I am a huge fan of breakfast food and places that offer all-day breakfast dining. The thought of waffles, pancakes, and fruit preserves can put a smile on my face, and the idea that you can have it past noon can fill my heart with joy.
A popular breakfast place in Manila is Single Origin. Their Bonifacio High Street Central branch is popular for its cafe and bar setup, cleverly combining breakfast food and premium coffee with cocktails. A date took me there once for breakfast and I loved the dark atmosphere.
Just recently, the guys behind Single Origin opened a new branch in Rockwell, and despite offering the same menu, the vibe is completely different. If Single Origin in BGC is moody, Single Origin in Rockwell is bright, airy, and warm. That’s because half the restaurant is made up of floor-to-ceiling glass windows that bathes the place with light and the promise of a good day.
I had the pleasure of dining at Single Origin’s Rockwell branch during its soft opening and here’s what I found:
We started our meal with a cup of coffee, one of Single Origin’s signature items. The coffee menu is packed with tempting choices, and it was hard to pick just one, but I settled on the creme brulee (P200), a cup of espresso, caramel, and textured milk with a crust of creme brulee on top. It was a refreshing drink: the sweet texture of the creme brulee opened up my palate for the strong flavor of the espresso.
The first dish we tried was the French toast. We tried two: the salted caramel choco a la mode (P350) and the strawberry cream cheese (P350). I liked the salted caramel more because it was fun wiping the melted ice cream with the toast, but I would prefer a thinner toast to balance the amount of toppings. The worst thing that could happen is to run out of the yummy ice cream while you’re halfway through the bread!
After having a few bites of the French toast, we had the mixed berries waffle (P375). You can never go wrong with waffles, and this dish has generous servings of strawberries, blackberries, and blueberries, topped off with whipped cream and drizzled with Vermont maple syrup. The sweetness of the waffle and maple syrup softens the tartness of the berries, which makes it a balanced dish.
I am a Nutella fan, so Single Origin’s banana nutella pancakes (P375) hit the spot for me. I believe that Nutella goes well with both bananas and pancakes, so I’m happy that the restaurant decided to combine all three. The pancakes are light and fluffy, and what else can you expect but great things when you have Nutella? Now that’s comfort food right there.
We moved on to savory dishes, and we began with the breakfast pizza (P320): a beer-dough pie with bacon, mushroom, quail eggs, and arugula. The ingredients are flavorful on their own, but Single Origin makes it work on this light pizza. It’s a perfect appetizer because the crust is thin. For me, the standout was the thick-cut bacon, because bacon.
This was followed by the wagyu frankfurters, which for some reason I can’t find on the Single Origin menus I searched online. As its name suggests, it’s wagyu beef served as frankfurter, which deserves praise for its inventive take on a classic dish. I never say no to wagyu so of course I had seconds.
Single Origin’s chicken and waffle sandwich (P320) is another dish that combines both savory and sweet. The chicken breasts are thick and drizzled with melted cheese, which complements the thick specialty waffles. It’s a wholesome and filling dish, and comes with their truffle chips. So good!
I love breakfast food, but the highlight of my meal in Single Origin’s Rockwell branch is the crab fat pasta (P375), a sinfully delicious dish covered in crab fat and heapings of seafood. The restaurant didn’t hold back on the ingredients and the flavors exploded in my mouth. A decadent treat.
Equally delicious is the white truffle pasta (P450), a linguine pasta with bacon, fresh mushrooms, poached egg, and truffle oil. It wasn’t as forceful as the crab fat pasta, but the flavors were respected and allowed to shine individually and together.
The four cheese grilled cheese (P320) is peak comfort food. Imagine a grilled cheese sandwich and you’re instantly transported to afternoons as a child parked in front of the TV. But this one is an upgrade as there’s four kinds of cheeses (Monterey jack, yellow cheddar, ementhal, and mozzarella) wrapped around two thick slices of bread. This is a light snack perfect for when you’re feeling peckish between meals.
Our meal came back full circle as we had another breakfast dish: the choco French toast with strawberries. I like the deep flavor of the choco French toast, which countered the savory dishes we had.
We did a lot of eating, but Single Origin is also known for its extensive drinks list. For coffee, Single Origin is the exclusive distributor of Lamill Coffee, an upscale American coffee brand. They also have a selection of extraction methods, such as the Hario pourover, French press, Syphon, Chemex, and Sowden. They also carry specialty tea and juices, wines, milkshakes, craft beers, and craft cocktails. I had a reposado margarita (P300) after dinner, but I’m thinking of getting the French lavender 75 (P280) cocktail next! It has lavender-infused syrup, gin, lemon, strawberry, and sparkling wine. Yum!
Single Origin’s new branch in Rockwell is perfect if you are in the area or you want a different vibe from their BGC branch. Their breakfast food shines, but the difference is the ambience: Single Origin’s BGC branch is for those who want to score a few minutes of silence before starting the day, while the Rockwell branch is for those who want to take charge of the day and greet it with a “good morning!”
Single Origin’s Rockwell branch is located in 18 Amorsolo Drive.
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