Foodie I am not, but I enjoy serendipitous finds, and Manila doesn’t disappoint when it comes to unearthing sweet treasures. There really is a huge chance of stumbling upon a sweet find, which is what always happens when I am home for the holidays. The first find – for me, that is – is a 5-layered chocolate cake from Lucca, a cake-pastry-bistro located the top floor of the new Fashion Hall of SM Megamall. Amidst the din and flurry of cosplay participants posing with fans and the sardine-packed ice skating rink, we were lucky to get a table for three within the mother’s-kitchen ambience of Lucca, which was equally filled with diners enjoying slices of cakes or something from the All day-breakfast menu at three in the afternoon.

There was no mistaking it – we were sharing the 5-layered chocolate (in photo), a gargantuan slice of moist chocolate cake smothered in chocolate icing, its five layers oozing with caramel sauce. The sweetness is, fortunately, equally spread throughout the layers of caramel sauce and chocolate icing, dispelling the first impression that it is an incredibly cloying slice of cake that would bore holes in your teeth in seconds. It goes well with either cappuccino (my choice), hot dark chocolate (dad’s beverage), or Americano (mum’s drink), and no need to sweeten your drink.

The other sweet discovery was because of my annoyance with Wang Fu restaurant where most of the items I liked were not available, prompting a decision to move to banapple instead for repast. Although focused on pies and all kinds of cheesecakes possible, banapple is a cozy bistro, located at the second level of Il Terrazo on Tomas Morato, with offerings of rice meals, pasta, sandwiches, salads, and pancakes. I was quickly taken by their pancake section of which the choices were regular butter milk, blueberry, and chocolate peanut butter. Settling for the third option was a good decision – the three pancakes were fluffy plus you have the wonderful option of alternating between spreading peanut butter with chocolate chips and drizzling with chocolate sauce and butter with maple syrup. Oh, sweetness!


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