We BURP, therefore we are.
December 16, 2012 – a significant date that got us excited for weeks. Finally, our first project, which started from our food blog, Certified Foodies, and our desire to meet new friends who are as fun-loving and curious as we are about food, is about to take off. The Burp Society’s first ever meet-up was happening at last! 🙂
It took about two weeks to plan and finalize the guest list. Our host, Cafe 1771 in El Pueblo, invited 12 members of The Burp Society, including me and Ken, for a lavish dinner. Many have signed up and showed their interest to join, but we can only accommodate a few. The night before the meet-up, I was so glad that everyone in the final guest list confirmed their attendance.
Photo by Frances
I came a few minutes before 6pm (we were booked ‘til 9pm), and the first member of TBS was already there – Potchi. He’s Ken’s schoolmate from Global Culinary and Hospitality Academy, so I’m already familiar with him. We went in and I was amazed by how posh and pretty the interiors of Cafe 1771 are. I hurriedly grabbed my camera to take photos of almost every corner of the restaurant.
Then, a lovely lady came in the reserved area for The Burp Society at Cafe 1771’s The Lounge. Her name’s Sevie. You can tell awkwardness filled the air at first and she even seated at the far end of the table, leaving a wide space between her and Potchi. We kidded her and invited her to move closer to us. “Galit galit ba tayo?!“, we said and she laughed. After a few minutes, I was glad that Potchi and Sevie started comfortably talking as I proceeded with my photo-taking.
I’ll try to remember what happened next as they all seem like a blur. Frances and Norman arrived. A few shy exchanges of small talk here and there. They were already seated when the siblings Karl and Karen came in. I know them for quite sometime now, but it was the first time I met them. As soon as they settled in, we were served Cafe 1771’s popcorn while waiting for everyone. We also ordered drinks – their fresh brewed House Iced Tea.
Kirk of Cafe 1771 came in to welcome us, but he had to leave early before our dinner ’cause it was a Sunday, meant to be a family day. Everyone in Cafe 1771 was left to cater to us, and they were splendid! 🙂
A couple of minutes later, Mishi entered the room. I introduced every one of them, making sure I remember their names. I teased them into memorizing all our names ‘cause we’ll have a ‘test’ later on. I never planned on taking that seriously, promise. 😀
Finally, Kim, my online officemate who I haven’t met in person yet, arrived. Followed shortly by Dave and Crystal, who I found out before the meet-up were behind the restaurant Mama Lou’s Italian Kitchen in Las Pinas (added them to our to-visit places from the South!).
There was only one person missing – Ken. He was at a rehearsal for their Christmas party presentation at work, so all our plans on how to start up the ‘program’ went down the drain and I had to improvise. 😀
As you can see from the photos above, Café 1771 boasts of dazzling interiors, with splashes of warm, earthy colors. The Lounge looked like a library that was turned into a dining room. Perfect to cozy up with a good book while drinking tea or coffee.
The Whimsy, on the other hand, is more playful. The gorgeous combinations of colors and the furnishings were bright and picturesque. They serve pastries here and you can even buy them as pasalubong.
You can call them to reserve for your private events: 631-7340.
Going back to the meet-up, a couple of minutes after everyone arrived (except for Ken), food started coming out and almost every one of us took the time to take photos of everything – from the appetizers to the decadent desserts.
No, we didn’t wait for the desserts to be served before we ate. 😀 We started digging in while the appetizers and entrees were still nice and warm. I can hear them mouthing words of deliciousness and exchanged a few feedback on what we were eating.
I’ll just give you a quick rundown of what we had for dinner. You can read the full feature on Café 1771 on our food blog.
For appetizers, we were served Fried Squash Flowers stuffed with anchovy and kesong puti.
Next are these yummy Oyster Rockefeller. Thankfully, Kim was the only one who couldn’t have any…I mean sadly. 😛
The Organic Chicken in Potato Crust was quite tasty.
The Salbacho Pizza was on top of our favorites that night. It’s topped with basil, salami, bacon, and chorizo.
Orange Pork Spareribs:
And the WineBar Burger with fries and a side of bone marrow proved to be a sinful combination.
We had group photos taken as soon as all the food arrived:
While eating, we then proceeded with introductions, starting from the latest arrivals. There was no format. They just shared what they wanted to tell everyone – what they do, where they’re from, their blogs, why they joined TBS and what they think of the concept. Everyone seemed genuinely interested in what each other had to say – yeah, even when we were eating and some were taking photos (see below 😀 ).
After the initial introductions, I can already sense they were getting comfortable as conversations started without me initiating it. 😉 Their common topic was food, which is exactly why I think the concept of The Burp Society works! Food is meant to be shared and nothing beats enjoying conversations over good food… and drinks. 😉
Ken came a few minutes before desserts were to be served. But, we saved some food for him so he can try almost everything that was served to us.
Another set of group photos were taken, and we also discussed our future plans for TBS.
As I’ve mentioned in our About Us page, we started TBS as a response to our food blog readers asking us if they can join in our next food trips. Ken and I also wanted to be around new people when dining out ’cause, well, the more, the merrier, right?
We also thought that this is one way for us to help the food and beverage industry here in the Philippines: by starting a food lovers meet-up group composed of mostly non-bloggers who are up for trying something new. We’re targeting family-style lunches or dinners, and even out-of-town trips!
Finally, as we shared with the group during the meet-up, there are many of us who want to be adventurous with our food trips, but our common companions are usually not comfortable with spending money at unfamiliar restaurants or food places, eating dishes that are probably new to them. For that, they can depend on TBS. 🙂
We shared a few more information, but they’re exclusively for TBS members. So, if you want to know more about our future plans, make sure you join us!
When desserts were served, you can hear the chatter was louder. Sugar rush probably? Chocolate is also known to give us a certain high. 😀
It’s hard to pick a favorite amongst all the desserts we had that night. They were all perfect to cap the night.
Chocolate Caramel Mousse Cake:
Chocolate Opera Cake:
Rose Noire and Amandelle – these were the top favorites for the majority.
And the Macarons:
After we finished off the glorious desserts, I asked if they still remember everyone’s names. I wanted to make sure they all know, at least, each other’s names before the night ends. Thankfully, they all did. Well, I think most of them forgot the names shortly after we left the restaurant, but it was all for fun. 😀
We took a mandatory ‘class’ photo outside of Cafe 1771. We were surprised how the photos turned out ’cause the outside of the resto looked a little eery, which is why I described it to resemble a Colonial house.
For the wacky pose, someone came up with the idea that we should all pretend to be BURPING. I thought everyone joined in. Here’s how that photo turned out. A little blurry, but you’d still see who played along: 😀
Ang daya lang nung iba!! I was even rubbing my tummy hahahaha
Ken and I had a lot of fun. I hope the first members of The Burp Society genuinely enjoyed themselves too.
Thank you again, Cafe 1771, for the lovely reception and the delightful dinner. We all want to come back soon. 🙂
Here are the first / pioneer members of The Burp Society, which you can also find in the Members section:
Sevie, Potchi and Ken
Frances and Norman
KKK: Kim, Karen and Karl
Mishi, Dave and Crystal
You can read more about Cafe 1771 on Certified Foodies. And here are the reviews from the TBS members who were there:
Want to join our next meet-up? Our second food trip is already in the works and is happening in early 2013. Sign up here! Stay tuned for clues about our upcoming meet-up. 🙂