CHECK IT OUT: Caffé Bene at Eastwood City Walk
Now brewing: a cup of Korea
Eastwood City Walk 2, Libis
Open daily, 7 a.m. to 1 a.m. on Sundays to Thursdays and 7 a.m. to 3 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays
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(SPOT.ph) This is not the place to look for a fix for Korean cuteness addiction. Although Caffé Bene is Korea-based coffeehouse chain, Diane Chua and her siblings aren't simply riding the Korean-wave that seems poised to engulf the world. What they attempted was bring to Manila the details which separate this café from the many other cafés you can spend your time in. We think they succeeded.
Cafés are more than just the drinks, they’re about the ambience. You walk in Caffé Bene to the mild scent of freshly baked dough-based waffles and honey bread. Their Blueberry Cream Cheese Liège Waffle (P165) is a lovely combination of the crispy outer layer of a waffle, the yummy goodness of blueberries and a surprisingly good kick from the cream cheese on top. If you're hanging out with some friends, you'll want to share the two-inch thick Choco Banana Honey Bread (P155). Topped with whip cream and cute chocolate chips, the honey bread has a delicate texture complimented by the sweet flavor of good old fashioned banana.
Seducing your olfactory senses is just the beginning. The quiet lighting and the high ceiling on the first floor partners perfectly with your drink of choice. They offer classic coffee brews, tea, their own brand of gelato and fun mocktails for kids. They also have Bingsu (P165-215/Large; P230-280/Huge), an iced parfait that's great for sharing. But what you must try is their specialty drink, the Misugaru (P145/Regular; P155/Large). Misugaru is a multigrain-based beverage, served either hot or cold. We recommend the hot version, not only because it's served in a unique mug - the brim of which is shaped so that it feels like you're kissing it - but because its malty flavor is accentuated when warm.
We took our drink up to the loft on the second floor and enjoyed the ample amount of space that Caffé Bene provides. This is really not the place for performing your favorite K-Pop moves but it does try be authentic. "We imported the furniture and the wood from Korea," Chua tells us, "Even the plastic plants are from Korea." Dedication to detail right down to the wall garnish.