Category Archives: Food

Exactly one year ago..

I just noticed that my Blog : BEHIND THE THICK FRAMED GLASSES  has reached one year today! this would be a good opportunity for me to thank people who have been with me during my one year of blog writing (although so slow, and filled with many hiatus moments).

to start,  i would like to thank Franz, Justin and Jaypee for being with me during the first days of my blog.
Len David and Donna Kiritharan for accompanying me in my food trips and many blog rant episodes.
Aris Suarez for my new photo and blog signatures, logos, and my header (which will be done soon! right aris?) and for also being my photographer.

Shot at Caunayan Falls in Baler, by Aris Suarez

Logo digitized and enhanced. thanks again Aris Suarez




Filed under Adventure, Food, Photo Dump, Review, Travel

Chapter V : Reawakening and the Surge of the Spyder

After a significant amount of down time, i have decided to continue my self proclaimed quest. i have said farewell to my usual companions and would start to fulfill my adventure on my own (maybe this could lead to me meeting more adventurers and possible companions in the future).  this adventurer has awakened from the slumber and is determined to finish the quest!

A request for Adventure was found on one of the boards in the web. an establishment called Spyder set out a call to adventurers for a one day skirmish in the river city of Marikina. This group wants several adventurers to try their new gears and see how they fare in action. but would also want to instill a different philosophy and mantra on how adventurers go about their daily lives (a fit and healthy lifestyle, if you will!)

Team Spyder Surge

The call to adventure was heeded by several experienced and neophyte adventurers. the goal was to go around the city of marikina in bikes, clad in spyder outfits and gear. the kit given by the company consists of a chest piece (Cycling Jersey), a visor (performance eyewear), and a helmet.

The adventure started at dawn of the 4th of august. spyder was there early, and adventurers were slowly assembling in front of the Marikina Bikeways office in marikina. Marikina is known to be the first (and only – for now) city that has bike lanes all throughout their road system. Marikina has been advocating a strong cycling community to minimize traffic congestion and pollution. Spyder also teamed-up with the Firefly Brigade in support of their advocacy of a healthier environment brought about by cycling.

The Event is dubbed “Spyder Surge: Answering the Call to Adventure”. it is a series of mini events hosted by Spyder Philippines to have individuals/bloggers/enthusiasts test their products and gears, and be part of an active lifestyle community. Spyder’s VP for marketing said that surges will feature different sports from time to time, and they plan to conduct it monthly or once every two months.  and that they plan to keep each event small so that they could promote the interaction between participants and hosts.

Awesome In-Action shot by Nikk Victoriano

Group shot at SM Marikina

each adventurer was outfitted with an eyewear , a cycling jersey, and a helmet. the goal of the event was to show how resilient, durable and stylish Spyder products are, but also trying to change mindsets from being couch potatoes to becoming health and exercise junkies. everyone was looking sharp, and we were having a lot of heads turning as the entire spyder surge team passed by.  the cycling went on for an hour and a half before we reached this awesome lunch stop.

Pan De-Amerikana has a very hogwartsy feel (kara santos and i agree on this!). there were giant chess pieces, vines hanging from the ceiling and furniture made of old wood (exudes the nature feel, and has a very earthy tone!). brunch was served (food was excellent!) and mingling occurred (one of spyder’s primary goal), several photo opportunities were also done.

Pan De Amerikana – Marikina Exterior

Great Hall look and feel!

Team Spyder Surge I : Cycling

Aris Suarez – Karyl Moral – Francis – Riel Pinones

Team PTB Bagets

after the lunch, the team went for another 10 min bike ride to where we started. there we bade each other goodbye, exchanged contact infos and had that notion of adventuring together sometime.


Spyder provided the following:

with Kara Santos, and Karyl Moral (wearing my mercury helmet)

Cycling Helmet – the Helmet that i used the is called the Spyder Mercury (a helmet created for the road). it was very light, and had well placed vents to allow the passage of the wind as you speed along the pavement. due to the excessive vents, there are no wind resistance. making it possible to speed up with ease.

Spyder Sequel and Cycling Jersey

Performance Eyewear –  the Eyewear that i got from Spyder is called the Sequel. it is a performance type of eyewear primarily developed for cyclists and runners. my sequel came with another set of lens that can be changed to fit the nature of the activity. the lenses are also polarized. the frame is made of lightweight plastic flexible material, not being an added “pagod” factor during activities.

Dry-Fit Cycling Jersey –  The Jersey that i got was extremely eye catching. it has three rear pockets (which i found out to be extremely useful – i tried putting my ipad there, and it fit! giving me many ideas on its other usage!).  the ride was extremely comfortable because wind was passing through this jersey as well. ill try to use this for jogging and running soon!

at the end of the ride – i learned many things. 1. how fun activities like these can change one’s mindset towards the active living/ 2. how it is always fun to do tiring activities with friends, and view it as a bonding activity / 3. i am now in love with cycling.

Thank you Spyder Philippines!

Follow their Social Media Accounts here:
Spyder Philippines Facebook
Team Spyder Twitter

Photos grabbed from Spyder Philippines and Nikk Victoriano


Filed under Adventure, Book 2 : The Quest, Food, Travel

Chapter IV : Soderno : The Food Adventure at Metro’s South

Mech and Myself decided to try out the latest of the many night markets that is scattered around the metro. Soderno, located along madrigal avenue – Alabang, is the latest (based on the info i gathered) of the many sought after food hubs during fridays and the weekends! charging towards the place with an empty stomach, i was prepared for the food adventure that is before me and my companion.

Both Mech and I, started the night with a burger from Big Bob’s Charcoal Burgers (which according to Anton Diaz of “Our Awesome Planet” is one of Mercato’s favorites). Both of us ordered the Big Bob’s special, which costs 180 pesos, but dont let the price take over your consciousness and deem this burger as expensive. it actually is worth the price. my impression of the burger was a taste combination of some of my favorite burger joints like Burger king, Wendy’s and Hardee’s. although offering a different twist with regard the tandem of the  softness of the bacon and the charred to perfection patty.

Big Bob’s Special Burger @ 180 pesos

After my romance with Big Bob’s Special Burger and a cup of Melon Drink, my small party of two was joined by a fellow Helios Project International photographer and blogger Donna Kiritharan. Alabang was her turf, and having her around would be fun! the three of us then set forth to meet another Helios Beauty, Robelene Rayala A.k.a. Robs, who by the way, was at Soderno the entire time. After the inevitable catching up and exchange of witty and funny anecdotes that is our everyday life, rob and her party decided to part ways with ours, leaving us hungry for more food and exchange of stories about life, love and career (cheesy!)

after another round of walking around the Soderno food vicinity, we procured some much talked about Iced Tea at Brewed Leaf : Homemade Iced Teas.  the difference is very noticeable as compared to the regular iced tea. i would recommend the Brewed Leaf: Honey Citrus Sweet Tea which costs 30 pesos only on a 16oz plastic cup. this is the much needed elixir for a very hot and humid night during yesterday’s food adventure.

Brewed Leaf : Honey Citrus Sweet Tea @ 30 pesos

the Adventure at Soderno was much needed after a very mind tearing and stressful week! and of course to top it off, the experience wouldn’t be complete had it not been for the 3 friends and companions that i was with on this food adventure.

some shots from our latest food adventure

—- Behind thick framed glasses notes:

1.Mercato – Night Market similar to Soderno, located at the Bonifacio Global City (Taguig)
2. Photo of Big Bob’s Burger grabbed from their fan page (like them today!) : Big Bob’s Burger
3. All other photos grabbed from Donna Kiritharan‘s Fb Account and Blog


Filed under Book 2 : The Quest, Food

Chapter III : Everything ends Well at Swell

After the intense rain and wind that manila experienced during the past few weeks, I, along with friends decided to visit a bar and cafe i used to go to in subic for a chill weekend. i heard that the sun is expected to shine there until wednesday, and i have been longing to dip myself in lukewarm water and lie in the rough sandy beaches fronting my favorite bar in subic.

we decided to leave for subic early. Me and the Apes were accompanied by Len David, a sexy and attractive deviant who excels in eating and critiquing food, and Lloyd – the lost boy, a wandering adventurer known for his many quests in and out of the country. at approximately 7:30, the six of us set forth on our adventure.

Subic was a 2-3 hour trip from the Victory Liner Cubao Terminal. costing 250 pesos (via SCTEX) per person. the trip wasn’t that bad, every one of us had our own personal agendas for the trip. i wanted the beach! some wanted the food, meet new friends, and see new sights. although our main objective in subic is to visit Swell Bar and Cafe. Swell is a relatively new Bar and Cafe in Subic, focusing more on healthy options and offering a very unique lineup of food and drinks.

Welcome to Swell Bar and Cafe

Swell offers paddle boarding to its patrons (more on this in the next chapters)

The very cozy and relaxed area of Swell Bar and Cafe

our party was greeted by Gianne, the operations manager of Swell Bar and Cafe. she had us relax and order some refreshments from their very refreshing drink selection. being a fan of their giant iced tea, i ordered it and even recommended it to my party. at this point, i just couldn’t resist the thought of standing in the bar and neglecting the opportunity to just jump in the water. and so i did, and it felt really good.

At that very instance, i was laying faced up to the sun. i thought to myself while floating around on the wavey ocean, i deserved this break. i told myself that every problem and issues that i may have at that point has been forgotten, even for a brief moment. because at that time, i just felt that everything is going to be SWELL.

—- Behind thick Framed Glasses notes:

1. Swell – word used to describe the rise of waves ; it is also an informal way of saying : good, excellent, superb
2. Photos were taken from Ape: Franz Lopez

Swell Bar and Cafe
Boardwalk Inn
Bldg 664 Waterfront Road
Subic Bay Freeport Zone
(047) 250 2221


Filed under Book 2 : The Quest, Food, Travel

Chapter II : Fresh from the Kitchen – Manang’s Chicken

I never heard of Manangs Chicken until a friend at my photography group, Helios Project International, mentioned it on our community page. Although it is really near my workplace, i never ventured to it alone. Until one day, Len David, a friend and fellow blogger, asked me to visit Manangs’ Chicken to try it out. right there and then, we agreed to have lunch there and experience the now talked about establishment.

Photo was taken during my fourth visit, with Helios Project

The first impression that i had of Manang’s Chicken Ortigas was the very modern and hip look and feel of the place. the colors are very friendly to the eyes, and the smell of the place was not a turn off. 80% of the places that i have dined at ortigas center always left a vile smell in my attire, making it really embarrassing to face the boss after lunch.

Before entering Manangs Chicken at Ortigas Center

The menu focused more on their chicken selection, a one piece chicken with rice and a two piece chicken with rice. Other meal options includes but not limited to are the Chicken Wings, Liempo, Fried Pancit , Spaghetti and Burgers.

Two Leg Piece Chicken – Extra Spicy Sauce , no drinks – 136 pesos

After selecting my Chicken meal, i was first asked for the part that i want – combine any leg, thigh or breast for the two piece chicken meal. I was then asked to choose the sauce for it (Original, Mild Spicy and Extra Spicy). After paying, Len and I looked for a place to sit in while waiting for our order. I thought that it would take a significant amount of time before our chickens actually find our table, but NO!, and to both our surprise, Len’s Chicken (since she ordered first) arrive just as we arrived at our table. it took less than 5 minutes to get our order! perfect for us corporate employees as our lunch is sometimes limited.

the Chicken looks ABSOLUTELY GREAT! the aroma that emanated from the stro container has already captivated my heart, and the first bite was actually HEAVEN! (the smell and the first bite are two very important factors for me to consider food as splendid!). the only downside with the meal is that it came in a styro container and not a plate, and at that time was accompanied with a plastic spoon and fork.

Two piece chicken meal with regular iced tea – 154 pesos

the newly added coleslaw at 30 pesos

MANANGS CHICKEN lives up to the reviews and the buzz that has been created. in my opinion, this could actually overthrow some well established chicken joints like Bonchon and all those Chicken wing shops that has been sprouting here and there like wild mushrooms! I have been to manangs 4 times just this month alone (and its only the 12th of october), and i have to say that it keeps getting better and better everytime! as the saying goes, Love is sweeter the second time around! what more on the third or fourth try?

me and len, waiting for my order to arrive

Thank you Manangs Chicken. see you tomorrow! right Len?

— Behind Thick Framed Notes

1. All Photos courtesy of Bobbit Lim
2. Visit or Contact Manangs at:
Manangs Chicken
AIC Gold Tower, Garnet Road, Ortigas Center


Filed under Book 2 : The Quest, Food

Chapter I : Mana-Ish, the Arabian Delight

“I miss and long for Arabic Food”. Those words kept popping out of my head like some thought bubble over and over again when my friend donna mentioned this AUTHENTIC Arabic Restaurant located in Buendia. i have been thinking about this restaurant ever since. and i have been building up my expectations based on her testimony of the place.

I grew up in Oman, a country in the middle east. Arabic cuisine has been my definition of Jollibee. ever since i transfered here in the Philippines for college, i have been in the constant search for a good and authentic arabic restaurant that could satisfy my palate, and my hunger for shawarma, falafel, Hummus and other arabic delights that reminds me of the place i grew to love throughout the years. i have not found the place, until two weeks ago, when my friends organized a dinner at this restaurant.

one of the awesomest hummus that i have ever tasted.

Mana-ish and more, a restaurant built around middle eastern authenticity, has given me the pleasure of experiencing and revisiting my second home with just one bite of hummus on a pita. i remember telling donna that i instantly fell in love with the place with just one bite. the place reminded me of my usual hangout places in oman, the ambiance also offered the same kind of experience that i have when i enter the usual arabic restaurant back home. and the food is at par, if not better than the ordinary cuisine that i have had the pleasure of experiencing back home.

for 350 pesos, you and your barkada can enjoy this shawarma masterpiece. i enjoyed this meal more because of the pickles that were included in the platter. rarely do i come across shawarma joints that includes pickles in their serving.

Mana-ish also gives you the authentic feel of an arabic restaurant, complete with the music from the far east, and the photos of celebrities only known to fans of arabic television. the display of shisha was a good touch to the very homy feel that mana-ish gives to its customers.

Mana-Ish from the outside

Shisha and reviews

the food is great, the place is superb and the experience is excellent!

i thank you, mana-ish for the very affordable flight back home. your place is one of a kind! shukran Mana-ish and more!

— Behind thick Framed notes:

1. Shawarma Photo grabbed from Mana-ish and more Facebook Fan Page
2. other photos taken by me, using donna’s camera
3. Visit or call Manaish at the info provided:
#20 Jupiter Street, Brgy. Bel Air
Makati City


Filed under Book 2 : The Quest, Food

Chapter VI : The Diner from the Past

The cab from Wright did not take that long to the burnham area. after several minutes, the four of us found ourselves wandering towards the agora near Burnham park. We decided to look for blankets, since our friend Jaypee was itching to get his hands on authentic baguio blankets made of fleece. I, on the other hand wanted to procure bonnet headgears, as my ears are starting to get numb due to the low temperature. and my hair was messy too, probably shaken from the mishap at Wright (see Chapter V).

Young ones selling bags to adventurers

Old ones Selling more than Bags

After finishing our restocking and procurement of supplies and homebound gifts, we decided to go to Burnham park. based on my research and interviews, i found out that Burnham park was named after the city planner of Baguio, and the Lake fronting it is actually man made! before actually reaching the lake, we sighted a monument of Igorots, funny how fascinated i am about this particular indigenous group. probably because i expected to see them and interact, yet to my dismay, i never did. 😦

The Igorot Monument

The lake looks really good, it emits this aura of calmness and serenity. The park gave an ambiant feel and invitation to adventurers for slow strolls, photo shoots, sport activities and even family picnics on the grass. Amusement of boat riding was offered to adventurers, and wandering camera men made their presence known by displaying their portraits to adventurers who may have neglected to bring their cameras to the park.

After a series of photo shots, we decided to end our baguio trip by having lunch at a diner we saw two days ago. We backtracked to the area of Wright, Mansion and Hotel Elizabeth to try out the 50s Diner.

it was like spiraling back to the 50-60s era. Of course, my knowledge and comparison are based on how movies portrayed the 50s and 60s. but the feel, the sound and heck, im not sure how i thought possible,the smell gave me the impression of said era. the seats and tables reminded me of the setting in grease, though not at all 50s and 60s but made the experience more authentic. the music were shifting through elvis, nat king cole and i could have sworn i heard a patsy cline once in awhile.

The common thing that was evident in the diner was “Happiness”. All of the patrons seemto be smiling at each other, or laughing their hearts out. i thought maybe the food was really great. the four of us ordered the bestsellers, i ordered the Gangsta, Gangsta along with a Vanilla Ice Cream shake. Justin ordered the same, with a chocolate milk shake to accompany the viand.

Gangsta Gangsta – Combination of Porkchop, Fried Chicken, Chicken Roll and Mixed Vegetables with Rice and topped with a sunny side up Egg. (135 pesos only)

Watermelon shake (50 pesos), Chocolate Milk shake (70 pesos) and Vanilla Milk shake (70 pesos)

Franz and Jaypee both had the Guys on the Hood accompanied by a a watermelon shake.

 Guys on the Hood –  Combination of spaghetti, Fired Chicken, Pizza, a slice of garlic toast, French Fries, and mixed vegetables. (130 pesos only)

we waited for at least 5-7 minutes until our food was served. to our surprise, the servings were indeed intended for big appetite fellows. the food wasn’t bad either, but wasn’t spectacular as well. but what made the experience fun was we, even for an hour, felt that we really were in the 50s. oh, and did i say that the prices are very affordable?

after pigging out at 50s Diner. Franz, for a moment, and this i just felt, had separation anxiety from baguio. He wanted one last stroll around the place, or until he realizes that we all are tired and wanted to be on our way home. after that stroll, we finally agreed to head back to Manila.

my List as of Oct. 3, 2011. Not Bad!

1. View the Mines
2. Seek out the Giant Dog
3. Igorot Ritual
4. Explore the Military Academy
5. Visit the largest Armory and Tavern
6. Seek out the Religious Edifaces
7. Visit the Sanctuary of the Good Shepherd
8. Traverse the Parks of Wright
9. Explore the Lake of Burnham
10. Visit the University way Up.
11. Forge alliance with Igorots
12. Drink the Crimson Concoction
13. Visit the Mansion of the High Head

Baguio, i shall return and finish all my unfinished business! till next time!


—Behind Thick Framed Notes

50s Diner product shots courtesy of Jaypee David


Filed under Adventure, Book 1 : Awakening, Food, Travel