Backstage with top Filipina models Isabel Roces and Bianca Valerio

We were able to catch up with top models Bianca Valerio and Isabel Roces after the Avon fashion show, where the dinner party showed that long, flowing dresses are definitely ‘in’ for summer - the longer, the better. Bianca wore a green frock which she bought for 200 baht in Bangkok while Isabel slipped on a multi-colored dress from Supre, an Australian brand.

Bianca Valerio

Here’s getting to know Bianca: “I love buying from ukay-ukay, shopping in bazaars and bargain-hunting. Among the brands, I really like Forever 21 and Salsa Trends, a local designer which has these pretty summer dresses. My favorite weakness is shoes. I have 400 pairs…it’s insane!

Isabel and my boyfriend have been trying to convert me to vegetarianism. I figure that Lent would be a good way to start. Right now, I stay fit by not eating anything fattening, oily or fried. I prefer grilled, steamed, boiled or baked. I stay away from simple carbs and as much as possible, I only eat brown rice and whole wheat bread. My only weakness are sweets. If ever I have sorbet, it means I’d have to work it off the whole day. In this business, I really have to make an effort to stay fit. I go to different schools for personality development courses and I try to practice what I preach. Living a healthy lifestyle is not a sacrifice, it’s something you can enjoy. You just have to get used to it.”


Remembering Batanes food…

Stranded in Batanes with nothing else to do, Mr. Z and I found solace in food. This wasn’t really easy to do. Food in the Batanes is dependent on the weather, and supplies of staples in the island can also be affected if the flights don’t come in (!!)

Meat like pork and beef come from Batanes itself - reason for the beautiful scenery of those cows grazing in the undulating valleys and hills. Most of the vegetables and other supplies have to come from Manila or neighboring areas like Tuguegarao. There wasn’t really an abundant supply of seafood, as people like us expected. Everything, it seems, was seasonal.

Yellow Rice and picnic food

A picnic on the beach is a must when you’re doing the requisite Batanes tour. A local caterer comes with the package, and they often prepare must-try Batanes food to give you an idea of what the locals eat. Among these are their delectable yellow rice, their adobo or lunis, steamed coconut crabs, and oved (strips of banana heart mixed with ground meat then formed into balls).


Ever heard of Killion?

Killion, Quiapo

I’ve gotten a lot of searches and inquiries on this site regarding Killion Merchandising in Quiapo. Killion is a very familiar name among people in the food service industry. However, the connection escapes me since I don’t go to this store much; however, I presume you’d have more affinity with Killion if you own a restaurant, baking or catering business. What is good, as I found out from my last visit, is that you can buy retail items here too - useful for when you’re just buying cookies for the family and not the whole banquet.


Read at the end of this post for your free ’spiked’ coffee from Delifrance

Delifrance bloggers' night

Delifrance (Philippines) just hosted a cozy get-together with us, bloggers, at a branch in Salcedo Village, Makati. This cafe is quite familiar to me.. there is one across my present office in UN Avenue, Manila. Delifrance is not as common as its sister company Jollibee though… maybe because the prices are at least three times higher here?

I’ve always complained, why is Delifrance more expensive?

Answer: because the shrimps in Delifrance’s seafood marinara actually taste like.. real shrimps! Plump and juicy (tell me if this is not the case with yours)

Coffee is always freshly-brewed (or else, the barista gets the bar)

The flour in their baguette and croissant are imported from the largest milling company in France, Grand Moulins de Paris.

In keeping with their classy, French image, Delifrance isn’t likely to introduce any rice dishes soon (you have to go o Jollibee for that)…. although their Premiere Roast Beef Sandwich looks like it will fill me for at least mealtimes.

We found out that a must-try at Delifrance is their Chocolate Lava Cake, a flourless chocolate cake with a liquid center … greatness in every bite!

Chocolate Lava Cake

A highlight of our bloggers’ dinner was a chance to be in the same table with William Tan-Untiong, President of Delifrance Philippines. I was left in awe, considering that he’s younger brother of Jollibee’s legendary magnate Tony Tancaktiong. Mr. Tan-Untiong proved to be very down-to-earth and sporty.


Here’s the transcript of our slum book-style interview him: