Tag Archive: Don Bosco

Coffee & Saints is a coffee shop run by the Don Bosco PUGAD, a project for migrant youth from all over the country. Other projects include bread making and water filtering stations where young men aged 17-21 gain technical skills and self-worth.






You’d find the coffee shop right beside the Don Bosco Church and within the church compound and parking lot. In my earlier blog, I wrote about a few of its simple menu offerings. Today, the tiny coffee shop now offers home-cooked meals at very affordable prices. Check out these daily offerings through the photos below.








Remember how we used to troop to Amicí just outside the church compound after hearing mass? At the time, it was just a simple “carinderia” with great pasta offerings and many gelato flavors. Well, Coffee & Saints is no trattoria and no, they only offer Pinoy everyday meals. But from the “Silog” series come these comfort food at prices well within one’s budget. Who says you can’t enjoy home-cooked comfort food while staying frugal? Plus the tiny dining place is tidy, packed with ambience, and manned by eager to please migrant youth.







And if you’re still stuck with Coffee & Saints’ original “Silog series”, they’re still available. EVERYDAY. Same with their desserts, except that some of the “Kakanin” are available only at certain hours of the day. Me? I promise to try a new dish every visit along with my “standard daing na bangus”. And if you don’t care for their desserts, ask for the Pugad cookies priced at P20 each. There are cookies flavored with malunggay or ashitaba leaves. The same leaves you’d find in your ginisang mongo and dinuguan dishes.







And oh, don’t forget to try their Barako coffee or the chocolate batirol. The Pugad boys will cheerfully serve them while you’re waiting for your orders. Bless these boys. God bless you too for patronizing this place!







I’m very happy with my parish. St. John Bosco Parish along Arnaiz Avenue and Amorsolo Street in Makati gives so much to its community and involves itself in many issues affecting everyday life. Never passive. Very pro-active. My kind of parish.







Today, I’m even happier. Right within the church compound, on the left side of the church, and claiming a corner off the church parking lot is a coffee shop manned by migrant youth. Coffee & Saints is a one-of-a-kind coffee shop. Just a few tables, a very simple menu, and a cheerful staff who’d bid you “God bless you” as you leave. What’s more, it is very cheap that I had to ask the waiter if they ever make money.






After the noontime mass, I dropped in on Coffee & Saints and ordered a meal consisting of coffee, 3 pandesals and a cheese omelette. All that for P65. You will also find other combo meals like longsilog, corned beef , bangus, etc with a cup of Barako brew for the same price or slightly more. And there’s Colly de Don Bosco, much like French Toast with ham filling. Goes well with a cup of Cappuccino. While waiting for your meal, you may want to browse through some books on saints. Better still, drop in on the Parish Store and buy Fr. Faroni’s books for only P25-75. Yes, that dirt cheap. I bought a couple of books for only P100!







So, next time you are in the area, how about dropping by Coffee & Saints? Bring your friends. Enjoy the pandesals or cookies baked by the Pugad boys. (In 2002, PUGAD started a new apostolate for migrant youth, or poor young men, ages 17 to 21, who take technical skills training at the Manpower Training Department of Don Bosco Technical Institute. Most come from the outskirts of Metro Manila and far-flung provinces and PUGAD has become a haven where they can study and work with ease and comfort.) Don’t expect top-class service though and leave room for the boys’ learning curve. It’s the least you can do to help this Parish which is so committed to the plight of the migrant youth. Help them. Encourage them. Bless them.






Whatever you do, do from the heart,
as for the LORD and not for others…
— Colossians 3: 23

Long before the Don Bosco Salesians sold it, we have been dropping by for their yummy and affordable gelato 🍦and pasta 🍝dishes. Simply called “Amici”, it was more like your neighborhood cafeteria. You get your tray, line up, and point to the dish you like. The “turo turo” concept was not lost in this cafeteria then run and managed by the Salesian priests. You can order a bowl of sinigang 🍵or dinuguan to share with a friend, or try the Italian “longganiza” or sausages, or the roast chicken. My favorite then was their roast turkey. Oh yes, they had turkey! Whenever I needed my turkey fix, I get it here without having to buy the whole bird.




From a simple neighborhood cafeteria, they started selling gelato, then pasta, then pizza. Thanks to the Italian priest managing the place in the early days, my Italian favorites couldn’t be more Italian! The cafeteria set-up meant diners get their own utensils, glasses and pitchers of water. One also orders soda by the liter, to share among friends around the table. The condiments section even included chili flakes, olive oil and Parmesan cheese ….. but not for long.






Delish. Not pricey. Where else can you order authentic gelato for P35 a scoop? Or pizza for P240? My favorite aglio olio was then selling for only P115 a plate with ample dollops of Parmesan flakes. You bet more diners came. The lines grew longer. The diners extended beyond the pack of noontime mass goers in the nearby Don Bosco Church. ⛪The gelato line up counted more flavors. More cakes 🍰adorned the display cabinets.






The Salesians may have been surprised about Amici’s instant success. And running a dining place is truly not within their mission. Sold to the same group which used to own Red Ribbon, the place is now called Cara Mia. But to “old timers” like me, it would still be Amici. The place has since abandoned the cafeteria set-up, introduced more Italain dishes, AND UPPED THE PRICES. That’s the sad part. My gelato is now double the original price. And the pasta and pizza now sell for at least 50% more. Service is far better though. And the place is dolled up and looks much neater. They even have branches too. Plus you can phone in your orders for home delivery.






After being away for some time, I longed for comfort food and found many here. In fact, I dropped in twice in 3 days and ordered the same stuff. Creatures of habit? Perhaps. but judging by the new desserts line-up, I’m sure to pick up new favorites ☺






Amici or Cara Mia is right within the Don Bosco compound near the Church. Entrance via Arnaiz Road (Pasay Road) near the corner of Chino Roces (Pasong Tamo Street). You can park behind the dining place by entering the gate to the Don Bosco Printing Press (between Amici and the gate to the church) or you can park at Waltermart at the corner and just walk to Amici. There is a branch in Ayala Triangle but I much prefer this original place 😊