I Recommend!

Tale of The Tastebuds: Marla’s Top 5 Marikina Picks

Disclaimer: All dining places in this post are nowhere near the famous Lilac Street.

Being a girl from “East Manila” (#represent), I usually spend my time around the Marikina area. Located at the outskirts of Metro Manila (but still part of it), Marikina is one of the “chillest” places I know. Known for their quality, handcrafted shoes, Marikina also boasts of hole-in-the-wall food places. I personally recommend food places that I’ve tried and tested and it just so happened that Marikina’s got a whole lot of these. Too bad I don’t have good photos of them (I just have a few tolerable snaps), but I totally guarantee you they are worth your every buck.

  1. Chef B’s (Formerly known as Boyong’s)

Location: 15, E. Dela Paz St., San Roque, Marikina City

Screen Shot 2015-03-21 at 3.27.09 PM

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset
   Boyong’s Aligue (Taba ng Talangka) Pasta
Processed with VSCOcam with m5 preset
                       Boyong’s Carbonara
Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset
                  Boyong’s Special Bibingka

This place, a former garage area converted into a ‘fast food restaurant’ serves one of the cheapest and best-tasting pasta dishes I know. They are also best-known for their sulit barbecues and grilled burgers (Imagine getting a GRILLED quarter-pounder looking-burger for just P35!) During the holidays, they also have big and low-cost bibingka and puto bumbong. But mind you, parking around Boyong’s is very, very hard, so you’d have to circle around the place a few times before scoring a parking slot at the side of the road. You can take-out food if their dining space is jam-packed (as it is, always). Open Mondays-Saturdays, until around 8 or 9 PM. Closed on Sundays.

2. Suba’s Diner

Location: Liamzon Street, Marikina City (located a block behind Lydia’s Lechon Marcos Highway Branch)

Screen Shot 2015-03-21 at 4.29.44 PM

This place is a small but thriving diner with a very homey ambiance. It serves quality lutong-bahay at very ‘keri lang’ prices. Often flocked by workers of all sorts during lunch breaks, as well as families who just want some lutong-bahay lovin’. I recommend you try their Papaitan and Paksiw, although their menu is different everyday, so it depends on its availability. Closed on Sundays. Parking is chill except when you go here during peak hours, especially lunch breaks.

3. Café Lidia

Location: Calderon St., San Roque, Marikina City

Screen Shot 2015-03-22 at 4.20.27 PM

Fun fact: This was taken on my 18th Birthday, and their Special Pizza (above) was actually my birthday cake.

This place is tucked away from shopping malls and other crowded places where you can usually see quite-fancy dining places. Café Lidia is a perfect date-night place, as it offers quality steaks, pizzas, pastas, and decadent desserts. A word though, it is a bit pricey if you’re on a tight budget, but every cent is totally worth it. I suggest you try their Salisbury steak, as well as their special Pizza and Pasta. Parking has no chill when the place is jam-packed (most of the time) but when you happen to drop by the place during its chill hours (usually around 1PM onwards), you can easily score a seat and a parking slot. Open Mondays-Sundays.

 4. QiZia Café

Location: Katipunan Avenue (behind SDS Hospital), SSS Village, Marikina City

Screen Shot 2015-03-22 at 5.15.16 PM

      A failed top shot of QiZia’s Pesto Plate

I fondly remember this place because it was introduced to me in a very weird and awkward manner. It went like this:

My Dad: “Anak, gusto mo ng steak?”

Me: “Steak? Seryoso ka dad?”

My Dad: “Oo, seryoso ako. Diyan sa SDS [Hospital] may steak.”

Me: “Niloloko mo nanaman ako eh.”

My Dad: “Seryoso, masarap pagkain diyan.”

Me: “Sa canteen ng ospital? ‘Di ba walang lasa pagkain dun?”

My Dad: “Tara try natin.”

             It may be behind a hospital building, but it served one of the most filling pesto pasta plates I’ve ever had. This place is quite cozy, and perfect for “tinamad ako magluto ng dinner kaya sa labas nalang tayo kumain” kind of dinners. Food is a bit above your average dinner’s spending, but it is seriously worth it (I still felt full a morning after I ate there). You will forget the place adjacent to it because the food is that good BUT! It will take at least 10-20 minutes before your food will be served (and I was hungry then, so I was impatient). Parking can go from chill-no chill in no time because it shares parking spaces with the hospital. Operating hours, I’m not really sure.

5. Mama Chit’s

Location: J.P. Rizal Avenue (across Shoe Museum, beside Johnnie Wilkie Bike Shop), San Roque, Marikina City

Screen Shot 2015-03-22 at 6.10.03 PM

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset
A pop-art portrait of Elvis Presley as well as photos of Old Manila line the walls of Mama Chit’s.
Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset
Pardon the face. Me with a mini-version of Mama Chit’s famous and ginormous Family Burger.

This is a Kris Aquino- certified food place. Enough said.

Seriously though, Mama Chit’s is best known for its chill, retro vibe topped off with Old Manila memorabilia and other vintage and restored stuff (If you’re a sucker for antique things like I am, you will surely love this place). Best known for their ginormous burger, it is also home to one of Marikina’s finest bike shops. They also offer pasta and desserts. It is quite pricey, but it’s perfect for post-holy mass merienda or if you’re feeling a bit adventurous with your burger choices. Parking has no chill, but you can go to this place conveniently by bike. Open Mondays-Sundays.

I hope I gave these places justice just as much as other food reviews did. As I’ve said before, I write what I feel, and my tongue might as well could be directly connected to my heart, as these places have swept me off my feet. I really hope you can check them out and let me know what you felt about what they could offer. 

‘Til the next Tale of The Taste Buds!


Marla 🙂 

Map screengrabs from Google Maps and zomato.com 

I Recommend!

What I Talk About When I Talk About Lydia’s


It’s been a while since I’ve posted here, since I’ve been quite busy with work and school and my other blog, thepookiechronicles.wordpress.com. But with this   “calm before the storm” kind of weekend, I took the chance to post my thoughts regarding one of the Philippines’ most popular restaurants– Lydia’s Lechon.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Lydia’s has been around for almost 50 years now, and it has definitely made a mark on Filipino dining culture. It started off with humble beginnings and since then, it has evolved with the changing times and trends in Filipino food, both locally and globally.

Being the #foodie that I am, my lechon craving took me to where Lydia’s all started– at their flagship restaurant at Baclaran.

I started off with their classics, a plate of crispy, sumptuous, signature Lechon, their famous Kare-Kare, and some Java rice to go with it. I topped it off with some Sago’t Gulaman and a bowl of mixed fruits. A heavy lunch indeed!

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

As I dined, each bite was an explosion of flavor. My tastebuds were very happy because the Lechon was sublime, as usual. Their special lechon sauce was the icing on the cake, making it stand out not just for me but for everyone else who have tried, tested and trusted Lydia’s.

Well, you know, it is kind of a blogging “rule of thumb” that before you eat, you take a picture of what you’re having. But since I was so busy eating, I totally forgot to take lots of photos of it. Trust me though, Lydia’s is still what it was when it started. It still offers great food with great service, all for very affordable prices, making it one of the country’s well-loved dining places.

I hope I’ve intensified your craving for lechon now more than ever, because seriously, just the thought of it makes me giggly. When I talk about food, I speak from the heart, and when I talk about Lydia’s, I speak as a very, very satisfied foodie. mp

P.S: I’ll keep you guys posted on more of my adventures and recent shenanigans, but for the meantime, please check out thepookiechronicles.wordpress.com for some of my self-published articles!

‘Til the next!


Marla 🙂

I Recommend!

The Heel Project Manila

Hi guys!

I know I haven’t posted anything for weeks, and I really want to catch up [but I have so many things to do]. All my blog has at the moment are reblogged content [mostly from Thought Catalog], but at least I’ve been able to share some with you through those greatly written essays.

Anyways, I’m here to talk about an online shop that is really an example of Drake’s “Started From The Bottom, Now We’re Here”. It started out as a small online shop selling trendy clothes and bags, and now it has a great number of Instagram followers, resellers and has set up shop at a nearby Robinsons mall. I’m talking about The Heel Project Manila, also known as THP Manila.

It’s a shoe shop very close to me, because it is owned by my dear cousin and her best friend. They started it when they were in college as they were taking up entrepreneurship. They sold Marikina-made shoes, best known for its export-grade quality and craftsmanship. Their shoes have a variety of styles and sizes, perfect for girls [like me] who can never have too many shoes, or, if you want to own a customized pair of shoes, you can also ask them to have it custom-made for you. They’ve been shipping locally and internationally, and they have many resellers trusting their brand and the quality of the products they sell. Just recently, they’ve opened their flagship store and will be launching The Heel Project Kids soon. Image

(Photo courtesy of  @theheelprojectmanila on Instagram)


In this photo, I’m wearing their “Anya” shoe, a brown suede moccasin booties with fringes. Perfect if you want to add a boho twist to your look. It’s also very comfy [ I use it for long walks and when I’m driving] and it’s a great pair to invest in.

After spending quite some time with The Heel Project Manila’s owners, I’ve decided to resell some of their bags, because I saw their attention to detail and their dedication when they have their products manufactured.

You can visit their flagship store inside the Fab Area at the 2nd level of Robinsons Metro East Pasig (near The 2nd Level Parking and Nike Store) or you can follow them on Instagram, it’s http://instagram.com/theheelprojectmanila

Also, don’t forget to follow my online shop, it’s instagram.com/baghaulph

On to the next one!


Marla 🙂