The sweet and perfect little place to get away from it all when you’re right in the middle of everything.
Pixie Sevilla-Santos and I were classmates in high school though we didn’t know each other very well. Funny how fate works and as professional career women, we have more to talk about now or, as she jokingly reasons, “It was all about boys back then kasi.” Now, she’s an accomplished pastry chef schooled at the CCA in San Francisco and at the CIA at Greystone in St. Helena, California. She’s also a chef-instructor, food stylist, and consultant.
Forget Me Not is the name of Pixie’s home baking business named after the 5-lobed blue flower, her favorite, and this year, it’s also what she calls her new bakery-café. “I had had it [the business] for 12 years already, supplying cakes to other people, companies, and it was time to take it to the next level,” she says of her decision to open Forget Me Not Specialty Cakes. Situated in the busy pulse of Makati’s heart, the walls are white and blue, the latter mimicking the flower’s hues. An intimate space, it swallows me up into its sweet fold as soon as I enter. A glass display case is an immediate lure, vibrant colors of indigo, green, and fuchsia melding with comforting browns and yellows.
I’m torn and tantalized by the selections on offer but there are two cakes you must try here, the highlights of Pixie’s repertoire. The first is the Dulce de Leche Cheesecake (P125/slice; P995/ whole; also see cover photo), a multi-awarded dessert and the store’s runaway best seller. While abroad, Pixie was on a dulce de leche flavor phase and wanted to translate this caramelized milk and sugar mixture into cheesecake. Nestled into a buttery cookie crust is a creamy filling – it envelopes the mouth before another familiar flavor rings through warm and sweet, dulce de leche. Amazingly, the amber syrup doesn’t appear as swirls but is baked right into the cake itself, its caramel warmth tasted but not seen. Incredible.
Moving from one golden and yellow dessert to another, it’s the brazo de Mercedes, no, Remedios. “We’re a bunch of Remedioses,” Pixie explains, “and I’m the third. Brazo de Remedios (P95/slice; P650/roll) is my Mom’s creation, a brazo that isn’t too eggy.” Hmm, I have no problem with eggy anything, such is my propensity for eggs, but I’m willing to suspend my disbelief. The fluffy meringue sticks to the roof of my mouth and as my tongue pushes it forward, the custard comes in, again not too sweet and yes, not overly eggy.
Situated right on bustling Arnaiz Avenue which everyone still calls Pasay Road, Forget Me Not is a haven for moms to while away their time before the kids’ dismissal, and is a quieter place for corporate people to have lunch. Students come here too, attracted they are to the free Wi-Fi, munching on cookies when they remember to rip their eyeballs away from the screen. During my time with Pixie, I have a naughty urge to scare the bejeezus out of this group of teenagers at the next table who are so engrossed in their respective laptops that they pay no mind to one another. But I remember that I’m an adult – most of the time at least – so I focus on my Guava Bar instead.
It’s my favorite of everything I taste at Forget Me Not, this Guava Bar. The name however makes my forehead furrow in doubt. Guava Bar?? Pixie says she makes this for “…people who want to have dessert but not feel guilty about it so I loaded it up with oatmeal and other good stuff so you don’t feel the guilt, just the satisfaction.” Sticky on first bite, then chewy, the bar’s contours consist of rolled oats held together maybe, by honey. More chewing and a current of guava reveals itself followed by a sprinkling of salt tasted on the sides of my mouth. Mmm. What a concept, uniquely inspired and unique to Forget Me Not. It’s unforgettable.
A plate from Forget-Me-Not: Sea Salt Caramel Brownie, Crinkles, assorted macarons, Bronco, Guava Bar
I can also recommend Pixie’s Macarons (P30/piece), especially the Filipino themed flavors: ube, mango, and calamansi, which is sour enough to “power your pucker.” The Sea Salt Caramel Chocolate Decadence (P125/slice; P995/whole) is a mouthful to say but satisfies me on all fronts when I want a straightforward chocolate cake. I also like the Broncos (P55/piece), one of those muffin-brownie-cookie hybrids also known as brookies or brooksters. Baked in muffin tins, the brownie base shoots up to enfold a dollop of cookie dough in its embrace. Each bite is different: more cookie, more brownie and back again. Pixie also serves some wonderful savories, my hands-down favorite being the Hamburgitas, mini burgers that taste exactly like the ones from a legendary hamburger chain. Simple and nostalgic, just like the time I spend with Pixie at Forget Me Not.
Forget Me Not Specialty Cakes
928 Arnaiz Avenue (formerly Pasay Road), Makati
A few meters away from Hotel Celeste beside Tian-Tian and Forque, a Spanish restaurant.
Open weekdays, 8-8; Weekends, 9:30am-8pm.
02 869 5333
*Thanks to Forget Me Not for some of the photos used in this article.