In Search of Good Coffee: At Dennis Coffee Garden

I have been in a lot of stress lately, and the only thing that can save me is a cuppa joe. There are only three things that keeps me running in a good mood: coffee, tea and chocolates. I know, I know. I’ll probably die young. But… I just couldn’t resist their call!

So anyway, I haven’t had any decent sleep (only had a couple of hours or so) because I had to finish a Hello Kitty birthday fondant cake. I was quite happy with how my cake turned out. After I delivered my cake, I decided to treat myself (and my sister, because my sister always, always, ALWAYS has to be included) with a cup of good coffee. Yeah, I know–lack of sleep, craving for coffee; I will need a doctor soon. My sister, being the lakwatsera, knows where to find good (and cheap) resto. So she volunteered to be my tribute, I mean, my guide to find delish but within-the-budget food.

Enter Dennis Coffee Garden. Whenever I go to Baranggay San Roque, I always pass by this sign  12375728_1537511749906634_1390835617_o

989487_1537518666572609_443665157_onear the intersection of San Jose Road and Camins Road. I was curious at this place–the exterior of the establishment looks like a house, and although it is along the main road, residential houses still lined that area.

My sister informed me that Dennis Coffee Garden offers good but affordable coffee, and by affordable I mean for only 35 pesos per cup. “Weh, baka naman 3 in 1 lang ‘yan?” I asked her. She just did that eye-rolling thing and responded her famous line: “Whatever.”

The interiors were cozy. There was a of section of air-conditioned room, an area outside near their garden, and the one where we opted to stay: on its second floor, loft-like set up.

So okay. She was not kidding me when she said it was only 35 pesos. When the waiter (and I had to say this, their waiters are very friendly and accommodating, a plus factor for me) handed us their menu, I was, like, “Oooh! Love it!”12399225_1537511433239999_713171025_n

Kuya waiter was kind enough not to roll his eyes like what my sister did.

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First thing I ordered was their Sulu Coffee (Kahawa Sug) for only 35 pesos a cup accompanied by their native pastries, which, according to their menu, is collectively called “Bangbang Sug.”

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Kahawa Sug

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I love the coffee’s rich aroma–it filled my nostrils, tempting me to take a sip. I am not exaggerating when I say it was THAT good. The rich flavor plus the wonderful aroma satisfied my craving for a cup (or two) of coffee. My sister finds me weird because I take my coffee black, no sugar and cream. I told her it was the best way to drink a coffee. She still finds me weird.

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Bangbang Sampler

Their Bangbang Sampler 1 consists of Apam (a kind of native pancake), Panggih-panggih (which tasted similar to a doughnut without the sugar) and my favorite, Daral (A crepe-like delicacy  with sweet coconut for filling).

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Daral

We also ordered pastil (35 pesos for 3 pieces), which looked like an empanada but filled with bean sprouts (or bihon) and served with spicy sauce.

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Pastil

And of course, the one my sister has been raving about all through out the day: Satti (marinated chicken cubes on sticks served with sweet and spicy sauce, and rice cooked on coconut leaves.) Satti is very similar to a Malaysian Satay.

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Satti

There are several resto and eatery in Zamboanga that offers satti, but theirs tasted different. A typical satti sauce is semi-sweet, thick, and very spicy, like those served in Morning Sun and Jimmy’s. But at Dennis’, it has that unique blend of sweet and spicy, sort of in equal proportion of sweetness and spiciness. And like what my sister had pointed out, it tasted like a spicy Alavar Sauce.  A plate of satti costs 60 pesos.

Over all, I was satisfied with our food experience. Their meryenda set is very affordable. Although, I have to agree with my sister that their rice meals is a bit pricey 125-135 per order) compared to other rice bowls served at other local resto in Zamboanga. If you’re probably living outside of Zamboanga City, 125 pesos is an okay price. But here it is already expensive, especially if you can find a restaurant that offers a sizzling plate of beef kulma for only 128 pesos, good for two to three persons.

All in all, I enjoyed their food, most especially their coffee. Yes, its their coffee. You have got to try their coffee. And what’s so great about this place is their business hours–they open as early as 0630H until 2230H. And they have free wifi! Great for those people who are fond of posting At The Moment photos on their IG.

And I just had to take a photo of this one:

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If you happen to be in Zamboanga, or planned to visit the city, you can find Dennis Coffee Garden at San Jose Road, Baliwasan, only a five minute tricycle ride from Zamboanga International Airport.

(All photos taken using a camera phone.)

 

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