(SPOT.ph) One of the best things about Ateneo is the abundance of restaurants that open up along the strip of Katipunan and its neighboring areas. With so many choices, it's easy to feel overwhelmed. Whether you're a frequent diner or an occasional visitor, we round up a list of must-try restaurants apart from the usual that are worth the extra mile.
Back in the 1980s, Grace Magalona ran Cheesesteak, a popular restaurant along Makati's Reposo Street. The café was a hit; foodies raved about the Philadelphia sandwich. Despite its success, Grace shut it down in 1997 to focus on raising her kids. Grace reopened the restaurant in April 2016—with a new name and a new home. Now, Joe's Cheesesteak is a grab-and-go shop on the corner of Katipunan Avenue and B. Gonzales street that boasts a single masterpiece—the Cheesesteak, tender slices of sirloin beef sautéed with onions and mushrooms stuffed inside a mini-baguette oozing with gooey cheese. The steady stream of customers (mostly students in a rush) prove that the timeless sandwich hasn't lost its appeal.
Must-try: Cheesesteak (P180/regular, P100/half)
Joe's Cheesesteak is at G/F SMRC Building, Katipunan Avenue Corner B. Gonzales Street, Loyola Heights, Quezon City.
Olivia's Concept Café
White brick walls, hanging plants, and a quiet, breezy ambience is what you'll find at Olivia's Concept Café. They cater to students, which is why they serve a familiar homemade menu with twists like the Tocino Style Liempo and Milkfish Al Ajillo (daing na bangus sautéed in garlic). It makes for a great place to study alone or an intimate hangout with friends.
Must-tries: Tocino Style Liempo (P165), Shrimp Arabbiata (P195), Dulce de Leche Praline Frappe (P183)
Olivia's Concept Café is at Unit 102, Blue Residences, Katipunan Avenue, Quezon City.
Long breaks and Friday nights call for a visit to Game Over a.k.a. every geek's paradise. Each corner is filled with little knickknacks that will make a nostalgic gamer fall in love—from the classic NES controllers to the old school arcade cabinets, Nintendo 64 video game cartridges down to weapon props. Even the food and drinks are made convenient enough to eat while gaming.
Must-tries: Super Cheezy Pizza (P260), Fettucine Alfredo (P210), Mango Surprise Pannacotta (P175)
Game Over is at 31 Xavierville Avenue, Loyola Heights, Quezon City.
55 Square Café and Vongarde Art Gallery
Meet the new kids on the block: 55 Square Café and Vongarde Art Gallery is a haven for coffee and art enthusiasts. It's the brainchild of UP Fine Arts graduates Kit Singson and Dan Villacruel. The café serves fourth-wave coffee, which is basically artisanal coffee made more accessible while also providing a sense of community with beans sourced directly from Bukidnon and the Cordilleras to promote Singson's advocacy of championing Filipino produce. Sip and dine as you admire the works of up-and-coming local artists at the gallery.
Must-tries: French Press Black Coffee (P145), Filipino Deli Pasta (P245), Capresini (P165)
55 Square Café and Vongarde Art Gallery is at G/F ALCAL Building, 285 Katipunan Avenue, Quezon City.
Siblings Patricia, Chuckie, Christian, and Chelsea Antonio wanted a restaurant with capsule-like rooms that guests can rent for studying or holding meetings. Undoubtedly, it's The Study's concept that will intrigue you, but itâs the food that will make you stay. Their Stackers, red velvet pancakes with cream cheese frosting, is a sweet way to start the day. They also have a Potato Bar where they let you build your own potato concoction starting with fries, wedges, mojos, and more, then adding your own toppings.
Must-tries: Stackers (P170), Berry Slush (P130), Honey Oyster Chicken (P165)
The Study is at Regis Center, Katipunan Avenue, Quezon City.
* Minor edits have been made by the Candymag.com editors.