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Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The New Sexy

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Unfussy basics with discreet little sensual details define the new sexy. My favorite pieces from Rihanna's collection for River Island fit this description to a T!

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Her take on the crop top involves knots and soft fabrics in solid hues. Perfect for Pinays in this scorching heat!

We may not have River Island in Manila yet but we can take inspiration from the collection. Think breezy tops, short shorts, crop tops and trusty denim skirts. 

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We all know a girl feels sexiest when she's comfortable! Looking and feeling sexy has never been this easy. 

The CityLifeStylist

Monday, May 27, 2013

Lovin' Levante

The new food and lifestyle market on the block is going on its third week! 

Levante, the latest offering of the Mercato Centrale Group, is open from 6:00 p.m. to 3:00 a.m. every Friday at the Eastwood Citywalk 2 in Libis, Quezon City.

Feast on meats and vegetarian choices plus a good selection of drinks and delightful desserts from constant Mercato favorites and intriguing newbies.

On my first visit, I was immediately drawn to the Eat My GF (Garlic Fries) stall, which was bright and inviting. I had the Virgin Chips, a dish of sliced potatoes with fresh garlic, parmesan, and a dash of parsley. Though I skipped the parmesan ('cause I'm allergic), it was still deliciously garlicky, with the parsley adding a fresh, aromatic herb flavor.

Next time, I'm having All the Way, a mix of the Original GF and Virgin Chips with sausage and bacon. Really, what more can you ask for?

More cheesy grub I wish I was able to try include Cheat Day's cheese-filled Cheat Day Burger, and the DigDeepCups by Twisted Desserts. If they taste half as good as they look, they should be a killer. Try these and lemme know what you think, will ya?

When I recognized Michelle Basa of Chef Bab's Sisig, I knew I was in for a treat! I've been frequenting her stall at Mezza Norte for the Veggie Sisig, but this time I wanted to try something new: the Tofu Sisig

And it did not disappoint. I'm still partial to the veggie version, but I enjoyed the spicy, tangy flavor and soft texture of the tofu.

Also available at Levante is Crunchy Belly by Carlo's Kitchen. I'm hopelessly addicted to these salty, crisp bits of pork belly. They're a hundred times better than chicharon!

Yet another Mezza Norte favorite you can find at Levante is Cakes by K, known for its delectable crepe cakes. I decided to try something new so I opted for the Pistachio Sansrival instead of my usual Chocolate Crepe Cake. It sure packed a lot of that pistachio flavor, and it's great if you have a sweet tooth. The crepe cake will forever be my favorite, though!

Drop by this Friday! There's so much more in store that'll surely please your palate.

The CityLifeStylist

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Tea-Infused Pho at

Had lunch at Tea Lounge at the Net Lima Building in Bonifacio Global City, just a few steps away from Wildflour Café + Bakery. Writing another entry on the teas as the Pho deserves its own post!

My sister and I shared a huge bowl of the chicken pho. Its tea-infused broth gave the dish a clean, refreshing taste, without overpowering the flavor of the meat. It may be on the bland side for some, but while I often like my food oozing with flavor, I also appreciate this pho's pure and succulent tastiness. 

But if you prefer your pho hot, salty, sour, or a combination of the three, serves lime on the side, along with chili, soy and hoisin sauces, so you can adjust it to your taste. 

A definite must-try.

The CityLifeStylist

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Levante: A New Mercato Rises in the East

The Mercato Centrale Group gives us another reason to look forward to Fridays: Levantea new night market, this time at Eastwood City Walk 2 in Libis, Quezon City! 

Featuring bestselling fare from top Mercato Centrale vendors as well as exciting up-and-comers, Levante will be open every Friday from 6:00 p.m. to 3:00 a.m. starting May 17.

Mark your calendars! See you on the 17th for the Grand Opening of Levante!

The CityLifeStylist

Monday, May 6, 2013

Mezza Norte: the Madness Continues at TriNoma!

Last week, a big event made me even more excited about Friday: the relaunch of Mezza Norte at TriNoma!

You know how much I love the Mercato Centrale weekend food market in Bonifacio Global City. While I was happy about the first opening of the "Mercato of the North" at the UP Ayala Technohub, I was more ecstatic about its big move to TriNoma because it's closer to home!

There are currently over 50 vendors offering a wide variety of dishes, drinks and desserts. There was live music and this fun, giddy energy from the food-loving crowd.

Here are some of my picks from our first night at Mezza Norte 2.0. Looks like the fam and I will have a new weekend habit!

The Filipino favorite, sisig, is traditionally a mix of chopped pig ears and cheeks with vinegar, calamansi, and onions. The humble dish has seen many variations, such as bangus sisig, squid sisig and chicken sisig, but Chef Bab's Sisig offers more than these. Vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike would be delighted to find veggie sisig and tofu sisig at this stall!

The Veggie Sisig, in particular, is the one I couldn't stop raving about. As my mom said, "You won't miss the meat!" It had the same chewy texture of pork sisig, and it tasted spicy, a bit salty and a little sour. Their dishes are cooked on the spot with your choice of add-ons.

I don't think I'll be craving for the real thing anytime soon!

Sinangag Trip serves good ol' Pinoy silogs--sinangag and egg paired with tapa, longganisa, bacon, and even Hungarian sausage. 

While owners Grace and Jay Santos say the bestsellers are the Hungsilog and the Special Baconsilog, I believe their Sirloin Beef Tapsilog deserves a lot more credit! The beef was soft and flavorful with a fresh, pure taste. I learned that they source their meat from their own market stall in Quiapo--truly market-fresh! 

The Baby Back Ribs at Edgy's Food Trip look so succulent even from afar that I doubt anybody would miss them. This dish drew me in and when I finally took a bite, I was not disappointed. The meat was fork-tender and the sauce was sweet and salty. Ask for extra sauce--it was superb!

Roasterrific! was a big hit at the first Mezza Norte, and its success led to the opening of its first restaurant along Maginhawa Street in Sikatuna Village, Quezon City. 

The Chow and Hao families continue to serve the famous Herbalicious Lechon and Peking Style Roasted Chicken at the new Mezza Norte. Both are packed with flavor, but the lechon was divine. Roasted and toasted to a crisp, you can say it's healthier because there's less fat!

There was no shortage of pork at Mezza Norte. The Crunchy Belly by Carlo's Kitchen was deliciously crispy with just enough saltiness. I wish they'd start serving beer because this would make the perfect companion!

For dessert, I started with Merry Moo. Tried the Strawberry Basil and Cookie Butter but ended up ordering two old favorites: Sea Salt Caramel and Earl Grey Tea! These never get old.

My mom went for some gelato from Mio Gelati. I loved the combination she chose--Chili Chocolate and Bailey's!

These flavors were surprisingly refreshing! The Chili Chocolate was indeed hot and chocolaty at the same time, but I think it would be even better with dark chocolate. The Bailey's flavor complemented it well. It's probably the best kind of alcohol to turn into gelato because it's already nice and creamy.

Another highlight of the night was the Chocolate Crepe Cake from Cakes by K. It was delectably light and not too sweet, with layers of crepe, rich cream in between, and chocolate sauce smothered on top. The melt-in-your-mouth goodness will leave you wanting more. True enough, the 'rents returned the following night and took home more of this. We're hopelessly hooked!

I can't wait to go back. Mezza Norte, now at the Mindanao Open Parking Lot of TriNoma mall (located at the corner of Mindanao Avenue and North Avenue) is open from 4:00 p.m. to 3:00 a.m. on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. 

See you there!

The CityLifeStylist

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Make Your Vote Count

It's election season once again. Who's getting your vote?

No candidate is perfect, but don't you think a track record of honesty and integrity as well as experience in public office should be basic requirements? 

Thanks to a MEGA assignment, I managed to get a head start in the decision-making process a couple months ago, beginning with the female senatoriables. We need more capable women in politics, but it looks like it's slim pickings even with eight vying for those Senate seats. But that's just me. 

I do hope every Filipino tries to do a bit of research before May 13. It's best to gather all the information you can get from different credible sources. 

Perhaps a starting point can be the feature on the eight women in the running by yours truly and Nante Santamaria in this month's MEGA. 

But please don't take our word for it--that's the beauty of democracy. Read print and online news, and make sure to hit the archives. Go through the candidates' platforms. Watch the debates. 

Here's hoping we will all make informed choices this time.

The CityLifeStylist