Tucked in a corner along the bustling Katipunan Road in Quezon City, we found a quaint house with a sign in front that read “Xocolat”. It reminded me of my grandmother’s old house. Rustic, familiar and it smelled of homemade cooking!
There were chairs and tables in the front lawn where people were drinking and dining al fresco. Inside, the place had a very relaxed and bohemian atmosphere. The main hall was packed with students- some were chatting, some discussing homework and others busy typing on their laptops. Pretty impressive turnout for a hot Saturday.
We were escorted to a smaller room on the second floor. The kids were already very hungry since we braved a one and a half hour commute from the South. It was all worth it though. Owner Val Lopez recommended meals from the menu. The sound of “chocolate” in every dish and drink she mentioned made our mouths water . 🙂
“I’ve always liked drinking hot chocolate. Before I opened Xocolat, there was no place in Manila that offered a good cup of hot coco. Everything was store-bought ,” Val said, as we waited for the food to be served. A trip to Barcelona where she tasted different kinds of coco beverages convinced her to open a café devoted totally to chocolate drinks. Together with friends Pinky Yap-Ortiz, Rina Avecilla and Trish Malvar, Val opened the first Xocolat café in Greenhills in 2005. ( The word “chocolate” comes from the Aztecs of Mexico, and is derived from the Nahuati word xocolat. ) “We served all kinds of chocolate drinks initially. Then we added the baked items and meals to the menu, ” she further explained.
Chocolate in Every Bite
Soon it was time to eat. We started our lunch with these appetizers.
Main Coco Course
We liked everything that was served! That’s saying a lot since my boys are picky eaters. Hubby A and son M both loved the Chicken Salpicacao. Chocolate in lechon kawali? I never would have thought of it until I tasted the Pork Belly. REALLY GOOD! The Xocolat Chicken Pasta is also a winner!
Of course, we had to try the cakes! The look on my three year old’s face says it all — super delicious!
THE BQP RECOMMENDS XOCOLAT
This unpretentious place is a great family restaurant and a cool hang-out joint. The prices are very reasonable,too, for the hefty servings. If you have been a frequent customer in the Katipunan branch of Xocolat, you just might be invited to join the “Wednesday Club. ” Val says she plans to serve dishes that have been tested but are not yet on the menu to loyal Xocolat fans. Aside from the Xocolat in Promenade, Greenhills and Katipunan, there’s a third branch at the back of Eastwood City.
I highly recommend that you come over and try the sinful-yet-heavenly drinks, dishes and desserts at Xocolat. We’ll surely come back and visit again!