The Search for the Ultimate Sooo Pinoy Blogger is On!

A few months ago, Ken was part of the Sooo Pinoy food tour where they went around the Metro to have a taste of specialty dishes from different restaurants featuring Filipino cuisines and our all-time favorites. The goal of the Sooo Pinoy advocacy was to help deepen the appreciation and awareness of Filipinos towards our own food. They launched their Facebook community awhile back and now, they’re looking for the Ultimate Sooo Pinoy Blogger with the purpose of promoting Filipino cuisine. I know you all would agree that the Pinoy flavor is something we should be proud of. 🙂

Sooo Pinoy advocacy promotes appreciation of Pinoy cuisine

WIth that said, I invite our fellow foodie bloggers to take on this challenge. This will not just test your passion for our local cuisine, but also your blogging prowess.

The Search for the Ultimate Sooo Pinoy Blogger is on!

There will be 3 rounds for this challenge to determine the Ultimate Sooo Pinoy Blogger. But, before I tell you about that, let me tell you first what you can win if you join:

What’s at Stake?

A chance to rediscover the Philippines and experience the richness of Filipino cuisine

• 10 destinations
• 30 days
• 101 restaurants
• PhP 25,000 cash

Now, if the prizes didn’t pique the interest of the foodie in you, I don’t know what will. Imagine getting to travel around the Philippines and enjoying the food different restaurants here have to offer. Plus, you get Php 25,000 cash prize! 🙂

If you’re excited to know how to join, let me just remind you that you only have until October 24, 2011 to submit your entry to make it to Round 1. Here are the mechanics:

1. Post an article about Why Should You Be the Ultimate Sooo Pinoy Blogger. The
blog post must have a minimum of 300 words and a maximum of 500 words, with at
least 3 food shots and a photo of you dining in the restaurant. These are just the
minimum – there is no limit as to how much you want to express creativity!

2. Take a screenshot of the blog entry and email it to The
email must also contain the blog post URL, the contestant’s name and mobile number,
and the blog article itself (preferably in .doc or .docx format)

3. The blog post must not be altered or deleted until the end of the Search (until
December 15).


Key Dates for Round 1:

• October 5 to 24 – Submission of entries (3 weeks)
• October 25 to November 5 – Round 1 judging period (2 weeks)
• November 7 – Announcement of shortlisted contestants and Round 2 Challenge.

If you make it to Round 2, you’d get the next set of mechanics. Isn’t this exciting?!?!

Ken and I are still figuring out if we could make it to the deadline. We’re both having a VERY hectic week, but this is something we would LOVE to experience. Oh well. *sigh*

If you’re joining the search for the Ultimate Sooo Pinoy Blogger, let us know so we can check out your entry. 🙂

Certified Foodies at the Ultimate Taste Test 6.0 : Part 1

Last Saturday, it was on. We prepared our tummies for the Ultimate Taste Test in Rockwell and we thought a couple of days of eating light will help. But, no. Out of the 55 food suppliers that were there, generously giving us a taste of their best-sellers or new products, we only got to try 38. WEAK you might say, but hey, we did that in 5 hours! We had to go to an event with our media partner so it was quite an achievement for foodies like us. And it was an experience we won’t forget. So, brace yourself for our two-part feature on this ultimate foodie adventure. 😀

First, let us tell you about our experience before we tell you our top picks. We were at Rockwell Tent a couple of minutes past 11am after the doors officially opened. We wanted to get first dibs on what the food suppliers had to offer, but there were already about 20-30 people there. 😀 Here’s our ticket:

Our ticket to Rockwell's Ultimate Taste Test -

We handed out our tickets at the reception area and were tagged. We were then given our own UTT  passports.

Our Ultimate Taste Test passports -

The passport had the whole place mapped out for us to find which ones we’d love to try first.

Inside the passport is the official score sheet where you can rate the food and leave comments for each supplier. Listed there are all the dishes the food suppliers were serving that day. But there were some hosts who offered more than what was initially listed. Woot! 🙂

Continue reading Certified Foodies at the Ultimate Taste Test 6.0 : Part 1

Cadbury Chocoholic Night + Joy Shots Promo for a Trip to Boracay

Bizu Patisserie and Bistro at Greenbelt 2A few weeks ago, we were invited by Cadbury Philippines to a chocoholic night at Bizu Patisserie and Bistro in Greenbelt 2 in Makati. Our family LOVES Cadbury chocolates because of its creamy, milky goodness so it was an event we won’t ever pass up.

We invited a fellow chocoholic friend Geejay of Mga Luto ni Lola to join the Certified Foodies team for the night. Here’s a shot of us at the photo booth. It was so fun that I think we took home 3-4 photos each! 😀

Team Certified Foodies at the Cadbury photo booth!

The event was graced by the lovely Georgina Wilson, Cadbury Philippines’ brand ambassador. She shared with us how much she loves Cadbury and how relishing these milky chocolates brings back memories of bonding times with her family, particularly her dad. And I feel her. We all did. Food and the enjoyment of it can really bring back memories and fun times we had with people we hold dear.

Cadbury Brand Ambassador Georgina Wilson graced the event

FYI: Each chocolate bar of Cadbury Dairy Milk contains a glass and a half of milk. No wonder it’s the richest and milkiest chocolate bar I’ve ever tasted! 🙂 I love the plain milk chocolate; my bro and parents are into their Fruits and Nuts variants.

Cadbury Dairy Milk Joy Shots Promo for a trip to Boracay with friendsAnyway, the chocoholic bloggers night was intended to announce the launch of their latest promo, Cadbury  Dairy Milk Joy Shots where a barkada of four can win a 4-day, 3-night round trip to Boracay inclusive of hotel accommodations and transfers. How exciting is that?!

How to join the Joy Shots promo? All you have to do is take a photo of you with 3 of your friends while you enjoy Cadbury Dairy Milk Bar/s (at least one 75g bar OR two 40g bars). The photo should be of you sharing a joyful moment with your friends.

Send in your photo, along with a brief caption (maximum of 60 words) about why you and your barkada deserve to win that Boracay trip. Email it to

Photos will be judged based on the following criteria:

– Depiction of Sharing the Joy with Cadbury Dairy Milk (40%)
– Originality of depicting bonding (30%)
– Creativity (20%)
– Caption (10%)

The best photo based on the above criteria will win the trip. 5 consolation prize winners will also get Cadbury gift bags. Promo runs until September 16, 2011 only so HURRY! 🙂

Continue reading Cadbury Chocoholic Night + Joy Shots Promo for a Trip to Boracay

Sooo Pinoy Food Tour First Stop at Adarna Food & Culture

There is a tight list of countries with dishes bearing “international cuisine” status, with the French and the Italian battling for top position. And sadly, our very own Filipino cuisine falls short in terms of popularity to even qualify for a place in the top 10. But the Sooo Pinoy food campaign is determined to change just that.

Sooo Pinoy - Promoting Filipino Cuisine -

Pioneered by Unilever Food Solutions in 2010, the Sooo Pinoy: Promoting Filipino Cuisine Ang sarap maging Pinoy - CertifiedFoodies.comcampaign advocates to finally put the Philippines in the cuisine map by increasing buzz and appreciation of our local dishes.

Last year, with an online voting contest, they led the search for the best Pinoy Dish with the “Sinigang na Hipon” emerging triumphant. And for 2011, the Sooo Pinoy campaign is now geared towards naming the best food establishments serving the best Pinoy dishes nationwide.

To get the word out about their new project, Unilever Food Solutions organized the Sooo Pinoy Food Tour, inviting 15 bloggers to a one-of-a-kind food trip aboard a WiFi-enabled bus around various food places in Metro Manila. Thankfully, I was part of the lucky bunch who got to participate in the event.

Everyone met up on June 11, 2011 at Adarna Food & Culture along Kalayaan Ave. in Diliman, Quezon City, the first stop in our food tour where we also had quite an unforgettable lunch prepared by executive chef and owner Giney Villar.

Our first stop is Adarna Food and Culture along Kalayaan Avenue -

For a chef her age, it’s very awe-inspiring that Chef Giney has taken a brave move of ignoring what the market dictates to earn easy money, like going for Italian or American food. Rather, she chose to start a restaurant business with aims of preserving and promoting the gustatory excellence of Filipino cuisine.

Chef Giney Villar of Adarna Food and Culture restaurant -

Lunch began with one of Adarna’s best-selling dishes, the Seafood Special (P485, pictured below), a mix of shrimps, scallops, and squids with several veggies all cooked in a tomato-based stew. I don’t usually get allergies when eating seafood. This time I did, possibly ‘cause of the scallops, but I think this delicious dish was worth a day of scratching. 😀

Adarna Food and Culture's Seafood Special, one of their best-selling dishes -

Continue reading Sooo Pinoy Food Tour First Stop at Adarna Food & Culture

Strawberry Farm in La Trinidad, Benguet near Baguio

Though we’ve been to Baguio a lot of times in the past, we never got to see Strawberry Farm for some reason. So, when were in Baguio last December, it was really part of our itinerary. We headed up there as early as 8am since we were going back to Manila in the afternoon.

We hired a taxi for the day and he was pretty familiar with the places in Baguio. He’s actually from La Trinidad, Benguet so getting there was a breeze.

As soon as I saw the strawberry farm itself, I got all excited. I love strawberries! No, I don’t like the powdered or artificial strawberry flavors. I want the actual fruit.

Strawberry Farm in La Trinidad in Baguio City -

Outside the strawberry farm, there are a lot of people selling a lot of goodies. There are also pre-packed strawberries being sold there and you can choose to buy them instead of having to pick your own strawberries at the farm. But, I mean, c’mon. You’re already there so why not do it yourself, right? 😀

Pre-packed strawberries are being sold for Php 100-200 each -

Before we get to the Strawberry farm, we had to try the Strawberry Taho in Baguio. It was sweet and I love that they put actual strawberries in the taho. Yum! 🙂

Strawberry Taho being sold at Strawberry Farm in Baguio -

We also tried the Strawberry dirty ice cream being sold there. I forgot the price, but I think we paid Php 15 for this cone of ice cream. It’s a little bland for me compared to the ones you can buy at the grocery. But, yeah, duh, right? Of course, it’s being sold at a cheaper price so it was okay. There were bits of strawberries, and the flavor was just okay.Strawberry Ice Cream at Strawberry Farm in Baguio -

Anyway, when we asked how much it is if we pick our own strawberries, they said it’ll cost Php 300 per kilo. Way expensive, right?! They explained that it covers those strawberries we’ll smash, plants we’ll damage, and those we’re going to eat while we were there. They have a point ’cause I saw a lot of other pickers actually doing all of the above. 😀

Continue reading Strawberry Farm in La Trinidad, Benguet near Baguio

Good Shepherd Pasalubong Items from Baguio

I’ve mentioned that we went on a 5-day vacation last December and one of our destinations was Baguio, the summer capital of the Philippines. I love Baguio, not only because of the climate, but because of all the pasalubong shopping I can do for us and my friends back home.

Before our lunch at Oh My Gulay Artist Cafe along Session Road, we went to Good Shepherd in Baguio to buy some pasalubong items that were requested by friends, particularly my blogger friend Eihdra. 😀

The Good Shepherd Convent is located along Gibraltar Road, near Mines View Park in Baguio. The Good Shepherd nuns make and sell different kinds of pasalubong items which are very popular among tourists / visitors in Baguio.Good Shepherd Convent in Baguio -

I super love this particular sign at their garden, right when you enter their premises.

Sign at the garden inside Good Shepherd Convent in Baguio - CertifiedFoodies.comTake nothing but photos. Leave nothing but goodness. Keep nothing but memories…

Continue reading Good Shepherd Pasalubong Items from Baguio

Oh My Gulay Artist Cafe in Baguio City : A Vegetarian Experience

Ever since a friend of mine mentioned Oh My Gulay Artist Cafe in Baguio, I’ve been dying to try their food. Why? No, it’s not because it’s a vegetarian restaurant. But, since Baguio is known as a popular source of fresh vegetables like broccoli and lettuce, and other crops like strawberries, oranges (from Sagada), etc., I know I can only expect the freshest ingredients on anything on their menu. Something I wouldn’t pass up! 🙂

Oh My Gulay sign on the 4th Floor of La Azotea building along Session Road in Baguio -

So, during our 5-day vacation last month, Oh My Gulay (O.M.G.) was definitely on our itinerary. We slightly had a hard time finding it ’cause when I did my research, someone said it’s located in “Green Azotea” building. 😀 We hired a taxi for the whole day (we went to Good Shepherd and Strawberry farm, which we’ll post about next!) and the driver didn’t know any building with that name. Turns out, it’s at the La Azotea building and the color of the whole structure is, well, green. 😀

La Azotea along Session Road in Baguio City where you'd find Oh My Gulay -

It’s along Session Road so it’s pretty easy to find. It’s right in front of Metrobank. Oh My Gulay is on the 5th floor and there are no elevators. So, you’d have to climb up all the way to their floor. There’s a bookstore, a gym and other food stalls that might entertain you while you take a break from climbing up those stairs. 😀

The stairs going up to the 5th floor, to Oh My Gulay Artist Cafe at La Azotea -

Now, before I go on about Oh My Gulay’s food, let me just share with you some of the photos we took of their restaurant. The whole eclectic design drew my attention.

View from the second floor, dining area of Oh My Gulay in Baguio -

Even my bro Ken was fascinated by the intricate structure and decorations, both on the first floor and second floor. He took most of the photos of the restaurant and even went upstairs.

Continue reading Oh My Gulay Artist Cafe in Baguio City : A Vegetarian Experience

Emohruo Beach Restobar in Saud Beach, Pagudpud

One of our main destinations during our 5-day North Luzon getaway last week was the beautiful and relaxing beaches of Pagudpud in Ilocos. I’ve been wanting to go there for years now, especially after I saw photos of my brother Ken with his friends during their Pagudpud trip.

Evangeline Beach Resort's Emohruo Beach Restobar at Saud Beach in Pagudpud, Ilocos Sur -

We stayed at the Saud Beach Resort hotel because there weren’t too many people staying there so we can enjoy the beach mostly all on our own. They’re one of the more expensive hotels in Pagudpud. Since we were only staying for a day, I thought screw my budget and let’s stay at the lovely Saud Beach Resort. We only paid Php 4,356 for a room good for 5, and I thought that’s already a good deal considering how lovely their resort is. Their resort seemed more relaxing than the other ones next to them.

Anyway, when we finally checked in, it was almost lunch time (they allowed us to check in earlier since there weren’t too many people staying at the resort). Ken said we should check out the other restaurants in the area. So, we immediately headed out to the other restos on the other side of Saud beach. It was a long walk so imagine how hungry we were when we finally arrived at the area where the restaurants in Saud beach were lined up.

Among all the menus we saw, my brother and I liked Emohruo Beach Restobar‘sof Evangeline Resort the best. And, the prices were also very affordable. All I can tell you now is the long walk was so worth it!

Emohruo is actually “Our Home” spelled backwards. Cool, eh? I love the whole vibe at their restobar. People dine al fresco and the rustic design of their area just complements the whole feel of dining near the beach.

Though the sun was really up and shining brightly, we didn’t feel uncomfortable because the wind was cool and fresh. Ahhhh… I so miss it! That’s why I so love the photos I took while we were at Emohruo. It reminds me of how relaxing the resort was.

Emohruo Beach Restobar has a wide range of dishes on their menu, mostly Asian dishes with their own twists. They all sounded really good that I wanted to order one of everything! 😀

Everyone with me – my mother, my bro, our aunt Zeny and Beth (my mom’s best friend) – were all supportive of our food blog so we all agreed to order different beverages. 😀

First up, my Banana Mocha Shake (Php 98.00), marked as one of the favorites on their menu. I love, love, love Mocha flavored anything, but I didn’t completely enjoy this one. I guess it’s because of the banana. But, it was still really good and Ken enjoyed it. I guess I was expecting the mocha flavor to be stronger than the banana.

My Banana Mocha Shake from Emohruo Beach Restobar -

Continue reading Emohruo Beach Restobar in Saud Beach, Pagudpud

Wai Ying Fast Food in Binondo, Manila

I am a big fan of Chinese food and I love dimsum A LOT. But, my desire to roam the streets of Binondo in Manila to taste the most authentic Chinese cooking/cuisines was heightened the night my mother brought home the best dimsum soup and siomai I’ve ever tasted.

I’ve asked a couple of my friends who are familiar with the Chinese restaurants in Binondo because my mom forgot the name of the restaurant. When my mom and I were at Divisoria last November, we decided to head over to Binondo and she’ll just try to remember where it was located.

After almost an hour of looking for the restaurant, the pedicab driver finally led us to Wai Ying Fast Food. As soon as my mother saw the front of this Chinese food joint, she immediately exclaimed we’re at the right place. Finally, I thought. I was already hungry. 😀

Wai Ying Restaurant in Chinatown in Binondo, Manila -

Wai Ying Fast Food is a two-storey restaurant at Buenavidez Street in Binondo, right across Manila Chinatown Hotel. Wai Ying has been around for over a decade and they are very popular in Chinatown. Front of Wai Ying Restaurant in Binondo -

At the very entrance, you’d see ducks and chickens being roasted by the window. They have a mini kitchen at the entrance so you can actually see them preparing food.

If you want a relaxing dining experience, you might not completely enjoy at Wai Ying’s. They’re just a small Chinese fast food restaurant. So, if you’re planning on bringing friends along with you, prepare to wait for tables or head on upstairs for more tables.

Anyway, as soon as we were handed the menu, it was funny to see my mother ordering away. 😛 So, we ended up with around seven (7) different dimsum dishes and other plates of Chinese food. 😀

First, we ordered 2 cold Lemon Tea (Php 50). It was really refreshing, especially after what we went through looking for Wai Ying all over Binondo (sorry, I can’t get over it :D). The lemon slices and the genuine taste of tea made it one of my fave iced lemon teas.

Wai Ying's Lemon Tea - Php 50 -

Oh, by the way, while I was taking photos of the menu, the guy who was waiting on our table approached me and gave me a copy of their menu. Nice, eh? They’ve got very accommodating staff, even during that very busy lunch hour.

Front of Wai Ying's menu -

Continue reading Wai Ying Fast Food in Binondo, Manila

Strawberry Sinigang?!

Update: Our nanay prepared her own Strawberry Sinigang recipe.

After seeing posts from a couple of bloggers who were invited to stay at one of the hotels in Baguio, I am now desperate to go back there for at least a week’s stay. I so miss Baguio because of the weather, the tourist spots, shopping, and, of course, strawberries!

  Fresh Strawberries -
  I can have fresh strawberries for breakfast, lunch or dinner! Anytime!!


I love, love, love strawberries. I kinda dislike strawberry-flavored food, but, I love actual strawberries. The last time we were in Baguio, we weren’t able to buy a lot of it ’cause my mom prefers strawberry jam. The next time we go there, I’ll make sure we buy at least a kilo of it so I can enjoy fresh strawberries at home.

Going back to the bloggers who went to Baguio recently, one of the most talked about food amongst them is the Strawberry Sinigang. When I first read it from one of their tweets and on Plurk, I was like, “Seriously?!”

  Strawberry Sinigang - Photo by
Strawberry Sinigang
Photo by EntrepreMom


I love Sinigang. It’s a very popular Philippine soup that’s sour in flavor. It’s usually cooked with tamarind (sampaloc), but, some use green/raw mangoes and guava (bayabas). So, discovering that people in Baguio actually cook their sinigang with fresh strawberries was really something for me. I want a taste of it!

I’m really intrigued because strawberries have a li’l taste of tangy sweetness to it. I would love to make strawberry sinigang at home when I find fresh strawberries in the grocery. I heard from the bloggers that it’s not the season yet for strawberries so I might have difficulty buying some good bunch of them at the market. But, I swear, I want to try it. I might just end up having a taste of it in Baguio when we go there next time so I can really enjoy the authentic taste of strawberry sinigang from people who are already experts in preparing it.

I wonder when we’ll be able to return to Baguio. We’re planning on visiting my mother’s childhood friend, who now lives with her family in Baguio, this December. I know I would need my cashmere sweaters when we do ’cause it’ll be really cold up there. But, definitely, a serving of freshly cooked strawberry sinigang will make me warm in no time.

Have you already tried strawberry sinigang?

How was it? Let me know at the comments section.


In case you’re wondering where you can find or get a taste of strawberry sinigang, I know for sure that Mines View Hotel serves it. Let me know if you know of other places in Baguio that serves this.



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