Coffee and food pairings at Cebu’s favorite cafés
By Deneb R. Batucan and Patricia May P. Catan
WHILE we enjoy sipping on our coffee alone, we can’t help but find the right food pairing to better appreciate the burst of flavors that coffee brings. Our quest to find the best coffee and food pairing might come to end as local coffee shops introduce us to insanely good food and drink pairings that will change how you savor that single cup of coffee. SunStar Weekend sourced out five cafés for these pairings that will complete your
Fujinoya Café and Bakery
Fujinoya has been a great player in Cebu’s specialty coffee scene since it opened three years ago. Their cakes and pastries have often beautifully complimented its special brews, and until today, they strive to never disappoint.
Tidow Gothong, the owner, suggested two food and drink pairings that are definitely a must-try. The Ethiopian Kochere pour over is paired lovingly with a tart strawberry muffin. The reason why they are a great pair is because the Ethiopian Kochere is very light, floral and a little bit fruity, so to match the fruitiness, we chose a strawberry muffin to balance the tartness of the dessert.
For non-coffee drinkers, he suggested one of their newest drinks, Honey Chocolate. The honey and chocolate makes a delicious blend of flavors where the honey cuts back the bitterness of the dark chocolate, providing a sweeter, carmel-like chocolate taste. Tidow pairs it with a chocolate chip muffin. “Of course, the only thing you can pair with chocolate is more chocolate!” he said.
Fujinoya Café and Bakery is now on its new location inside Gothong Southern Properties at Wilson Street, Lahug, Cebu City. The brewing starts from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
One of the newest players in Cebu’s coffee industry, Bicester Café brings in a new twist for Cebuanos. Bicester is not your typical café as its menu revolves around four things: coffee, pastries, brunch and cocktails. This is explicitly depicted by a neon sign that greets guests as they come through its doors.
Manager Rejzl Awit wants her customers to feel nothing but comfort when they dine at Bicester Café. So it’s not surprising that the food and drink combinations she suggested were classic brunch comfort food paired with any of their specialty grade coffee sourced from Mt. Apo and Mt. Kitanglad.
The chicken and waffle is a sumptuous sweet and savory dish that truly brings a touch of contentment at every bite. Pair it with a warm cup of special brew, and you have yourself a filling meal that not only sustains the hunger but warms the heart.
Another great food and drink pairing is Bicester’s banana pancakes, which are even more elevated when paired with a flavorful cup of coffee.
The best part of all is that all these brunch favorites are available all day! Get your brunch fix from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. on weekdays and until 12 a.m. on weekends at Mahogany Place.
Linear Coffee Roasters
This seemingly hidden brew spot is gaining a sort-of cult following since it opened just months ago. Regular patrons who come to Linear Coffee Roasters are greeted with coffee speak as like-minded coffee aficionados come together and just enjoy the flavors of Linear’s carefully curated line of coffee beans. Their constantly rotating roster of beans is exciting to its guests as they are often educated by the intricacies and varieties of coffee at every visit.
John Michael Hermoso, Linear’s head barista, suggested a light and fruity food and drink combination that’s guaranteed to lift the spirits — and energy — of anyone who wishes to partake.
Paired with a citrusy Ethiopian Adado cold brew is the delightfully creamy mango lychee cheesecake. The creaminess and lightness of the cheesecake cuts the strong citrus notes of the cold brew, making a myriad of alluring flavors.
Linear Coffee Roasters is located at C. Rosal St., Cebu City and is open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Yolk Coffee and Breakfast
More than just an all-day breakfast place offering creative breakfast ideas and third wave specialty coffee, Yolk Coffee and Breakfast also believes in celebrating authenticity and originality. Yolk’s brand welcomes you to be your authentic self giving off that homey atmosphere when dining with them.
Yolk is also committed to creativity and passion as they strive to create unique, innovative dishes with great customer experience. Although centered on the creative idea of incorporating eggs in their dishes, Yolk offers more than just eggs. They have an inventive menu that can both start your day right and end your night satisfied.
Taking pride in their house specialty that has the perfect balanced flavor that Cebu grew to love, Yolk’s signature coffee is a blend of beans from Tanzania and Ethiopia, best enjoyed with milk to bring out its chocolate notes.
Their signature blend is best paired with the Best Eggs Benedict in Cebu. You can have either Eggs Ben Bacon or Pumba (Pulled Pork Humba). Yolk offers single origin coffee prepared using your choice of brewing method as well.
Dine with them at 80 Tres Borces St., Mabolo, Cebu City. They’re open daily from Monday to Friday at 7 a.m. to 7 pm. and at 7 a.m. to 9 p.m on Saturday and Sunday.
Balai Brunch by Cafeplus
This aptly named brunch hub is all kind of cozy with its picturesque rustic interiors reminiscent of an indoor garden that makes its patrons immediately feel at home. Its menu is filled with food that gives a lasting comfort, too, so there’s a fun and relaxed atmosphere in the air as one frolics into this hidden gem in Mandaue City.
Balai is the third outlet of Cafeplus, a coffee shop chain that started inside the Talamban Campus of University of San Carlos. Now with a bigger space and a wider variety of food and drinks, Balai aims to become a community for brunch lovers or even regular foodies where good food and drinks stir up fun conversations.
There are plenty of food and drinks to choose from at Balai, but Ralph Reyes, the founder of Cafeplus, suggested the Ultimate Moist Layers of Chocolate, a rich and dense chocolate cake, paired with a babyccino, which is a small-sized decaf cappuccino. This pairing is a burst of rich flavors that leaves you sighing in contentment.
You’ll find Balai Brunch by Cafeplus at No. 1, Floremer Subdivision, A.S. Fortuna St., Mandaue City. Brunch starts from 10 a.m. to 12 a.m.