I used to remember before becoming a mom, me and my high school friends loves spontaneous trips. Our wandering feet led us to different destinations along with laughter, stories and adventure. And from time to time, unplanned trips are part of our fun-filled and life-long friendship. This unplanned escapade led us to another beautiful place of interest in San Pablo filled with delicious foods, treasure trove of antiques and vast space filled with history and culture in a day trip in Sulyap Café and Gallery.
The Sulyap Café and Gallery are located in San Pablo City in Laguna. It can be easily reached via a private vehicle or PUVs. It is located just beside Cocoland Subdivision and there are directions pointing towards the place. Our plan for visiting the café was to sample their food and celebrate our good friend’s birthdays. The restaurant crew led us to an “old” house which was converted as a restaurant and also features furnitures and design by Spanish influence. I love their plate’s cabinet/ storage in the corner of the restaurant which reminds me of my Lola’s (grandmother) cabinet in the past.
Upon checking their specialty we tried their best sellers:
- Kulawong Talong – this is a local dish in San Pablo Laguna and nearby provinces which consist of grilled eggplant in smoked flavor coconut milk, cooked in fire brick stove which is topped with grilled liempo. I find it very tasty and delicious.
- Boneless Bangus Belly, the milkfish is sautéed in garlic and topped with grilled tomatoes. My son who is a picky eater loved this!
- Ensaladang Pako, a fern salad in vinaigrette dressing. I also loved this local version of salad.
- Pinayti, a local dish of micro shrimp found in the lakes of San Pablo and chopped finely. The dish is also seasonal depending on the supply of the local shrimp.
- Beef Steak, tenderloin meat which is also cooked in brick fire stove and paired with caramelized onions. I also loved that the beef is tender and tasty which is a real Pinoy comfort food version.
Most of the foods we ordered are good for two persons only, but we noticed that we were able to share the dishes around five people. Their servings did not disappoint us and we really love the taste of the local food. For the drinks, we also tried their Sago’t Gulaman which also did not disappoint. And while we were savoring the cozy and homey ambiance of their restaurant, we even ordered desserts such as Banana Con Hielo ( Sweetened Banana with Milk and Ice) and their Torrones Con Sorbetes (which is a Pan friend banana wrapped in thin rice paper with vanilla ice cream on top). After filling our tummies with delicious foods, paid our bill, done picture taking of the restaurant and being the interested individuals in the history of the place, we explore the perimeter of Sulyap Gallery.
We were given a mini tour of the bed and breakfast rooms good for family care of Kuya Kevin. The rates for the accommodation vary depending on the number of guests. Their family room is spacious with four huge beds available for groups. After the quick tour and inquiry at the bed and breakfast, we were led into Sulyap’s Gallery. The gallery is an amazing treasure trove of antiques and old knick-knacks which will give you a trip to the memory lane and glimpse of the past. The owners of the gallery love to collect antiques gather from different parts of the Philippines and their trips abroad. There are wooden cabinets, lamps, old sewing machine, toys, paintings, beds, posters, utensils, various trinkets and kitchen apparatus and even religious icons collected and arranged in the gallery. Kuya Kevin gave us a tour of the different areas of the gallery and a bit of a history lesson. I love seeing old coffee makers, sewing machines, baul (travel chest), old pictures and old furniture which gives you nostalgia of the past.
The gallery also offers a great venue for weddings and other memorable events. Their venue for wedding is really suitable for a Filipiniana themed or Victorian themed wedding and can handle the capacity of 90 -100 people. Sulyap Gallery also offers catering package for those who want to avail the venue for their wedding and other events. After our tour, Kuya Kevin also showed us the recreational pool at the other end of the property which is surrounded with lots lanzones and rambutan trees. Not only we get to roam around the vicinity but we were also treated with rambutan picked from one of the trees! The rambutan was sweet and juicy. After lounging for a few minutes and enjoying our freshly picked rambutan, we call it a day.
Our initial plan for the visit in the café is to sample their foods but we were also treated to historic tours of their gallery and an afternoon around rambutan and lanzones trees. Sulyap Café and Gallery were definitely a great place to visit and get a “glimpse” of the past. It was one of weekends best spent with your High School friends and our spouses. The place is also perfect for a romantic getaway, get together with friends and family. We will definitely come back! Cheers to life-long friendships, birthdays and spontaneous trips!!!!
For those who are interested or wants to visit their café and gallery, you may want to check out their site:
Address: Brgy. Del Remedio, Cocoland Compound, San Pablo Laguna
Numbers: (049) 573-2907
Map directions can be found in their website.