Saturday, May 5, 2012

Veg Out in Baguio

If only Baguio were a few hours closer to Manila, I would probably head up there every month. I love going there to experience cooler weather, to go market shopping, and to re-visit my favorite veggie haunts in the city, which I'm sharing with you today.
An early mornight bus trip will save you time but will make you sleepy on your first day--especially if you're riding a party bus like this one! Just kidding, those are just the NLEX tollway lights you can see outside the window.
The sun rises just in time to see Baguio's mountaintop, which is densely peppered (pimpled?) with houses.
First stop is the BenCab Museum. Nature + Art + Art + Art + Food. You will be surprised to find this modern structure down Asin road (just outside Baguio City), and will feel so proud to be Filipino when you see all the beautiful artworks.
Graffiti mural by the museum's entrance.My favorites in the meseum: Black & white Sabel mural; this watercolored artwork of Baguio's urban-scape; White mixed media; and finely woven jars.Anitos everywhere.
Munimuni journal time in the garden for me and siesta for fat kitty.
On the ground floor is a little restaurant, Cafe Sabel. I had tomato basil spaghetti and some carrot and ginger soup.
Pretty yellow chairs.

Look up.Look down.

Framed exhibit posters. Cool.Spotted BenCab walking back to his house. On the left is an artwork that I want.

Next stop is the Baguio Market! You'll want to save buying fresh produce on your last day, right before you head down to Manila. Don't hesitate to visit the market before you leave for last minute shopping because the shops along the highway (right before leaving Baguio) will rip you off!Click to read more Baguio Market finds.
Strawberry taho. Yum.

PNKY Bed & Breakfast has a little cafe up front. When you get there, ask for a guided tour of the rooms, and check out the furniture, most of which are for sale.The cafe features the owner's travel photos and memorabilia. Veg options are available. Their potato croquettes are really yummy!
Sometimes, we stay at Baguio Country Club. On the evenings when it's really chilly in the veranda, I go for some greens wrapped with nori, and squash soup made creamy using coconut milk.
When you're in a rush, you can drop by Azotea building (it's the green building along Session Road) and on the 2nd floor, you'll find a tiny vegetarian kiosk. They serve homestyle Filipino dishes that are vegetarian-friendly. Make sure to ask for the vegan options if you're not into dairy and eggs."Chicken" pastel, mushrooms, clear soup, and a cup of mountain rice.

But when you do have the luxury of time, walk up to the top floor of the building and have a nice meal at Oh My Gulay. The restaurant, owned by famous artist Kidlat Tahimik, is decked with artworks and installations. My favorite dishes here are the Anak ng Putanesca and their salads.Micro-fishnetssss.
Cafe By The Ruins is another veg-friendly & organic restaurant. I love their camote bread (especially when it's freshly baked) and strawberry sorbet.
I have no photos, but if you're with meat eaters, you can head to O Mai Khan mongolian restaurant, and keep everybody happy. There are lots of fresh vegetables and a separate cooking area for purely vegetarian bowls.

There is also Bliss Cafe, which you may have to go out of the way for, but the quiet atmosphere will be a relaxing change from the busy Baguio streets. Tucked inside Hotel Elizabeth, Bliss offers lacto-vegetarian options, and is a great place to meet and chat with fellow vegheads.Bliss coconut balls for dessert, but not before gorging on this huge breakfast plate of tofu scramble and spiced vegan sausage.
Baguio Vegetarian Directory:

Cafe Sabel at BenCab Museum
Km. 6 Asin Road, Tadiangan Tuba, Philippines

Baguio Market
Session Road, Baguio City

PNKY Travel Cafe
9 Cabinet Hill, Purok 3 Leonard Wood Road  Baguio City

Azotea Greens Vegetarian Deli
Oh My Gulay
La Azotea BuildingSession RoadBaguio City

Cafe By The Ruins
25 Shuntug Road  Baguio City

O My Khan
12 Otek Street, Rizal Park, Baguio

Bliss Cafe
1 J. Felipe Street corner Gibraltar Road, Baguio City