Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Philstar.com - The Filipino Global Community

Philstar.com - The Filipino Global Community
Christmas list 2006
LOVE LUCY By Lucy Gomez
The Philippine STAR 12/17/2006

(Part 2)
I regret to inform you that Manang Tessie of Ulcing’s lechon lost her mobile phone so the number I shared with you last week is no longer working. Call her instead at 0919-3613291. I just enjoyed many servings of her authentic lechon today, and it tastes exquisite (if you can ever call lechon that).

Tapa. There are only two sources I run to for tapa that truly satisfies. Each is deliciously special, in its own distinct way.

From Dolor comes beef tapa, sliced so thinly it mimics bacon, but with a taste that is decidedly more Pinoy. I love it fried to a crisp over a bowl of steaming white rice topped with fried egg, but I enjoy it just as much in a sandwich or sprinkled over salad. Call Dolor at 0920-9143031.

From Picadeli comes Mega Tapa, made from tender beef sirloin bathed in a special, secret marinade. Delicious and highly desirable. For orders, call or text Marian at 0917-5306558.

I admit, I will never tire of the tapa these two ladies offer.

Tocino. For the best tocino in town, look no further than Pampanga’s Best. Theirs is the most delicious, with a consistent taste and quality you can trust. I once had a chance to peek inside their factory and it was sparkling clean, with world-class facilities. The hotdogs they make, which go by the name of Boom-Boom, are also wonderful. Both kids and adults will love them.

Ham. Christmas is almost never complete without ham. It is as ubiquitous as queso de bola and leche flan on the dinner table. There are many kinds and brands available but these three shine brightly like the stars the Three Kings followed: for Adelina’s ham, call 531-6833; for the bone-in baked Virginia ham from Mt. Malarayat Golf & Country Club in Lipa Batangas (perhaps my favorite, thank heavens they have an office here in Metro Manila, call 814-0743 and 893-1601 for orders. In Lipa, their contact number is 043-7567932; and for The Plaza Premium Baked Ham, call 729-0003, with a selection of sauces such as premium glaze, wasabi mayo, sweet mustard, and gutsy garlic.

Ham from these three sources is excellent.

Goldilock’s. One of my favorite value-for-money stops. As a special treat this year, they offer the Goldilocks Cookie House Kit. Building has never been such a fun, instantly gratifying experience! Hansel and Gretel must have lived in a house this deliciously pretty. Other top favorites include the choco crunch polvoron with sugar decorettes Christmas icons (P100 per box), the chocolate sans rival (a steal at only P400), and choco-dipped macaroons (P85 per box).

Symphony Sweets Gourmet Desserts. Try the following: Arabian holiday cake, a moist caramel-infused cake bursting with such royal ingredients as almonds, walnuts, dates, apricots, persimmons, and yogurt. It is topped with pecans, even more dates, and a glace cherry; the ultimate chocolate cake, two layers of dark, moist chocolate cake filled and frosted with coffee-flavored chocolate ganache, lavishly adorned with almonds; the white chocolate strawberry swirl cheesecake has a crunchy walnut crust, and a white chocolate and cream cheese layer brimming with plump, juicy strawberries, surrounded with white chocolate panels. For orders, call 823-5235, 0922-8536638, and 0921-5967821.

Claude 9 Sauces. I cannot decide which I love more: the custom-made bookshelves by Claude Tayag that run the length of one wall in our home, the beautiful wooden rice/ice/stew buckets lined with stainless steel bowls, or his special line of homemade bottled sauces that include taba ng talangka, XO chili sauce which happens to be my favorite, made with Chinese ham, dried shrimps, and spices, and balo-balo or burong hipon. All are made without preservatives and MSG, available at leading supermarkets and ABouT Design, at the ground floor of Greenbelt 3, Ayala Center. These sauces are great and I have taken them with most everything. I don’t have to choose just one, I guess; all I know is I am thankful Claude is around to share his many talents with us. Call 0917-5105771.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Makeup gift ideas for different personalities - INQ7.net

Makeup gift ideas for different personalities - INQ7.net

Makeup gift ideas for different personalities

By Kinny Salas
Last updated 07:38pm (Mla time) 12/14/2006

Published on Page F4 of the December 15, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, CRICKET! She’s my only sister and although we both love makeup, our styles could not be more different. She is no-frills Zen while I am all Louis XIV.

Readers may be someone like her who is very streamlined or they may be like me who is full of drama. For the two classes of readers, here are makeup products they may appreciate this Christmas.

For the streamlined woman, recommended is the Bobbi Brown Sparkle and Rubies Collection 2006. The streamlined woman appreciates versatility but does not like carrying too much stuff around. The perfect gift options for her in this collection are:

-- Shimmer Brick and Lip Kit (P3,350) -- it has four neutral/nude lip shades that suit every outfit or skin tone. The Shimmer brick with multiple shades of brown, pinks, and beige can be used on eyes as shadow and liner. It can also be used on the cheeks and all over face as a bronzer for an instant healthy glow. The streamlined woman will stick this neat package in her bag, and after adding mascara, she is all set.

-- Mini Brush set (P2,600) -- it is made of real hair and structured in such a way that application will be easy as pie. It comes in a neat black zipper case, good for traveling.

For foundation, the Max Factor Flawless Perfection liquid (P895) is advised.

One side is a primer with SPF 12 to blur minor flaws, protect skin, and make foundation stay flawless longer. Another side is the actual shade.

One great thing about this is that every shade blends into a wide range of skin color so not finding your actual shade is close to impossible. In fact I can wear both Creamy Ivory and Sand and it blends beautifully.

For the flamboyant woman, Christian Dior’s collection is suggested.

Every year Dior manages to incorporate trinkets with makeup. This year it is a heart-shaped silver padlock surrounded by Swarovski crystals, called Dior Pretty Charm (P2,900).

It opens to reveal a lip color and gloss on both halves of a broken heart. A tiny mirror where you can check your lips is on the lid.

You don’t need to rummage in your bag for this as it is a bag charm so one always knows where it is.

The 001 Magical Seduction is fuschia with mauve gloss while the 002 Pink Enchantment is a duo of frosty pinks.

Rouge Dior lipstick has skincare properties that hydrates the driest lips, feels light and comfortable, and has strategic shimmer and rich color that makes lips look fuller without the cheap oily look.

The makeup is inspired by the lighting used in film sets and tries to come up with succulent lips for the user.

Check out the Christian Dior counters personally because although I loved the texture and finish, the two shades sent to me did not suit my skin tone so I cannot rave about any shade in particular.

Such a shame as the packaging was very elegant.

Flamboyant women have some unreasonable expectations when it comes to makeup.

I, for one, expect it to perform above and beyond the call of duty. I don’t mind retouching my powder, lipstick and blush during an event, but I expect my eye makeup to stay put despite heavy sweating in this humid weather.

Make-up Forever has come out with a pearly waterproof eye color (P880) and eyeliner pencil range (P780). This is truly waterproof as it was designed for women who join water ballet competitions.

Of course, women who are conscious of their small Oriental eyes have even gone to the extent of using the black and brown variants of this in Boracay to make their eyes appear bigger and more deep-set.

It does, however, wash out with cleansing oil and eye makeup remover so there is no fear of stale makeup causing breakouts in the eye area.

I have the eyeliner in Navy which makes the whites of my eyes seem brighter and breaks the monotony of beige and brown eye shadows, instantly transforming my day eye makeup into something more interesting for the Holiday evening parties.

Copyright 2006 Inquirer. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Philstar.com - The Filipino Global Community

Philstar.com - The Filipino Global Community

LOVE LUCY By Lucy Gomez
The Philippine STAR 12/10/2006

Great food finds to share with everyone on your Christmas list! Enjoy them, even long after this season of indulgent eating is over.
New Finds
Betsy’s Cake Center. The contact numbers are 281-1127 or 281-1131. You must try the mini rolls, soft pillows that remind me of a buttery kiss, with a hint of orange. I enjoy it very much with coffee, tempered only with a generous splash of milk or cream. A happy box of 12 goes for P210. Do try their broas also, a veritable sweet fix that will make you grateful for such things as sugar, eggs and milk and the baker that concocts them into a kind of magic that only the taste buds can fully comprehend. They sell for P16 a piece but I’m sure you will be wanting/needing more than that.

Ina’s chocolate bundt rum cake with caramel sauce. P350 for a box of six and P650 for a box of 12. This is delicious. Call 0922-7133465 for orders.

Toasted yema. From Hizon’s. I know they have been around forever, and that they are famous for their ensaymada, but it was only when they finally opened an almost secret little nook tucked at the Promenade this year that I got to feast on a cascade of other such treats, the toasted yema being the star as far as my sweet tooth knows.

Saltine. Products thoughtfully and passionately concocted by CIA-trained chef Tippi Tambunting, best-sellers include patties in seven flavors (spinach, mushroom, oxtail, pork belly, chicken, tuna, and chorizo) which make such great gifts because an assortment of flavors can be had in one box, and can be easily stored in the freezer and heated in the oven toaster as needed. They also have the best lemon squares in town (comes in a sugar-free version, too!), absolutely delicious toffee cookies, bread pudding and enganyo de bobo. All treats come in classy packaging, too. If you are not in the mood for sweets, they have the best pasta sauce (featuring juicy tomatoes that have been slow roasted) and salad dressing. Call 843-8970 to 71, 0918-8118088, 0919-8958603 for orders.

Carina. Why, oh why, did I meet Carina just recently? Another CIA-trained chef, Carina Guevarra first fed me and Kris Aquino (we were together when we first met) what perhaps was the most fulfilling tuna sandwich I’ve ever had. There also was a delicious salad that I devoured to the last bite. For Christmas, her specials include traditional garlic roasted prime rib, juicy herb-stuffed turkey, and rosemary roasted boneless leg of lamb – all of which are served with trimmings. Call or text 0920-9065650.

Kitchen Herbs. If you have been to the Saturday morning Ayala Alabang Weekend Market along Narra St. at Ayala Alabang Village, chances are you’ve met Jejo and Pinky and their lovely herbs. If not, you can always visit their garden in Sta. Rosa, Laguna and/or contact them at 0917-8108293 and (049) 541-2154. They have a wide range of freshly cut, chemical-free culinary herbs such as holy basil, Thai basil, lemon basil, cilantro, culantro (a.k.a. ngo ngai, Mexican cilantro), galangal, kinchai, lemon grass, mint, and pandan. They also have arugula, sweet basil, basil fin vert, fresh bay leaf, chives, dill, fennel, marjoram, Italian oregano, lemon mint, spearmint, rosemary, sage, tarragon, and thyme.

Pinakurat Vinegar. After I first tried it, I vowed that my kitchen would never, ever be without it. I take pinakurat vinegar with everything, from fish, meat and Chippy to practically everything else in between (except dessert). It gives a kick to my meals and when you try it, you will know why. The Manila depot for this gem of a product is at 262 Amapola St., Palm Village, Guadalupe Viejo, Makati City. You may also call 899-3494 for orders.

Marisa’s truffles. Dark Belgian chocolate truffles lovingly and painstakingly homemade. You can choose from a box of four, six, nine, 12 or 16, with prices from P120 to P450. The boxes come in different colors as well, held together with a satin ribbon and inside the truffles sit prettily on liners with such designs as floral vines, circles or zebra stripes. These are delicious, a festive treat for an even more festive season. Call or text 0920-9608390 for orders, or you can e-mail her at ferrer.marisa@gmail.com

Arya. Wonderful Persian cuisine at The Promenade. They have great food, yes, but so, too, do they have lovely dessert. Try their rich and decadently delicious fig orange cake. Perfect with tea and on just about any day when you want to celebrate the joy of life and appetites. Call 727-5062; you must place your order for this sweet treat three to five days in advance.

Dulce Lin mango torte. Always a welcome sight at the meal table, this sweetheart of a dessert is refreshing – crispy and chewy at the same time with just the right amount of sweetness thrown in. A nine-inch pie goes for P480 while the 12-inch size sells for P750. Call 374-2165 to 67 for orders, although it is so famous that it is always readily available.

Krispy Kreme. You may have to wait in line, good-naturedly grumble a bit too for having to do so, but with donuts this good why shouldn’t you? My top picks are the honey-glazed (glazes me with such sweet happiness, I tell you) and the New York cheesecake. Available at Serendra, the mere sight of a Krispy Kreme box (with its famous logo set against the white background speckled with tiny green dots) is enough to set my heart aflutter.

Floring’s. For get-togethers which are de riguer this season, make mealtime one less thing to worry about by ordering Floring’s famous barbecue – tender, juicy, with the Pinoy taste we so love. Priced at P33 for a stick that is very siksik. Contact numbers are 709-0223 and 440-4292.

Wagyu burger patties. It is wonderful to have a stack of them in the freezer; you never know when you will have company. I am not much of a burger person, really, but I am totally sold on this one. No extenders here; each patty is a robust testament to beefy, meaty goodness. I do not know how you enjoy your burger, but here in the house after thawing, we simply fry it, plunk it in between two slabs of bread trimmed with fat slices of juicy tomato. Before the first bite we dress it up with a mayonnaise and mustard combo and occasionally, a dash of Lea & Perrins, too. Call Junie at 0906-4911270. They also have delicious rib eye, so tender it will melt in your mouth.

Florabel. For your noche buena feast, Florabel offers slow roasted US Angus rib eye with double baked potatoes with truffle cream sauce at P2,500 per kilo. Available whole cakes include sugar-free decadence chocolate cake P900; low-fat ricotta cheesecake, P1,200; almond chocolate cake (tastes like sans rival), P1,000; yema-filled chocolate cake with caramel sauce, P990; and walnut brittle cake, P1,000. Call 667-3220 and 638-7527 for orders.

Galileo. They have the best hot chocolate in town! Get a box or tin of their famous Cioco Delice, perfect for a rainy day, the Christmas season, every day. They have a great deli – choose from a variety of cheeses and cold cuts, Baci chocolates, panetone, Molinari coffee. They even have the traditional stove-top espresso makers. Located at No. 80 Calbayog St. corner Malinao, Mandaluyong, call 532-0482 or 534-4633.

Oysters from Spoon. The freshest and best oysters in town – fat, juicy, truly yummy. Call 929-9965.

Cosmo Bread. Try her fresh mango cake (refreshing) and her ginger chip biscotti (more chocolate-y, actually, with ginger bits thrown in as a delicious afterthought). Call Elaine at 0922-4874565.
Old Favorites
Roshan. You will never go wrong with Roshan, taste-, size-, and packaging-wise. She is always consistent and so, so good at what she does – baking lovely sweet treats for people like you and me, and presenting them impeccably, too. Aside from her famous chocolate chip cookies and brownies, she makes chocolate cupcakes with a surprise filling you just have to try. And her ginger biscotti is perhaps the Mercedes-Benz of biscotti, it is just oh-so-delicious. Call or text Roshan at 0917-833-6286.

Margaret’s torta espanol. Still unrivaled, the first and original is always the best. Light, spongy, and buttery Christmas will not be complete without this. Call 0918-9082576 for orders.

Ulcing’s lechon. Still the best in town, and a true-blue Cebu original, the taste is always consistently perfect. Call 810-6408 or call/text Tessie at 0919-4595591.

Le Canard D’or. Paris has never been this close. Farah’s foie gras, with its velvety, wonderfully indulgent taste boasts of nothing less than superior quality fattened duck livers especially flown in from Perigord, France. For orders call Farah Tolentino Ylagan at 722-4234 or 0918-9264671. Place orders a week in advance.

Delize. Jill Sandique, the woman behind Delize, is known for her Pavlova, Concorde, and she is also the sans rival queen, with no less than three specialties from her kitchen pistachio sans rival, cashew sans rival, and macadamia sans rival. For orders, call 721-7022.

French coconut pie. From Carmel. Slippery, sensuous, delicious, there is no other quite like it. Her carrot cake is the ultimate as far as carrot cakes go and she also makes great pineapple upside down cake, very similar to how Richard’s Lola Lydia used to make it. Tita Carmel is also well-loved for her bottled tuyo, caviar Pinoy, and daing flakes. Call 911-3443 or 0917-6220083 for orders.

Polly’s. Best known for her legendary chocolate cake, and her delicious bread pudding with the Spanish cream sauce. Call 824-7612 for orders.

Lydia’s chicken relleno. A treat that can be happily enjoyed the whole year through, call 0917-4405106 for orders. Still the best chicken relleno I have tasted.

Salted eggs. From Doc Larry Buenaflor. The salted eggs he makes always taste consistently good, naglalangis as those in the know always say, and that apparently sets apart a good salted egg from a mediocre one. Call 0916-7990787 for orders.

Bellini’s. For orange cake topped with grated candied orange rind. Even after a full meal, I will always have room for Bellini’s orange cake. Call 913-2550 for orders.

Conti’s chicken pie. Rivaled only by Conti’s tuna pie. Anyone should be happy to get a box of this.

Pawsitively purrfect. She still makes the best Irish fruitcake (P700) and now she offers Irish fruitcake cookies (P300 for 300 grams). A must-try is her pumpkin pie (P350) which also happens to be my daughter’s favorite. Her food for the gods sells at P425 for a box of 24 pieces and you can buy her apple walnut either in a bundt (P600), a loaf (P375) or muffins (P600 for 18 pieces). Call or text Cynthia at 0916-3115900.

Beware of pols, ‘Idol’ told - INQ7.net

Beware of pols, ‘Idol’ told - INQ7.net

By Delfin Mallari Jr.
Last updated 00:04am (Mla time) 12/15/2006

Published on Page A20 of the December 15, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

LUCENA CITY—With the coming election season, relatives and local fans of the first Philippine Idol, Maureen “Mau” Marcelo, have one piece of advice to her: Stay away from politicians.

“With her newfound national popularity, I would advise her not to allow herself to be used by politicians,” Mau’s grandmother, Erlinda Reyes, told the Inquirer in an interview on Monday.

The legions of Mau’s fans have the same message to the latest singing sensation who was born and grew up in this capital city.

Text messages

“Even before the finals at the Big Dome when she guested in my program, most of the text messages and phone calls from her fans that I received had also advised Mau to shy away from partisan politics,” said Arnel Avila, host of morning cable TV program “Pag-usapan Natin” aired over STV6.

Avila predicted that politicians would come in droves to get Mau’s support and endorsement in the coming elections.

“It would be good for her to just politely turn them down,” Avila quoted some of the messages of Mau’s fans as saying.

“And it would also be better for her to just concentrate on her participation in the upcoming World Idol singing contest next year and leave elections to professional politicians,” the local TV broadcaster said.


He said local politicians had originally extended their support to another local candidate, Raymond Sajor.

“In their previous streamers, only the name of Raymond Sajor was written. There was no mention of Mau, probably thinking that she had less chances of winning. But when Raymond was disqualified and she reached the finals, all of a sudden they shifted their attention to her,” Avila said.

He noted that when Mau arrived in the studio for the TV interview, she rode a borrowed barangay patrol vehicle, assisted by only one village councilor.

But a day after Mau bested the two other Philippine Idol finalists, Jan Nieto and Gian Magdangal, in the grand finals at the Araneta Coliseum on Saturday and Sunday, streamers of all sizes and colors from local politicians extolling her feat suddenly mushroomed in major highways of this city and in some parts of the province.

Copyright 2006 Inquirer. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Roars of approval at NU Rock Awards - INQ7.net

Roars of approval at NU Rock Awards - INQ7.net

Roars of approval at NU Rock Awards

By Pocholo Concepcion
Last updated 05:53am (Mla time) 12/07/2006

Published on Page E1 of the December 7, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

IT LASTED till 3 a.m. with no untoward incidents. For that alone, the 13th NU Rock Awards held on Dec. 1 at the Manila World Trade Center deserves commendation.

Describing itself as “the premier rock awards show for Pinoy rockers,” the annual event has continued to generate interest and excitement among listeners of NU 107. In the pre-MTV years, this FM station almost single-handedly promoted rock as a commercially viable force in the local music industry.

Amid the crowd’s constant roar of approval and the joyful din of the live performances, some things could not escape notice:

The Eraserheads may be long gone, but three of its four members have never stopped making music. Ely Buendia looked well-adjusted to the direction he’s taken as leader of the band Pupil. Appearing onstage in a bullet-proof vest, Buendia was visibly happy as he swayed while playing rhythm guitar and singing lead vocals on “Nasaan Ka Na.”

Even more obvious was Raimund Marasigan having the time of his life as a key member of two bands and much sought-after record producer—usually in tandem with Buddy Zabala, who is likewise a noticeable presence these days as the new bassist of the Dawn. Marasigan’s newfound role as vocalist of Sandwich, keyboardist of Pedicab and co-producer of albums by the Itchyworms and Dong Abay, among others, is an example of a musician’s generosity in sharing talent whose rewards were felt that night. Marasigan and Zabala picked up the Producer of the Year Award for Itchyworms’ “Noontime Show” album.

Yano, too, has long been defunct, but its former vocalist seems to have recovered from the trauma of wrong career moves and legal problems. Dong Abay, now fronting his own band, remains a crowd favorite and was eagerly anticipated to upstage everyone. However, the superlative introduction by Imago’s Aia de Leon fell flat as Abay, strutting in a G-string and sporting a long beard, sang in a hoarse voice that made the staccato lyrics of “Bombardment” more difficult to deliver.

This is also a year that saw a veteran band like the Dawn back with a new album, coinciding with the release of a semi-autobiographical movie that earned raves in a recent digital film festival.

Noteworthy is the popularity of new bands Urbandub and Up Dharma Down, whose leaders, Gabby Alipe and Armi Millare, took home the Vocalist of the Year and Best Female Rock Icon awards, respectively.

It should likewise merit attention that, alongside Marasigan, two of the winners, Myrene Academia (Bassist of the Year) and Mong Alcaraz (Best Male Rock Icon) are actually band mates in several different groups. How they maintain this balancing act is praiseworthy.

But the night belonged to Kamikazee, which won Best Live Act, Song of the Year (“Narda”) and Artist of the Year Awards. The ruckus the band creates each time it performs could be attributed to the hell-raising stance of vocalist Jay Contreras, as well as the sarcastic humor and working-class sentiments of its songs—which in one way or another have a connection with the music of Parokya Ni Edgar and Yano.

The NU Rock Awards is 13 years old and should go on forever—if only because it’s greatly responsible for the fame, fortune and influence of the best young bands in the country then and now.

Best New Artist—Up Dharma Down
Drummer of the Year—Jazz Nicolas of Itchyworms
Bassist of the Year—Myrene Academia of Sandwich/Imago
Guitarist of the Year—Mong Alcaraz of Sandwich/Chicosci
Vocalist of the Year—Gabby Alipe of Urbandub
Producer of the Year—Raimund Marasigan, Buddy Zabala for “Noontime Show”
Best Album Packaging—“5 on the Floor” by Sandwich
Best Music Video—“Sugod” (Sandwich) directed by Marie Jamora
Rising Sun Award—Itchyworms
Best Live Act—Kamikazee
In the Raw Award—Silent Sanctuary
Best Male Rock Icon—Mong Alcaraz of Sandwich/Chicocsci
Best Female Rock Icon—Armi Millare of Up Dharma Down
Hall of Fame Award—DJs of the Rock of Manila (DZRJ)
Song of the Year—“Narda” (Kamikazee)
Artist of the Year—Kamikazee

Copyright 2006 Inquirer. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.