Restaurants and food parks continue to sprout in different areas in the metro. And that’s good news to us who like eating. But with so many food establishments offering so many choices, it sometimes becomes tricky when choosing a place to dine.
We at MNLToday.ph like to think of ourselves as foodies so we make it a point to sample interesting establishments that offer new gastronomic delights.
In the heart of Ortigas Business District, there is a strip at the Sapphire Bloc that has been attracting food lovers for quite a while now. Both students and working folks have been flocking in droves to sample the varied choices of restaurants and bars.
May Lopez, Robinsons Land vice president for sales and marketing, explains that when they were building Sapphire Bloc, they envisioned a dining hub will cater to the professionals working in and around the Ortigas area.
“Ortigas Center is not a huge CBD, but we have a good number of offices here including malls and even hotels. So we chose restaurants that are unique and not found in the regional malls because otherwise people would just go to the mall to eat lunch or dinner. Sapphire Bloc’s ground floor is a good and alternative dining destination.”
But while there are a host to choose from, one restaurant particularly stands out: Papa Didi’s. Originally an ice cream shop in Maginhawa street in Quezon City, their Sapphire Bloc branch attracts diners even from afar. Its interesting façade is light, roomy and is a breath of fresh air among the darkly lit establishments along the stretch.
‘Meeting’ Papa Diddi
Specializing in handcrafted ice cream, owner and founder Paul Perez named it after his father. Papa Diddi was a lawyer and politician in Tuguegarao. Being a lawyer who took on many pro bono cases, payment for his fees took the form of produce brought by the farmers. Fruits, poultry, milk, and eggs often served as payment.
Being stuck with lots of fresh products, the family decided to turn them into jams and ice cream.
“I grew up in an environment of homemade ice cream,” said Perez. It was his father Diddi who made the ice cream and cooked for the family, “but publicly he said it was my mom.”
The homemade ice cream soon gained popularity among people who like trying things. Papa Didi’s also established itself as an ice cream brand that was made from carabao’s milk and its use of local flavors and delicacies.
Today, Papa Diddi’s serves more than 15-flavors with Tres Leches, Roasted Forbidden Rice and Avocado Rhum as among its bestsellers.
Even people who on a diet will find Papa Diddi’s ice creams delectable because they are organic. And children who hate vegetables can appreciate the taste with a squash inspired flavor called “Too Early for Halloween.” Just some of the innovative flavors Papa Didi’s offers.
More than just ice cream
Even with Papa Diddi’s success with handcrafted ice cream the restaurant eventually began offering food items other ice cream. The menu was influenced by the Ibanag culture and soon became a hit among its customers.
“We’re river people and a lot of our recipes use ingredients from either the river or the mountains. Whatever’s in season we use and we don’t add a lot of things to bring out the flavor” shared Perez.Papa Diddi’s is not your usual restaurant. It’s a distinctly local flavor will make you come back for more. Aside from the good food and flavorful ice cream, Papa Diddi’s Ice Cream Company helps many small farmers by buying their produce.
Papa Diddi’s is not your usual restaurant. It’s a distinctly local flavor will make you come back for more. Aside from the good food and flavorful ice cream, Papa Diddi’s Ice Cream Company helps many small farmers by buying their produce.
Now isn’t that another reason for you to keep coming back?
Papa Diddi’s Handcrafted Ice Cream at The Sapphire Bloc is located at Sapphire Road, San Antonio Pasig City, and is open from 7:00 am to 11:00pm on Mondays to Saturdays and 7:00am to 2:00pm to on Sundays.