The sweet wonders of Hilton Manila’s Afternoon Tea Buffet at Madison Lounge & Bar

Hilton Afternoon Tea COVERRR - The sweet wonders of Hilton Manila's Afternoon Tea Buffet at Madison Lounge & Bar

It’s funny how the opportunity to try out Hilton Manila’s Afternoon Tea Buffet at their Madison Lounge & Bar came right around the time I was missing afternoon tea. Afternoon Tea has become one of my guilty pleasures. While I am aware it’s not something I strictly need in my life, I still find it a really really nice occasional indulgence. Feelings of being posh aside, I get a lot of excitement out of the little creative food items you usually get to try with an Afternoon Tea set.

The current theme of Hilton Manila’s Afternoon Tea Buffet is Choco Berry delights. Most of us probably know that these two things are a wonderful combination, both flavor-wise and appearance-wise.

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Hilton Manila’s Hua Yuan Brasserie Chinoise is the perfect place for elegant Shanghai cuisine

Hua Yuan COVERR - Hilton Manila's Hua Yuan Brasserie Chinoise is the perfect place for elegant Shanghai cuisine

To say that Hilton Manila’s Hua Yuan Brasserie Chinoise made a banging first impression would be an understatement. Out of the Chinese restaurants I’ve managed to visit in different hotels, the interiors here are perhaps my favorite. The ambiance is right up my alley. It feels very classy because the restaurant doesn’t go overboard with the decor. The decor also complements the furniture and all those metal dividers rather than clash, and there is this feeling of spaciousness inside. 

Speaking of spacious, not only does this restaurant have a big open dining area with cozy booths, it also has three private dining rooms that can seat 10 to 12 persons each.

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The lovely Hua Yuan Brasserie Chinoise.

Having never been to Hilton Manila since it opened in late 2019, I didn’t expect to immediately get a good feeling about Hua Yuan Brasserie Chinoise. As I sat down on my table, I was fervently hoping that all the good vibes will continue on once the actual food arrives. After all, the restaurant was named to Philippine Tatler’s list of Best Restaurants for 2020. 

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That lighting fixture reminds me of a dandelion.

My first time dining at Lola Cafe in Tomas Morato

Even though Lola Café has been around enough time to turn into a real crowd favorite, I have no qualms about admitting I’ve never been. Though I call myself a food blogger, I don’t really care about being the first person to try a new restaurant. I will go when I’m ready. But that doesn’t mean I am hearing about Lola Café for the first time. They’re a restaurant popular for their modern interpretations of Filipino dishes after all.

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Lola Café has a lot of rave reviews, and after a meal there I would say that a lot of the comments are well founded. But the restaurant did not exactly give me a purely great experience to bring home. It started out really well though. I called in a reservation and found that we would be running late, so I called to move the reservation to a slightly later time and they were very accommodating.

Upon arriving, the place was jam-packed. I was nervous at first that my reservation change got lost in all the hubbub and that our table might’ve been given away, but thankfully our table was still available. We were told it was upstairs, and were haphazardly pointed to the table. We sat there for about 5 minutes, ignored, not even being given menus to look at.

Single Origin: One of my favorite places for coffee and chill

Single Origin COVERR - Single Origin: One of my favorite places for coffee and chill

If there’s one coffee shop I feel like I don’t visit enough, it’s Single Origin. Out of the coffee shops I’ve visited in the metro, I find myself inexplicably drawn to two so far. Single Origin is one, and Yardstick is the other. I suppose one could say the ambiance of either coffee shop could not be any more different than the other, but both places give me a very similar feeling.

They aren’t huge coffee shops, but they manage to invoke a feeling of spaciousness inside. It gives me a lot of comfort. They have this certain quiet that helps me think. And it helps that both places serve good coffee too.

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Compared to the lighter colors of Yardstick’s interiors, Single Origin has a bit of a dark brick warehouse vibe. It’s a comfy place too though. Just like with Yardstick, their tables are all in different sizes, but large enough for you to lay out your things and work on something creative.

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