Month: February 2011

King Chef

King Chef

I heard of King Chef for a long time already but I haven’t had the chance to visit there.  I was informed before through a comment on one of my previous blog posts that King Chef is good for big crowds.  Since I usually just dine out with my mom, I didn’t dare visit King Chef.

Last friday, a friend (who is actually one of the owners of King Chef), invited me for a late night dinner.  When we entered the restaurant, I was pleasantly surprised that there are also tables good for small groups.  I was amazed at how big King Chef is.  Imagine they have 3 establishments in the same area?  They kept expanding and expanding in order to accomodate all the guests who wanted to dine at King Chef.  Talk about being successful.

I noticed the couches too in King Chef w/c reminded me of Cantonese Soup Kitchen.  Guess what?  Same owners hahaha!  No wonder even King Chef’s menu have the same items as Cantonese Soup Kitchen.

king chef seats

Now, the other Chinese restaurants have some serious competition.  King Chef is becoming more popular with their dimsum at an awesome affordable price.  The servers actually thought we were there for the dimsum, we did inform them though that we’d have dinner instead.  I’ll definitely go back to King Chef for their dimsum next time 😉

king chef dimsum

We ordered the ff.:

  • Seafood with Spinach Soup (Php 220)

spinach soup king chef

King Chef has 3 sizes for most dishes.  We ordered their small size w/c is good for 3-4 people.  We were able to finish the seafood w/ spinach soup all by ourselves.  I really love the soup offerings of the franchise (King Chef & Cantonese Soup Kitchen).  It’s their specialty.  The soup have the exact amount of ingredients and spices that would make us feel soothed and satisfied when we sample them.

  • Scallop Fried Rice (Php 350)

scallop fried rice king chef

Scallop fried rice was suggested by the manager of King Chef.  As I love scallops a lot, I decided to order it.  When our order came, I was looking for the scallops for quite a few seconds.  Then I realized that the dark strands in the rice were actually scallops.  They were shredded and cooked with the rest of the ingredients.  I loved how tasty the fried rice is.  I super appreciate fried rice that we can get away without any main dish.  This is definitely one of those but I find it too expensive though.

  • BBQ Pork Asado (Php 270)

asado king chef

I’m seriously disappointed with this dish.  It was dry and the meat was a bit tough.  I barely touched the dish.

  • Fried Frog Legs w/ Salt & Pepper (Php 320)

frog legs king chef

the picture might not give the dish justice but believe me, it was so delicious!  I enjoyed each bite of the frog legs.  Dipping them in vinegar was heavenly.  One of the better frog legs I’ve eaten so far.  Yummmmmy!

  • Mango Pudding (Php 70)

mango jelly king chef

I wasn’t able to sample this dish when I attended the blogger’s event at Cantonese Soup kitchen back then.  Last friday, I made sure that I wouldn’t miss the chance to finally try it.  It was basically a combination of mango & almond pudding with mango bits on top then served with evaporated milk.  It was a pretty decent dessert.

  • Mango Sago (Php 60)

mango sago king chef

Nothing special but still okay.

  • Cold Fruit Punch (Php 195)

fruit punch king chef

King Chef’s Fruit Punch was too sweet for my taste.  I was actually requesting for additional ice every single time hahaha!  I might just stick with their other drink offerings next time 😛

I believe King Chef is trying to bring in the bigger Chinese restaurant-type into Banawe, Q.C.  The concept is really good as we need to have places like this in our area.  I won’t be surprised if I get invited to a birthday party or wedding reception in King Chef.  It won’t be for long.  Their latest expansion will be opening very soon.

King Chef
989 Banawe St., Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines
(02) 410-4919

Roch Signature



Buying deals from group buying sites became my habit nowadays.  I got one of the best deals by purchasing the discounted promo of Borough.  I’m glad I did because I liked every single dish served to us.

We drove to Podium mall yesterday to dine at Borough.  They say that if you wanted to get a feel of New York, you will be able to find it in Borough.  I was curious to find out.  Of course, I wanted to try out what comfort food in New York tasted like.  I was a bit worried as we didn’t get any reservation but was relieved that there were still empty tables.

borough ambiance

The ambiance of Borough made me feel that a lot of people hang out at the place.  I saw several barkadas enjoying their meal.  I also saw some businessmen talking about work stuff.  There were couples too!  My mom and I went to Borough for dinner but I noticed that a lot of people go there for late-night drinks.

I appreciate the service too.  It wasn’t too hard calling their attention if I wanted more water or needed anything.  I was however a bit sad that they took our fries away without asking my permission :'(  When I asked for it, they didn’t give it back as they’ve thrown it away.  We were done with our meal but I wasn’t done yet with the fries.  I loved it and would want to finish it :'(

We got the best-sellers in Borough.  1 appetizer, 1 main meal & 1 dessert.  Let me share with you what they are:

  • Buffalo Chicken Wings (Php 300)

buffalo wings borough

Definitely the best buffalo wings I have eaten in the Metro.  The flavoring was absolutely perfect!  It was a bit spicy though so for those who isn’t fond of spicy food, you have to watch out for that.  On the other hand, my mom loved the blue cheese dip.  It was a great start for a great meal!

  • All-Beef Cheeseburger (Php 360)

all beef cheeseburger borough

I love the presentation of this dish.  The burger was put in a chopboard with a map-designed placemat on top.  You have the burger bun opened up showing the awesome burger with melted cheddar cheese & onions on top.  On the other side, there was the lettuce with some tomatoes.  I especially love that they put the fries on a brown bag (pretty good thinking out there).

The presentation just wasn’t the only thing that we admired with Borough’s all-beef cheeseburger.  The bun was so warm and I actually told my mom I can eat the bun without anything on it.  The beef was very nice too but I felt it was a bit dry in the middle.  I do know why though coz I requested it to be cooked well-done.  I should have asked for medium-well but still good.  The fries was delightful!  It was crispy and didn’t sog at all.  This dish was a winner!

  • Mom’s Milk & Cookies (Php 190)

moms milk & cookies borough

One of the most unique desserts I have taken.  Mom’s Milk & Cookies has 3 different freshly baked cookies namely: chocolate chip, spiced ginger & peanut cookies.  They were really freshly baked, still hot when served to us.  We were asked to dip the cookies in the milk which was a special blend by the Chef.  I tasted the milk without the cookies and it was yummy!  Then I found out that it was a combination of milk and vanilla ice cream!  Wow!  Out of all the cookies, I enjoyed the spiced ginger the most.  When I visit Borough next time, I will request to have all spiced ginger cookies than assorted ones hehehe 😛

My mom and I enjoyed our food tripping last night.  I told my mom we will eat out every week in a different restaurant.  We’ll try out food places we haven’t been.  Borough was our 1st stop and we weren’t disappointed.

mom and roch at borough

G/F The Podium Mall, 12 ADB Ave., Ortigas Center, Mandaluyong City, Metro Manila, Philippines
(02) 570-8906

Roch Signature

Estero Fast Food


I just got my camera and I was oh so excited to use it.  But before we can go to our Binondo street photowalk, we have to satisfy our appetite first.  There was only one place in our minds and that was Estero Fast Food.

Located beside the ongpin bridge, Estero is definitely a place everyone would love to eat at.  With such yummy yet cheap food, who would not want to?  I remember having eaten at Estero a few times but this was the 1st time I actually took pictures.  So let me share with you our experience 🙂

Ambiance is not really A-grade but I do think that all their food is clean.  People from all walks of life do actually eat there as it’s affordable.  For the ones who are not used to dining at eateries then Estero has another option.  They have a 2nd floor air-conditioned room.  That was where we ate, we were 10 so we really needed the space.

estero ambiance

We did order a lot!  But guess what?  We finished all dishes!  Talk about being hungry 😛

  • Fried Chicken (Php 200)

Estero Fried Chicken

Very sinful but truly delicious.  I like chicken skin a lot and wouldn’t mind eating chicken with mostly skin in it.  I actually appreciate it better.  This particular dish from Estero cooked this dish quite well by cutting the chicken into smaller parts and putting more spices & flour.  Healthy buff won’t appreciate the dish but I always go for tasty food!  This was a winner to me.

  • Beef with Broccoli (Php 180)

estero beef with broccoli

sorry for the blurry pic.  I was really in a hurry because all 10 of us were starving.  I took the picture not realizing that it was not good hehehe.  Anyway, I like the generous serving of the dish.  And I also like that the beef and broccoli were swimming in the sauce.  I always like it that way.

  • Frog Legs (Php 220)

estero frog legs

It has been a long time since I’ve eaten frog legs.  My friends ordered this first and I’m glad they did.  It tasted like fried chicken but it was like eating a snack.  There was one restaurant branding their chicken as “sarap to the bone (delicious to the last bone)”.  For me, Estero’s frog legs suited it more: Sarap to the bone.  Yum yum!

  • Garlic Rice (Php 140)

Estero Garlic Rice

Would you believe we actually ordered 4 of large servings of rice?  My gosh!  I only took like 2-3 spoonfuls as I’m trying to watch my diet.

  • Chopsuey (Php 180)

estero chopsuey

The world’s favorite Chinese vegetable!  I also liked this dish.  They just need to remove the liver hahaha!  I do not know why but I really hate the taste of liver.  Nevertheless, still yummy!  Just like the beef broccoli, this dish also had so much sauce which I really appreciate!

  • Steamed Lapu Lapu (Php 200)

estero steamed lapu lapu

The cheapest steamed lapu lapu I have eaten ever.  They cooked it like a pro, no joke.  It was just the same as the high-end Chinese restaurants but with a big difference in price.  When you visit Estero, do not forget to order their steamed lapu lapu.  The fish wasn’t that big but it was definitely meaty and the sauce was just delightful!

I really wish I go to Binondo often but I don’t.  I hate that there’s always traffic.  I also dislike not having parking spaces there.  I do enjoy joining any Binondo food tour that my friends organize though.  Manila is truly the best place to go for good food.  Estero definitely, is part of the top 5 best dining places. 🙂

Estero Fast Food
847-G Ongpin Gandara St., Sta. Cruz, Manila, Philippines
(02) 734-3279

Real Life Value Investing Example (Philippines Setting)

Finance Dude

As promised from the previous article, here is one real life example of applying our short discussion to real life scenarios:

Pepsi Cola Philippines Inc. (Ticker Symbol: PIP)

Listed on February 1, 2008 on the Philippine Stock Exchange, Pepsi Cola is a company most people are familiar with.  It listed with an IPO (Initial Public Offering) price of P3.50.  The Summarized Balance Sheet as of June 30, 2007 is as follows (figures are rounded off for simplicity):

Total Current Assets P2.3Billion
Total Non Current Assets     4.5Billion

Total Current Liabilities           P3.2Billion
Total NonCurrent Liabilities   0.3Billion

Capital Stock P0.5Billion
Additional Paid in Capital   0.05Billion
Retained Earnings   2.75Billion
Cash from the IPO    4.0Billion
TOTAL NET BOOK VALUE or Stockholders’ Equity After IPO P7.3Billion

Market Capitalization After IPO (P3.50 x 3.68Billion shares) P12.9B

Market Capitalization Formula=Price per share x Outstanding Shares
During the IPO: the Market Capitalization is larger than the Net Book Value It is selling about 1.8 times its recorded value on its balance sheet, as calculated below:

Price to Book: (12.9B/7.3B= 1.8x)

Price to Book Formula=Market Capitalization Divide by Net Book Value

Let’s look at the 2007 Net Income

NET INCOME (for one year ending June 30, 2007) P1Billion

Let’s compute for (trailing) P/E

P/E: P12.9B / P1B = 12.9x

P/E : stock price per share divided by earnings per share (or market cap divided by total net income)

This means that if we buy at the IPO price of P3.50 per share and we expect to have the same 2007 Net Income in the future years, we’ll recoup our investment in about 13 years. Or put in another way, this could give us a return of about 8% per year (1 divided by 13).  This assumes that earnings do not grow or do not decrease per year.

Let’s now look at the dividends:
According to its IPO prospectus, it will have a dividend policy of paying off 50% of its net income as dividends.  So in this case, if it makes 8% a year, it will pay about 4% a year in dividends. You could get 4% return on your investments. This is better than time deposits but less than most long term government bonds.

(An IPO prospectus or red herring tells the public the important information about the company to enable the public to decide whether the IPO is a good one. Of course, I rarely know of investors who read it beginning to end before subscribing. Reading it should give you an advantage.)

Based on the IPO price, it’s an average investment but not an excellent one.

On the day of the IPO, it opened at P3.30 and went as low as P2.90. It traded above P2 until September 2008.  Then the sub-prime crisis came. Most investors panicked, selling irrationally the stocks they had bought just a few months ago. Starting October 2008 the price fell below P2, it even went below P0.70 and traded below P1  from late October 2008 to late April 2009. (Honestly, I didn’t think people would less likely to drink Pepsi products just because there’s a credit crunch going on.)

Although the prices went crazy, the business did not. Let’s look at the Financial Statements for the Fiscal year ending June 30, 2008. (A business year that ends on December 31 is called a Calendar Year when it ends any other month its called Fiscal Year)

Pepsi-Cola Products Philippines Inc.
Balance Sheet
June 30, 2008

Total Current Assets P2.5Billion
Total Non Current Assets     5.5Billion

Total Current Liabilities           P2.3Billion
Total Non-Current Liabilities   0.40Billion

Capital Stock P0.5Billion
Additional Paid in Capital   1.2Billion
Retained Earnings   3.5Billion

Market Capitalization at P1 (P1 x 3.68Billion shares) P3.68Billion
Price to Book (3.68B / 5.3B = 0.69x)
The company is selling P0.69 for every P1 you’ll get using recorded book values. Based on the book value you’ll get about 30% discount.
We can also observe that the company has basically no long term debt. Long term Debt to Total Assets is just about 5% (0.40B / 8B). Long-term debt to equity is just about 7.5% (0.4B / 5.38B)

NET INCOME (for one year ending June 30, 2008) P0.76Billion
P/E Ratio (3.68B/0.76B = 4.84x )
Although the Net Income went down, and assuming it stays low, you still get a good deal.  Here’s why: It would take less than 5 years (about 4.84 years) to recoup your capital if you invest at current prices (in this case P1) and faster if earnings grow. Now based on the IPO prospectus the reason for the IPO was to pay off the company debt and to expand. A company would not normally expand if there would be no room for more demand that is foreseen.

Dividends: The company has a policy of distributing half of the income as dividends.  This means you could get a dividend return of about 10% a year assuming stock prices don’t go up soon.  You would be paid about P0.10 on your P1 while you wait for price to go back up to its right value.

The risks are:

  • Since it’s a bottling company, it could have increased manufacturing costs that cannot be passed on to buyers immediately.
  • Its license may be revoked. (This is unlikely since Quaker Global owns almost 30% of its shares)
  • Poor management. (President owns about 20million shares and no changes in management is seen in the immediate term which means we could expect a similar performance from previous years. Net income should be about P600million to P1billion in the next few years)
  • People stop drinking Pepsi Products (Although this could have big impact over the long term, in the next few years, consumers will typically have a similar consumption habits for the past years.)

What happened:
Starting May of 2009, it traded above P1 and never looked back. On October of 2009 it went as high as P2.50. If you have bought the stock below or near P1 and held it, you could have made at least 100-160% of your investment in less than a year.

I know you might think it can’t be done. But you can do it too. With a little analysis and a commonsense approach, it’s doable. As a matter of inspiration, I did it and so can you!

P.S. Why I chose it: I understood the business. I understood the financial statements. I know the risks and the rewards. The sell-off was not due to the problems of the company but mainly systemic in nature. (Systemic means all stocks in the exchange are simply being sold. People just want to get out.) Of course, I could have picked other stocks which are cheaper and has more growth and better prospects. Although, I did pick some others I chose it for the abovementioned reasons.

Disclosure: I currently do not own stocks mentioned above anymore. This is not an advertisement of the product or the stock. )

About the contributor:
Finance Dude
The writer is a financial planner, investor, speaker and a self confessed cheapaholic. (Cheapaholic- a term he invented to mean someone who is addicted to being very cheap).  Send in your questions.  He will try to answer any questions you might have, preferably on finance and money matters.  Although he does not object to questions on love and relationships, he never had one and due to his extreme cheapness, will probably never have one (In case you’ll send it mistakenly, he promised to forward it to HeaRty).

Disclaimer: Advice posted in this portion is merely opinions and views of the writer.  It does not constitute formal advice.  The writer will not be responsible for any of your gains or losses. If symptoms persist, contact your trusted financial planner.

Cobo Bubble Tea & Snow Ice

Cobo Bubble Tea & Snow Ice

While I was driving along Tomas Morato last week, I saw a very bright spot somewhere.  I was too curious to find out that I turned to the street where it was situated.  Then I found out, there’s a new milk tea place yet again.  This time though, the ambiance and the bright lights amazed me.

Christina & I ended up having drinks there after our dinner.  Cobo Bubble Tea & Snow Ice is one of the many bubble tea places in the Metro.  I can’t believe that new brands just kept popping out hahaha!

What I love with Cobo is the ambiance.  The place is really big and the colors blend very well too!  It’s so soothing to the eyes that you wouldn’t mind hanging out there for a long time.

cobo bubble tea ambiance

  • Cobo Milk Tea (Php 90)

cobo milk tea

I asked for a recommendation and the cashier had only one drink to say, Cobo Milk Tea.  I ordered the cold one with pearls while Christina opted for the hot one.  Even though they don’t have hot Cobo milk tea in their menu, they obliged with my friend’s request.  Very cool.

cobo iced milk tea

I must say that Cobo’s milk tea is pretty much the same as what other bubble tea stations offer.  They let us choose the level of sweetness, either low, medium or high.  As I’m trying to monitor my weight, I’ve opted for low.  I still liked the drink even without its usual sweetness.  For a 16 oz, I believe the price is reasonable.

  • Snow Ice (Php 85)

cobo snow ice

Cobo Snow Ice really caught my eye.  Though I was a bit full, I opted to order one just to try it.  It’s basically flavored shaved ice.  There were a lot of flavors to choose from: original, chocolate, coffee, green tea, honeydew, mango, peanut, sesame & strawberry.  Honeydew was our choice for the night.  It was okay.  Eating it was a bit refreshing too!  Having those cute ‘lil pop pearls made it interesting and enjoyable to eat.

cobo snow ice toppings

I called it pop pearls but Cobo Bubble Tea & Snow Ice actually called it Popping Boba.  Every order of Cobo Snow Ice gives us one free popping boba of choice.  We can also order additional for only Php 15.  I was in awe just looking at them.  They have mango, strawberry, orange, passionfruit, plum & yogurt flavors.  Their strawberry was the best, thus my choice.  The popping boba are pearls but inside it is fruit juice.  So better choose the one of your liking 🙂

  • Cobo Taiwanese Chicken (Php 60)

cobo bubble tea chicken

It’s quite unique that Cobo gave a twist to the usual Taiwanese chicken.  Their Cobo Taiwanese Chicken has 3 variants: pepper salt, mexican and green tea.  They recommended mexican but I still ordered pepper salt.  I’m quite disappointed with their chicken though.  It’s not as tender as I expected it to be.

I’m happy we tried out Cobo Bubble Tea & Snow Ice.  Now, we have more hangout places to choose from after a heavy meal.  I honestly am so tired of coffee shops.  I’m a tea person and I would choose tea over coffee anytime.

roch and chris at cobo bubble tea

Cobo Bubble Tea & Snow Ice
#96 Scout Gandia Street, Tomas Morato, Quezon City, Philippines
(02) 736-5621

Roch Signature