Sassy launches a new site in the capital of The Philippines!
We’ve got some exciting news, Sassy Girls… Manila just got a little Sassier! That’s right, Sassy Manila is now live, delivering the same in-the-know info for girls in the Pearl of the Orient. They’ve got you covered on all that’s hot and happening in this bustling, energetic city; from the best places to eat and shop, to the most inspiring female entrepreneurs on the scene. We asked our awesome Manila team about their favourite spots in their city, so read on to discover more about our new Sassy location. As they say, it’s always fun in the Philippines!
Favourite Restaurant (General):
Celine: Wildflour – Weekend brunches are best spent at Wildflour. I usually start with their Wild Mushroom Salad then order the Croque Madame (generously slathered with melted gruyere) for my main. If I feel like indulging, I’ll order a slice of Salted Chocolate Cake, deliciously decadent with the perfect mix of sweet and salty.
Alex: Your Local – Whipping up Southeast Asian fusion dishes, Your Local has a special place in my heart and stomach. It’s a great place for intimate conversations over good food. The first time I tried their Torched Salmon Donburi, I knew that I had to go back and give their other dishes a try.
Kristel: 12/10 – Tucked away in a quiet street in Makati, 12/10 serves up innovative Japanese fusion fare in a modern yet homey space. Don’t miss the raw tuna salad, salmon kushiyaki and toro onigiri. And their cocktails are some of the best I’ve tried in the city!
Lady: Mecha Uma – The hype about this Japanese restaurant is not without reason. I rarely end up saying “wow” after the first bite, and to have that happen multiple times in one meal here is amazing! I still can’t get the scallop aburi sushi and the salmon “sandwich” out of my head.
Lyca: Smith Butcher & Grill Room – This place is perfect for steak lovers! They’ve got a wide variety of premium meats to choose from – check out the steak room with prime cuts on display – and the modern-masculine interior complements the experience well.
Favourite Restaurant (Filipino):
Alex: Abe – When I have friends or relatives visiting from abroad, I make sure to take them to Abe for Filipino food. Their dishes are big enough to share with a group of people, so it’s like having a mini-fiesta with your loved ones.
Kristel: Sentro 1771 – Filipino food is best prepared at home, and dining at Sentro always feels like having a home-cooked meal. It’s my family’s go-to place for authentic Filipino dishes. Best to come with a group for a sampling of traditional local cuisine.
Lady: Sarsa – A contemporary twist to Ilonggo/Negrenese comfort food, Sarsa is my go-to place on a rainy day or when I just want a really, really filling meal. I love heading over here for a satisfying bowl of Sarsa Batchoy. If you’re feeling adventurous, you should try the isaw (chicken intestine), a street food staple.
Celine: Milky Way Café – For Filipino Food, Milky Way Café tops my list. Their dishes capture the nuances in flavour that are distinctly Filipino, and there is always that comforting feeling whenever I take a bite of their CrispyHito (deep fried catfish) with a spoonful of steaming hot white rice. I also highly recommend their Halo-halo for dessert – a recipe they’ve had since 1962!
Lyca: Locavore – Locavore serves up traditional Filipino cuisine, but with a twist. Enjoy popular dishes, like Sizzling Sinigang, paired with a bottle of our local beer brews.
Alex: Z Hostel – Rooftop bars are all the rage these days, but the one that serves affordable alcohol with a mini grill gets extra points with me. Z Hostel has two roof deck areas with different skyline views where you and your friends can hang out.
Celine: Blind Pig – Blind Pig is my go-to place when only a strong drink (or three) can cure my woes. All their cocktails pack quite a punch with at least two ounces of alcohol per cocktail. Just give the bartenders your flavour profile and they always manage to whip up something deliciously deceiving.
Kristel: Finders Keepers – For a proper girls’ night out (minus the clubbing crowd), Finders Keepers is always a safe bet on weekends. It’s small enough so it’s not overwhelming, but still packed enough to be fun.
Lady: ABV – Manila’s answer to New York’s PDT, ABV can be accessed through an old-school elevator corridor, which leads you to a dimly lit den serving bang-on cocktails and delicious hotdogs. It feels like I’m back in Manhattan when I’m there, so I go whenever I miss a taste of the Big Apple.
Lyca: Lit – Located in the busy commercial area of Serendra at The Fort, you could easily bypass Japanese whisky bar Lit. Its inconspicuous black door is not telling of what’s inside though — a dark, cosy interior that promises an authentic whisky-tasting experience.
Favourite Coffee Spot:
Lady: EDSA Beverage Design Studio – I’m at this coffee shop literally every week for my Purple Haze espresso with milk. It’s such an easy escape from the hustle and bustle of the highway it’s situated along, and the chill atmosphere makes you feel right at home.
Alex: Refinery – Refinery can be anything I want it to be that day: a catch-up place with the girls, a quiet working space, or somewhere I can relax and blow off steam. It’s a place where I can enjoy a cup of coffee, tea or even a cocktail in the middle of the day! Other than that, their Honey and Basil Grilled Cheese Sandwich always satisfies my cravings.
Lyca: Yardstick – Nestled in the busy Legaspi village in the heart of Manila’s CBD, this barebones coffee shop not only serves up great java, but also offers courses and classes for the coffee enthusiast.
Favourite Shopping Spot:
Kristel: Aranaz – Aranaz clutches and beach totes are staple accessories of Manila’s most stylish women. Using local materials like mother-of-pearl and abaca, it combines high quality craftsmanship with modern Filipino design. They also recently launched a home collection, and I’m particularly in love with the lobster trays and pineapple-shaped bowls.
Alex: Renegade Folk – Designed and manufactured in Manila, Renegade Folk gives girls like me the benefit of both comfort and style. Their shoes are perfect to wear on casual days in the city, on the beach or even when travelling.
Celine: Cura V – I’m the type who gets easily overwhelmed when there is too much on display, that’s why I love how this lifestyle concept store is so tastefully curated. Walking inside Cura V is like entering a stylish friend’s well-decorated apartment where you end up wanting to take everything home with you!
Lady: Soma Stores at Green Sun – In a former car showroom turned events space and design centre, the polished concrete floors and white walls give a unique backdrop to Manila’s newest talents. With a diverse collection of fashion, furniture and wares from emerging designers, it’s hard to leave empty-handed.
Lyca: harlan+holden – Homegrown label Harlan + Holden churns out classic pieces with an edge. Their well-constructed designs can easily be mixed and matched with your current closet staples.
Like the sound of Manila? Find out more about this fascinating city in the Philippines at www.sassymanila.com!