Kai Cafe: Coffee and Library
I think this cafe is the first of its kind in our town. It is one of those cafes that have a library wherein you can spend time in the cafe reading the books available while drinking your coffee or eating meals you have ordered. It is a nice place to lounge. Some books are also for sale. During my visit a few days ago, there were lots of people and all tables are occupied except one that is for five people. No choice but to sit there. I was surprised how busy this cafe is.
I like the ambience here. The wide space and high ceiling and glass windows help brighten the room. However, when it gets dark, the lighting is not bright enough and not warm enough. Only at the counter did they use warm lighting.
There is a bit of improvement from the last time that I came here. They put more accessories and decorations to the counter and set up merchandise section beside it. They sell organic coffee from Kalinga.
Kalinga's organic Arabica coffee
Homemade garlic chili oil
Kalinga is the province from where the infamous Whang-od (Maria Oggay) hails from. She is a local tattoo artist (mambabatok) and said to be the oldest mambabatok who practices a traditional way of tattooing. Her face is used to promote the coffee sold in this cafe. For 200g of Arabica coffee, you can buy it for PHP150.00. Green coffee beans are sold at PHP100.00 for 200g.
Aside from the coffee, other food products are also sold such as garlic chili oil which sells for PHP100.00 for 75 ml. They also sell muscuvado (200g) for PHP45.00.
These products are all locally made and produced.
I like how the cafe support local products by selling and promoting these in their cafe.
When I arrived, I went straight to the counter to take my order. No one was there. Maybe because they were short staffed but I had to wait a couple of minutes before someone came to attend to me. Note: No greetings, no smile from the girl who came out. I didn't mind that.
I was unsure of what to order because they seem to have not upgraded their menu. I want to try something else.
I wanted to eat salad. That's for sure. I then asked the girl what were the differences of the salads. She said she does not know but according to her it differs in "sauce". I then opted for Asian salad. I asked her what will be the "sauce" (dressing) to be used and she said she does not know. I am having a great day but she probably was not. So I did not mind her lack of customer service and her lack of knowledge of their food. I still ordered the salad.
I then looked at their cakes and ordered the one slice of chocolate mousse that was left. I asked her if they were freshly baked. They were not and she said they were probably 1-2 days old. I then canceled the cake.
So I went back to the menu and decided on their burger and fries and lemon ice tea.
After paying for my order, I then took photos around the cafe.
I didn't have to wait for long before my order arrived. The service is faster than I expected which is good. I also like the note they stick in your burger. The note in my burger was from the good book which is found in Ephesians 4:2 "Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love." Very timely. I was patient that time lol!
Asian salad turned out to be lettuce with chopped cucumber and apple and dressed with Teriyaki sauce. This is good for sharing for two people but if you like to munch on these combo, just like me, then it is good for one.
The burger has good-sized beef patty and I like how it has enough juice. It was seasoned with just enough saltiness. The bun is not too dry. The other ingredients like cheese and vegetables are of enough size as well. The texture of the fries is perfect as well. Hard on the outside and soft in the inside. They don't get soggy even after exposed to open air for a few minutes.
The indicator that I have had too much salt is when my lips and inside of my mouth start to feel sore. I felt this when I finished the burger. There were a few fries left and I tried to finish but failed.
This is not a sophisticated cafe but this is budget friendly.
One other concern I have is the stairs to this cafe. Compare these photos:
The stairs need more lighting. The photo above look darker than it was in real life. For the second photo, I used flash.
I thought they have improved that but it is still the same as from the previous visits that I have been here in this cafe. For those with eyesight concerns, this would be a bit of a problem. You can use the light of your phone if you have. The management should do something about that.
You will be greeted by this set up beside the entrance to the cafe. This is a new install as well because I have not seen this the last time.
Overall, I rate this cafe as 2/5. There is a big room for improvement in customer service, food choices and fixtures.
I have not asked if they have wifi but with the books available, better opt to disconnect. If you came in with friends, then all the more reason not to connect to wifi and enjoy the time with them instead.
Kai Cafe is located at Km. 4 La Trinidad, Benguet (in front of Shell Gasoline Station).
!steemitworldmap 16.439704 lat 120.594500 long Kai Cafe d3scr