Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that this blog of ours would reach so many people, in such a short amount of time. Which is why every time someone tells me - whether through Facebook, Twitter, or in person - that they read my blog, I can't help but beam with pride.
Tiny is one particular reader that reached out to me through Instagram. It's a funny story how it happened, because nothing like this has ever happened to me before. Instagram alerted me that I got a mention from a user that I was not friends with. When I clicked on it, I wasn't allowed to view it because her profile was set to private. I was actually in the middle of doing something so I thought nothing of it. The next day, when i was fiddling around with Instagram again, I noticed the alert was still in my notifications. I took a good look at the little thumbnail and noticed something.
It was a picture of me!
Of course it got me wondering if I knew this person or not, and what my picture was doing there, which I recognized from an old blog post. I added her as a friend, and I saw that she was a Pinay reader that was based in another country, and was just telling everyone that she enjoyed reading my blog.
I'll tell you this right now.. It was a truly wonderful feeling.
Since that day, Tiny and I have been corresponding through Instagram and Facebook, and have become friends. We made plans to finally meet when she came back to Manila for her Christmas vacation.
When she asked where we could meet up I couldn't but think to myself.. "Where else would you meet up with a girl named "Tiny", but at "Poco Deli"!
Though it's not far from where I live, I had yet to go to Poco Deli. My blogger friend, Tales From The Tummy has been urging me to go for quite some time, but I never have the time (I have a ridiculous backlog of posts, and almost every weekend is booked! Sosyal, di ba?). Poco Deli rang true to its name.. The place is really small and cramped, and there was no room for a stroller. The seats are comprised of stools and benches, which are "backless", so it was a bit difficult bringing an infant with us.
Funnily enough, this was a week before they announced the opening of their bigger branch at Ayala Triangle. To me it felt more like a tavern than a deli. it did have a rustic feel to it that I enjoyed.
I'm a bit claustrophobic so I don't feel comfortable in cramped places,but I made an exception for Poco Deli. But something, (apart from meeting Tiny and her bro of course), swayed me to stay (You'll find out in a minute).
Rina ordered the Pumpkin Soup (P95) to start off her meal. After giving it a try, it clearly paled in comparison to the other soups I've had in the past. I found it a tad bland, lacking a bit of seasoning and creamy sweetness that I look for in a pumpkin soup.
Poco Deli endeared themselves to me by serving Bacon Rice with their meals. In fact, practically all of their rice dishes includes a scoop of steaming white rice and rather generous helping of crumbled crisp bacon on top.
I really enjoyed this, but I personally think this would have been even better if the Bacon Rice was Bacon Fried Rice (Rina thinks it would be too oily, but whatever).
Tiny ordered the Irish Beef Stew (P280), which was tender slices of beef, "simmered for hours in a dark beer, which brings out its unique caramel flavor". This was actually quite good, with the taste of beer subtly evident, but not too overpowering. The flavor of the beef is still the star of this dish.
Rina really loves Christmas ham, and was still a little hung over from our holiday celebration, so I KNEW she would enjoy the Jamon De Oro with Eggs and Bacon Rice (P250). And boy I was right. It was smoked beautifully, with just a touch of sweetness that melded perfectly with the eggs, and the saltiness of the bacon rice. This was pretty fantastic.
But screw the ham. I was here for the BACON SLABS (P280). This wasn't your average ordinary restaurant bacon. This was thick cuts of smoked bacon, served with two eggs and Bacon Rice. And it was absolutely amazing.
I won't lie to you.. After a couple of bites, I had to have it sent back in order for them to cook it more. It was really so thick that I wanted to make sure that there were no raw bits left. But after they brought it back, there was nothing I could complain about. The meat was juicy, the fat to meat ratio was just perfect, and the flavor was phenomenal. This is something I could probably eat everyday.
I felt like an idiot for not trying this earlier, especially since it seemed like a dish that was specifically made for me.. Almost like we were soulmates (Don't judge us, our love is pure).
For dessert, Tiny ordered the Red Velvet Cupcake (P65), which was actually quite good. The strawberry flavored cake was moist and tasty, and the cream cheese frosting had the right tartness to it.
Rina, as expected, could not pass up the opportunity to try Poco Deli's famous Blackout Chocolate Cake. I was thinking of skipping this, because I expected it to be a dark chocolate cake, and nothing more.
Instead, It turned out to be a little slice of heaven.
The Blackout Cake featured a layer of luscious caramel, sandwiched inside an incredibly moist chocolate cake and another layer of Valrhona Chocolate, with bits of Belgian Chocolate sprinkling on every bit of the cake's exterior.
I couldn't think of a better way to cap off an amazing meal!
What did I think about Poco Deli? I got two words for you.. BACON. SLABS. I fell in love with this restaurant almost by default.
Since owner Joy De Leon sharpened her sausage making skills under the tutelage of Mickey the awesome but sadly, now defunct Mickey's Deli, I plan to go back for their sausages, particularly the Wagyu and Lamb, as well as their pizzas, which I hear are pretty spectacular as well.
I shall return, Poco Deli!
Also, great news.. Poco Deli has a new branch at Ayala Triangle.. Which isn't too far from from my office!
Don't be surprised if you see me there during lunch breaks hehe..
Meeting Tiny (And her brother) in person was surreal for me. I was truly amazed with how familiar she was with my posts hehe.. It was really heartwarming to meet someone who enjoys my work, and although she doesn't look like it in the picture above (hehe), it was nice to see her excited reaction when I gave her and her son a humble Thank You gift for all the support she's been giving me!
Isn't she and her son adorable?
It was wonderful to finally meet you, Tiny!
Hope to see you when you come back!