I’m not trying to make a month-long celebration so you don’t have to greet me belated happy birthday. Indecision got in the way so I wasn’t able to post this right away. Anyhoo, I celebrated my 34th birthday in a coffee shop; nothing fancy, just met a few friends over coffee. I was supposed to go to La Union but I decided to reschedule it the next day so I can hang out with my friends. But it’s my birthday so there should be something special about it. I looked for a coffee shop that I’ve never tried before, one that offers specialty coffee. From consulting Google and Looloo I found Habitual Coffee. [Read: A Weekend Solo Travel Guide to San Juan, La Union]
Habitual Coffee is located in Chino Roces, Makati. How it managed to escape my attention in my three years of living around that area, I have no idea. I remember that it shares a building with Primal Ape, a cross-fit gym, what I failed to remember is the exact location so I lost my way. Yes, I wasted an hour or so of my life swimming through the traffic, trying to looking for it.
My struggle is justifiable though because it is really not that simple to locate. For one it is inside a walled area with no landmarks across from it to guide you. The only clue that I can give you is that it is near King’s Court in Dela Rosa, but stay on the Chino Roces side. If you are coming from Buendia, from King’s Court, take the sidewalk going right. You can see this concrete wall, walk a bit further and you will see its entrance. Once you get in, it’s Habitual Coffee that you will see right away, though it’s the Primal Ape signage on top of it that you may notice at first glance.
Habitual Coffee takes on the industrialized minimalist theme that has become the signature look of third-wave and hip cafes. Decorations are kept in a minimum. The ground and the walls made of cement were left unpainted creating an unfinished look that is very masculine, which seems to echo the cross-fit gym next to it.
Habitual sources their coffee from Belis Washing Station in Atok, Benguet. I am partial with specialty coffee because they really taste better than those you can buy from regular cafes.
I ordered my favorite coffee flavor, Flat White PHP 140 (USD 2.90). It has strong woodsy and nutty notes with a bit of a sour aftertaste. It was awesome!
Since it was my birthday, my friend, Pancake, got me a cake. It’s chocolate cake, which surprisingly passed to my liking (I’m not big on chocolate cake you see) because it was not overly sweet. The staff garnished it with some flowers, a nice touch that I truly appreciated. The wine candles are from my friend by the way.
We also had two sandwiches, they were just okay to me, nothing remarkable. This one below is Grilled Cheese worth PHP 200 (USD 4.14).
While we were there, Potpot regaled us with his many adventures and misadventures in his recent trip to the Cordillera region. As always, Pancake was in her constant giggling mood. My other friend, Alchris came with a laptop because he has to work so we didn’t really get to feel his presence that much.
All in all I loved Habitual and my friends and I agreed that it was worth returning to. Potpot said that he wants to come back with a good camera, preferably at day time so he could take better photos. As with me, I spread out the good news with my other friends and returned to Habitual few weeks after for a reunion with my former colleagues. Some of them also lost their way trying to find it.