New Restaurant Alert: KANDLE Cafe at Mother Ignacia Avenue, Quezon City
A third-wave coffee shop with great food to match.
113 Mother Ignacia Avenue, South Triangle, Quezon City
Open daily from 1 p.m. to 10 p.m.
(SPOT.ph) Opening a third-wave coffee shop in Quezon City is by far the most unanimous decision Chef Leslie Ong and her three brothers ever made.
All four siblings—two of whom are chefs—are incredibly passionate about coffee culture. They even enrolled in brewing workshops before the idea of setting up a coffee shop ever came to mind. It just so happened that their family also owned an unused lot on Mother Ignacia Avenue that served as their playground when they were kids.
The pieces of the puzzle were already laid out long before they managed to put them together. And so, in April, KANDLE Café opened. KANDLE, which is a play on the siblings' initials (Khryss, Don King, Leslie, and Eli), specializes in meticulously brewed and blended coffee, but their food items are steadily attracting attention as well.
A nice, organic look.
Nearly everything is made in-house, including the bread, noodles, and patties. “We want [our dishes] to be as pure as can be,” Chef Leslie points out. “We want our personality to reflect in the food that we serve.” It's a tall order for a budding café, but the taste and quality of their creations do most of the work.
For example, there's no denying the flavors of their KANDLE Burger (P250). It's made with 100% pure beef and flourished with red pesto, cheese, sautéed onions, tomato, and greens. It comes with a crispy medley of vegetable fries and the serving size is enough to satisfy even two hungry customers.
Spicy Squid Salad
You won't find anything amiss with the Spicy Squid Salad (P250). The greens, mixed with pickled root veggies and dried red chili, are tossed in a patis vinaigrette, while the sautéed squid is lifted by a Korean gochujang and pickled lemon sauce. You can tell by their portions that KANDLE is all about generosity.
Ms. Eggy & Mr. Eggoy Pasta
It's difficult not to spot a dish called Ms. Eggy & Mr. Eggoy Pasta (P240) on the menu.This fresh squid-ink pasta is sautéed in smoked bacon and onion, tossed in a light cream sauce, and garnished with crispy bacon. The crown of 63-degree poached egg and Parmesan cheese ties the flavors together. KANDLE also has a cocktail-based pasta, the Bloody Mary Cream Pie Pasta (P330), which is pretty much your no-fail tomato sauce variety.
If the place’s industrial yet laid-back atmosphere doesn’t warm you up, their selection of teas might just do the trick. Stand-outs include the Piña Rose (P120), Kape Rice (P120), and Lemonada (P120). The Ongs, however, recommend their signature Latte (P130) and Cappuccino (P120).
KANDLE may still be under the radar, but with all the buzz surrounding it, hitting the mainstream is just a matter of time.
Photos by Hans Fausto