Divisoria sometime in September 2007-

Ruy and Liv: (soaking wet after walking from tutuban mall to the tiangge in Tabora with our feet wet from the pungent, sticky surprises of the mossy divisoria earth made juicy by the continuous downpour of rain) Boss may tinda ba kayo niyang lalagyan na plastic na ganyan?

Vendor: Oo.

Ruy and Liv: Magkano?

Vendor: 10 pesos.

Ruy and Liv: Eight na lang. Kuha kami madami.

Vendor: Sige.

Ruy and Liv: (Silently whooping with joy because we finally found what we've been looking for and at an unexpectedly cheap price) Pakuha ng 80 pcs.

Vendor: Ay, bumalik na lang po kayo sa lunes kasi sarado yung pagkukunan pag linggo. Iwan kayo ng down para sure kami na kukunin ninyo.

Ruy and Liv: (in stunned disbelief) baka naman meron sa iba?

Vendor: Wala talaga kahit san kayo magpunta.

Ruy and Liv: (we had no way of coming back on a weekday with our jobs) Di bale na lang. Tingin po muna kami.

We continued to trudge on in search of our container only to sadly learn that the freaking vendor was right and that most vendors haggle price even if they don't have the product to sell and with the realization that our divisoria ordeal was all for nothing...

During the hustle and bustle and stress of preparations in the days leading up to Andrea's baptism, when emotional states were quite intense and migraines a constant nuisance, one place reminded us to take it easy on ourselves and to take things a bit slower. A place that echoes of a soft presence, a soothing whisper which can only be uttered by the tranquil spirit of green tea.

Thousands of years in existence with properties ancient and wondrous, this amazing liquid concoction is a healing balm, administered, to a wondrous effect, by a zen haven named Kozui. Located in Tomas Morato QC, we learned about this place from my wife's good buddies Nuni and Nunu.

Looking in from a very busy Tomas Morato sidewalk, a wierd, familiar sensation is aroused. I am enveloped by a feeling of detachment and calm similar to what I experience when I look into aquariums. I subconsciously fall into a trance as I peer in and watch the fish sway to an inaudible thumping beat while I simultaneously internalize being enveloped in a cool, quiet universe as my imagination gets drawn into the fish's mind. Glug, glug, glug.... Peace...

Stepping in, I am immediately captivated by the beautiful interiors. It's strikingly white theme seems to initiate a person into a "cleansing" process upon entry while the cool, green tone set by the furniture and vegetation ushers one's state into nature's revitalizing tranquility. The minimalist, modern design perfectly binds these two elements to create a place of instant calm and relaxation.

Walking up to the counter, we were greeted by a menu board of different kinds of green tea among which were: Genmaicha (green tea combined with roasted brown rice), Matcha (green tea where leaves are are powdered and actually consumed), Sencha (a particularly strong green tea harvested in early spring), Kukicha (made from stems and twigs, a tea that packs a mean dose of anti-oxidants), Dragonwell- (said to be from a chinese village called Dragon Well has a sweet, smooth flavor).

I just wish they had a tea manual or at least some sort of description on the menu board to assist the uninitiated tea drinker like myself in choosing what to order. As I didn't have the luxury of google at that moment, I found myself paralyzed, standing by the counter, baffled over what to order and sporting an authentic blank stare of a tea retard.

Finally after a couple of agonizing minutes of deliberaton and guess work, I eventually settled for a Genmaicha Lemon tea while Liv had a mint jelly fruit blend whose name escapes me now but which looked like this. =)

Having taken care of the tea selection business, we then proceeded to order our food. Given our not too hungry state, we opted to eat light and just relax (which in Kozui seemed like the perfect thing to do).

The only drawback was that we had to pass up on the Tearamizu

and Green Tea Cheesecake

Our food.

Dan Dan Noodle: Fresh chilled egg noodle with spicy hot creamy szechuan dressing. --A dish as refreshing to the taste as it is to the eye, the freshness of crisp veggies and the citrusy tang of lemon enhance the cool wave that washes to the shores of my tongue through a current of cold egg noodles. The szechuan dressing provides the glorious sun that warms the mouth after the vigorous splash. A fun and enjoyable dish.

Herbed Meatball Soup: Herbed meatballs swimming in egg soup.--- Warms the heart as the taste of its liquid broth brings the coziness and security of home on a cold rainy evening while the meatballs and vegetables provide the stability and substance of the house's sturdy foundation. Visually, it is to me a tranquil pond brimming with nature's bounties.

Takoyaki: Dumplings made from seafood bits and shavings mixed in a batter.--- Again another piece to behold. Unfortunately, I was looking forward to a sweetness which I didn't get from their version of the dish so I didn't enjoy eating it too much (an expectation probably influenced by my familiarity with the "Samurai Balls" takoyaki which has a really sweet sauce).

I did enjoy staring at it though.

It must be said that Kozui was indeed an "experience". From the moment we entered, the visual therapy of colors and interior design, the cleansing properties of green tea, the immaculate flavors and invigorating presentation of the food all blended together to provide a much-needed rejuvenation.

Kozui is definitely the place to reboot senses that are numbed and wearied by today's overloaded life.


nuni and nunu said...

We agree...Kozui is definitely an experience ;) Yummy food and comfy ambiance =) Have you been to Sanggo in Makati? It's nice there too =)

Olivia said...

Ahhmmm...yeah...what he said!

Jen Tan said...

so you didn't like the takoyaki? haven't tried samurai balls kase... =)

Ruy said...

Jen: I was looking forward to a sweeter sauce like the Samurai Balls sauce which I grew up eating. So not taking into consideration the amazing presentation, I didn't like it too much.

Jen Tan said...

oh...hmmm..i have no point of comparison this is my first takoyaki =) ...san ba may samurai balls...i should try it then.

Ruy said...

Jen: Hmmm, would you dare?=) Samurai Balls are usually located outside SM Malls' supermarket section.

Jen Tan said...

ruy...why not! =) daring ako! bwahahaha ;P



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