Opening Hours: 11:00 A.M. – 9:00 P.M. (Sunday – Thursday), 11:00 A.M. – 10:00 P.M. (Friday – Saturday)
Phone: (02) 501-3785
With El Niño ramping up temperatures, we need all the cold we can get. And what better — and, dare we say, tastier — way to do that than to sit down with a nice, filling cup of gelato a.k.a. Italian-style ice cream?
We already explained what makes "gelato" different from the usual ice cream. For recap's sake, suffice it to say that gelato is a healthier, but no less delicious, version of the classic sweet dessert you've come to love. Also, plenty of establishments sell gelato around Metro Manila — including our subject for today, Caffe Ti-Amo.
Italian for "I love coffee," Caffe Ti-Amo is actually a Korean brand. It opened in 2010 at Greenbelt 5, where it has since served coffee, gelato and other tasty dishes to hungry shoppers and diners alike. Before anything else, however, let's take a look at what it's like to stay there.
Located near the boundary of Greenbelt 1 and 5, Caffe Ti-Amo is quite accessible. If you came from Greenbelt 3 via the second floor walkway, take the escalator downwards, walk straight until you see the Marks and Spencer shop, keep walking and look to your right until you see the cafe.
Size-wise, the place is all right. It's not so large that it feels more like a restaurant than a cafe, but it's not so small that it feels cramped, either. Whether you come here alone, or with a small group, Caffe Ti-Amo will suit you just fine.
Also, as other bloggers have already noted, the Caffe has a nook called "The Anything Area." As you can imagine, it's a place where you can do, well, anything, as long as it's not too scandalous or disruptive to the other customers. If you need Wi-Fi (and this place provides it for free), you can surf the Net here to your heart's desire.
To sample their offerings, we ordered one Tuna Onion Sandwich (Php125), one Tiramisu Caffelato Frappe (Php140) and one original Medium Gelato (Php145).
As for the Tiramisu Caffelato Frappe, it tasted okay too.
However, it was the Medium Gelato — made of three scoops of different flavors — which proved to be a revelation.
Overall, with the exception of the sandwich, we'd say that the price of the offerings was just right. They're not so high that they'd be out of reach for the ordinary customer, but not so low as to not be competitive with other cafes.
For the most part, the service was great. The moment you start browsing their gelato selections, a friendly server would smile at you and ask for what you want. Also, the sandwich and frappe arrived almost right after we asked for them, which was remarkable considering how many people were there at the time. The arrival of the gelato, which we ordered last for obvious reasons, was no less quick.
We did have one complaint, though. In the middle of eating the sandwich and frappe, we were suddenly approached by a server who asked for the tray back. Seeing as there were no obvious places to deposit the trays, it made us feel like we were being rude, or that we were in a fast food restaurant of sorts. Thankfully, these negative feelings lasted for only a little bit.
Caffe Ti-Amo has been around for almost six years already, and yet it's still a good place for a cold drink or a quick private meeting (except for the service hiccup we mentioned earlier). You can heat up with a nice cup of coffee, or cool down with one of their frappes and gelato flavors. Judging from what we've sampled so far, their signature products are indeed worth the hype. We grant this place an 8.5 on a scale of 1 to 10.