Away from the maddening crowd at Serendra or Bonifacio High Street, there’s a quiet cafe a few blocks away at Forbeswood Heights – Numa Tea Salon. Formerly T Salon in Glorietta 4, Makati, this cozy restaurant has found a new home in the more laid-back part of Bonifacio Global City.
Inside, shelves of dainty teacups and jars containing a merry mix of tea varieties greet you upon entering. Light green walls and plush seats by the large windows beckon you to sit down and relax.
Tea lovers can delight in the more than 30 tea varieties available, such as oolong, cranberry, banana caramel and Earl Grey white tea. I frequent Numa though, for its sandwiches and desserts. Though the sandwiches are a bit pricy (the cheapest ones come at P135), the toast is always crisp on the outside and soft on the inside, the spreads thick and generous.
Grilled Cheese with Pesto
The Deviled Egg Salad (P135) with pimiento has a sweet-spicy flavor that’s a welcome alternative to the usual Kraft bottled variety. Another delicious item is the Grilled Cheese with Pesto (P185), with the home-made softened cheese giving a slightly salty flavor. My favorite sandwich though is the Waldorf Chicken (P165) salad with green apples .
The apple bits are liberally strewn on the deep layer of chicken flakes and mayonnaise. It’s best to eat this sandwich right away so the crisp green apple bits don’t get soggy. On the downside, the Cucumber Tea Sandwich (P135) tastes bland, as the cream cheese spread is too thin. The cheese in the Marinated Mozzarella Sandwich (P225) has been soaked in dill, tarragon and basil with tomatoes, but the taste still falls flat.
For more carbo-loading, Numa has a respectable selection of pasta dishes. I recommend the Lasagna with Bechamel Sauce (P195), with its generous meat servings and the full-flavored tomato and white sauce on top, but not the Spicy Hungarian Sausage (P235), as the runny sauce tastes suspiciously too much like ketchup and less of tomato sauce or spices.
Reasonably priced Executive Meals are served with rice.
Rice meals are also on hand, though there’s nothing really remarkable with most items. The Breaded Pork Chop (P145), All-time Favorite Longganisa (P165) and Arroz ala Cubana (P155) are fine, but are more or less run of the mill. Do try the Homemade Embotido (P165) though – there’s plenty of meat, hardly any extenders, and chunks of carrot, red pepper, pickles and eggs.
As for desserts, the best is arguably Gooey Butter Cake (P95). The moist buttery top is sprinkled with confectioner’s sugar, and the cake has a taffy-like center that has a subtle sweetness. The sides sometimes tend to get dry and burnt, so I usually scrape off the sides and eat only the middle.
Gooey Butter Cake
Also, I think the Gooey Butter Cake tastes best if served chilled, so just order this for take out and leave it first in the fridge for a few hours. A close second is the very moist and rich Bailey’s Chocolate Cake (P95), with its melt-in-your-mouth fudge tinged ever so slightly with alcohol. Try also the Fruited Pound Cake (P95) and Rum Cake (P95).
If you want no-nonsense sandwiches without having to bump into too many people, head over to Numa. Order a pot or two of tea, sink into the soft couch, and just pass the time gazing at the green outside.