Cafe Picarre, Baguio

It was the last day of my solo escapade in Baguio and I had 90 minutes to spare for a slow meal before boarding a butt-numbing, 7- hour bus ride back to Manila. After a day of locking myself inside a hotel room for a much needed time alone, I craved to see people.  And if it’s a crowd you want, SM definitely lives up to its tagline of having it all. 😛

Fortunately, SM’s simple structure made it easy for me to spot a place to dine. Cafe Picarre is located at the Upper Ground floor, right beside the terrace which has views of the city as well as nearby mountains. It’s other branch, conveniently located beside the magnificent Baguio Cathedral, has been on my must try list for several months now.

Photo Source : www.cafe-picarre.com 

Its menu, propped on a board a few feet off the floor made me feel confused, but in a good way. They have quite a selection of pastas that came with different sauces and add-ons as well as pastries, definitely a carbo crazy’s dream destination. The friendly guy at the cashier noticed my dilemma and gave out several suggestions. Oh why do I only have an appetite good for one?

 I decided to go for Baguio Harvest which is penne mixed with creamy pesto and fresh vegetables. “That’s all for now.” I said to the cashier with no sense of conviction as my eyes kept on gravitating towards the dessert display.

“Is that really all?“, ooh, this guy is quite observant.

I couldn’t respond. I just spotted lime tart and apple crumble. Oh love. My two favorite desserts and I should only get one.  Before I could decide, my hyperactive brain lurched another idea. That would go well with coffee.  Oh what coffee should I get?

 

Picarre is from Italian word “piquer,” = “to excite or

stimulate curiosity”. 😛

 

As though the guy could read my thoughts, he suggested, “You should try our promo. If you order our dessert of the day, you get a free cup of coffee.” Alleluia! The dessert of the day however, was not part of what I was deciding on, but it’s an interesting option, Strawberry Cheesecake. I agreed and the guy punched in the additional order.

A few seconds later, lime tart and apple crumble nagged my conscience, er my stomach. “How could you leave us out?!”

Mr. ever helpful guy said that apple crumble sells better than lime tart. “Please add that in.”, I delivered those words with excitement and a full smile. I couldn’t help it. The apple crumble, with its towering, alluring toppings teased my appetite mercilessly. It was hard to resist.

After paying for everything, I looked for a table. The outdoor seating has an attractive view, overlooking the peaks of Mt. Cabuyao and Mt. Sto. Tomas which I have hiked before but I wanted to gather my thoughts and be distracted with passers by. I opted for one of the tables inside the cafe, near the cashier, with my back turned against the crowd.

Its interiors aren’t as cozy as other coffee shops. It’s well lit and some of the sofa looks outdated but it didn’t dampen my mood. The very helpful and cheerful cashier ignited positive vibes and sometimes, awesome customer service makes the unpleasant details forgivable.   🙂

Orders arrived before I wondered where they were, which meant they came in about 10-15 minutes. First came the strawberry cheesecake, then the coffee, followed by the pasta and apple crumble.

Strawberry Cheesecake

As I’m not a cheesecake fan, I don’t really know if I’m missing anything. I loved that it’s not too sweet but I couldn’t taste the strawberry though.

Ah the pasta, this one,  I love and enjoyed to the fullest. It looked and tasted great. I love how the noodles were cooked al dente, the vegetables were crunchy, though the brocolli had an odd color, a bit orange at the tips, which I noticed is how they get, when they’ve been in the ref for quite some time.  The creamy pesto mix is just right. The wheat bread that came with it was insignificant though but the serving size was generous enough so I felt full even without consuming the bread.

Baguio Harvest (125 Pesos)

Now the apple crumble was served exactly as how I requested it. I had informed the cashier that I’d be taking it out but I’d also want to try some of it during lunch. He suggested to have it heated as it tasted better that way and I agreed. It was served in  a nice plastic container and the staff were considerate enough to add disposable fork, knife and a napkin. I think they figured out that I’d be consuming it somewhere along the way before reaching home.   (a few hours later, I did finish it off while in transit to Tarlac :p). It was yummy, its toppings were crunchy and sugary. It had real apples and its base was tasty and easy to bite into.

Apple Crumble (75 Pesos)

The brewed coffee which came with the strawberry cheesecake tasted a bit weak but I don’t want to judge the rest of what’s on the menu as there’s several types of brews available. I need to go back for a much fairer assessment. Of course, that’s just my excuse to sample more pastas and pastries.  😛 Ti amo Cafe Picarre! 

Food Trip Expenses :
Baguio Harvest Pasta – 125 Pesos
Strawberry Cheesecake with free brewed coffee – 90 Pesos
Apple Crumble – 75 Pesos
 Total : 290 Pesos
 
Cafe Picarre
Upper Ground Floor Veranda Side SM Baguio. Telephone:+63(074) 619 77 34
 
Session Road Branch :
4th level Porta Vaga Commercial Center, Upper Session Road, Baguio City. 
Telephone:+63(074) 426 88 18
 
Website :http://www.cafe-picarre.com/
 

Baguio City’s Strawberry Taho

 

Strawberry Taho

Since Baguio City is famous for its strawberry, it would not be far fetch for the Strawberry Taho to come alive.

I make it a point to taste the Strawberry Taho whenever I am in Baguio. This kills the monotony of having the normal taho here in Manila where they only put arnibal (melted brown sugar with vanilla syrup) as flavoring.

With the many Strawberry Taho that I have tasted, I noticed that there is no consistency with the taste. Sometimes it lacks the strawberry flavor and sometimes it’s too sweet. According to one of the Taho vendors that I asked, they were the ones who cook their taho and they cook them according to their taste. He said that the strawberries are being bought in the market early in the morning to be processed so that they would prepare them fresh.

Price: 20 Pesos per Strawberry Taho
Best served hot in the cold Baguio.

Taste: 8/10
Texture: 8/10
Value for your Money: 6/10