Tsokolateria & The Original Hawaiian BBQ

It was rainy Saturday morning and my wife and I were struggling to decide what to do. We had just finished an important errand and we wanted to reward ourselves with a nice lunch. BF Homes was always one of the options on our list, but the traffic at Sucat and the requirement of a “friendship sticker” to pass through Las Piñas always made it virtually unfeasible. We had already depleted our other options in Alabang, so my wife asked “How about Tagaytay?” I readily agreed because I was itching for a short road trip. 

Chay suggested Tsokolateria, a reasonably-priced Filipino restaurant she found online. The drive was only an hour long, much shorter than I had expected for a Saturday. My guess is that Tagaytay and Sky Ranch aren’t popular destinations when it rains. We arrived around 1pm and it was incredibly foggy. It was so thick, I struggled to see the restaurant signs. Fortunately, Google maps informed me when it was approaching so I found it quickly. 

Tsokolateria is the same restaurant as Hawaiian BBQ and is part of The Bouquet Bed & Breakfast. They have an outdoor area with a view of Taal Lake. But due to the rain and fog, all you could see was white and the outdoor area was cordoned off. 

Once seated we had the pleasure of looking through two menus. My wife ordered the Saltillo Tapa from Tsokolateria – with marinated beef, egg, onion, cucumber tomato and sriracha rice. I got to try some and the rice was amazing. The other ingredients really stood out and it made a typical Filipino dish feel new and exciting. 

I ordered the Luau Taco with BBQ pulled pork because I wasn’t in the mood for Filipino food. I haven’t had pulled pork in a while, so I forgot how good it could tastes. It came with coleslaw and a thin sour cream. Very yummy. 

Our only complaint was that they served our appetizer after our main course. We ordered the chili con carne with french  fries and kamote (sweet potato) because we were really hungry and figured we could give some to our daughter. But since it came late, it wasn’t as appetizing. It was probably my least favorite dish that we ordered. 

We were really full from the food, but my wife suggested we try some of their hot chocolate (tskolate) because Tagaytay is known for their beverages. Their menu had the Tsokolate Ah and the Tsokolate Eh, and we learned from the waiter that the former was sweet while the latter was bitter and sweet. When asked which he recommended we said the bitter and sweet one, Tsokolate Eh. And boy was it good! I don’t typically like Filipino chocolate drinks (I’m also not a big fan of champorado) but there was something different about their version that made it palatable. I ended up drinking three and a half cups of it while my wife drank a cup and a half. It came in a steaming hot metal pitcher that had to be held with a pot holder. It included a honey dipper that you can use to mix the drink. You pour the hot chocolate into these small cups (that have their own honey dippers). You drink it slowly, but don’t let it get cold.

I want to go back to try their other foods. And one of these days stay at the BnB. It’s a winner in my book. 

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