What is extreme? Extreme is eating 12 scoops of ice cream in one sitting. Extreme is eating four cupcakes for breakfast. Extreme is falling so hard in love with a coffee shop that I eat there twice in seven hours. I’m guilty of all of the above, and so extreme is my latest sin of excess that it should be called “xtreme.”
Note: For the remainder of this post, “extreme” is spelled xtreme.
Xtremely Xpresso Café is a tremendously popular coffee shop in Subic. Calling it a coffee shop however, grossly undermines its totality. It’s so much more than that ”“ it’s a coffee place, a café, a pizza parlor, a pastry shop, and a deli. Now that’s xtreme.
The café opened in 2003 serving primarily espresso-based beverages and accompanying sweets. The moniker, Xtremely Xpresso, connotes the “extremes” the owners will go to give the best to their patrons. Apparently, so xtremely good were their efforts that the management soon expanded their offerings to include a full-service menu from breakfast to soups to salads to pasta to main courses and pizzas.
The café-now-restaurant’s xtreme claims to fame are their pizzas. The oversized rounds are edibles encapsulating xtreme-ness: size. At 14 or 22 inches in diameter translating to 16 slices for the latter, these pizzas are so xtremely popular that during my two visits, I notice that every table has one.
The photo here is of the Big Ben (P649), the king of xtreme pizzas. It’s heaped with bacon, sausage, pepperoni, olives, beef, garlic, mushrooms, and a duo of cheeses. It’s impossible for the waiter to subtly place it on the table; plates and glasses have to be quickly moved as everyone at table expresses their “oohs” and “ahhs” in unison.
Its crust is the perfect compromise for thick crust/thin crust lovers. The crust is thin, but the ends are thick and puffy. Firmly entrenched in the thick crust camp, I’m scolded a few times by my Bin for surreptitiously attempting to slice off a few crusts for my consumption. When it comes to pizza, I prefer two or three toppings at most. I’m not a fan of everything-but-the-kitchen-sink varieties, but this Big Ben is good.
Xtremely Xpresso is loved — very loved — by Subic habitues and visitors from Manila. Having said that, do be prepared for slow service during evenings and weekends. The owners run a tight ship but they’re terribly understaffed. The staff that are there however, are very efficient.
I also highly recommend the eggplant parmigiana (above), chicken oriental salad, and the plata patatas (not pictured) which is really just chunky mashed potatoes deluged in cheese sauce. It doesn’t look like much and the cheese sauce obviously comes from a can, but there’s something about it that makes it impossible to quit picking at it.
Much of Xtremely Xpresso’s charm is its ambience, an eclectic mish-mash of country-style meets bookstore. Look at the photo to understand. Off to the left is the pastry counter. Today, there are some appealing cakes like tablea-chocolate, hazelnut-chocolate, and a chocolate-carrot, my choice.
I’m not expecting much but the cake is just this side of moist with enough chocolate to make its presence tasted. Pair that with the best cappuccino (Lavazza coffee) I’ve had in months, and this dessert lover is happy. Xtremely.
Xtremely Xpresso Café
#1 Dewey Avenue corner Sta. Rita Road.
Subic Freeport Zone
Open for breakfast, lunch, dinner, late night
The Meeting Place
SM City Clark