ClickTheCity feature on PhoebeCakes last Dec. 2009 :) – revisited!

23 Apr

Phoebe Cakes

by Trix Deseo
posted on Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Neither I nor Phoebe Estrevillo knew Phoebe Cates, initially. If you personally know the both of us, I’m sure that won’t come off as a surprise. (Hint: We can don high school uniforms and get pass the guard. And oh, guards like asking for our IDs at the cinemas.)

On the other hand, people in their late twenties (and onwards) are almost always the ones who gush “Ay Phoebe Cakes? Parang Phoebe Cates!” and this has many times turned heads and worked well in favor of Phoebe, the baker. “My dad suggested the name. He said, why not Phoebe Cakes, parang Phoebe Cates. I had no idea who she was!” she explained. Naturally, she did her research and was impressed by the actress’ charm. Hoping her dad is right about the brand making a great recall, she adopted the name for her brand. Fast forward to several months later, I’m sure she’s glad she did.

Phoebe Cakes
Simply irresistible! And no, we’re not talking about the drop dead gorgeous Phoebe Cates of the 80’s. Pastry Chef and entrepreneur Phoebe Estrevillo proudly showcases her labor of love.

It was primarily the name that set Phoebe’s bakes apart from the rest of the gazillion home-bake brands that we were planning to feature. Being familiar and a fan (I think) of the then teeny-bopper actress (Megan Fox to this generation, I presume?), my editor asked me to research further about Phoebe Cakes and sample the products.

I was quite surprised then when I found out that a bubbly girl, only a few years ahead of me is the one behind the brand. Just like most of all homebakers-turned-business mogul-stories, it all started with the perfect recipe for a cookie. “I started way back in high school. I used to sell my chocolate chip cookies to friends,” Phoebe related. From then on she started developing more recipes, got officially schooled (She’s a pastry chef, by the way!) and joined several bazaars. It wasn’t until just last month when she finally branded her products under the name Phoebe Cakes.

To date, Phoebe Cakes offers 9 items, frontlined by the pioneers of her line: Live: Chewy Chocolate Brownies (P145 per box of 6pcs.) and Love: Chocolate Chip Cookies with Cashews (P150 per 8 pcs).

Chewy cookie fans (myself included) now has something else to consider putting inside the cookie jar. Phoebe’s version of the chewy chocolate cookies wasn’t able to knock off my favorite cookie brand from its spot, but it was altogether great in its own way. Average-sized diameter-wise, the cookies are spread thinly, with bits and pieces of chocolate chips and cashew nuts forming pleasant bumps on top. Although I found them a little too thin, therefore a tad short in terms of “chunkiness,” the chewy factor impressed me — be it fresh off the oven (the version I initially tasted) or fresh from 3 days in the fridge.

Live (Chewy Chocolate Brownies) is by far one of my favorites among the ones I’ve tasted from Phoebe Cakes.

Exterior of the brownie is deceivingly flaky and dry but wait ’til your teeth sinks in to its moist core.

Apart from it being wonderfully ironic– crusty and fudgy at the same time, this brownie is as simple tasting and heartwarming as a home made goodie could get.

Aside from the above said best selling traditional products, Phoebe Cakes offers other variants for the more adventurous pastry lovers.

A zesty dessert might not appeal to you until you try the Spice Surprise or the Spicy Double Chocolate Cookies prized at P85 for 6pcs.

Who knew that cayenne peppers and black pepper would go so well with cinnamon? Better question is: who knew it would be a real addicting treat? I was at first hesitant to try the spicy cookie but after I heard Phoebe’s story how customers in the recently held World Trade Bazaar gave in to their curiosity and ended up buying (or hoarding, for that matter) all of her prepared canisters, I knew I had to sample it.

First flavor to expect is the woody sweet combination from the cinnamon. That will last for a little while when the cookie is still crumbling in your mouth. Once swallowed, expect faint tingling of your taste buds care of the cayenne and black pepper. The transition from sweet to spicy makes it a whole new experience altogether.

If there are two more things to look forward to in Phoebe Cakes’ menu, that would be the Red Velvet (Stuffed Red Velvet Cookies) priced at P175 per container (6 pieces) and Love From Above (Pistachio White Chocolate Chip Cookies) at P145 per canister (8 pieces).

This is the first time I’ve tried Red Velvet in a cookie form. I have high regards for the flavor since it is one of my most craved desserts. Anything Red Velvet is supposed to be good, I thought. Phoebe’s Red Velvet cookies did not fail me.

Unlike the Chocoloate Chip cookie I mentioned earlier, this is stuffier– more like a compact crinkle. But just like the brownie, this little wonder is tough on the outside but soft and gooey in the inside. In its core is the gooey cream cheese. However, a little more of this will make it even better.

Last I’ve tried is Pistachio White Chocolate Chip Cookies. Pistachio plus White Chocolate in its name is already enough to make my mouth water.

The shape, size and consistency doesn’t differ much from its cousin chocolate chip cookie. However, the wonderful combination of pistachios and white chocolate drops spells a different flavor and sensation altogether. I have never had pistachios in my cookies as walnuts and cashews are used more often so tasting another variant was a good surprise.

It would’ve been great to try the Chocolate Truffle Cake and the Apple Crumble Tart (both popular items too) but they were unavailable that time. Anyhow, my latest food discovery, thanks to Phoebe Cates, was what I’d consider a good find. I wonder what I’d find next. Michael Croutons? Curry Underwood?


PhoebeCakes: Back & Baking!

8 Feb


Flour, butter, cinnamon, cocoa… Sugar, spice and everything nice (on my beloved cupboard).  My trusty oven and over-worn mitts and aprons = HOME SWEET HOME. After almost a year and a half, I am FINALLY re-acquainted to my first love: food and baking. And you know what they say, “The second time’s even better than the first.”

I can’t begin to tell you how I was when I first turned on my x-year-old oven again to bake a couple of brownies and cupcakes. It was something I just stopped doing for a while but still had the same amount of passion. I didn’t cry. I did however, smile the widest smile. Fine! maybe I did shed a tear. I had missed it SO MUCH!

I am more than thrilled to be handling PhoebeCakes again. Hands-on, 24-7, and with an additional service to boot: Catering. Yup! As everything, from the look, to the products, to the service is ready to proceed, I have realized one thing that I want Phoebe Cakes to be known for:

A dear friend recently shared to me that whenever she felt down or needing of a mood booster, she buys a slice of cake. Why? Because it would always remind her of celebration. Cake is equivalent to birthdays, weddings, anniversaries plus all the other special and memorable occasions. Cake brings people together. And cake creates great memories with family and loved ones. So when she eats a slice of cake, it reminds her of all this, and suddenly the world becomes a better place to live in again. CAKE means CELEBRATION.

After hearing this, I realized that she may have given out the very outline of the foundation I envisioned PhoebeCakes to have. I want PhoebeCakes to be a part of celebrations and witness great memories. Remembering that and the delicious products made with passionate creativity, and served with excellence. Every occasion, big or small, a piece of pastry to the grandest catering event: a celebration indeed!

Whether you want to be reminded of special memories, you’re creating new ones, or just plainly in need of a mood booster, a bite of PhoebeCakes will, just like what my dear friend said, “make you feel good and suddenly that world becomes a better place to live in again.”

Let’s celebrate! That’s PhoebeCakes!

For bookings and orders contact Phoebe at 0926-7205317