I really like summer afternoons and nights. The more pleasant weather allows one to venture out and enjoy the sights. At the same time, it allows great bonding time with friends as one goes out to familiar haunts. Whether those haunts are found in the city or beyond it, summer brings out one's need for comfort.
As this particular summer left this particular foodista with nothing much of a choice but to stay within the city for work, most of my free time was spent lounging in the air-conditioned comforts of malls. On a recent Saturday night, I tagged a friend along and we had an Ortigas food trip among familiar haunts.
The Ortigas area is actually a nice place for urbanites to lounge or stroll around. With malls within the vicinity, as well as great dining choices, there is something for everyone's budget. Of course, we were in a particular mood to splurge for a bit, so we went around the area and ate to our heart's content.
The afternoon was pretty hot, so we decided to lounge by Cafe Mediterreanean along The Podium - which was the subject of our past entry - to pass by the time. I ordered some hummus, which had chickpeas or garbanzos as its main ingredient, with some warm whole wheat pita bread. Downed in bottomless iced tea, the hummus was so rich and appetizing, I ended up having three pita bread with it! It definitely felt so light and healthy, even as it left a nice fullness in your tummy after having it with bread.
We left the Cafe Mediterreanean in the early evening - around 6:30 - and we decided to stroll along Ortigas which was already a bit cooler at the time. To burn off what we just ate, we decide to go to the Shangri-La Mall in Ortigas for a longer walk. Among the many malls that have become landmarks of the metropolis, I like Shangri-La the best for its relatively unhurried atmosphere as compared to others.
We bought a few stuff that we needed, and having worked up a bit of an appetite, we went to Wham! (which was subject of another blog entry) and had some grilled burgers and fries. Wham! was always one of the reasons I went to Shangri-La, for before I discovered their great row of restaurants upstairs at the top floor, this joint was my favorite for their food and prices. We had the usual Wham! with cheese and Crosstrax Fries for dinner, and we had it over recollections of college days when this joint was so affordable for students like us then.
In the mood for dessert, we decided to have a nightcap by going back to The Podium and visiting Cafe Breton. Having been the subject of earlier posts, Cafe Breton is one of our clear all-time favorites. With great sweet treats, Cafe Breton was always a cozy, comfortable place to chat and just lounge around. Being regulars to the cafe, we sampled almost everything from their savory to sweet crepes, as well as their salads and other offerings. For this particular night, we wanted something cool. We were pretty full and satisfied after Wham!, so we just shared a banana split, while I had some tea and honey to go with it.
We left Ortigas at around 10 pm, being satisfied with an afternoon and evening of strolls, dining and chat. It was indeed a comfortable time among familiar eats. Now, if I can just go to the beach...
(Special thanks to the following sites for this entry's pictures: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Wham-Burgers/50720010585, http://www.solarnavigator.net/geography/geography_images/Philippines_San_Miguel_Avenue_Ortigas_full_moon.jpg, http://heitmannsnuts.netfirms.com/nuts2/nfoscomm/catalog/images/banana_split.gif)