A love for cafes is not hard for anyone to develop especially if the essentials are present: good coffee or dessert, a great meal, good foods, comfortable seating, and fast internet connection. The booming trend surrounding cafes in the metro have slowly been transforming the way people and even businesses operate. Aside from a Starbucks or Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf around every corner of a city, several underrated cafes continue to spring in places no one has dared to imagine.
It’s more so common in Metro Manila being the capital of the Philippines where most people are populated in. The modernity of the city automatically translates for a more millennial and “hipster” persona when it comes to small businesses like coffee shops and cafes circulating every part of the Manila. It is quite different in Cebu though, for it is located in the Visayan region of the Philippines and is far from the fast pace of Manila life. Despite such, Cebu City is still an example of a budding city center that is slowly adapting to the ways and demands of the youth. I would often come across people who were born and raised in Cebu studying or working in Manila for a temporary basis, then later going back to their home towns in Cebu to start their own businesses.
The Booming Cafe and Coffee Business
A friend of mine actually studied in a prominent business school in Manila only to return to Cebu after 4 years to start his own coffee business in the heart of Cebu city. When I asked him what about businesses in Manila inspired him to start his own, he said “solitude.” In the first year he moved to Manila to study in university, the place that he found ultimate solitude were coffee shops and cafes around the metro. He would often stress that staying in a cafe for hours working or just relaxing with a good book was solitude for him, compared to actually being alone in his dormitory. Such frequent visits to several coffee shops and cafes prompted him to study harder and start his own place of solitude back in his hometown in Cebu. Developing his own business plan and laying everything out is still in the process, in the meantime, some suggestions below are highly encouraged for newbies in Cebu to visit.
CAFE DE FRANCE RESTAURANT
Where: G/F, Block A, Mactan Marina Mall, MEZ 1, Barangay Ibo, Lapu-lapu City 6015
What: Paul Bunyan’s Favorite and French Apple Tart
Being a morning person is a great requirement for travelers who want to maximize their trips. Finding a good place to enjoy a delicious breakfast becomes a priority in order to help get the energy raising for the rest of the trip. Cafe de France in Marina Mall is frequented by many locals and even foreign visitors for their savory breakfast meals.
A suggested pick to try would be Paul Bunyan’s Favorite which is a plate made up of two waffles done with the perfect crisp along with eggs and bacon or ham. The meal comes with either a coffee or tea option up for the customer’s selection. Now for their dessert, I would personally say it is quite hard to satisfy my pastry cravings for I hold quite the standard when it comes to cakes and pastries.
I was relieved to discover that Cafe De France did not disappoint in that regard. Indeed, one mouth watering treat for those who have a sweet tooth will have to be their French Apple Tart perfectly baked into its golden brown edges, topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream to cap off the dessert. It wasn’t just like the regular rich and filling apple pie-liketype of dessert, the French apple tart got me wanting more for there was a definite balance between the sweetness and the fruity apple taste.
CAFE CRATE RESTAURANT
Where: Veteran’s Drive, Cebu City 6000
What: The hill top view of Cebu City and their Macapuno carrot bar
Driving up to Cafe Crate is one highly recommended adventure for every tourist or traveler in Cebu. Not only is it a quaint little place up a hill, they also pride themselves in having a resident cat to entertain its customers. The charming cafe is known for their macapuno carrot bar partnered with a cup of coffee; something to surely cap off a long tiring day of exploration.
A cousin of mine have been pushing for me to visit this place when I come visit them in Cebu. It’s not only an ultimate go-to spot, but also a place to just take in the beauty mother earth herself has to offer. Cafe Crate thrives in the intimacy of its location and it doesn’t only attract people but also exudes a certain vibe that many visitors get from their staff and from their top notch pastry selection.
TREAT STREET CAFE
Where: Ayala Center Cebu, Cebu Business Park
When: Sunday – Monday (10:00 AM – 9:00 PM); Friday – Saturday (10:00 AM – 10:00 PM)
What: Calamansi cheesecake and brownie ala mode
If relaxing and spending some cool down time after a long day of exploring Ayala Center Cebu was the main chunk of your agenda, then Treat Street Cafe is the main hang for every tourist and traveler in the area. The small kiosk found in the middle of Ayala Center Cebu is best known for their deserts. A must try staple is their calamansi cheesecake which was said to have mastered the perfect balance between citrus and cream cheese, truly a treat to wow every customer’s taste buds. Ayala Center Cebu is quite a busy place where people come to shop and spend some leisure time in. Treat Street Cafe made the right choice when it comes to location since many passersby are in the area. It is convenient for many mall goers since it is literally located in the center of the mall, making it easy to locate.