Check a halo-halo, rice bowl @ Kublai Khan

by Maria Eleanor E. Valeros, #CebuBloggingCommunity

CEBU CITY, PHILIPPINES — Do you remove lettuce from your burger? Or has the habit of picking out of your sandwich the cheese wedge?

Would you rather have red mung beans over boiled corn grains on your halo-halo (refreshment using ice shavings, milk, and a cocktail of colorful ingredients), a dessert item that is so much a part of the Filipino food culture. Or are you fond of setting aside julienned carrots of a veggie-based dish?

Kublai Khan Restaurant on the Ayala Center Cebu Terraces has developed a system to make it convenient for clients to enjoy their rice bowls and halo-halo. So diners won’t end up tossing the bean sprouts out of the bowl. Through the “Check a Bowl” and “Check a Halo” services, clients are given a list of ingredients divided into four sections – meat and sauces, condiments, vegetables, and base which is either rice or rice noodles (bihon or canton). Customers choose the items according to preference. That way they can enjoy their meals more, preventing further wastage of food, and paying only for what’s necessary.

This blogger, for example, is not so much into Schezuan but can tolerate native chili for hot and spicy Warrior Bowl. Doesn’t really pay attention to gizzard but adores liver (chicken and pork). And as tofu is a very healthy stuff, it is on top of the “ticking job.”

For the halo-halo, tahore or red mung beans is a favorite along with the natural sweetness of nata de coco, the pretty colors of kaong, the softness of coco strings.

According to Juditha Batino, store manager, they make sure that ice is shaved only the very moment the order comes in to maintain safety in food handling. “There’s no pre-shaving. We want ice to be pure as it should be, so preparation comes only after real-time orders are taken.”

She takes pride in “specially formulated milk that doesn’t need further granulated sugar.” Ingredients such as green gulaman, monggo, sweetened banana and sweet potato, jackfruit and leche flan, among others, are said to be homemade.

Rice bowl costs P140 while halo-halo is pegged at P79 but one can add P20 to get all 12 ingredients or the “7-5” formula (base and toppings).

Expect congee at its Cybergate outlet on midtown Cebu next month featuring chicken congee, seafood congee, and black congee or with squid ink.

Of the four outlets in Cebu, the one in Ayala Terraces is the biggest with 128 seats. Kublai Khan is also at the Parkmall, Robinsons Galleria at Fuente Rotunda, and at SM Foodcourt. One is in Bacolod. Two more outlets will be opened soon here.###


Sledgers embodies French style, comfort

bMaria Eleanor E. Valeros, newmedia specialist

photo grabbed from

CEBU CITY, PHILIPPINES — Looking out for what’s hot when it comes to men’s footwear?

Check the classic line of Sledgers and find loafers, moccasins and boat shoes that match short pants perfectly.

These are complemented by Sledgers innovative footwear technologies, as explained by export manager Florian Rocher in a visit here at its store of the Ayala Center Cebu.

Rocher expounded that Flex and Move gives the most comfort to one’s feet through flexible shoes that allow the wearer more freedom to move. Extra Light feature makes use of imported materials that produce lighter leather shoes. “We use cow leather, calf leather, but not synthetic leather, not pigskin,” Rocher pointed out.

The shoes’ Airport Friendly feature is a technology exclusive to Sledgers. This means shoes are metal free, making it not just light but also hassle free when passing through airport security.

Extra Width allows Sledgers shoes to be a little extra wider, making it more comfortable to wear. Shockwave Dispersion, meanwhile, means that the outsole of the shoes is designed to distribute the impact of every step to different parts of the shoe to lessen wear and tear on your feet. There’s also an air-cushioning system which provides extreme comfort. And here’s the catch: Sledgers insoles can be removed after wearing it the whole day to prevent accumulation of dust, dirt, and presence of bacteria.

Sledgers has gained a solid presence in the international market for its stylish lineup of impeccably-made footwear. It is a French brand which has also established a loyal following in the Asian region having considered the styles familiar to the Asian market.

In the Philippines, Sledgers is exclusively distributed by the Primer Group of Companies. It has 10 stores all over the country, two of which are in Cebu (SM City and Ayala Center). Four more stores will be opened by yearend. Globally, the brand is available in countries like France, Bahrain, Croatia, Hong Kong, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Kuwait, UAE, Indonesia, Dubai, and Malaysia. Soon in Tunisia, Nigeria and Bolivia, as well as in Eastern Europe.

As for the women’s line, it will definitely be developed, Rocher assures. “We know we’ll be strong in ladies shoes because women love shoes more than men do. Aside from expanding accessories, we are also looking at shoe care products. You can find plenty of products in the market today but these are full of chemicals that might hurt your Sledgers. So we will come up with natural products, made of water and wax or in cream form that would help you maintain your shoes regularly,” Rocher added.