Baguio Thanksgiving Weekend

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Baguio holds the charm which I would say is comparable to Boracay. No matter how many times I set foot on such place, it will always feel like it’s the first time. This trip to Baguio was our third for the year. However, this time, we decided that it will be different in the sense that it will not involve any of those Baguio cliches. By this, I mean not visiting traditional places like Camp John Hay, Burnham, Mines View Park, and The Mansion, among others. Instead, we will go hopping on different restaurants and cafes within the vicinity.

The first place where I ate was at The Flying Gecko along Session Road. I was alone on my first day, and on that day as well, I ate on this place thrice. I had a portion of carbonara and iced tea twice, and had their hot chocolate once. Also tried their Beef Tapa and Apple Custard Pie. The good thing about this place is that they have their food served in portion or whole, depending on how much of an eater you are.

On the first night, while I was alone, I also had the chance to have a quick alcohol-sip all by myself. I went to Ayuyang but could not find a seat, so I decided to walk along Session Road to find myself a decent place to have a quick drink. I landed at Rumour’s, located at the far end of Session. I sat by the bar and had my Jack. The place is like Baguio’s own Distillery or Reserve, less the party atmosphere. I was quite small, but good enough for a glass or two.

On our second day, I had breakfast alone at Cafe by the Ruins. This place in one of my favorites and I would not definitely mind going back the next time I’m in Baguio.  The place is cozy and artistic. At one of the dining areas, you can see the ruins of a garden theater which has been later transformed into a residence and now serves as one of the major pieces in the cafe.

Cafe by the Ruins Menu

For my breakfast, I had Carbonara, Chocolate de Agua, and iced tea.

Carbonara                                                                       “Home-cured bacon, egg, and cream in hand-cranked noodles, made w/ fresh eggs. Served with focaccia. 

Chocolate de Agua                                     “A mug of pure, bittersweet chocolate tablea dissolved in water, the Mexican way, with a touch of sugar. Served with cinnamon toasts made of brioche”

Pandan Lemon Grass Iced Tea with Honey

For lunch, we decided to try the Slaughter House. We heard this place from some friends and we decided to give it a shot as we received good feedback about the place. Slaughter House does not refer to the name of a specific establishment. Rather, it collectively houses a line of carinderia which serves good food at a cheap price. We had Sinigang na Baboy, Inihaw na Liempo, Inihaw na Pusit, and Talong for lunch.

Sinigang na Baboy

Inihaw na Pusit

Inihaw na Liempo

Talong

After having lunch, we went to Mt. Cloud Bookshop, located at Casa Vallejo. We chanced upon a small talk in the place but did not stay long. The shop is a perfect place to read some books while sipping a cup of coffee or drinking a bottle of beer.

Bookshelf at Mt. Cloud

Near the bookshop, also at Casa Vallejo, there is a restaurant called Hill Station. We decided to have a quick stay in the place. It is marketed as one of the best restaurants in Baguio, and even voted as one of the best in Asia. The place hosts a collection of framed photos and is nothing beyond any other cafe in a hotel lobby.

A wall of framed photos at Hill Station

Hill Station Iced Tea

Cafe Mocha

Death by Chocolate Cake

We then headed to Mother’s Garden Panorama Cafe after a stay at the Hill Station. The place, no wonder, is tagged as a panorama cafe because of the amazing view it offers its guests. Apart from being a cafe, the place is also a garden. There are various herbs grown indoors and outdoors, and various animals including rabbits and birds. They also offer free pottery and wood carving workshop, as well as free face painting, if the artist happens to be there. While there, we met Cel, a Fine Arts student from UP Baguio working at Mother’s Garden as the resident artist of the place. He does sketches and other works of art to help entertain the guests.

For this trip, it was already my second time in the place. I was lucky to have met the owner on my first day. She is a kind lady, maybe in her 60s, and obviously, with passion for gardening. Aside from the magnificent panoramic view of the city, you can also enjoy privacy in this place. On the two times we were there, we were the only guests. The place has a cafe, herb conservatory, petting farm, plant nursery, kindergarten, hobby shop, and souvenir shop.

Panoramic View of the City from Mother’s Garden

Petting Farm at Mother’s Garden

Green Tea

Vanilla Ice Cream with Strawberry Coulis

We also tried their beef burger twice during this weekend trip.

The house which we rented was ;just near the place so we decided to have a quick nap first before heading out for dinner.

We had dinner at Forest House. It was a bad idea to go there without reservations as the place is small and often full. We waited for a few minutes before we were finally seated. The place is also tagged as one of Baguio’s best restaurants and prides itself for offering reasonable (not low) prices, given the quality of their food and service.

Forest House

Forest House Iced Tea

 Potato Chowder Soup in Bread

Vegetable Kebab Served on a Bed of Java Rice

Forest House Wine Sauced Chicken “Grilled chicken breast marinated in white wine and served in creamy white sauce with vegetables on the side”

Fireplace at Forest House Entrance

Another thing which is unusual about this trip is that there’s not too much beer involved. After dinner at Forest House, we went to Cafe Will for coffee and beer, short walk at Session Road, and coffee and beer again at Zola.

Will’s Best Coffee                                     “Hot coffee with Ice Cream on Top”

Zola

Entrance at Zola

On our last day, we went to Oh My Gulay for breakfast. We were quite disappointed when we found out that they have limited items on the menu. Nonetheless, the place is artistic – an evidence of having Kidlat Tahimik as one of the owner’s. It is located on the top floor of La Azotea along Session Road.

Oh My Gulay’s Menu

Oh My Gulay Entrance

Limonada “Freshly-squeezed native lemonade”

Oh My Gulay Club Sandwich “Two-decker sandwich of plump tomatoes, crisp cucumber and egg, served with green salad”

Kung Fu “Sweet and succulent Mandarin orange segments with chocolate and cream drizzles, stuffed in hot buttered crepe”

The view from the second floor

One of the dining areas inside Oh My Gulay

Inside Oh My Gulay

After going to the public market for a quick pasalubong shopping, we had our last meal for the trip at Jim’s Retro Diner which is also located at La Azotea. The place is like 50’s Diner and Bambenny’s, with their milkshakes and giant burgers. I just find it quite off that there’s Pancit Canton in a retro diner.

Jim’s Retro Diner Menu

Inside Jim’s

Pancit Canton

Cordon Bleu

For this trip, we stayed at Our Place Bed and Breakfast. It is a house with three bedrooms, a common bathroom, kitchen, fridge, dining area, living room, and fireplace.

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