A few posts ago, I listed down some of the newly opened and upcoming restaurants and cafes in Cebu City. Since it's been a while, some of the establishments I mentioned have already started to operate and draw in guests. One of these new establishments is the (most likely) Korean-owned Picasso Cafe that I've started to enjoy.
Situated on the corner of Escario and Gorordo Streets, G and I have been waiting for this cafe to open so we could stay there while waiting for my laundry to finish every Monday morning. (Side note: I do my laundry at Lavada Queen's self-service option so I no longer have to fume about missing pieces of clothing). But since my laundry shop moved, staying at the cafe would not be a feasible option anymore. For adventure's sake, however, G and I decided to visit the newly opened cafe on a relaxing Wednesday afternoon.
Upon arriving, I was immediately reminded of a secretive club which led to an upstairs bar. On the front door, there was a server waiting and asked how many we would be. When I answered, she opened the door and it led to an empty room with a staircase on the side. The staircase led up to a second storey filled with a selection of regular tables and small private "rooms" where you'd have to take off your shoes so you can sit on the pillows.
We opted to go with one of these Indian-style-sitting tables so we could plug in my laptop (I was decorating our wedding invitations). Knowing the Cebu crowd, the owners of Picasso Cafe prepared his establishment by providing enough spaces with a plug and even had three different Wi-Fi networks available.
Despite its charming Coffee Prince-esque appearance, the cafe seemed to be inspired from a bar to me-- minus, of course, the dark room and the laser lights flashing every now and then. Apart from the remarkably familiar entrance, the cafe offered a selection of hip songs on their playlist with the likes of Meghan Trainor's All About That Bass and other new songs.
Considering we went there on a Wednesday afternoon, the area was pretty cool that I had to go to the restroom twice. When we passed by on a weekend, the cafe was jampacked with youngsters who had nothing better to do than relax and chill on a summer day.
Picasso Cafe really is about their coffee. And there's a reason why I don't really post a lot of cafes with the same concept on my blog. Most of the time, I get disappointed with the different cafes that open in the city because they are just the same as the other Korean cafes available. Apart from their interior and design, they usually tend to offer only toast cake and waffles on their menu along with their coffee. Growing up in a city where we had options like Calea and Felicia's, cafes to me were a haven where I could relax and enjoy a slice of cake and drink my coffee.
And thankfully, Picasso Cafe did not disappoint. They had a good selection of cakes and sandwiches that you could really devour when you're hungry. I found the sandwiches to be a bit too pricey, however. But since we were there before dinnertime, we decided to grab a cup of coffee and a slice of cake to share.
Hot White Mocha Coffee (P120)
The coffee that I ordered was the Hot White MochaCoffee. It was good but unfortunately, I wasn't informed that there was sugar already so when I put in the contents of a sachet of sugar, I regretted making my impulsive decision. It was already too sweet for me. Nonetheless, I did enjoy its taste because it wasn't as strong and bitter.
G, meanwhile, ordered the Americano, which is similar to brewed coffee. I wasn't able to try it but the only observation I can make from the two cups of coffee we had were that the sizes were pretty big. It was also priced okay considering it was in a cafe. It was cheaper than Starbucks but definitely more expensive than a 3-in-1 sachet. (Kidding here).
As for the cake we shared, it was indeed the highlight of my afternoon.
Back when I was in College in Bacolod, I used to frequent a coffee shop for their cake: Blackout. It had layers of Oreo sandwiching layers of a marshmallow-tasting cream that could be from a jar of Jif and nuts, and it was all coated in a moist chocolate sauce. I loved this cake so much that for my 19th birthday, my (then) boyfriend bought me an entire cake which I obviously shared with everyone. That cafe has long closed and the memory of that perfect cake will always haunt me whenever I spot its name on the menu. For years, I've tried testing out other Blackout cakes offered by other cafes and restaurants but to no avail.
So when I saw that specific cake on the display case of Picasso Cafe, I was curious but scared to disappoint myself yet again. But when I asked the waitress what their bestseller was, it was that exact cake that she pointed out to me so I decided to give it a try.
Blackout Madness (P150)
They called it the Blackout Madness and while it was nowhere near the cake I used to dream about, it was pretty close. It definitely was the closest to it that I really enjoyed it so much. The outside was covered by vertical chocolate wafer-ish pieces that melted whenever you bit into them. The inside had the similar layers (minus the marshmallow cream) but then when my fork hit the bottom, I was surprised to see that there was a little bit of the marshmallow cream inside the cake.
I was in heaven.
The memory of my college years all came flooding back and for once, I am reminded to be adventurous and not classify each cafe from its facade-- despite how much it resembled a bar/disco.
Picasso Cafe is situated on the corner of Escario and Gorordo Streets, Cebu City. It is across Golden Peak Hotel. They are open every day from 9:00am to 3:00am. For inquiries, you may call them at 0906-363-2394.