Saturday, January 19, 2008

The Chocolate Kiss Cafe

The Chocolate Kiss Cafe

Location :
Ang Bahay ng Alumni, R. Magsaysay Street, UP Diliman, Quezon City

Tel # : +63 (2) 433-3782; +63 (2) 434-7430
Cuisine : Italian, Filipino
Menu Price Range : Php 150.00 - Php 300.00
Service Charge: none
Rating : A-

Anyone who’s ever been to the University of the Philippines has probably dined or at least heard of this place, and with good reason: The Chocolate Kiss Cafe is a great romantic sojourn into fine dining that remains affordable and elegant at the same time: a rare combination.

Despite its humble facade, the interiors beckon to a much more sophisticated clientèle. Upon entry, you are greeted by a classy, glass cake display, exhibiting the tasty pastries that were probably the inspiration for the establishment’s title. A grand piano and various paintings are strewn about the area, adding color to the elegant blacks and brown furnishings and subdued, beige walls.

Chicken Kiev
Price: Php 220.00 (with mashed potatoes) Php 200.00 (without)
Rating: A

A delicious classic that’s been popular for years, the chicken was succulent, the stuffing tasty, and the breading flavorful. The vegetables were surprisingly sparse, but my big complaint was the lack of the traditional mashed potatoes and gravy. Not being a big fan for rice myself, I settled for a helping of garlic bread instead, which was surprisingly good.

Taco Salad
Price: Php 190.00
Rating: B

Although a bit spicy, this concoction was quite hearty, not skimping on any of the ingredients. There were healthy portions of flavorful ground beef, tasty beans, and crisp vegetables. The tortilla chips weren’t soggy (a common problem with this dish) and the concoction as a whole was very scrumptious. It’s a bit pricey, but this meal is still a great value as two people can easily share it, considering the copious servings.

Chix in a Basket
Price: Php 175.00
Rating: A-

A tasty and addicting concoction of breaded, boneless chicken strips with a side of fries presented in a small wicker basket, this dish is a far cry from the fast food fare that often touts a similar title. The breading is crunchy and flavorful while the chicken strips are succulent and juicy. The fries are light, crisp, and light on oil. The tart barbecue sauce was the perfect accompaniment: bold and musky, it featured a mix of complimentary spices that made it a delight.

Devil’s Food Cake
Price: Php 58.00 (slice) Php 580.00 (whole)
Rating: A

Perhaps one of the most sinful deserts on the planet, it starts off with moist chocolate layer cake smothered in generous portions of frothy frosting. This is the most popular desert in The Chocolate Kiss Cafe and with good reason - its sweet frosting and moist cake melts in your mouth and leaves you craving for more.

Kahlua Butter Cake
Price: Php 72.00 (slice) Php 720.00 (whole)
Rating: B

For those craving for a desert that’s more coffee than chocolate and more moist that sweet, The Chocolate Kiss Cafe also offers a Kahlua Cake. Although you can taste the coffeesque flavor of Kahlua fudge filling, it isn’t overpowering and mixes well fluffy butter cake desert. Although it may not as tasty as the Devil’s Food Cake, it’s still a tempting taste sensation.

House Ice Tea

Price: Php 58.00 (Bottomless)
Rating: A

Although most establishments are content in serving generic ice tea drinks drawn from either Nestea or Lipton budget packs, The Chocolate Kiss Cafe actually has their own concoction that sure to satisfy. A small jar of honey and some calamansi (Filipino miniature lemons) are also provided separately, allowing you to mix your ice tea to your taste. Best of all, it’s bottomless!


Food: Delicious, hearty food that doesn’t skimp on quality or ingredients, The Chocolate Kiss Cafe offers a variety of flavorful dishes from various cultures.

Ambiance: This is definitely a great place to take a date. The furnishings are elegant with subdued lighting and a great romantic atmosphere. Live music is also available, adding a dash of class and style.

Value: A touch expensive, the menu prices definitely border on the lower end of fine dining. Despite this, it’s still a great value, everything considered. Probably not a place someone on a budget would frequent, but, for that rare special occasion, it’s a fantastic place to dine.

Service: The staff was friendly and accommodating, although the ambiance was disrupted occasionally with the clash of dropped plates. At times, it was hard to get attract the attention of a server, but when they did spot you, they were very helpful and courteous. The people at the cake counter were especially warm and cheery, making for a relaxing stay.

Overall: The Chocolate Kiss Cafe has all the accouterments of a fine dining establishment without the exorbitant prices usually associated with them. The ambiance is warm and relaxing and the staff, helpful and accommodating. It’s a perfect place to have a nice, relaxing night out with your significant other (or prospective significant other). Here’s a place that will impress, without making a permanent impression on your wallet.

© 2008 Pablo Bairan

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