Date # 31: Cafe Xocolat
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Cafe Xocolat is a cafe’ that specializes in—well—you guessed it: chocolate. They serve a variety of chocolate drinks, as well as chocolate-inspired entrees and desserts.
Xocolat’s B. Gonzalez Branch (the one near Katipunan) is our go-to place whenever it’s raining and we’re in the mood for some cuddling over a nice cup of hot chocolate. The branch is located in a converted house, which gives this place a very warm and homey ambiance. They have comfortable couches but they also have some mono-block chairs.
I wouldn’t go here if it’s not a rainy day, though, because it can get quite hot and humid. We went here when it was raining hard and we needed a place to stay in before watching the UAAP Finals Game 2 (Woo! Ateneo won!).
Douglas got me a hot chocolate mint drink the last time we went to Xocolat, but since I wanted a drink that would go with my lunch, I ordered the Cool Chocolate Mint (P115) this time. Unfortunately, I didn’t like it as much as I liked the hot chocolate mint because I could barely feel the minty essence now that the entire drink is cold. Now it just felt like cold Ovaltine with chocolate shavings.
I wish they had served it in a ceramic mug to make it more environment-friendly and also to add to the homey ambiance.
Xocolat’s Meaty Lasagna (P165) is one of the best I’ve tasted so far. It’s what it presents itself to be: meaty, saucy and cheesy. I normally like more cheese with my lasagna, but this nice balance of ingredients still makes this very tasty for me.
A downside is that the plate is very shallow so it’s not very filling.
This was Douglas’ lunch: Hawaiian Porkchop w/ Pineapple Chocolate Sauce (P195). You’d admire Xocolat for their chocolate inspired dishes, and this is one of them. Here’s what we thought about it: The breaded pork chop was good to eat on its own, it had a slab of fat around the edges but it still had a thick portion of lean meat. However, the magic lies on the pineapple chocolate sauce which was simply divine. It’s a sweet and sour sauce which essentially comes from pineapple extract and then sweetened by chocolate.
You have to slice it with a knife, but it’s tender when chewed. Strange, I know.
Douglas gave me the potato gratin on the side, since he knows I’m fond of it. It’s very rich and creamy, almost like eating a puree. It has a hint of butter and garlic, and the toasted portion on top gives it a nice glaze.
This was Douglas’ drink: Xoco Lava (P145). The vanilla ice cream on top made the drink extra creamy and it also added a variety in the strong flavor of the cacao. The subtle taste didn’t make it feel like it was forcing chocolate into your system.
I ate the stick-o on the side because I love stick-o. This drink is a must-try :)
Don’t let the blackened color of the Xoco Fries (P95) fool you—they’re actually fries coated in chocolate powder and then topped with chocolate syrup. It’s another one of Xocolat’s chocolate-inspired dishes.
It comes with a flavorful aioli dip which I found was too strong for my taste. It’s better to eat the fries without the dip. Douglas really loved both of them though, he said he was sure to order them next time. “Oooh, those were so weird but sooo goood,” he told me.
The Verdict: Some of the chocolate-inspired dishes of Xocolat are truly unique and must be tried. It’s worth at least a visit.
This is the best place in the Katipunan area for hot chocolate under heavy rain. As I’ve said, though, it’s not advisable to go here if it’s sunny because the airconditioning is kind of whack.
172 B. Gonzales St. (nr Katipunan Ave.), Loyola Heights
Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines
With and For Love,
Rina Caparras and Douglas Chong
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