T.G.I. Friday’s in Eastwood City

Most of us look forward to Friday. It’s the end of a busy week and, at the same time, the start of a well-deserved weekend for all those who hustle and bustle at school or at work. It’s the ultimate day for relaxation and enjoyment. But, guess what, we don’t really need to wait for Friday just to have fun. With T.G.I. Friday’s infectious energy and with their excellent food and customer service, everyone would feel like it’s Friday every single day of the week!

T.G.I. Friday's Sign - CertifiedFoodies.com

After more than 15 years since setting up their first in 1994, T.G.I. Friday’s opens a new branch in Eastwood City, Libis. This is their 13th and now considered as their new flagship branch since it’s the location where the brand has decided to implement major changes in architectural and interior design. It is the first free-standing Friday’s branch. All of the other branches, as we all have known, are located in major shopping malls around the Metro.

T.G.I. Friday's Facade - CertifiedFoodies.com

From outside, the facade looks bright and very inviting. They have replaced the old canopies and awnings with movie theater-like sheds, giving the place a more modern feel. Almost everyone who comes to Friday’s has their own camera, and surely they wouldn’t be able to resist having their pictures taken with these life-size models of Superman; the king of rock and roll, Elvis Presley; and the iconic, Marilyn Monroe.

T.G.I. Friday's Superman, Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley - CertifiedFoodies.com

Friday’s is known for having an “artistic clutter” of memorabilia from decades as early as the ‘30s. Now they have decided to move forward in time by including pieces from later decades like the ‘80s, ‘90s, and even from the new millennium.

Continue reading T.G.I. Friday’s in Eastwood City

KFC Zinger Double Down : A Hot Meaty Surprise

When I took my first bite on a KFC Double Down sandwich when it was launched months ago, I enjoyed its sinful meatiness. A lot of my friends and fellow KFC enthusiasts have also raved about it, and were demanding for the return of this sandwich. Now, imagine how excited we were when we found out they decided to bring it back with a hot new twist – KFC Zinger Double Down Sandwich.

KFC Zinger Double Down - up-close

Our family, especially Ken, enjoys spicy food. So we really, really wanted to give this a try. The KFC branch in Malabon no longer delivers to our area for some reason (why?!? 🙁 ) so we had to go to their store to order.

To prepare ourselves for this spicy experience, my nanay and I bought KFC Krushers too. She picked the Strawberry Lush yogurt Krusher, I got the Kookies n’ Cream. We ended up finishing them off before our orders were completed. It’s ‘cause of the weather! 😀

KFC Krushers Kookies n' Cream and Strawberry Lush

There are more new Krushers flavors now and I want to try the rest next time we go to KFC. I’ll order the Mocha Krunch, Rockin’ Road or their Christmas Krushers Winter Berry and Dulce de Leche. The classic Krushers are priced at Php 65; yoghurt ones are at Php 75, while the minis are at Php 45.

I really hope they include us again in their delivery areas. 🙁 Sorry, can’t get over the fact that just a month ago, they still deliver and now, they can’t anymore. 😀

Continue reading KFC Zinger Double Down : A Hot Meaty Surprise

Our Top Picks in the Ultimate Taste Test 6.0 in Rockwell

We know, this is an uber late post. But, we still think it’s worth posting about our top picks for UTT 6. It’s better late than never, I guess. Stay tuned for our faves the last UTT 7 at Mercato. 🙂

We first told you about our experience at the Ultimate Taste Test in Rockwell. Now, let us share with you all the yummy food we had that day.

Our ticket to Rockwell's Ultimate Taste Test - CertifiedFoodies.com

It took us a couple of days to finalize our top picks for the Ultimate Taste Test because we couldn’t agree on all of our choices. That’s what you get when you have 2 people (and siblings) with different tolerance to flavor intensities and with varying preferences. 😀 So, we agreed to not rank anything and just feature the ones we absolutely loved and those that were worth mentioning. 🙂

But, before we continue, please take note that we only got to taste what 38 out of 55 food suppliers have to offer.

Without further ado, in no particular order, here are our Top Picks for the Ultimate Taste Test 6.0 in Rockwell, starting with the sweet stuff…



Sweet Delights


Carmen’s Best and Holly’s Milk

Paco Magsaysay, the owner of Carmen’s Best Ice Cream and Holly’s Milk, was the very first food supplier who approached us. Even before we got to taste his products, we were totally convinced!

Paco Magsaysay of Carmen's Best and Holly's Milk - CertifiedFoodies.com

We first got to try the Salted Caramel and Coffee flavored ice cream (sorry, we didn’t get to take a photo of the actual product :D). And let us tell yah it was the creamiest ice cream we’ve ever had! We both nodded at each other in total agreement. 😀

Paco proudly continued on to tell us that their ice cream and milk are all fresh, even using this very catchy tagline “From Cow to Cone”. And you can truly taste the freshness from the milk and the ice cream. The flavors and creaminess of the spoonfuls of frozen delights served to us lingered in our mouths. 🙂

They don’t have this available in supermarkets yet so if you want to have a taste of their products, contact them to order:

Carmen’s Best
Contact info: 809-2042 or cb_icecream@yahoo.com
Carmen’s Best on Facebook


Holly’s Milk
Contact info: 813-1385 / Website: http://www.hollysmilk.com/ Holly’s Milk on Facebook

Update: They were the #1 pick by the UTT 6.0 foodies! 🙂 Congrats!

Continue reading Our Top Picks in the Ultimate Taste Test 6.0 in Rockwell

Starbucks 2012 Planner Giveaway

Giveaway is already closed. Winner has been announced on our Facebook page.

A couple of posts ago, we showed you what’s new with this planner. Because of the high demand for a Starbucks 2012 planner giveaway, we have decided to raffle off one to our dear foodie readers.

CertifiedFoodies.com Starbucks 2012 Planner GiveawayDon’t worry, there’s no Certified Foodies logo etched on it 😀

We’re giving away one (1) Starbucks 2012 Planner in Cherry, pictured above and below to one lucky reader.

This will be a month-long giveaway and we’ll make sure the winner gets this before the New Year so you can already start using it as soon as the clock strikes 12 on January 1, 2012.

How do you join? This will be another easy giveaway. 🙂

We're giving away a Starbucks 2012 planner in Cherry

Continue reading Starbucks 2012 Planner Giveaway

Marios : 40 Years of Great Food and Memories

For most local restaurants in the Philippines, surviving 10 years in the business can already be considered an amazing achievement, which gives Mario’s restaurant all the reason to celebrate for lasting an astounding 40 years in the industry.


Mario’s: A History

Mario and Nenuca Benitez

Mario Benitez’ great passion for customer service married well with Nenuca’s perfect execution of her family’s long tradition of Spanish cuisine, which, together, gave birth to the establishment of the very first Mario’s Restaurant in 1971 along Session Road in Baguio.

Former location of the original Mario's restaurant in BaguioFormer location of the original Mario’s restaurant, where a branch of KFC now stands.

New location of Mario's in Baguio

After the original venue got burned down, Mario’s transferred to a more open and spacious location.

It didn’t take long until the restaurant received great reviews from both locals and vacationers alike, some even encouraging the couple to branch out in the big city of Manila. Finally in 1974, the Benitez Family, confident that their fusion of Filipino and Spanish cuisine will have a special place in the hearts of the Manileños, opened the doors of their second branch situated along the bustling streets of Tomas Morato, Quezon City.

Mario's in Tomas Morato

The façade of Mario’s in Tomas Morato, Quezon City.

Continue reading Marios : 40 Years of Great Food and Memories

Chocolate Lover : A Baking and Confectionery Store

There are many things I’m currently enjoying about Ken being in culinary school. First, of course, is everything he bakes or cooks at home so he can practice or prepare for an upcoming test or lab activity in school. I especially loved these cream puffs and éclairs he made for our birthday celebration weeks ago. Everyone loved them! 🙂

Eclairs and Cream Puffs Ken baked for our birthday party

Secondly is shopping with him for ingredients and tools he’ll need at home. One of our favorite stores now is Chocolate Lover in P. Tuazon in Cubao, Quezon City.

Chocolate Lover - a store for your baking, confectionery and packaging needs

If you’ve passed through their area in QC, we bet you saw the eye-catching design of their building. I mean, seriously. How can you miss this castle?

The Chocolate Lover castle store in Cubao, Quezon City

Continue reading Chocolate Lover : A Baking and Confectionery Store

Excited about the Starbucks Coffee 2012 Planner?

Ever since I got my first Starbucks planner last year as a gift from my aunt Zeny (she saw me joining giveaways to win one – thanks Tita! :D), I began to realize how it’s become a part of tradition for most people I know – to collect stickers during the last quarter of the year and redeem a planner before the new year comes. It’s actually fun and I can’t believe how useful it’s been to me since I got it. So, this year, I’m already one of those who are excited to get our hands on a Starbucks 2012 Planner. 🙂 Starbucks Coffee 2012 Planners

On its ninth (9th) year, the Starbucks Coffee 2012 Planner comes in five (5) unique covers – from darkest to lightest: Oak, Spruce, Cherry, Bamboo and Poplar.

The planner materials that they used for this 2012 planner reflects the theme Starbucks Shared Planet. What exactly does this mean? It’s their very own vow to do business while still taking care of the planet by supporting these pillars (from the press release):

  • Ethical sourcing – This year’s planner was produced in a facility that is FSC certified. FSC stands for Forest Stewardship Council which is an independent, non-governmental, non- profit organization established to promote that the world’s forests are responsibly managed.
  • Environmental Stewardship – The inner planner pages are made from 70% recycled paper.
  • Community Involvement – For every planner redeemed, a donation will be made to SparkHope – Starbucks Philippines flagship program for early childhood care and development in partnership with UNICEF.

My oak Starbucks 2012 planner

Continue reading Excited about the Starbucks Coffee 2012 Planner?

Ultimate Taste Test 7.0 – See You at Mercato Centrale!

We know, it’s been almost 2 months now since the Ultimate Taste Test 6.0 at the Rockwell Tent and we haven’t even posted our top picks yet! We’re hoping to finish the post within this week before the Ultimate Taste Test 7.0 at Mercato Centrale. YES, it’s happening! Just in time for your Christmas shopping! 😀

Last time, at UTT 6.0, we weren’t able to have a taste of what all the purveyors / food suppliers’ have to offer. We had to go somewhere else so we had to leave early. This time, we’re hoping to drop by all of the participating food merchants. We’ll stay until the end of the UTT at 10pm. 😀 There are more tables and chairs available at this UTT so we can take necessary breaks anytime before we continue on our quest to finish all the food. 😀

The Ultimate Taste Test 7.0 is happening on November 17, 2011, Thursday, 7-10pm at Mercato Centrale in Bonifacio Global City. There’ll be over 50 food businesses participating, and this will be great for those of you who are still in the market for Christmas and New Year’s gifts for your loved ones and friends.

Right now, you can already reserve tickets for the Ultimate Taste Test 7.0. They’re now priced at Php 385 / head – cheaper than UTT 6.0. For more info on how to reserve and/or purchase tickets, click here (you’ll be directed to Our Awesome Planet) or go to their Facebook page – www.facebook.com/UltimateTasteTest.

We’ll be there so see yah fellow foodies! Let’s all prepare our tummies! 🙂

Enjoy these Holiday Indulgence from Starbucks this Christmas

Last week, we were at SM Sky Garden to try something from the list of Starbucks Philippines new food items this Christmas 2011. We ordered a slice of their Triple Decker Cheesecake with Snickers (Php 130 / slice, Php 1,250 whole) because the name just sounds so delectable.

Starbucks Triple Decker Cheesecake with Snickers

It’s a 3-layer cheesecake with a chocolate cookie crust, caramel, chocolate fudge icing and chunks of Snickers candy bar mixed in, topped with roasted chopped peanuts. Being a Snickers chocolate lover, I enjoyed every bit of this. The mixed textures in my mouth lingered ‘til we got home. 😀

We also ordered two (2) of their delightful seasonal drinks – the new Cranberry White Chocolate Mocha for me and Peppermint Mocha for Ken.

Starbucks Peppermint Mocha and Cranberry White Chocolate Mocha

The Cranberry White Chocolate Mocha is a combination of, as the name implies, white chocolate, freshly steamed milk, and topped with a generous serving of whipped cream, a tart cranberry drizzle and crystallized cranberry sugar. I enjoyed sipping it as it’s not too sweet even with all the extra sugar added. Or maybe I just have a sweet tooth, I don’t know. Try it and let me know. 🙂

Continue reading Enjoy these Holiday Indulgence from Starbucks this Christmas

Cha Dao Tea Place : A Memorable Milk Tea Experience

We are quickly getting addicted to milk tea and it’s no surprise how it has become a popular preference by Pinoys nowadays as an alternative source of caffeine. It’s healthy and yummy at the same time so we’re happy if these milk tea places continue to mushroom around the Metro as long as they offer their own distinct flavors. One of our latest discoveries is Cha Dao Tea Place.

Cha Dao Tea Place

Cha Dao Tea Place opened its first store in Katipunan, Quezon City back in June 2011 (they now have 5 branches, with one more opening up very soon – check bottom of this post for the list). They’re one of the more popular milk tea places we know so when we were invited to try their milk teas, we gladly accepted. A couple of days ago, after a meeting at SM Megamall, we headed out to their tea shop in Kapitolyo, Pasig. It was easy to find since it was located right smack near the front gate of Barangay Kapitolyo, beside Cebuana Lhuillier.

Vanie from Cha Dao Tea Place in Kapitolyo

As soon as we entered, we were greeted by their staff, particularly this jolly lady named Vanie (I just remembered, I forgot to properly introduce ourselves. But, I gave her our card and pointed at Ken. I need to do better introductions next time, I swear! :D). She smiled at us and had to attend to another group of customers who came in before us.

Continue reading Cha Dao Tea Place : A Memorable Milk Tea Experience