I mentioned in my last post that we visited a recently opened café close to our home. We only intended to get an iced coffee to go; my preferred coffee is an iced Spanish Latte.
However, our plans were changed when we were warmly welcomed by the personnel as soon as we entered the shop. The manager offered us the menu as we were ordering coffee, but I said we just came to try the coffee. The manager was so passionate about how they came up with the menu and so inviting that we should at least give it a try. We ended up dining there, so the convincing power must have been effective. Here's what happened during our experience:
Since the coffee shop is situated just outside the community's main gate, we have witnessed its development from building to design. We were overjoyed to find out that it would be a café. We enjoy a calm environment like this because my husband frequently visits coffee shops when he is anxious and burnt out at work. We were given the opportunity to visit the venue's soft opening, but we changed our minds about going due to the lengthy line of people wanting to try their cuisine and coffee. Instead, we said we'd be back once it was formally open.
The shop's name is pretty intriguing. In the Philippines, the word "hiwaga" stands for mystery or enigma. I forgot to ask the staff why they came up with the name though.
From the sidewalk, there's a pathway leading to the coffee shop that's lined with various plants and flowers. My kids have been walking back and forth on the pathway while I wander about and take pictures of the exterior design.
I took a few pictures before deciding to go up to the front desk to place an order. Three Chocolate Frappuccinos and one iced Spanish Latte were my orders. As the cashier was preparing the transaction, the manager approached us and said hello. Due to his persuasive power, we decided to buy food and have dinner. We added beef soft tacos, chicken parmigiana, chicken tender fries, seafood marinara, truffle mushrooms, and their iconic grass-fed burger to our coffee orders.
After paying for our order and going back to our chosen table, I realized I had overordered again. I asked the cashier if the serving of pasta I ordered was good for one person; he said yes, but since we have two kids, one order of pasta is good for two kids. Realizing I ordered too much for the four of us, I asked my husband to invite his brother to join us for dinner. My brother-in-law said yes to the invitation, and he arrived after a few minutes since the cafe is just five minutes walk from home.
While waiting for our order, I decided to roam around and check out the interior of the place. Real and dried plants, wood, and some handmade furnishings made of local materials are used to decorate the space, giving it a rustic feel.
The image above shows the coffee shop's interior.
And below are the details for every corner of the shop.
For couples who wish to eat and simply have a romantic night while also taking in the scenery, they also have a few tables set up outside for al fresco eating, which is highly recommended.
At first, the kids wanted us to sit at the outside table because there was a little fountain in the corner with aqua plants, and they wanted to play and check it out, but since there were dark clouds when we arrived, we chose the table inside to secure us from the upcoming rain, but I like the set up outside too.
They also have this signage outside so you'll know what to expect when dining in, though I noticed there's a lot of electric fly repellant around the area.
I went back to our table, and my brother-in-law was already there with my family waiting for our order. I gave my husband my phone and asked him to take a group photo for the blog.
Just in time, after taking photos, our order started to arrive. Our coffee came first, followed by appetizers, and then the main dish followed.
My kids are enjoying their Frappe and playing with their phones while we wait for the rest of our order.
The kids ate the chicken, fries, and chicken tenders, and they also took a bite of the truffle pasta. While I ate the Tacos and some seafood marinara. The servings of pasta were actually more than enough for two, or did we just order a lot? Of all the things I ordered, my least favorite was the seafood marinara. Im just being delicate about seafood in pasta. I like the flavor of seafood, but when it is mixed in pasta, it needs a delicate process and a few spices not to make it fishy," if you know what I mean. The pasta is too fishy for me; the fishy taste of the mussels is quite dominating and overpowers the rest of the ingredients. It's actually overpowering that I can no longer taste the shrimp and the octopus. It's a 3/10 for me.
Not a food critic! lol
After calling a backup, we still have a few leftovers that we asked for takeout. One piece of untouched Tacos and the chicken parmigiana.
We had a great day overall and enjoyed the ambiance of the cafe. We mostly enjoyed the food, and the coffee was excellent. I love the latte, and the kids love the frappe. My kids are already asking me to make the mozzarella sticks at home.
We will definitely go back for the coffee!
And that's how our experience was in this newly opened cafe near our place.
Thank you for reading, and join me again on my next blog!
All photos are my own, unless stated otherwise.
Edit: Anyone who can guess the total bill of our orders in the comment, the closest one will have 3 Hive as a reward, just for fun.