Celebrating Philippine Independence in Chinatown

Yesterday was Philippines’ 114th Independence Anniversary —means no work for me so I tagged along with friends who are going for a food trip in Binondo. Way to go to celebrate the holiday. :p

I’ve long planned doing this but as usual, friends’ schedules never met so there, it remained a plan, until Tuesday. We sure exercised our right to eat whatever our tummies can accommodate. It’s gluttony, but hey, we only live once! So do whatever makes you happy! Food and eating makes us happy. 🙂

(I’m using a big lens so pardon the bad photos. I still can’t afford to buy a smaller lens. My shots sure didn’t do justice to all the yummy food we had.)

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We were at Ongpin by 1pm, I was already hungry by then because I hadn’t eaten breakfast. We started walking to look for the restaurants on Shyne’s list. She did a little research about the restaurants we must try. While searching for Benavidez Street, we past by Shanghai Fried Siopao, which is on our list. So we bought a piece for each (P16), which was a miscalculation because the siopao is just so damn good after a bite I wanted to go back and buy some more. We were only few steps away from the shop but decided to move on and just go back later for take-outs. (But we should’ve listened to our tummies because the shop was already closed when we went for it before going home.)

I do not have a photo of that siopao but I’ll try to describe it. It’s not an ordinary asado or bola-bola siopao you can find at Chinese restaurants. The bun was so soft and the filling is flavorful. They call it fried because the bottom of the bun was fried. Also the bun’s white, not the brown bread like toasted siopao.

After a long walk, we finally found MaSuKi located at Benavidez Street. MaSuKi formerly known as Ma Kong Mami is a popular noodle house, and they’ve got photos to prove that.

Again, I wasn’t able to take any good photo of our food. We ordered four different mami and the boys ordered side dishes siomai and a huge siopao. I settled with Beef Chicken Wanton mami for Php170 (prices start at Php100). They give really huge servings. I thought I might not finish mine but of course, I did. (Later, we would discover they have smaller servings.) The soup was a little sweet, and the noodles come with a sweet asado-like sauce. I noticed other customers putting sauce on the noodles before eating but I preferred mine the way it is. I just added a little calamansi sauce and brown sauce, just out of habit (when eating out I tend to add seasoning on my food just because). Also, while we were there, the restaurant never ran out of customers. That must amount to something, right? If you’re into genuine Chinese mami, MaSuKi is the place to be.

Another colleague arrived just after we finished our noodles (Shyne ate like only a quarter of hers but Rein was there for the rescue, hehe). We ate food that’s good for two meals so we decided to go for a walk before searching for our next destination- this dumpling place that took us almost an hour to locate, because we agreed not to ask for directions. Hardcore daw eh, but when we seem to be going around the same street, Rein finally asked some man, but didn’t get a good answer either.

When we finally located Yuchengco Street, our instincts lead us to the wrong direction. By this time Emman was already hungry because he went straight to Binondo after getting out of bed. I was telling Shyne we should’ve split the group and took the opposite directions and whoever comes back to the main alley would mean they have to take the other way, hehe. Then Shyne yelled to Rein the name of the place we’re looking for, “Dong Bei? Dun sa kabila, tatlong kanto mula dito,” a man on the street suddenly exclaimed when she heard Shyne.

This is a plate of Kuchay-Pork dumplings from Dong Bei Dumpling. Most of their other dumplings were not available so we just ordered two of this at P100 per plate, and a plate of fried rice for Emman. We munched on them dumplings in no time at all because we were inspired by those fast-eating matakaw anime characters.

What’s interesting about Dong Bei is that you can see how the dumplings are made, because they make dumplings right at the spare tables beside the eating customers. They seem to not mind how the customers might discover the secret of their popular dumplings. 🙂

Lucky Chinatown mall was overlooking from outside of Dong Bei so we decided to go and take a look at this new mall, and who knows we might just get lucky. 😉 We spent some time going around the place and more time at Toy Kingdom reminiscing our awesome childhood.

After making fun of a child riding a fake toy pony (Rein says she could make a good white castle girl someday), we happily got out of the mall and went to look for someplace to eat dinner. Honestly, I’m still full by this time, but heck, this is a food trip, so never mind committing gluttony.

Wai Ying served our dinner. We had a dimsum party- ordered 5 kinds of siomai and other dimsums and shared with everybody. I later found out through blogs that Wai Ying’s congee is also great.

We got out of Chinatown at half past 8. Most of the shops were already closed, that meant no more fried siopao for us. Anyway, there’s always next time. Actually, we agreed to make this a regular thing. Just not too often. 🙂

Arts, Photos

Inah at Intramuros

The best thing about having beautiful friends, they can instantly become models if you need one. 😀

This is Inah. She’s always mentioned in this blog because she’s my drinking/filmfests/gigs buddy. Basically, our friendship is based on pure awesomeness, haha! We often hang out dahil magkasundo kami sa mga bagay-bagay. We’ve been friends since high school. We call her Kat. She was seated beside me during the first few weeks (or months?) of our freshman year. Some time later I came to know that she watches a lot of movies and she speaks English real good. Oh, and she was one of the prettiest faces in our school. I could go on and on telling things about her but I know she doesn’t have the slightest idea she’s being blogged about so there. :p Just check out her tumblog.

Obviously, she loves art, that’s why she asked her photos taken with the graffiti painted walls inside Intramuros. She takes photos, too. 🙂

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