It was one of the cafes that I’d been meaning to visit. Barbara’s Coffee Shop is nestled inside the oldest district in Manila, Intramuros. You can find it inside Plaza San Luis Complex, across San Agustin Church. It is a sort of a spin-off of Barbara’s Restaurant, which offers fine dining.
If there is anything that I love most about this place it’s the ambiance. It looked like it has been trapped in the Spanish area, with antique decors and furniture to complete the effect. This quaint little place tenders a very calm and rather romantic atmosphere, perfect for those who are looking for some alone time.
I visited the place with three of my closest friends when we went on a little tour around Intramuros. It was way past lunch time so we ordered food that would satisfy our already grumbling stomachs. [Read: Wandering Inside The Walls of Intramuros]
When we checked the menu, we were pleased to find that the foods were easy on the budget. If memory serves me right, it took about 15 or 20 minutes before they were able to serve the food, but we were so enthralled with the beauty of the place we didn’t mind waiting.
Now on to the food, we started with the salads: the Mesclun Greens with Raspberry Vanaigrette (PHP 175 – USD 3.73)…
and Barbara’s Special with Lychee Vinaigrette (PHP185 – $3.94), both were okay and hardly tasted different from one another. The serving is really sad and by sad I mean it’s not even enough for one person.
For our meal we had Adobo Rice with Fried Egg Topping (PHP 85 – USD 1.60)…
and Tapa with Rice and Fried Egg (PHP 135 – USD 2.87). Both were okay but I had a hard time appreciating the tapa because it tasted too sweet.
We also had Seafood Pasta in Olive Oil (PHP 175 – USD 3.73), which I found to be a tad too salty.
Clubhouse Sandwich; a real winner.
Pizza Gorgonzola (PH P135 – USD 2.87), which sad to say is a total letdown.
The real disappointment though was the coffee. Neither the Cappuccino (PHP 75 – USD 1.81) nor the Iced Coffee (PHP60 – USD 1.28) was good enough to be recommended. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that instant coffees were much better than what we had at Barbara’s. I wonder if it has anything to do with the value; maybe a case of a sacrificed quality in exchange for inexpensive price? Go figure.
I might have gotten a bit disappointed with the food, (guess my expectations were a little too high) but I’d still recommend the place if only for its redeeming quality; the ambiance. Barbara’s Coffee Shop is still worth visiting and I suggest that you do if you happen to go to Intramuros. For what it’s worth, it still made our Intramuros trip memorable.
Barbara’s Coffee Shop
Plaza San Luis Complex,
Gen. Luna corner Urdaneta St.
Telephone nos: (02) 527-4086/(02) 527-4083