfect snack while drinking an ice cold beer or cocktail.

Buffalo Wings w/ Garlic Aioli
I really enjoyed the spiciness of the Buffalo Wings but I really wished that it was partnered with a Bleu Cheese Dip. Still, this is an awesome dish for dinner or when paired with an alcoholic beverage.

Kadyos/Kadios
This is an Ilonggo cuisine which is composed of lentil beans with liempo chunks and jackfruit. A best seller here at Cafe Lupe.

Beef Tapa
Love how tender the tapa is and it is not too salty. Taste even better when dipped in vinegar. 


Tocilog
Orange Juice
Besides the delicious food offered by Cafe Lupe, customers flock the place because of their affordable Onea KTV rooms. We are very happy to have been given the chance to sing our hearts out on one of their 4 KTV Rooms. You can actually book their smallest room with a capacity of 8-12 pax for only P300.00 per hour with an additional fee of P50.00 for every extra person. 


It has 2 microphones that is great for those who love to sing duet songs and what's awesome is that you can download an application where you can search a song to retrieve its code to easily input it in the karaoke machine. Look for it at the end page of the song book. Make the experience more fun with cocktails, ice cold beer and finger foods.


Here's my video while singing Till they take my heart away by Clair Marlo. (Thanks to David of The Life and Times of Rich Valor for the video):


They also have a live band performing outside the restaurant scheduled every Tuesday to Sunday:

photo grabbed from Cafe Lupe's Website

The live band and KTV are till 2 am, so when the restaurant and Onea KTV closed, we went back to our rooms at the Hostel. Cafe Lupe has 8 available rooms, 6 with 2 single beds, 1 with a Queen size bed and a family room with a King Size Bed. Me and my room mate Kim of Chasing Curious Alice was assigned to occupy the Melba Room.


Our room has two single beds, LED TV with cable, AC unit, Hot and Cold Shower, Electric Kettle, Lamp Shade, Towels, Toiletries (Shampoo, Soap, Toothbrush and Toothpaste), Disposable Slippers and Mineral bottles. 

Rooms with 2 single beds (Room 2-5,7-8) like this cost P1,800.00 on weekdays and P2,800.00 on weekends and holidays. Room 1 with a Queen Size Bed and Room 6 with a King Size Bed cost P3,800.00 on weekdays and P4,800.00 on weekends and holidays. All prices are inclusive of breakfast for 2 pax. Check out Cafe Lupe's Website to see photos of the other rooms. For families with toddlers, the kids will surely enjoy the little playground outside the hostel:


I truly enjoyed the experience and I would to like to thank Sir Alvin and Chef Albright Carranza for inviting us and to Ms. Grace of Tag Media and Pinoy Blogger for giving me the opportunity to join this getaway. I had so much fun with my new blogger friends: Dianne of Curly Dianne, Arrianne of Travel Habeat, Allan of The Filipino Rambler, Orlee of Orlee Pasion, David of The Life and Times of Rich Valor, Kim of Chasing Curious Alice and Rey of Boy Raket. Check out their sites as well to read their own experiences during the weekend getaway. :)

With Chef Albright Carranza - photo grabbed from Orlee of Orlee Pasion

Our own version of 360 video c/o Allan of The Filipino Rambler. Fun times haha!


To know more about Cafe Lupe Hostel and Restaurant, you may check out their Website and follow them on their Social Media accounts: Facebook and Instagram for updates and ongoing promos. For inquiries and reservation, call 4703201 or 09226892898. I highly recommend that you visit the place if ever you are in the area or plan your stay soon. Will definitely come back and bring my family/friends at Cafe Lupe. ^^

Cafe Lupe Hostel and Restaurant
Lot 2B and C, Brgy. Mambugan, Sumulong Highway, Antipolo City
4703201/09226892898

Cafe Lupe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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