Of the non-obvious, middle Earth, and interracial marriages

I was still in grade school when Tagaytay Highlands was being constructed. Papa was a contractor of the then up-and-coming vacation estate and a few times I went with him to see how construction was progressing. My memories of those days were hazy, but I recall dusty roads, never-ending piles of soil and a really good view of Tagaytay Ridge.

This used to be cable cars, if I'm not mistaken.

I never really got to visit after construction finished. There have been plans but none materialized. That is, until last Saturday, when I attended the wedding of the decade (as in it took a decade for the wedding to finally happen :-P): John and Joy’s.

The sacrament was held at the Midlands’ Madre de Dios Chapel. The church was quaint, the size of which reminded me of a slightly wider Caleruega. The ceremony was equally no frills and  straightforward but was still very romantic and emotional. Funny how both their vows had the words “worst enemy”. Hahaha! Kidding aside, I was sooo happy for the couple and was relieved I was able to hold it. Andami na kaya umiiyak!

At Madre de Dios. Simple, yet lovely, wedding.

Reception followed at Midlands Veranda. We waited for quite some time before getting in the dining area. There was the mandatory photo booth, but that hardly got noticed (at least by me). I had a grander time looking at the adjacent golf course and the magnificent view of both the lake and volcano of Taal just as sunset was setting in.

Where the rich and famous play.

Even without the once-planned Hollywood-esque signage, you can still spot Taal.

I’d like to apologize for not posting the actual wedding photos. I haven’t had any clearance from the couple yet. :-P (The photos and videos were lovely, by the way. It helps that John and Joy are a very good-looking couple and the backdrop the venue offered was perfect.) With that, let me post pictures of our sumptuous dinner instead. I was keeping my fingers crossed that true-blue Pinoy dishes will be served, but alas, our plates were filled with Western cuisine.

Looking at the guests, it was undeniable that the food was awesome. The salad greens were crisp and the salmon fresh. The soup was light yet satiating. The main course was superb! The prawn was grilled perfectly, tender and sweet, while the steak was juicy and was prepared medium well. Some of us thought the dessert was too sweet, but it capped the meal just right.

Norwegian smoked salmon with Tagaytay greens and balsamic vinaigrette: hidden from this angle, a pile of julienned carrots.

Cream of broccoli with Danish ham: basic and unadulterated.

Surf and turf of beef tenderloin and prawns, garden fresh vegetables and pesto flavored mashed potatoes

Yey! Pink meat! :)

Chocolate Toblerone cake: ganache, mousse and cake base.

The beautiful cause of the off tone of this post's photos.

Just before dinner ended, Ish quipped: “Eh, paano magiging Sooo Pinoy entry ‘to?“. I was stumped, actually, until I realized most of the ingredients have been locally sourced. The greens and vegetables were, as stated in the menu card, from Tagaytay, the beef was from Batangas and the prawns were from Cavite. That fact coupled with a romantic February night in a Tagaytay veranda and the company of the people you love, I think you can’t get any more Pinoy than that.

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