MY PERSONAL gauge for good pizza is Quattro formaggio (four cheese) since tasting it at Picobbelo and making it my favorite forever. And so, any new pizza place that offers more than one cheese ranks high in my ordering priorities, except that its sheer size demands that I go there to eat with at least one big guy or two buddies with small appetites. No solo binges there. Sorry.
Thus, on this night with just dive buddy Mecai in tow, my eyes lit up upon seeing in the pizza menu: Five Cheese!
We were at this new hotel along J.P. Cabaguio Avenue that is just a few meters from the corner of J.P. Laurel (Bajada). But what has been catching my attention for so long now is the coffee shop in that hotel. Caf‚ Aurora, it reads. Right beside it is Hermie’s Place.
There are three outlets in one entrance. When you enter the door marked Caf‚ Aurora, on the left side of the door is the coffee shop, on the right side is a restaurant. And deeper into the restaurant is a karaoke bar.
We chose the restaurant instead of the coffee shop because I suddenly became interested in trying out the food after seeing the interior of the coffee shop. Somehow the interior gave me the impression that whoever owns the place is offering some surprise.
That’s when I found the Five Cheese pizza. I would have settled for just that, except that we had to try one other dish just to get a sampling of what the place offers. I chose from the pasta, except that I can’t recall what it was since my mind has focused on the pizza plus the fact that it was the least familiar among the pastas in the list.
The pasta was good, but I was just too focused on the pizza, my brain cells singing, “Five cheese! Five cheese! Five cheese!”
It arrived and I was in cheese heaven. *Swoon!*
Just as I was swinging in glee, a lady came out of the karaoke bar, apparently saw my delighted expression and asked, “You liked it?”
I could just repeatedly nod in agreement (I had pizza in my mouth, you know?).
Now the pasta? I still can’t recall what it was, but it went well with the pizza. I used the pizza edges to wipe out the olive oil based sauce.
The pasta came with two slices of focaccia bread but I was enjoying the pizza too much.
A few minutes later, the waiter came over carrying a huge slice of a moist chocolate cake. “Compliments of the house,” he said.
It must have been that enthusiastic nod I gave the lady, I thought.
The hotel, the waiter said is owned by the Villanos and true enough, from out of the corner of my eye, I saw Doctor Villano coming out of the karaoke bar. A family gathering must have been going on inside because everyone who came in and out of the bar (male, female, young ones) had the general features of the doc. That was when I was convinced that my enthusiastic nod earned me that huge slice of cake. Thanks!
Before I forget, the cake was yummy too, except that, there was just the two of us and are both trying to shed a whole load of pounds. We had it wrapped and took it home. Good food shouldn’t be wasted.
And note to self: that pizza deserves a second visit. Five cheese! And the next visit shouldn’t be with a friend on a diet. Bummer.