Today on dates

14 02 2013

SPOTTED AT Royce’ at The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands.  And then at Montblanc.

Royce' - Valentines_021413_00

Blushing pink with joy at Royce’



Montblanc - Valentines_021413_00

There’s a ribbon in the sky – or at the window display at Montblanc – for our love.

Copyright © 2013 by eNTeNG  c”,)™©’s  MunchTime™©.  All rights reserved

Royce’ and expectations

21 11 2009

Opening a box of Royce' Pure Chocolate Mild Bitter and Extra Bitter...

I CAN put on the persona of a brooding melancholy young man like it’s nobody’s business.  I mean, next to Edward Norton.

And when I brood, I guess I tend to end up grumpy, cranky even.  I don’t intend to and I guess I’m oblivious to it because it took the Harryboy to point it out and snap me out of it: “Bakit parang ang sungit mo yata lately?”  (Why does it seem that you’re cranky lately?)

I realize that brooding’s a bitch.  And it travels through underwater fiber optics.  Sorry, Harryboy.

Anyway, for an instant shot of happiness – cheerfulness that bubbles to the surface, optional – I finally decided to open the box of Royce’ Pure Chocolate Mild Bitter & Extra Bitter that has been sitting in the fridge for a while now.  Open…  and finish it in one sitting!  My gosh, that was a lot of brooding that needed to be turned around!

A disc of Royce' Pure Chocolate 80% Mild Bitter


Now with a disc of the 90% Extra Bitter


These velvety smooth discs... were all soon gone.

The box contains discs of velvety smooth chocolate that are 80% and 90% pure cocoa.  Expectedly, the 80% chocolate was really mildy bitter, with just a touch of sweetness.  But it was the 90% chocolate that was unexpectedly pleasing.  Yes, it was bitter.  But as I chewed on, I got a shot of an almost cognac-like flavor that played in my mouth, coating my tongue.  It was such a tease.

With a box of chocolates, I realized that our expectations may sometimes sell us short.  I expected to enjoy the mildly bitter, but not the extra bitter one.  What could’ve been a fleeting moment of eating turned out to be a lesson that the expected sometimes pales in comparison to the unexpected.

The unexpected is what changes our lives.  Very much like the first text message I got yesterday morning.


Copyright © 2009 by eNTeNG  c”,)™©’s  MuchTime™©.  All rights reserved.

Where it all started for me

5 11 2009
Royce' Takashimaya

Royce' counter at Takashimaya in Singapore

MY LOVE affair with Royce’ started with pasalubong – the Nama Chocolate Champagne Pierre Mignon – a really good friend bought at one of the stores in Singapore.  Technically speaking, the love affair actually started with the first bite.

I totally did away with the cute miniature plastic fork that comes with each box, as the heavy dusting of cocoa powder on each little chocolate block was just so tempting.  It promised a mess on my fingers that could only mean finger-lickin’ goodness.

The first bite of these chocolates allowed me the taste of the most delicate confection there has ever been.  It was light and was delicate like finespun sugar threads used to decorate a croquembuche.  It almost instantly melted in my mouth, leaving only a faint – but lingering –  coating of what can only be perfect melding of cream and chocolate.

I can finish a box of these easily and have actually on occasion failed to survive bouts with momentary selfishness.  The worst that it has ever made me do is become demanding of friends who travel to either Singapore, Hong Kong, or Japan.  I “demand” that they bring back Royce’.

So when the Tycoon had to fulfill yet another schedule on his fully booked social calendar – this time in Singapore – I didn’t think twice about shamelessly asking not only to have some purchased but also to have photographs of the Royce’ stores taken.

The Tycoon didn’t disappoint.  It has actually been a couple of days already since I got my hands on the chocolates.  But waking up this morning to yet more Royce’ confections – this time from my brother – by the coffee table by my bed, I got reminded of making this post.

Royce' Ion 2

Royce' store at Ion on Orchard


Royce' Ion 1

This Royce' store at Ion on Orchard just has a futuristic appeal to me. I won't be surprised if Neo would ring up my purchases at the cash register!


Royce' Ion 3

This is a close-up of the display panel that you see on the right side of the picture above.


Royce' - From Singapore 01

Royce' Pure Chocolate – Venezuela Bitter & Ghana Sweet.


Royce' - From Singapore 02

Royce' Pure Chocolate – Mild Bitter (80%) & Extra Bitter (90%).


Royce' - From Singapore 05

Gotta love two boxes of Royce' Pure Chocolate!


Royce' - Nutty Bar Chocolate

I woke up to one of these on the coffee table.


Here are my previous Royce’ chocolate posts – or Royce’-related posts – that you may also like:

[The joys of Royce’]   [What goes on inside a bag of Royce’?!]   [eNTeNG’s 25]   [Royce’ for a fave Superhero]   [And with Royce’ I said farewell]   [Four-letter word]


Copyright © 2009 by eNTeNG  c”,)™©’s  MuchTime™©.  All rights reserved.


Four-letter word

13 07 2009

I SHOP only when it is screaming SALE in big bold letters.

But with the economy as it is right now – with every aspect of our life taking some serious beating – it behooves us to reflect on this very serious matter, so serious it’s way up there with the debate on poll automation.

ShoppingShopping in these times.

For over a couple of years now, I’ve been my own incarnation of a penny-pinching miserly old man.  Eversince Friendship introduced me to the unbridled joy of retail therapy in the States (when I was there), I’ve never come near any retail item in the malls here at home.  Okay, that’s a bit too much to say.  I have actually had – though very few and far between – but most definitely, I’ve steered clear of the cashiers.  The first one on my all-time shopping list that I had crossed out has been clothes.  Sometimes, some are just so ridiculously priced here.  But I won’t go into a debate with anybody.  Because even I myself do recognize that the barcoded numbers I see on the tags here take into consideration a lot of overhead cost.

Superman has actually been a very good influence on me on these things.  There was one time that I backed out of ringing up my purchase at Armani Exchange at the Shangri-La Plaza Mall, just the very split second after the sales associate had assisted the person before me, and just the very moment before she could even mouth, “this way, Sir.”  I fixed the red, white, and blue knit shirt in my hand a “longing” stare and went my way.

But yesterday, I made an exception.  I went to Makati to get some gifts for one of my best friends – Spider-man.  For special occasions and for special people, I think it’s perfectly okay to break the rules.  Hahaha!  And take note, MOST of the stores were actually on SALE!

I haven’t been in the Makati area for a while so I took my leisurely walk.  I actually spanned the expanse of Serendra, all the way to Glorietta, then to Greenbelt.  I decided on a Zara Basic Polo Shirt in light blue.  It was a toss up between the red and the blue.  I was actually leaning towards red (since it is a birthday present), until the sales associate said, “The blue is better.”  Though just this morning, James said that whenever he and his wife shop, and he couldn’t decide, he would be told to “get both.”  I’m scratching my head right now and thinking why on earth I didn’t think the same way!  Hahaha!

Shopping - Zara Polo Shirt 00

Zara Basic Polo Shirt in red


Shopping - Zara Polo Shirt 01

Zara Basic Polo Shirt in blue. I took the images using my Nokia 5310 camera phone.

Being in Makati also allowed me to fulfill a couple of other promises I’ve made to Spider-man.  Finally, I’m picking up Royce’ Nama Chocolate for him (got the Champagne Pierre Mignon).  And for good measure, I got a small box of Machiavelli Chocolatier chocolates.  I’ll post something about these chocolates!

Birthday Gifts 00

The Royce' paper bag now has a cute logo ribbon as accent. They used to use a gold foil ribbobn they tie to the straps.


Machiavelli Chocolates 07

Say HAPPY BIRTHDAY with Machiavelli Chocolatier's chocolates!


Birthday Gifts 01

Some things for the birthday boy Spider-man!

I had a great time yesterday and by the end of my shopping day, I realized that I didn’t bleed the coffers dry (Zara has such great deals!!!).  And seriously, not even a small hole was burned in my pockets.  I’ve made wise purchases that based from Spider-man’s reaction this morning, are well-appreciated.

Shopping - Kenneth Cole Sign 01

Trust Kenneth Cole to say it like it is!

In Heat

1 07 2009

CLIMATE CHANGE really sucks!  After the unforgiving, unrelenting, torrential rains, it’s the “heatwave” – unbearable as of the other night – that we need to come to terms with.

Coffee California Heath Frappe 01

Coffee California's California Heath Frappe

So how is a mere mortal like me trying to cope up?  I changed one thing about my eating habits – I stopped having steaming hot coffee and have since moved to it’s ice-blended kin.

My friends know that every single meal I have is washed down not by water – not even by that carbonated mineral water produced and bottled somewhere in Lombardo, Italy – but by coffee.  And I’m very easy when it comes to my coffee as Nescafé 3-in-1 (coffee, sugar, cream) has always done it for me.

That was until the cafeteria in the office has somehow subjected their coffee supply to their sporadic whims.  What’s a caffeine-dependent to do?  Turn to the next supplier of course.  It didn’t matter anymore that I would have to fork out at least fifty pesos every single time I’d need coffee.  I had to have the fix and I had to have it good.

And that’s when I came to know Coffee Califonia’s California Heath Frappe. It’s a velvety smooth ice-blended drink concocted with freshly brewed coffee, chocolate, fresh whole milk, and chocolate syrup, spiked with a splash of Torani liqueur – usually hazelnut.  The day they ran out of hazelnut, I asked that they use banana instead.

And with one sip, not only did it quench my thirst and moistened my parched lips, it sort of reminded me of my favorite Royce’ seasonal nama chocolate (banana).  Not bad for sixty five pesos!

Coffee California Heath Frappe 00

My friend Stave Michael took the photos, using his Nokia N73 camera phone with a Carl Zeiss lens.

And with Royce’ I said farewell

31 05 2009
Royce' - Farewell Gift Rum Raisin Bar

And with this I said farewell...

I SAW quite a number of people leave last Friday.  Not leave for the weekend.  But really leave.

I’m not good with goodbyes.  I have never been.  And I dread it all the time.  But now more than ever, I have realized just how much it is a part of life.

And with bars of Royce’ Rum Raisin Chocolate, neatly packed inside their pretty gift sleeve sealed with their signature gold sticker, I said farewell to my friends.  I really felt like this was the least gesture I could make to let people know that they have my best hopes and intentions as they move forward to new endeavors.

I would’ve opted for the Nama Chocolate in Champagne Pierre Mignon.  But the ice-replacement gel packs last for only 5 hours.  And I wanted my friends to be able to bring the chocolate home with them should they decide to.  So the Rum Raisin Chocolate Bara Royce’ bestseller – was the perfect choice!






Joren bathed in light!



Ryan in orange...



Mark Anthony, Joren (blurred... sorry), Arnel, Mark, Ryan...



With Mark Anthony and Joren



With Joren!



With Ryan and Mark Anthony



Two of my newest friends - Joren and Mark Anthony


Royce’ for a fave Superhero

27 05 2009

ROYCE’ CHOCOLATES remind me that there need not be a special occasion to give someone special something special.  Yes, it’s true that there are so many reasons in this world to give gifts – but I have to say that the best is to give gifts for no reason at all.

Royce' - Gift Bags 00

Royce' Chocolate gift bags for a favorite Superhero!

And for one of my best Superhero friends – a chocolate lover at that – I couldn’t help but get some of the best Royce’ Chocolate varieties ever.  These are the ones that I myself really adore… and devour!  Hahaha!

Royce' - Milk Chocolate Bar 00

Royce' Milk Chocolate Bar


Royce' - Milk Chocolate Bar 01

A peek into one of the gift bags revealed the Royce' Milk Chocolate Bar!

As the ones I’m sharing here were gifts, I didn’t get to take snapshots of the actual chocolates.  But the packaging are too pretty to not take photographs of.  So, here they are!

Royce' - Nama Champagne 00

The Royce' Nama Chocolate in Champagne "Pierre Mignon"

I’ve long raved about the unparalleled pleasure the touch, feel and taste of nama chocolates give.  Not to mention the teasing, lingering chocolate notes that they leave on the tongue.  But I have to categorically declare here just how unprepared I was for Nama Chocolate in banana, their latest seasonal offering at their Greenbelt 5 kiosk, coming at the heels of strawberry about a couple of weeks back.  After savoring my first block of this generously cocoa powder-dusted confection, the skeptic in me recoiled at the thought that I had unwittingly deprived myself with so much pleasure all the time I cringed at the idea of throwing bananas and chocolate together in the blender for a refreshing smoothie snack!

Royce' - Nama Banana 00

The Royce' Nama Chocolate in "Banana" (seasonal)

Unfortunately, I don’t have shots of my other favorites – the Nama Chocolate in Strawberry (seasonal), “Bitter,” and “Au Lait,” and the Rum Raisin Chocolate Bar.

Royce' - Nama Banana 01

Aren't they the prettiest?... Yet another shot of the Nama Chocolates!