What used to be a simple area in UP Village, has now evolved into a gastronomical road map to be sampled and explored with enthusiasm and gusto. But more than the taste of the restaurateurs’ food, patrons of Maginhawa Street are also interested in capturing the visual beauty of what they are about to eat.
Luckily, this place is filled to the brim with stalls and trucks that were practically made to be devoured by the eyes first. Here are a few places worth checking out:
Located at #80 Maginhawa Street, The Lost Bread is a success story worth sharing. With branches spread across three other places, including a newly opened branch in SM Megamall’s Fashion Hall, they specialize in classic desserts with a cool twist.
We recommend their iconic French Bread cubes paired with sauces served in syringes! If you’re up to something more decadent, order their special milkshakes that are as beautiful to behold as they are delicious to eat.
Apart from the artistry of their food presentation, your Instagram would do well with its aesthetic and modern industrial interiors.
For the insatiable bookworm in you, visit Maginhawa Street’s Cool Beans Café and Library. This is considered the very first library café in Metro Manila, proudly serving up coffee brewed from local sources in Sagada, Benguet, and Kalinga.
Located at #67 Maginhawa Street, they’re popular with students particularly because of all the free books you can read at any time.
While their Instagram aesthetic is much more subdued, take advantage of the beautiful wooden pieces and down-to-earth bookshelf backdrops for your #OOTD’s.
Hue Café specializes in some of the most unique-looking coffee and dessert items this side of Maginhawa Street.
As the name suggests, ordering here will bombard your senses with an explosion of color and flavour worthy of any Instagram feed. Their interiors are also perfect for selfies and candid shots since they made them look like palettes and swatches.
Wanna make the most out of the food shot? Order different dishes and complete the whole spectrum. Then arrange them on the white table and take a flat lay!
Serving up only the best of Hawaiian poké food, which are basically rice bowls with seafood and vegetable viands mixed in like a deconstructed piece of sushi, Ahi Hawaii in #3 Maginhawa Street is as fun and tropical as you can expect. Their menu items are both healthy and photogenic against bright backdrops. And even if you’re just passing by, Ahi Hawaii’s Waikiki beach inspired exteriors are a sight to behold. Maybe it’s time to say aloha to a brand new Facebook profile picture, while you’re here?
Empire Fashion Café came up with the brilliant idea of combining two of the most important things in the world—food and fashion—and placing them under the same establishment.
Shopping while dining has never been this easy, and the same goes for taking food shots of their menu items. In fact, the Empire HQ has been visited by plenty of local celebrities, thanks to its Instagram-friendly interior.
If you’re more into the shabby chic style, definitely give this restaurant a try. Born from the friendship between an artist named Uan and a designer named Sally, coming inside is like traveling to another dimension.
The spaces are intimate, while the set pieces they’ve left behind lend themselves to the whimsical nature of the restaurant. Here, you can take pictures of Sally’s interiors and boutique finds from all over the world, which more likely than not, have stories attached explaining how she came about their existence.
The quality of the food isn’t comprised here either. Everything is constructed with a certain degree of artistry. Here, it’s all about serving simple dishes done well.
Speaking of artistic spaces, the Artsy Café is a Maginhawa Street staple. Come here on one of their slower days if you want space to actually take decent shots for your Instagram, because they’re usually a full house.
Specializing in a warm, inviting ambiance that’s just right for afternoon tea and snacks with friends, Artsy Café was meant for the Instagrammer. Their bar and prep area is decorated with colored glass lamps hanging from the ceiling, and mason jars are used to serve almost everything.
Never run out of #CatsOfInstagram photos when you visit the Cat Café, located on the 2nd floor of 189 Maginhawa Street. Although the space itself is small—capable of serving only six tables worth of guests and visitors—it’s worth it for the furry felines who may grace your meal with their presence.
Decorated with splashes of purple here and there, people are highly encouraged to interact with the cats, and to visit their kitty nooks that were designed to look like miniature bird homes. (The irony is real!)
Post selfies with the kitties, or take pictures of just the cats themselves. Whichever you feel like doing, Cat Café Manila has got you covered.
In all seriousness, the best food shots happen when there’s nothing else coming in between the camera and the subject. No frills, no fuss, just food.
Enter Flip Guys, located at #103 Maginhawa Street. This Tex-Mex styled diner serves large portions of comfort food like you’ve never seen. Servings for two people can be good for a small family, depending on appetites.
They don’t skimp out on great ingredients, so expect your dishes to come in heaping portions, overflowing with rice, beans, cheese, and tomatoes.
If you feel like taking a picture of you and your friends, Flip Guys has got you covered with an industrial-inspired background, like you were eating at a food truck in the States.
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Hakaw, dim sum, noodles, and more.