Periwinkle SIOPAO and Mochaccino HOPIA!!!
my brother and I were members of the last batches
that graduated from the De La Salle Taft Grade School,
our younger sister studied across the avenue in St. Scholastica's,
my mom worked in PAL's main office along Roxas Boulevard,
and my dad's Law Firm was located on the lot
where the Pan Pacific Hotel now stands.
we spent most of our work & school days in and around Ermita & Malate,
and the way home every evening towards our house in Sta. Cruz
was always via our favorite... the streets of Chinatown!!!
Snaps from Saturday in Sino-town:
Eng Bee Tin, where almost everything is UBE,
recently launched these pretty pastel paos;
5% of the dough of the "puto" portion is 100% ube,
hence the reason why it looks like an LA Laker siopao.
Yup, there really is a hint of ube in every bite!!!
Available in Special Asado and Classic Bola2 fillings.
Gateway to Goodies!
The 1st Bridge of Ongpin Street,
leading up to the heart of the Binondo,
source of all things weird and wonderful,
from Snake Blood elixirs to Salazar Bakery's CU CHAY SO,
the best empanada in Chinatown!
That humongous structure that suddenly appeared practically
overnight, between ShangriLa Makati and Landmark?
Meet the very humble beginnings of the ANSON Emporium empire
at the corner of Salazar and Ongpin!
During my La Salle GS days, my dad used to take me here
to buy the newest Aladdin and Thermos lunchboxes from the U.S.
And being the kidder that he was,
he convinced me that Boots Anson-Roa was a saleslady here.
Dad also introduced us to the namesake owner of the nearby
RAMON LEE Panciteria, and yup, they connived and convinced
my brother, my cousins and I that BRUCE was his "shobe"!
If you're experiencing withdrawal symptoms
because of the Floss Bread Crisis at Bread Talk,
you'll find all the shredded pork you'll ever need here,
MOUNTAINS of MAHU!!!
Crispy or Feathery, Sweet or Spicy, all varieties
available at the supermarket and delicateseens of Ongpin!
It amazes me how my preferences to this day are still influenced
profoundly by those first two gourmets I ever met,
my grandfather, "Daddy Pong" and my father, Atty. Eddie;
both of them always had stocks of Mahu that I would snack on.
Remember the days when there were only two kinds of Hopia?
Baboy or Mongo?
Those days are long gone, what with EBT's innovative takes
on our favorite Chinese Pastry, from Ube to Pastillas to Cheese
and everything in between; now there's a CHOC-NUT flavor,
and an amazing coffee flavor that's as robust as a bold BARAKO:
The entrepreneurs behind EBT aren't just concerned
about ube-infused delicacies.
A few years ago, they gave back to their community,
and to the rest of MetroManila as well,
by donating the snazziest (ube colored!) firetrucks for the fastest-
responding firemen of the city, the Binondo Volunteers!!!