25 years of French Baker and a Visit Paris promotion!

We recently attended The French Baker 25th year anniversary at the SM Mega Fashion Hall which was filled with luminaries from Manila’s society. It was a grand celebration full of good food, chocolates, sweets, wine, coffee and everything you’d ask for. The milestone was really worth celebrating as it takes a certain degree of awesomeness to last 25 years in the business.

Credit it to the vision of CEO Johnlu Koa, a former UP business professor who decided to apply what he taught in school by founding The French Baker.


“It was in 1985 when I travelled to Europe for the first time that I fell in love with Paris and her baked goodies. Since then I’ve dreamt of doing the same so that I can impart a similar experience to our countrymen in the Philippines,” Koa noted.

And soon, one lucky French Baker patron will get to enjoy Paris for real with three chosen companions as part of the chain’s 25th anniversary promo.

It will be an all-expense paid vacation made possible by the promotion’s partners Insight Vacations,Rajah Travel Corporation, and Etihad Airways as the official airline. The winner and his companions will spend at least three days in each of France’ key cities,including Paris, the old Roman City of Nimes; and finally Monte Carlo.

Aside from the grand prize, 25 pieces The French Baker gift certificates worth P5,000 each are also up for grabs.

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Early Thanksgiving dinner from US Potato Board

Though Thanksgiving 2014 is still a few days away, the US Potato Board fulfilled its annual tradition to host a Thanksgiving dinner in the Philippines with prominent chefs and media guests in attendance. This time around, the venue was the One Rockwell East Tower Ballroom.

Chef for the celebration was Sau del Rosario who was a sight to behold carrying this much-awaited Roasted US Turkey which was the night’s main event.


It was a seven-course affair that had guests feasting on potato-inspired dishes with a French touch ingeniously prepared by Chef Sau. Like this Lapu-Lapu Rilette Fried Potato Cake (note: rilette is similar to pâté).


Potato ravioli with marinated prawns and micro sprouts Salad….


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Anzani New Mediterranean Restaurant, Cebu

And our potato adventure continues.

One of our stops was Anzani restaurant, perched atop Nivel Hills for dinner. It was a good thing that we dropped by here at night since the place is really elegant and romantic. You can stay indoors….

Anzani Cebu

….. or outdoors!


This VIP room has a separate enclosure for more intimate functions.


The underground wine cellar in this sprawling resto was a nice touch. I simply had to have a photo with Sophia Loren above me :)


The man behind the resto is Chef Marco Anzani who has worked with Alain Ducasse and has been hailed by the New York Times as a pioneer of ‘New Mediterranean Cuisine.’ Unfortunately, chef Marco wasn’t around during our visit but no problem since the very able sous chef Randell was there to take his place.We had a five-course dinner and it all began with the complimentary bread served in a pot. It was eyecatching, to say the least.


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SuperModelMe Sirens Season 5 premieres Nov. 24 on Diva

Writeup and coverage by Angelique Misa

This year’s roster of finalists for SupermodelME, The Original Asian Supermodel Series. includes 2 feisty Filipinas Irish Ong, 20, and Jasmine Ng, 21 along with the other 10 aspiring models of Asian heritage who are competing in a once in a life time chance to advance their career in the fashion industry. And last November 13, 2014, Ong, Ng and their fellow finalists, Brazilian-Japanese twins Rafaella and Gabriela Leonardo, made an appearance in BGC’s Cav Wine Shop and Café.

supermodel me

During the event, the gorgeous finalists answered questions that were asked by some members of the press. Most of the questions were about the experience they had during the duration of the season. The four sirens also shared some tips like – “Be Yourself”, “Know how to market yourself well”, and “Be a smart model” to all the young ladies who are aspiring to be part of the fashion industry.

Aside from that, guests and media partners were also lucky to have watched a sneak peak of the upcoming new season of SupermodelMe Sirens. And with its return, it assures its viewers that it’s by far the most daring, most explosive and most revealing season yet! The latest seasons promises to break new ground as the search for the ultimate siren is set against an exotic background of a brand new location: Kuala Lumpur Malaysia. Among the grueling, fashion-forward challenges faced by the finalists were crazy casting calls, photo shoots featuring exotic birds, catfights on moving vehicles, and many more.

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Dinner with bestie at Chef Jessie Rockwell Club + winners!

It’s almost Thanksgiving and I want to tell the world about this close friend of mine who I’ve known for more than 20 years. We’re godmother to each other’s kids, I introduced her to the man who would be her husband (toinks!) …. she knows my deepest secrets, helped me through the hard times (to the tune of ‘pay when able’, haha), even lived with her family after college. If I’m ever wanted in history for some kind of infamy, the FBI and the paparazzi should know who to look for. She’d know all the answers :)

Cecil is more than family to me and she’s leaving for the USA next week (saaad!) I simply had to squeeze in time in my uber-hectic week to treat her to dinner.

with Cecil

The elegant Chef Jessie restaurant at the Rockwell Club seemed a sensible choice. I’ve eaten at Chef Jessie several times in the past for press events but it was my first time to be here at night.

Chef Jessie

Now that the holidays are in the air, the place seems prettier now with the brightly-lit Christmas tree by the foyer.

Xmas tree

I love the high ceiling. The resto has a mezzanine level that can host intimate functions for 30-50 persons.

Chef Jessie

Now on to the food. There’s a long list of salads in the menu and our friendly waiter, Vince, recommended the Smoked Salmon, Grilled Prawns,and Sauteed Mushrooms Salad. We ordered this and decided to share. Price was P795 but this was so worth it since the house didn’t scrimp on the ingredients. The prawns were plump and fresh, there was an abundance of my fave salmon at the bottom and the creamy balsamic dressing was delish.This salad had everything I love!

Grilled prawn salad - Chef jessie's

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H&M unveils line in support of Unicef’s All for Children

Am a huge fan of the H&M kids’ line. Saw a lot of Hello Kitty cute stuff at their recent opening and it was adorb!! Starting October 30, H&M also unveiled its All for Children collection in selected stores worldwide and this is something worth looking at for parents like me who would like to indulge in some retail therapy while contributing to a good cause. Approximately 25% of sales from this collection will go towards supporting UNICEF’s early childhood education and development efforts throughout the world.

All for Children by H&M echoes the kids’ active lifestyle mixed with an environmentally-friendly ‘going back to nature’ theme. We spotted this attractive poncho with a hood that resembles an owl.


How about a glow-in-the-dark sweatshirt with bat wings?


The accessories are equally fun and include beetle-shaped bags, gorilla gloves, faux-fur raccoon’s tail and a headlamp with fox’s eyes.


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Manila International Book Fair 2014


Bookworms unite! The Manila International Book Fair (MIBF) – the biggest and most awaited book event in the country – will be held from tomorrow, September 17 up to the 21st at the SMX Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay City. For bibliophiles, this is a good chance to see what local and international publishers have to offer in terms of their latest titles. And if you get lucky, you might meet your favorite authors too!

Senator Bam Aquino, a self-confessed book lover will lead the opening ceremonies on Sept. 17 at SMX. The event’s publicist provided a short bio of the senator where it was stated: “at the age of six, Aquino had already read Harper Lee’s ‘To Kill a Mocking Bird’. Among his favorite books are Paolo Coelho’s Fifth Mountain, John Carlin’s Playing the Enemy: Nelson Mandela and the Game that Made a Nation, Malcolm Galdwell’s The Tipping Point, J.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy, Stephen King’s The Shining, Neil Gaiman’s American Gods, Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan series, and Mario Puzo’s The Godfather.

There are a total of 150 exhibitors in MIBF which is celebrating its 35th year. Some of these include the biggest publication houses. They will be displaying books from various genres – from bestsellers to textbooks, graphic novels and general references. Likewise, there are scheduled book launches and signings, dialogues with readers, contests, and literary events.

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Hands-on with the Unilever #PureItWater purifier

It was nice to get acquainted last week with the Unilever PureIt water purifier. I’ve always known Unilever as the multinational which produced those ubiquitous beauty and personal care products. It turns out: they’re now into consumer appliances too!

Unilever PureIt

This water purifier which now occupies an important space in our home came right in time because we’ve always bought our water from the neighborhood water refilling station. I guess, for a household decision-maker like me, this has always been the easiest way.

At a suggested retail price of only P5,000, I deem it a worthy investment because it’s certified by no less than the US Environmental Protection Agency as having met microbiological safety norms.

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The Physiogel Beauty Fair plus a giveaway!

Note: Read at the end of this post for a chance to win one of three gift packs from Physiogel. We guarantee it’s one beauty bag you can’t live without ;)

The contents: 300 ml Physiogel Cleanser, 200 ml Physiogel Lotion, 75 ml Physiogel Cream and another 60 ml travel-size Cleanser.Estimated value: P2,000 each.

Physiogel Pack

The Physiogel Beauty Fair was one fab event that happened at the Makati Shang-ri La last week. It got us closer to some of the in-demand make-up artists in the country who shared their insider tips on looking good, of course.

There was make-up artist to the stars Krist Bansuelo who did the make-up on Maya (Jodi Sta.Maria) when she wed Sir Chief (Richard Yap) in TV’s Wedding of the Year. Take a look! :)

Maya's wedding via @kristbansuelo

Krist subscribes to the “keep it simple dictum” by saying that great make-up starts with good cleansing. A hypoallergenic brand like Physiogel hydrates and keeps skin moisturized by mimicking the natural lipid composition of the skin. It’s so effective that it can last up to three days, even with washing or bathing.

MAC-sponsored make-up maven Pong Niu and beauty junkie Carla Avancena also shared their looking good tips, especially the trends that will hog the limelight in 2014.

Physiogel Beauty Fair

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Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 on sale Nov.8

Samsung’s GALAXY Note 10.1 (2014 Edition) will be available globally starting tomorrow, Nov. 8. It is a WiFi Only device, available in 16 GB + Micro SD up to 64 GB. There are two color options to choose from – Jet Black and Classic White. Price is around P25,000.

GALAXY Note 10.1 (2014)_1

We were able to have a preview of this tablet during a dinner at M Cafe recently where Rafael Gutierrez and Ivan Pua of Samsung Philippines’ Mobility & Convergence Products unit revealed that Galaxy Note 10.1 is one of their first products to be equipped with the Knox mobile security solution.This addresses the need of business users for security on Android devices. With the Knox platform, business and personal data will coexist on the same device; the user will simply press an icon to switch from Personal to Work (and vice versa) instantly.

Samsung Galaxy Note Tab 10.1

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