Sunday, August 26, 2012

Cafe d'Asie at Bellevue Hotel Manila

An urban bliss for frazzled city dweller, as writer editor Jing Lejano puts it appropriately, Bellevue Hotel Manila, once again made my heart grow fonder with its resident restaurant, Cafe d'Asie's promo, Php880++ lunch buffet during week days from a regular price of Php1,300++. 

Being coined as a cosmopolitan hyena by those who know me, I am always prowling at the city's best gustatory deals. 

Before, Makati used to be the epicenter of the metropolitan's abundance. Not with the advent of posh hotels popping out left and right, from Ortigas to Alabang, now the replete of luxury spread out evenly. 

There are only three hotels(that I know of) in the Alabang area that offers buffet spread, Vivere Suite Hotel, Acacia Hotel Manila and Bellevue Hotel Manila. I have only tried the last two, recent being at the Bellevue Hotel Manila, and this is what they have to offer. 

Located at the 2nd levee of the hotel, Cafe d'Asie is a perfect place for a comfortable and cozy ambiance that offered not only the relaxing feel but of a gustatory delight from a variety of mouthwatering cuisines of international fare. 

An assortment of breads. 


Salad complements and...

More of  it. 

Fine ensemble of cheese and fruits. 

Do-It-Your-Own salad. 

Seafoods from the grill section. 

Beef, Pork Belly and Sausages form the grill section. 


Ebi, Sushi and Sashimi from the Japanese section. 

Shrimp Tempura. 

Dumplings. They also have other variants placed in dimsum trays. 

Noodles from the Chinese section. 

Ingredients from the Mongolian section. 

Roasted Potatoes and French Beans with Bacon.  Not in the pic is the Seafood Lasagna. 

Korean Beef Stew. 

Roasted Chicken Italian Style. 

Soy Ginger Fish Fillet.

Tuna Salad. 

Green Salad. 


Lamb Leg with a variety of sauce to choose from. 

A variety of desserts to choose from, from White Chocolate Mousse, Assorted Fruit Tarts, Ube Roll, Desire Cheese Cake, Creme Brulee, Strawberry Shortcake, Belgian Cake, Chery Cheesecake, Mango Flan, Chocolate Sauce, and Lemon Merengue. Let's count them starting with this one.










Lamb leg, the star of the show. I I said in my buffet science, always go for the most expensive first, and usually they are found at the carving station.  

From the Chinese section. 

Beef from the main course section. 

Let's try their grillable section. Tanguige is perfectly done. 

Another one from the grillable section. 

Soup, one of the thickest and most delicious that I have tasted. 

A Mongolian feast courtesy of the chef. 

From the Japanese section. 

Desserts for my sweet tooth because for me, meal isn't a meal without it. 

Fruit Medley. 

DIY Garden Fresh Salad. 

Three scoops of rocky road variant, plus this combination, concludes my delectable pleasure. 

I am on the quest of writing my top ten buffet destination for this year, and at this rate, this one may enjoy the accolade of it. At a discounted price of Php880 + 12% VAT + 10% SC, I think it was well worth a drive to the south. 

Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 LE

While there has been a lot of spates and spikes brewing in the tables of Samsung and Apple right now because of the legal slaying off each other, Samsung never grow weary in popping out new devices after another. While Apple introduces new  toys year after year or two, Samsung on the other hand releases three or four times a year, one a better sleeker, thinner device than the other. 

Thanks to the ever dynamic OS in the form of Android. The search for the best slate to encapsulate the OS has been a obviously favorable to the consuming public.

Let's see what is new Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 has to offer under its hood:

First off, at 9.7 x 6.7 x 0.34 inches, the Galaxy Tab 10.1 is a little wider than the iPad 2 (9.5 x 7.3 inches), although suffice to say, it has the same thickness. In the weight department, the Tab is a hair lighter, coming in at 1.24 pounds to the iPad 2's 1.35 pounds. It's 1280 x 800 WXGA display offered vibrant, popping colors and deep blacks, plus wide viewing angles. The specs is inviting so far, but having no user-accessible MicroSD Card slot means that you are stuccoed with either 16GB or 32GB of memory. It also has 3-MP and 1.3-MP cameras and the rear-facing one can only record up to 720p. Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 rocks a 1-GHz Nvidia Tegra 2 processor backed by 1GB of RAM, which I found snappy enough to complement its WiFi functionality when playing video streaming sources.  

At a 20grand price point, the value for money largely depends on the targeted user demographics. I just feel it inadequate for any tab for that matter not to have a phone functionality option. While people just considered a tab as a backup for their standard computing(e.g., laptop, desktop), I want mine to be a backup of both my laptop and a phone. But then again, maybe it's just me. 

Saturday, August 18, 2012

The Stuff that Makes the Universe: Dark Matter, Dark Energy and Baryonic Matter

Few Sundays back, I dished out a talk about "The Stuff that Makes the Universe: Dark Matter, Dark Energy and Baryonic Matter" at the National Museum | Planetarium. 

The lecture posits on the understanding of particle formation from the time when four forces of nature collapses at the onset of a Big Bang Nucleosynthesis. The particles, after the temperature of the cosmos cooled down, gave rise to the requisite elements for the advent of stellar birth and galactic clusters and ultimately to wheat is known today as the universe. 

Because the lecture somehow immersed highly on mathematical abstractions, some audience may have had a hard time crunching all the equations, derivations and conceptualizations. So a strong background on higher mathematics maybe necessary to absorb all the variables and constants. And some commented, it is an epistaxis-causing lecture, and that they might not be able to report for work the next day because of the endless streams of blood coming out of their nostrils. 

The mass component of the baryonic matters is not enough to account for the total mass volume of the universe. Simple Newtonian physics suggests that objects located even at the outskirts of the galaxy rotates with seemingly high angular momentum in its orbital path as with the objects near the mass concentration/luminous bulge. Thus a Dark Matter is taken into account, comprising 23% of the cosmic components. It was found out that the role of the Dark Matter is to clump clusters of galaxies together so that its circumnavigating objects local to the respective galaxies will not smear out of its structure. 
Dark Energy on the other hand is the energy of the vacuum that stretches the fabric of space and time in exponential rate. Dark Energy, on a mathematical sense, is essentially a positive energy density with a negative pressure. Two models were taken into consideration for its explanation, Quintessence and Quantum Fluctuation. By Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, when the conservation of energy is temporarily violated, it left an energy density hole in the vacuum. Dark Energy is said to be the downright victor in the tug-of-war of the Dark Matter and Dark Energy pulling against its other because of the 70% measured volume of the Dark Energy.
Same month, I have released two issues for the PJA: TOV Special Edition and the regular edition
Transit of Venus edition talks about the rarest phenomenon for this millennium, one that occurs in pairs every 240 years, with an 8 year interval. This transit is very significant to astronomers because it gave rise to the parallax mathematics, one that is being used in scaling the distances of planets. 
The regular edition, on the other hand, revolves around the most feared astronomical phenomenon in ancient times, the eclipses. This had undersigned the blueprints of every human history, where fortunes are framed, battles are fought, and crops planted, all in the belief that eclipses may make or break their fate. 
My maiden launch being a Managing Editor of the Philippine Journal of Astronomy, the country's first astronomical journal, is the "2012: Sham? Or Science" edition where the possibilities of the end of the world scenario in December 2012 is mathematically postulated, historically debated and scientifically probed. 

Saturday, August 11, 2012

F599 Ferrari Thingymajiggy

A VHS rewinder? A pencil sharpener? A gasoline station promotional product? An RC toy car? Think again. 

There's something about both the Ferrari Red and Lamborghini Yellow thematic colors that make me drool.  

Need anymore clues? 

At a Php3,500 price point, this is a cool gift idea without having to spend much. 

Although the specs doesn't quite fit for an average geek, this itself has a different targeted market which is neither niche nor consumer-base. 

Under its hood, this has a 2.0inch screen with 260k QVGA 240x320 resolution, a 0.3 MP camera capable of playing 640x480 video, expandable memory via its TF Card slot, GPRS, WAP, Bluetooth and a dual sim to boot. 

Not a plasticky feel at all, a metal back cover instead, this will appeal to those people who either want a secondary phone, or want a simple phone with esoteric form-factor, or simply a Ferrari merchandise collector. 

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