Cool down this summer with our picks of cold drinks and desserts that are sure to satisfy any taste buds.
It’s been a hot summer in the Philippines. And when we say hot, we mean HOT. For the past few weeks, temperatures have reached between mid-30°C to as high as mid-40°C. Due to the pandemic, it’s also not that easy to take a trip to the beach to cool off or go somewhere outside like the mall to cool off. Luckily, there are a lot of places that offer cold drinks that are both delicious and will make you feel refreshed like as if you jumped into a pool. Here are some of our picks of cold drinks and desserts you should try.
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If you want to cool down with a cold drink that also looks Instagram-ready, 11:11 has got you covered. This drink shop currently has four locations around the Metro and serves a wide variety of drinks from milk teas to milkshakes they call Whipee, coffee-based drinks, fruit teas, and many more. Try their classic milk tea, or you could go for a Mango Whipee, and there is also the Strawberry Take Me Home that comes in a reusable bottle.
Local brand Alt Scoops’ oat-milk-based ice cream is made with vegan ingredients to make for a dessert that is both healthier, but still rich, smooth, and creamy. This dairy-free ice cream has an assortment of flavors from dark chocolate, to strawberry, choco hazelnut, and more. You can buy these by the pint that will cost around 350-375 pesos.
If ice cream bars are your thing, Bubu Bars offer the comforting taste of ice cream made with healthy ingredients. Not only do these handcrafted bars look great, but they taste great too. The plant-based and dairy-free bars are vegan friendly and come in three flavors; banana infused Little Monkey that is topped with a Biscoff crumble, Nuts For You which is a chocolate-vanilla flavor mixed with nuts and topped with salted almond praline bits, and Fancy Pants, a combination of strawberry and dark chocolate topped with dried strawberries. One bar costs 220 pesos each and is sold in batches so make sure to stay updated to know when the next batch is coming.
Carousel Creamery can be considered a Greenhills institution. The ice cream parlor is known for its over 101 flavors available every day. Diverse flavors and classic staples are available here. If your feeling adventurous, you can try their beer and chicharron, cough syrup, or wasabi flavors. They also have classics like chocolate, mango, and strawberry on hand. If you can’t go visit the store, they also offer delivery via 3rd party apps where you can buy flavors by the pint, half-gallon, or gallon.
When the milk tea craze hit the Philippines in the early 2010s, Chatime was arguably one of the first brands to benefit from the phenomenon. This Taiwan-based milk tea chain has over 2,500 stores worldwide and is a favorite in the Philippines. Their creamy milk tea combined with their fresh and savory tapioca pearls make for a great combo that serves as a great refresher on a hot day. They also offer shakes and fruit teas which you can customize however you want to fit your taste.
CoCo Fresh Tea & Juice
CoCo opened its first store in 1997 and more than two decades later, CoCo is still satisfying customers with its wide assortment of drinks. Pre-pandemic, it was a regular sight to see lines of people outside CoCo stores around Metro Manila. But just because the lines are gone does not mean their great and fresh taste is gone too. Their Panda Milk Tea remains a classic with its mix of their rich milk tea with black and white tapioca pearls. They also offer teas, juices, milkshake-like slushes, and more if you want to try something different.
Craft Your Own Milk Tea PH
If you’re feeling adventurous and want to mix and match your own milk tea, this brand offers that experience. They describe themselves as a “third wave milk tea shop” that specializes in DIY Milk Tea Kits and other specialty beverages. They sell milk tea kits of different flavors and other mix-ins that you can customize to make your perfect drink. You can buy classic flavors like a brown sugar boba milk tea kit or you could mix things up with a taro pudding milk tea kit, the choice is yours.
You can’t go wrong with a classic and Dairy Queen is that kind of dessert that both kids and adults can enjoy. You probably grew up eating Dairy Queen and you may still be eating Dairy Queen to this day. Their wide variety of world-famous Blizzards will satisfy any sweet tooth. You can also go bigger with an Ice Cream cake that now comes in a tin. They also offer their classic ice cream sandwich and Dilly bar for a quick and easy dessert.
FRNK Milk Bar
FRNK Milk Bar is a fairly new drink and dessert shop, but in just a short amount of time, it has become one of the trendiest and most popular drinks and dessert shops in Metro Manila and there is a reason for that. Not only do their drinks look great, but they also taste great too. FRNK describes themselves as milk reimagined and they succeed on that front. They have dozens of drinks and variations on their menu that appeal to a wide variety of tastes. There are also artisan donuts and baked goods for sale if you want something to eat with your drink.
Ice Scramble PH
Some of you may remember eating ice scramble, or iskrambol, as a kid, a dessert that you could buy on the streets that is both visually attractive and tastes delicious. If you want to relive those childhood memories and cool down for the summer, try getting a tub of ice scramble from Ice Scramble PH. A 1-liter tub costs 120 pesos while a 2-liter tub is 200 pesos. both versions come with skimmed milk, chocolate syrup, sprinkles, mini mallows, and chocolate droplets. You can extra toppings if that is what you want.
Iskrambol is a childhood-favorite dessert. Milk tea is a modern-day favorite drink. Kahatea decided to mix both drinks for the best of both worlds. This local milk tea brand has been around for less than a year and its menu is filled with local drinks themed around local ingredients and flavors. Aside from selling the first-ever Iskrambol Milk Tea in the country, they also offer drinks like Baguio (Ube Halaya), Alfonso (Tablea/Dark Chocolate), Guimaras (Mango Lychee), and many more local inspired drinks.
Kurimu get’s its name from the Japanese word Aisukurimu, which directly translates to ice cream in English. This local ice cream brand describes itself as being “centered around minimalism, attention to detail, and focus” and they succeed on every front. This is hand-crafted ice cream at its finest. Their 8 currently available flavors, from Black Sesame to Kinako Vanilla, and Chai Latte all hit the sweet spot with their taste and texture. Kurimu is on the pricier side at 420-450 pesos per pint, but it’s worth every centavo.
Macao Imperial Tea
When Macao Imperial Tea first landed in the Philippines in 2017, it soon became a favorite and the brand quickly expanded to over 200 stores in the country in a few years. Their cheesecake line of drinks like the cheesecake and pearl milk tea and cheesecake oreo is what put them on the map. But they also offer fan-favorite drinks like Cream Cheese Oreo Milk Tea and a classic Black Pearl Milk Tea. Their sodas, meanwhile, not only look great, but they are extremely tasty and refreshing too. The best part is that most of the drinks come in a reusable cup that can be recycled.
Manila Creamery specializes in making gelato with and based on local ingredients and flavors. You can get flavors like Black Sesame, Buko Pandan Cake, Davao Chocolate, and many more. They also offer dairy-free options. We also recommend that you try their bestseller, the Mango Float Parfait which is made with mango gelato, pandan whipped cream, and crushed Grahams.
Run Rabbit Run x Merry Moo
This one is for the adults. Alcohol and ice cream may sound like a weird combination, but they can taste good together if done right. Run Rabbit Run, one of Manila’s best bars, and local ice cream brand Merry Moo have teamed up for this alcohol-infused collaboration. The Floppy Ears Cocktails ice cream gets its name from the cocktail of the same name served in Run Rabbit Run. The desert is a mix of the drink’s flavors and fragrant notes with Merry Moo’s trademark, smooth and delicious ice cream. You can buy this limited edition desert in a 473ml Pint Size that will set you back 600 pesos.
Super Scoops Dairy Free
If you want to beat the heat with some dessert and feel good about it, Super Scoops Dairy Free may be just what you needed. This local vegan ice cream brand uses coconut and soy milk in their ice cream. This then makes for a more environmentally friendly way to make ice cream. The end result is a dairy-free ice cream that won’t overwhelm you and can be just as satisfying if not more. They currently have 10 flavors available with some of those being Dark Chocolate, Strawberries & Cream, Almond Cookie Dough, and the award-winning Choco Brownie Madness.
The Lost Bread
The Lost Bread is known for having some crazy dessert combinations. It’s one of the few places in Manila where you can buy a milkshake with a whole chocolate ice cream bar in the shake or alcohol-infused shakes. They offer a variety of fun flavors like Cookies & Cream Cheesecake, Choco Banana Smoothie, 90s Kid Mix, and Fun Fair Popcorn. They even do collaborations with other brands such as their new Lily’s Peanut Butter Brownie Fudge. 1 Pint can cost between 250-300 pesos though they do sell 1L tub versions.