CHECK IT OUT: Ritual at The Collective, Makati


Unit A The Collective, 7274 Malugay Street,
San Antonio, Makati. Tel. No. 400-4326
Open 12 noon to 9 p.m. (Tuesday to Saturday)

It’s easy to go organic and buy local at Ritual. Click for more.


( It's hard not to want to start shopping the moment you step into Ritual, a little store in The Collective on Malugay Street in Makati. The shop, which opened in May 2010, can only be described as simple and traditional, in that it might transport you to a time when supermarkets were a figment of the imagination and buying cooking ingredients meant bringing your own containers to the store.


At Ritual, shelves are lined with bottles of kitchen essentials like sea salt and organic coconut sugar, along with jars of jam and fish and, yes, even bagoong, and are likely to remind you of your lola's stash of homemade staples. "I think that the small details of your day are what make you happy," says Bea Misa, who co-owns the store with fiancé Rob Crisostomo. No surprise, then, that details like the straightforward, quaintly old-fashioned labels on the bottles and jars, which Misa designs herself, contribute to the store's homey feel.

Right in the middle of the shop's floor space, you'll find little-known varieties of sugar, salt, and rice sourced from small-scale farmers who don't have the equipment required to package their produce for the retail market. "We want to be a sort of platform for food entrepreneurs," Misa shares. "We meet with them to make sure they don't use artificial colorings or preservatives. We want to see what they're about. That's why we don't carry the usual things." The store's set-up is also representative of one of their main objectives: to let you buy just the amount that you need. The idea took root when Misa and Crisostomo set up a stall in the Legazpi Weekend Market in 2009, and people would bring their own containers to buy laundry soap, coffee, and other everyday needs.

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Today the store also carries Pinkerton ice cream and the famed Bacon Jam, as well as their own homemade sodas. The Cinnamon Dark Cacao (P100) from their Real Food line is a must-try: the cold, bottled drink is a rich concoction of chocolate made from local tablea with subtle hints of cinnamon, which, in spite of its intense flavor, is surprisingly light and refreshing.


Though there won't be any other branches of Ritual opening anytime soon, they plan to start hosting a "breakfast club" which will serve hot cacao, coffee, and pandesal with homemade syrups and jams by late March.


Photos by Monica Barretto and Trixie Zabal-Mendoza

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