Chocolate Kiss Cafe: Serving the Good Stuff

Wednesday, February 01, 2012
Last week, my date and I were fortunate to try out another café we have never been to. Located in the 2nd floor of UP Bahay ng Alumni, this simple yet cozy-looking comfort food destination is well-hidden in the UP Diliman compound. With no sign boards or tarpaulins to guide a wandering foodie, only UP students and faculty, as well as long-time patrons would have known that Chocolate Kiss Cafe is a gem tucked in the area.

Chocolate Kiss Cafe is owned by a family who are proud alumni of the University of the Philippines. It all started with two siblings who have a strong passion for baking cakes and cookies. But come 1997, what was only a hobby became a business venture as the family finally opened the resto-café to cater to teachers and students of UP Diliman. As of today though, there are already 2 branches in the compound -- one in the 2nd floor and another one in the ground floor (morning 'til afternoon only). They also have a 3rd branch in Roces Avenue.


Although Chocolate Kiss Cafe is a hidden gem, its interior is as good as those of other cafés in town. Its space spells simplicity with just white walls and deep red-colored tiles. However, there are reds and blacks which accented the whole place, as well as pastel-colored flowers and framed paintings which added a soft and dainty touch to the café. And good news to suave suitors, you can bring your date here and enjoy a casual yet quite intimate dinner since Chocolate Kiss Cafe also provides soothing live music every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

After enjoying the simple, casual yet still very cozy ambiance at Chocolate Kiss Cafe, it was finally time to try out what their kitchen can offer. Along with bloggers and fellow OpenRicers, we were first offered with meal starters such as the Chicken Quesadilla (P225).


This quesadilla is a good starter, but not a memorable one. Served with sour cream and salsa on the side, the Chicken Quesadilla contains the usual fillings one would expect from this Mexican favorite -- chicken, cheese, bell peppers and onions, sandwiched between two flour tortillas and pan-fried to a slight crisp.


Next we were served with the Spinach Cream Dip (P180) -- a warm cream cheese dip enveloping a mixture of spinach, mushrooms and roasted peppers, served with slices of butter-toasted French bread on the side. Like the first dish, this plate was good but not memorable.


We were also served their Fish Croquettes (P185) -- deep-fried flaked fish and mashed potatoes rolled in bread crumbs and served with horseradish dip, Piglets (P155) -- bite-sized German franks wrapped in bacon, and Rumaki (P162) -- chicken liver and water chestnuts wrapped in bacon. These 3 were tasty and definitely good meal starters that everyone in the table nodded approval.


We also got to sample 2 sandwiches with fries from Chocolate Kiss Cafe, their Pulled-Pork Sandwich (P205) -- oven-roasted pork pulled from the bone, drizzled with Mesquite barbecue sauce and sandwiched in home-baked bun, and Cheeseburger (P215) -- one-third pound pure beef patty with lettuce, tomato, cucumber, onion, dill pickles and cheese sandwiched also in a home-baked bun. Both sandwiches were juicy and tasty. They're good but nothing exemplary.


By now, you'd probably realized that Chocolate Kiss Cafe offers international dishes. So after a trip to Mexico, Britain, Germany and America, we got to sample Italy this time through the Linguine Margherita with Shrimp (P235) and Hungarian Sausage & Penne (P210) which were both savory and al dente-cooked pasta dishes.


Chocolate Kiss Cafe also caters to rice meal lovers by offering quality Spanish-Filipino favorites like the Beef Caldereta (P250) -- beef chunks, potatoes, chorizo, bell peppers and olives swimming in tomato-liver sauce, and Callos Madrileña (P255) -- ox tripe and tendons simmered with chorizo Bilbao, chickpeas, bell peppers and olive oil, both served with pandan rice.



We also got to try the savory Chicken Kiev with Garlic Mashed Potato (P240) -- roulade of tender chicken breast filled with cream cheese, butter and herbs, Fish Kiev with Rice (P250) -- the fish version of the chicken kiev, served with white wine scallion sauce, Hickory Smoked Spareribs (P210) -- grilled pork spareribs with Hickory sauce and buttered corn kernels, and Fish Fillet with Pesto Salsa (P235) -- grilled fillet of fish topped with corn-pesto salsa on paprika rice.


If you think we're already done, then think again. After the wide array of international food items, we were served with yet another Asian favorite -- Kalbi Chim (P240). This Korean dish is also known as Galbijjim, and is composed of beef short ribs and shiitake mushrooms stewed Korean style and served with kimchi and rice. The beef was tender and had a spicy, savory taste. I cannot comment on the kimchi though as I am personally not a fan.


Another Asian dish we had is the Indonesian staples Sate Ayam & Nasi Goreng (P245) which directly translates to chicken satay (barbecue with peanut sauce) and fried rice. Chocolate Kiss Cafe's version though is even topped with fried egg and crackling krupuk, with a siding of veggies. Being a chicken stay lover, I actually liked this dish. The chicken meat was tender, not overcooked and tasted nicely with the peanut sauce. The fried rice was also flavorful and close to what I had in Singapore.

After sampling all these dishes, it was time to have a taste of what Chocolate Kiss Cafe is very much proud of -- their desserts. We got to try 11 meal-enders and out of this number, my top favorites that night were the Classic Chocolate Cake (P103), Carrot Cake (P80) and Sour Cream Cheesecake (P115).


The Classic Chocolate Cake was the most memorable food I've eaten that evening. The dark chocolate base cake was moist and tasted very rich. It is also filled and frosted with dark chocolate ganache. The Carrot Cake on the other hand, was actually a no-brainer. I love carrot cakes so it's just natural that a good one will top my list. The Sour Cream Cheesecake was a surprise though. I don't really dig cheesecakes in general, but I really liked this one. Maybe the harmonious blend of sour and sweet, as well as the home-made sour cream topping won me over.


My next favorites were the Sans Rival (P80), Texas Square Sundae (P115) and another wild card, the Blueberry Cheesecake (P115). Sans Rival ranks high in my must-order list since I like Silvanas, so it was not a surprise that I would like even an ordinary version. The Texas Square Sundae on the other hand, is Chocolate Kiss Cafe's take on a brownie ala mode. The brownie is quite good, rich and quite gooey. However, it's not as good as the one I've tried at Burgoo's. The Blueberry Cheesecake was another surprising item I quite liked for reason I can't really tell. I just thought it's good.


Kahlua Butter Cake (P105), Chocolate Chip Cheesecake (P120), Quezo Chiffon Cake (P85) and Date Walnut Cake (P80) -- these cakes are the ones I either find just okay or have forgotten the taste of, 'cause with these much cakes to sample, who wouldn't have confused taste buds?


We also got to sample Chocolate Kiss Cafe's pride, its Devil's Food Cake (P80) -- a deep rich chocolate cake with chocolate fudge filling and marshmallow frosting. I haven't had a lot of Devil's Food Cake in my life, but I was quite disappointed with this one. The marshmallow frosting is quite good but a little too sweet for my taste. The base cake on the other hand, was slightly crumbly.

Normally, I do not find the need to write about iced tea. However, Chocolate Kiss Cafe's Bottomless Iced Tea (P70) is quite interesting. Instead of using powdered iced tea like other food establishments', they use freshly brewed tea and serves a cold glass with a carafe of sugar syrup -- healthier and nicer in presentation.

THE VERDICT

This visit to Chocolate Kiss Cafe is a memorable one since I have not sampled, blogged and reviewed this much food in a single post. But seriously speaking, almost everything we've tried in this resto-café is good. Each dish served got a nod for approval. Variety is also something Chocolate Kiss Cafe can definitely boast of. With this single trip, we have sampled dishes of European, Asian and American influence. They also have an array of cakes and pastries for dessert. I liked most of their food items, and I can definitely vouch for their tagline. Yes, Chocolate Kiss Cafe does serve good stuff.

Taste - 4/5
Ambiance - 4/5
Service - 4/5
Price - 4/5
Overall Value - 4/5


The Chocolate Kiss Cafe, UP Diliman
2/F Ang Bahay ng Alumni, R. Magsaysay St.,
UP Diliman, Quezon City
Metro Manila Philippines
(02) 433-3782
Official Website
Facebook Page

68 comments:

  1. sis! dami naman ng kinain nyo. inggit much! lagi din ako sa chocolate kiss pag madami allowance. tipid mode kasi ako nung nag-aaral pa ko sa UP. hehehe

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  2. i love their devils food cake & kahlua butter cake. I find them really delicious! if you wanna try another choco cake w/ marshmallow icing, go buy Chocolate Campfire from Purple Oven.. heavenly! :D

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  3. @Kath: Medyo pricey nga ang food ng Chocolate Kiss for a student's budget. Pang special occasion or dates probably? :D

    @michymichymoo: Hahaha.. Cake heaven :D

    @[pinkc00kies]: Thanks sa recommendation sis ah! I've heard many good things about Purple Oven, but I haven't visited them yet. Will do super soon 'cause I really love cakes :D

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  4. OMG. You ordered all that food? If I had eaten that much in a day, I'd be 5 lbs. heavier the day after. Haha.

    I used to hang out in Choco Kiss but I've only got to taste 2 dishes from and 4 cakes from what you've ordered. It's a good thing to have date who loves sweets! My boyfriend doesn't like them so I don't get to sample different desserts.

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  5. grabe ang sasarap ng itsura ng inorder nyo. i stayed in manila for how many years pero once lang ako naka kain dito :( i wish i could drop by chocolate kiss again.

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  6. Devil's Food Cake and Spare Ribs are the winner here :D !!! This place is actually one of the first blog posts in En Route, back then when we thought a phone cam is all you needed to show pics.

    We were so wrong back then :P

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  7. I love cake! The place looks super dooper cozy. Wish I could visit :)) Great post! Thanks for sharing..

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  8. looks so yummy! i love the cakes!

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  9. Why did I read your blog again at this time of the day. hungry girl here! I wish they open a branch in the south soon!

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  10. Wow! Great find. I know where to take her next! By the way, I love the purple theme of this site. Refreshing sa mata.

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  11. .. kaka work out ko lang tapos this blog! whoaaaa.. sasarap food and chocolate cake!!!

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  12. Wow! Everything looks delicious! Mas malapit ako sa Roces branch, and I'll try that out soon. :)

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  13. Very tempting. Im just wondering if they have a place here in Cebu. I think they caters good food :D

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  14. Kahit pricey dyan, puno palagi. I remember eating lunch there when I have long breaks. Favorite namin ni hubby ang Bulalo nila. Haha!

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  15. Favorite ko ang Chocolate Kiss. That was where I first tried a creamy tomato soup and until now, it's still stuck in my mind because it was sooooo good! It's been ages since I've been there but I guess it's time to go back. So many yummy looking dishes in this post that I gotta try! :)

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  16. wow, the foods especially the desserts looks yummy, since high ang rating mo, we will also try to visit there. thanks!

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  17. I've heard about Chocolate Kiss before. I saw it on TV years ago. So many foods! I think I'll enjoy the desserts.:D

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  18. the food you present of chocolate kiss cafe looks yummy.. your reviews almost perfect and very affordable. the only thing the company forgot is the signage. A Business Without Sign Is A Sign Of No Business at all....thanks for sharing it looks refreshing food cafe..

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  19. the photographs gave the place and the food life... they look so good you could imagine how they taste and smell... good job

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  20. Looks like their price are really affordable, and the foods seem to have the taste of goodness in it. Thanks for sharing this will go there some time soon. :)

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  21. i love the cakes! i'll make sure to drop by after my jogging session.

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  22. hi, Sumi! I love how you write your experience in this post. The UP students are very lucky because a great resto is only in their vicinity. Panalo lahat eh!But i would love to try their desserts. they're mouth-watering. I only seeing the photos, ano pa kaya sa totoo. lol! yuuummm! =)

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  23. Drooling and getting hungry here. The food looks great, worth the trip up north base on your verdict!:)

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  24. Andaming food...

    Sa inyo yan lahat?

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  25. I used to drop by here often before my blogging days.. my family owned the coffee shop right across it, called "Oz Cafe".. (it's not operational anymore though)

    Whenever i'd get sawa of our food, i'd stroll on over there hehe

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  26. Woah! Talk about food overload! But everything looks good! Would like to try some of the cakes. :)

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  27. Wow, it's been a while since I last went to chockiss (that's what me and my friends call it).

    Drooling

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  28. Ah, Chocolate Kiss, of course. Brings back memories. I miss college.

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  29. Parang you went around the world with the food they offer! My officemates and I are planning on going on a food trip sa UP. Thanks for this post! :D

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  30. I have so many places-to-visit now coz of your blog. Love it! :) ...even though you don't like the muppets! Haha. Will join your giveaway soon!

    http://wonderwomanrises.blogspot.com

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  31. nice to know another cool resto... it looks so great!

    It’s a GIRL Thing

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  32. Wow! So many food in one go. :D Great job with the food review. I have heard of Chocolate Kiss Cafe before from my friends but I haven't been there since it's so far from my place. But if ever I will be in the area, I think I'd like to give the place a try based on your reviw! :)

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  33. ang dami ah! kakagutom tuloy :)

    I had to skip down to the dessert area and boy! I was not disappointed.. looks really yummy and appetizing! I love anything cheesecake!

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  34. Good lord I should have read this when I was full but I just woke up, still in bed and... ok, this will be good as my breakfast in bed :) How convenient it must be to run a business without worrying about ads. The place looks wonderful in my books as I love to eat. Now if I can have that sate ayam and nasi goreng....

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  35. aaaww nakakamiss! gusto ko bumalik ng ChoKiss! ♥

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  36. aww.. andami nun ah! I wish we live nearby. Talagang sasadyain ko pag nagawi kami sa area or I'll try their branch sa Roces Ave. :D

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  37. waaaaaahhhhh!!! honestly, my eyes almost popped out after seeing the photos. :(

    Ibalik nio ako sa pinasssss!!!! :(

    I showed my wife your website and now she wanted to check out the places you've been and try it herself :)

    thanks for sharing :P

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  38. Texas Square Sundae and the Blueberry Cheesecake really looks delicious to me! Nom nom. Yung Texas square sundae parang kapamilya lang nung Naya's sin (lustful chocolate ice cream inside with chocolate pinipig coating and chocolate syrup toppings) na kinain ko lately. Haaay, nagutom na naman po ako w_w

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  39. aren't the UP people lucky? good food, good place! your posts are all very inviting!

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  40. Choco Kiss is one of my favorite restaurants. Their specialty is actually their pasta dishes. Love the seafood pomodori. And of course I never fail to order the cake sampler and the bottomless iced tea!

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  41. oh, that's in diliman? wow, level na ang mga iska/isko ng bayan. pricey foodies, pero all dishes looked delish:)
    the daughter applied cross reg. there this summer, sana makita niya yang cafe na yan. looks cozy.

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  42. Sarap namn po ng food...!! minsan ma visit nga namin yan...!! Thanks for the info..!!

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  43. Cozy place, food looks wonderful! The cake slices look divine...wow! Théy've been on my list since, hopefully when I get home I'd be able to drop by. :) Enjoy the rest of the week :)

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  44. Omy! FOOOOOOD! I love food! <3 <3 <3 haha But pansin ko nga it's medyo pricey but for sure it's worth it nmn! The dessertsss! Looks very delicious! nom nom! It makes my hungry! :D

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  45. those foods are definitely looks so yummy!! your shots were so good! i've been seeing a lot of good places to eat in philippines mate when i go back der i should go there one by one haha xx god bless!

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  46. The best talaga ang Chocolate Kiss. Pricey nga lang kaya nung student ako, di ako nakaka-dine in dyan. Now that I'm working, everytime na nauwi sa Pinas for vacation, a visit there is a must. Winner yung Devil's Food cake! =)

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  47. looks incredibly yummy and the place looks clean and quiet. Why do I open all these food blogs exactly when I'm hungry? Now I'm more than hungry. I can eat a whale. hehe.

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  48. hidden ba talaga yan. bonggang bongga ung benta ah... nagutom tulog ako.

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  49. This place is waaay too far from me. But I'd love to go here if I had the chance! I think I'd probably want to try as much desserts of theirs :P

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  50. I love their Devil's Food Cake! Must drop by Choc Kiss soon.

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  51. Natuwa ako sa triangle shaped table =) Galing ng concept hehe. Everything looks delish and price is reasonable kaso lang ang layo sa amin

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  52. UP represent! I have to admit I ate more times here after college than I did when I was still on the campus. It can get steep for a student's budget but some items are pretty dran good. I love the chocolate cake and the spare ribs! :)

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  53. I like this place though I really have to explore more of their food.

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  54. I've been a fan of Chokiss since college. (= Love this place.

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  55. when i'm craving for cakes.. i'd go here and buy myself the whole devil's food cake! the frosting is just soooo addicting! :)

    http://travelnfoodwithgayle.blogspot.com/2011/05/chocolate-kiss-cafe.html

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  56. Chicken Kiev with Garlic Mashed Potato looks like Cordon Bleu, yummy!

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  57. the daughter applied cross reg. there this summer, sana makita niya yang cafe na yan. looks cozy.

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  58. As of today though, there are already 2 branches in the compound -- one in the 2nd floor and another one in the ground floor (morning 'til afternoon only).

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  59. The chicken meat was tender, not overcooked and tasted nicely with the peanut sauce. The fried rice was also flavorful and close to what I had in Singapore.

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  60. I love the chocolate cake and the spare ribs! :)

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  61. Everything looks delish and price is reasonable kaso lang ang layo sa amin

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  62. Good to be back in here, likely to get back for more...
    Chris Harris
    Workers comp bill

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  63. Chicken Kiev with Garlic Mashed Potato and the dessert looks really yummy,and the place looks cozy...

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