An afternoon of corner-to-corner, wall-to-wall, bumper-to-bumper fraternizing with the best possible company -- food, glorious food!
It was my first time to attend the Best Food Forward event. Armed with my DSLR and a picky appetite, I had no intention of taking photos of each and every booth. Not that I was being snobbish or anything, but I figured I needed a game plan if I wanted to take pictures of even a decent number of concessionaires. My first rule, skip the ones I've featured before like those from the Ultimate Taste Test or Dessert Comes First event. Second, take photographs of whatever catches my eye that I deem fancy or unique or just plain appetizing. Simple, yes? Thought so, too. My shoulder blades and feet had a different opinion though, by the time I was "through". So let me walk and talk you through my gastronomic finds.
The Spinach, Feta and Sundried Tomato Quiche had a smooth, cheesy flavor that was light on the stomach. It's something I'd want to munch on while reading a book, only to find myself finishing a whole box later.
I only got to try the Wicked Bites which are chocolate brownies with a hint of chili. Though I hate anything too much fudgy, I appreciated the kick that gave an additional layer to an otherwise ordinary brownie.
0917.823.1123 / 624.6459
I liked the sticky pearls gathered at the bottom of the Royal Milk Tea, but then again, that's a common property found in that particular sinker among all milk tea shops. The flavor was subtle and I couldn't find anything that can make this standout from the rest of the fast-sprouting bubble teas in Manila.
Owned by LJ Moreno-Alapag, these lollipop lookalikes are actually round chocolate-covered cakes on sticks. I loved how moist the Red Velvet was; a trait I need in a cake since I hate the choked up feeling you have when eating a dry, dense sponge. Another flavor I liked was the rich Cheesecake that was soft and creamy on the tongue.
The Lollicake Factory
56-D East Capitol Drive Brgy. Kapitolyo, Pasig City
These cake pops (apparently another term for lollicakes) are all chocolate flavored according to the lady manning the booth; they just differ in design. It was nice and all, but really nothing that grabbed and kept my attention for more than the time it took me to take a few snapshots.
Blue Sugar Cakes by Charlotte
It was already slightly tough albeit still chewy when I sampled a couple of their buns. Understandably, the bite-sized pieces were already exposed in the air for a while. Still, I enjoyed the elastic trait of this bread, imagining how softer it could be had I eaten it fresh. I tasted the Original Black Sesame and Dark Chocolate. Though the flavors were subtle, they had this addicting quality that made me crave for more. In hindsight, I'm not sure if it's the flavor itself that got me hooked or the fact that I was leisurely chewing on some deliciously comforting bread that was making me hanker for those buns.
217.8215 / 622.2575
I know, I know, I featured Mochiko before. Still, I couldn't resist posting their new flavor -- Milk Tea. I didn't even get to taste it because I was already full and I was afraid to buy some and have it melting before I even got the chance to pounce on it since I wasn't going home yet. I love milk tea and the new flavor intrigued me, that's all.
Honestly, no one can eat from all these booths in one afternoon and it was just too darn frustrating that these seductive Italian ice cream flavors can no longer fit into my bulging belly. I would have loved some of those Chili Chocolate, Blueberry Cheesecake, Strawberry Shortcake, Bailey's and Tequila Rose!
As I tasted the Red Velvet, the consistency of the cake was sort of crumbly, almost like there were traces of sugar crystals folded into the cupcake. As I said, I need moisture in my cakes, hence I wasn't particularly fond of this one.
Sugar Cakes by Ana's Kitchen
When I first saw these, I thought they were inverted lollicakes. There were far too many of them at the event that it was hard to keep track. Upon closer look however, they were undoubtedly chocolates hardened into little plastic cups topped with marshmallows, chocolate chips and candy sprinkles. These were actually made by the daughter of Pepita of the eponymous Pepita's Kitchen. Similar to chocolate spoons, the key to enjoying these sticks of chocolate happiness is to dip one into a mug of warm milk, gently stirring it while marveling at the slowly melting cocoa. When most of it is melted, you can then enjoy nibbling on the remnants still attached to the sticks while sipping on your now flavorful chocolate milk. Happiness!
0917.8660662 / 425.4605
When I got to the booth, there were no samples of the Crack Pie so I tried the Nutella Cupcakes instead. I really don't have a predilection for chocolate cupcakes so even an impregnation of Nutella into this one didn't come off as captivating for me.
Red Hot Oven
0917.819.4700 / 0918.962.4700
This, too, was made by another of Pepita's daughters. Since I have yet to taste the legendary Butter Beer at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, I have nothing to compare this drink with. But if I had to imagine what it would taste like, I reckon this comes pretty close. A tincture of butterscotch curbed by the cream that blanketed the cup, it was light and not at all cloying; there were no traces of alcohol if indeed there was any at all. It had a unique flavor that my gustatory organ yearned for long after I've sipped the very last drop.
0917.8660662 / 425.4605
A tamed crunch echoes the crispness of each piece of popped corn kernel as I put in a couple of clusters of the Almond Caramel Crisp into my mouth. The nutty and sweet flavor was very well received by my palate, but even more interesting was when the crew offered me some Cheese flavored ones to go with it. The subdued saltiness of the latter melded quite beautifully with the nuts and caramel making for an ambrosial afternoon snack.
Chicago Popcorn Shops
3878 St. Paul St. Rocka Village Plaridel, Bulacan
More of these delectable edibles on my next post!