Dining Out

Bag of Beans, Tagaytay City

There are two older entries about Bag of Beans in the archive (here and here) but the old photos are no longer available. Lost from multiple technical problems and panic attacks when the server was compromised during the latter part of 2008.

We were in Tagaytay yesterday, had merienda cena at Bag of Beans and the food was just as wonderful as before. There are people who think that food at Bag of Beans is overrated. But not me. I love the homey dishes and the lack of pretentiousness of the menu. I like it even more that Bag of Beans relies on the quality of food rather than plating and presentation — tricks which I’ve always found to be too contrived and ostentatious. I like Bag of Beans because everything there is comforting — from the meals to the table settings to the overall ambience.

casaveneracion.com Hut

The hut can seat up to around eight persons but Bag of Beans wasn’t too full last night so we moved from a table of four to the hut.

casaveneracion.com Hut

One of the attractions of the place, aside from the food of course, is the myna bird that says such funny things. Like what? Like “pangit” (ugly).

casaveneracion.com Hut

This photo shows the garden as viewed from inside the hut.

casaveneracion.com Hut

Inside the hut, there is a big circular table made from solid wood. There are four individual chairs and a daybed that can seat four people. Four sides of the hut are screened and curtained.

casaveneracion.com Hut

We all ordered coffee. I had the house blend, Speedy had barako, Alex chose the cafe latte and Sam had cookies and cream.

My coffee and Speedy’s were priced at P95 each (P105 for bottomless) but the coffee is served in mugs, not in small cups, so we opted not to go bottomless. Superb coffee, as usual.

casaveneracion.com Hut

To go with the coffee, we had the bread basket which came with butter and jam. The bread was freshly baked, still warm, very soft inside and lightly crusty outside. Delicious!

casaveneracion.com Hut

At first glance, you’d think that that’s not enough butter and jam for all that bread but, really, when the bread is so wonderfully fresh and still smells of the oven, you don’t want to overpower it — use butter and jam sparingly to savor the bread’s real flavors.

casaveneracion.com Hut

Because it was too late for an afternoon snack but still too early for dinner, and because we had a long drive ahead of us back to Manila, we ordered a whole beef and gravy pie. So much better than the chicken and mushrooms pie we had at Bag of Beans a couple of years ago. The beef cubes were melt-in-your-mouth tender and there was just enough gravy to keep the meat moist. The bottom crust was naturally damp with the gravy but the top crust was crumbly and crisp and lightly browned.

The only issue I have with Bag of Beans is the presence of too many mosquitoes. With all the plants and trees, it’s to be expected but there are tricks like citronella oil in burners and even citronella sticks to shoo them away. Anyway, just be warned. It is best to go to Bag of Beans armed with a bottle of citronella oil or Off! lotion. And ask for mosquito coils from the staff if the smoke does not bother you.

The bill was P1,149.00. We were full after the meal. We had no more meals after that, and even after the drive back to Manila. Not even dessert.

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