Review: Arabica Coffee Shop & Resto

After tasting some genuine Arabic food then having to come back to the Philippines and not be able to get that same taste is frustrating. I rarely get to go food-tripping here with all that’s happening in my personal life, but I am so thankful people at work recommended I try out Arabica, a small Arabic-themed (and owned) restaurant/coffee shop near Magsaysay Avenue. 

Prior to coming, I’d been telling my workmates how much I was yearning for some hummus; it was practically a need at that point for some reason. By the time I finally went with the fam the following Saturday, my expectations had elevated.

The shawarma we used to buy in Oman usually cost OMR 1.5 if I remember correctly, so converted to peso, it’s Php150. It’s cheap at Php 70 so I had no second thoughts getting one for me and my brother (mom has never liked Shawarma because of the smell, haha). We also got a plate of pita bread and some hummus (oh yeess).

(Sorry for the photo quality - I only had my iPhone with me.)

Now, the taste. Mom asked the waitress if the shop was authentic Arabic cooking, and according to the lady, they only served authentic Arabic food and that the cook was either Arabic himself or well-trained. After a bite of the Shawarma and a dip into the hummus, I can definitely say that Arabica is 70% genuine.

The Shawarma almost tasted the same with the fries and veggies, but I couldn’t taste any garlic sauce in the mix. The consistency of the sauce was also very runny, and would often drip from the end of the wrap. While that doesn’t affect my rating much, I wasn’t expecting it to be so runny, haha. 

As for the hummus, it was also almost the same, though they could’ve added more flavor. I’m quite sure measured chick peas, tahini, and the right amount of sesame paste would’ve made this 100% awesome. I think it’s 65% accurate. 

So yeah, I haven’t tasted their other Arabic food items, so I can’t speak for the authenticity of the others (perhaps an updated post soon?). All I know is that Arabica satisfied my cravings more than I expected. 

Before our orders came. Not the happiest, most satisfied I’ve been haha.

Oh yeah, my mom got a cappuccino at an Arabic restaurant. Not sure how to feel about that, but okay. 

Visiting Arabica was a Saturday well-spent. If you’re ever in Naga and get the urge to grab some Arabic food for lunch or whatever, I suggest trying out Arabica. It’ll help satisfy most of your cravings, haha. 

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