Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Qaldi Coffee Bar & Cyber Cafe Bloggers Night

Hubby stumbled on a tweet looking for a food blogger in the south area. Knowing that I'm a foodie he immediately retweeted it to me. Syempre I replied agad and was fortunately included in the roster of bloggers invited to review this new and hip place called Qaldi Coffee Bar & Cyber Cafe.

Qaldi, which is situated along the National Highway, is easily accessible both by public and private transport. Although the compound housing it directly fronts the City Hall of Muntinlupa it still is deceptively subdued and quiet since it is situated in the inner recesses of the compound. Parking is ample and easily maneuverable even for a novice driver.

The facade is unassuming but sticks itself out with the rows of outside seating situated in front (Al Fresco dining or those with a nicotine habit).

The menu plastered upfront belies its sophisticated stature and surely will make your wallet smile.

Inside bodes an upscale hotel lobby feel evoked by the spiral chandelier and imposing brand-badge. The brand-badge draws attention to the upstairs rooms reserved for small functions and meetings (more on this later).

The dining area caters to a wide range of customers (solitary warriors, couples, trios, families, barkadas) with seating provided for each.

Being a cafe, Qaldi prides itself in offering choice coffee beans from India wherein you can have it done any which way. They also offer (I think) French Press and Siphon methods for brewing (the Coffee Siphon is awe inspiring but the French Press is much more satisfying).

But wait there's more!
They also offer Sri Lankan tea which goes well with their desserts..

A pot of Dilmah Berry Sensation Tea was first served to us. It was served on a warmer so as to maintain its temperature but inadvertently steep it longer. It has a fruity flavor to it (owing to its blend) which easily makes it one of the highly recommended tea flavors.

Dilmah Berry Sensation Tea (P95.00)

Next up is the Sheikh Almond Nut Mocha. I ordered it because I was curious as to what the "Sheikh" would taste like (hehe)... And it also looked good on the menu :). Though I don't actually drink coffee, I am interested to know how Indian grown coffee would fare in a mixed drink.

Sheikh Almond Nut Mocha (Sageer - P105.00; Kabeer - P125.00)

The "Sheikh" is best appreciated in phases. First the ultra-smooth cream lines up your mouth followed by a blast of mocha with hints of almond then punches you in the head with a caffeine kick!

After that 'buzz' I needed something to soothe me down so I dive into their Frozen Toffee Nut. This one mercifully has a milder caffeine boost. As with the "Sheikh" the sweet whip cream gives it an immaculate intro.

Frozen Toffee Nut (Kabeer P150.00)

After quenching my thirst, on to their grub!

First up are their sandwiches:

Grilled Ham and Cheese

This is NOT your ordinary school canteen anemic ham and cheese. No no no! Using a panini maker, the cheese is melted onto the ham while the butter-garlic-parsley trifecta bathes the whole wheat bread. Delicious is an understatement.

Grilled Ham & Cheese (P95.00)

Grilled Egg and Cheese

To be honest, I never thought scrambled eggs and cheese would work as fine as this. The whole wheat bread slathered with butter, garlic, and parsley elevates this concoction to a higher level of zen. The potato chip sides provides a perfect accompaniment.

Grilled Egg & Cheese (P95.00)

Classic Tuna Sandwich

I love their tuna sandwich. Why? The flavors are well balanced. Not too salty, the onion is kept at the background, and the mayonnaise is light. The lettuce is a clever addition making this an overall healthy treat.

Classic Tuna Sandwich (P115.00)

Chicken Clubhouse Sandwich

As with the Classic Tuna Sandwich, the basic spread is light and balanced. As for the others, it is a basic straight-forward club sandwich. Good thing is that the serving size is big enough for two!

Chicken Clubhouse Sandwich (P175.00)

Reuben Clubhouse Sandwich

This is a play on the Reuben Sandwich transformed into a club giving you two distinct sandwiches rolled into one. Though the corned beef used could have been improved, overall this is a good pick.

Reuben Clubhouse Sandwich (P175.00)

Appetizers done, bring on the Entree':

Clockwise from Top: Classic Pesto, Carbonara, Tomato Pesto,
Classic Creamy, Classic Tomato and Sweet Tomato

Their pasta comes in two sizes, a la cart or platter. All are priced at P145.00 for a la carte and P175.00 for platter except for the Carbonara which is at P175.00 and P195.00 respectively.

Classic Pesto (Bestseller)

This naturally is my favorite. It is simple and straightforward. The basil leaves were fresh and flavorful but the unexpected treat came from the toasted whole wheat breads accompanying it. Imagine, whole wheat bread laced with a trifecta of butter, minced garlic, and chopped parsley then toasted 'til light brown. Heaven  isn't it?

Carbonara (Bestseller)

The Carbonara didn't disappoint as well. The lightness of the sauce was complemented by the saltiness of the ham. A liberal sprinkling of grated parmesan tied this dish into a neat little bow.

Tomato Pesto

This one is new to me. A twist on a classic tomato base punctuated by chopped basil. Sprinkle a little more parmesan to balance the tangy tomato.

Classic Creamy

A vegetarian carbonara. This one needs a heck of a lot more parmesan to cut the mildness of the sauce.

Classic Tomato (Besteller)

Classic Italian. Fresh tomatoes though maintaining a right blend of the sour and sweet.

Sweet Tomato

Truly Pinoy. This one will be more appreciated by the kids or the kids at heart.

The only downside for all was the pasta were a tad overcooked.

Whew! After that onslaught I need to do a little calisthenics to prep me up for the main course:

Clockwise from Top: Five-Spice Beef Steak (P150.00), Greek Pork (P110.00),
Fish Fillet (P140.00),  Pork on Qaldi Sauce (P120.00),
Spicy Chicken on Qaldi Sauce (P150.00) and Chicken Breast (P130.00)

Five-Spice Beef Steak

Tender beef cuts rubbed with 'five-spice' that didn't drown out the natural flavor of the beef. The garlic butter sauce brings in an added richness to the steak. One odd feature though was a dollop of garlic ranch dip next to the steak. Good for dressing the side salad but surprisingly nice with the steak!

Greek Pork

The Greek Pork was interesting. Fried pork belly with sauteed oregano served with a side salad and garlic ranch dip. The belly cut wasn't that fatty and the oregano enhances the medley all-around (This I think would never work for a leaner cut of pork). Again, the surprise lies with the garlic ranch dip.

Fish Fillet

Cream Dory was used here which explains the tenderness of the fillet. Fried to perfection giving you that 'crunchy on the outside but moist on the inside' feel.

Pork on Qaldi Sauce

Pork belly which was slowly cooked making it tender and juicy. The Qaldi sauce has the right combination of flavor that complements the pork.

Spicy Chicken on Qaldi Sauce

It's not too spicy that it burns away the flavor of the dish. The heat is just enough to awaken your palate and make this dish doubly intense.

Chicken Breast

When you think about chicken breast, the first adjective that will come to your mind is that its dry. This one is NOT. Grilled but still moist. The garlic ranch dip enhances its smokey flavor.

As the evening winds down, time for some sweet endings:

Chocolate Mousse

This is my favorite of the three cakes I tasted. Not too sweet and the texture is smooth and creamy. I guess Qaldi's customers love so much 'coz when me and my family came back the next day, it was already unavailable.

Chocolate Mousse (P185.00)

Chocolate Ganache

The cake is moist and fluffy. But the winner is the Ganache itself. Smooth, creamy, pure chocolate heaven.

Chocolate Ganache (P175.00)

Blueberry Cheesecake

The cheesecake was okay though it left much to be desired.

Blueberry Cheesecake (P195.00)

Aside from the cafe, the upstairs rooms are available for functions and events. They could also provide for a free use of their 40" LED TV and Laptop Computers (for presentation purposes only).

Here is the function room which can accommodate up to 30 people...

The conference room which can be converted into two smaller rooms...

By the way, they have free WI-FI - as in a real, working, and fast WI-FI internet connection! When you ask them for the password, they'll give you this...

Nice right? Very impressive!

As for the competition, Qaldi's prices are reasonable given the, ambiance,  food quality and add-on service it provides. It was good value for money all-around.

A bonus to attending these blogger events is that I get to meet my fellow bloggers. Here I am with the gang accompanied by Joon Tianzon, Qaldi Operations Manager...

Qaldi Coffee Bar & Cyber Cafe

Putatan, Muntinlupa City
The compound is located along Muntinlupa National Road,
Near City Hall of Muntinlupa and Puregold Agro. It is
infront of Max's Restaurant, beside BPI Family Bank

Store Hours:
Sunday to Thurs - 6:30am to 12:00mn
Friday and Saturday - 6:30am to 2:30am

Like them on Facebook:

No comments:

Post a Comment