My heart is heavy as I write this: the iconic Chocolate Kiss Café has officially closed its restaurant in the Bahay ng Alumni of the University of the Philippines Diliman campus after 23 years.
As an alumna of UP Diliman, I have created so many memories during my college days in Chocolate Kiss. Even as I graduated, I made time to visit every once in a while to sit down and indulge in their best-selling Devil’s Food Cake.
But with the current health crisis affecting food businesses everywhere, Chockiss is just one of the many casualties.
Ina Flores Pahati, the current owner and daughter of the co-founder of Chockiss, penned a heartfelt goodbye as she officially announced the closure of their longstanding restaurant.
“Difficult as it is to break the news, there’s something about writing it down that brings slight ease. Maybe it’s how seeing the words on paper makes it more real, as if putting a finality to it, and by doing so, urges one past the denial stage of grief, inching towards acceptance, even if by tiny increments,” she began.
She revealed that it was ultimately the loss of their daily dine-in customers and their inability to operate at full capacity that led to their difficult decision.
Amid everything, she shared that it’s not being able to see their customers anymore that saddens her the most. “People felt comfortable to come as they were, and we loved how it was that way. We will miss how on some hours, the Café can be quiet and feel like a respite; then on other occasions, someone can suddenly sit on the piano and serenade everyone in the room, or members of the UP Singing Ambassadors will just break into a song,” she said.
“We are deeply grateful for all the customers who have shown their support for The Chocolate Kiss Café for many years. Thank you for trusting us to be part of your lives’ special, as well as everyday moments. Thank you for gifting our cakes to your teacher, best friend, or crush. Thank you for inviting your loved ones over, even if they considered a drive to Quezon City a field trip! You brought our dining room to life. What a blessing indeed to be warmly embraced by the UP community.”
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“The world was shook this year by the pandemic. Everyone is forced to face a new normal and navigate uncharted territories. Just as my family’s life was unexpectedly changed for the better when the Café opened 23 years ago, I wait in anticipated breath for the best fruit to come out of this pruning. In the meantime, we will go back to our roots of baking cakes…and who knows where that sweet road may lead us,” she ended her post.
Fortunately, we can still be able to order our Chockiss favorites from their Fairview Commissary. They will accommodate orders of their savory meals until August 23, after which they will be trimming down their menu to desserts.
You can check out their Instagram page below to find out how.
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