When in La Union, I’m sure we’re all up for surfing, swimming, and adventures. Of course, that’s all great but sometimes, we just gotta take a chill pill and pause for a while–maybe have a good cup of coffee, or treat the family to a scrumptious meal.
Let me present to you the best place to go for a great cup of coffee in La Union: The Coffee Library. This restaurant-cafe is named as such because of the vast range of coffee choices you can choose from. Yes, it’s literally a library for coffee. If that doesn’t already get your heart palpitating, I don’t know what will!
The Coffee Library opened its first branch in Baguio City in 2015, but because the sea calls them, the owners decided to open up a new branch early this year in San Juan, La Union.
It all started from the love of coffee and the dream of opening a coffee shop. Stephen Zarate, one of the owners of The Coffee Library, went to great lengths just to deliver the authenticity of the coffee that they aim to serve. He collaborated with different coffee shop owners from various countries and even studied the cuisine in Vietnam–in Hanoi Cooking Center.
Authentic coffee from all over the world can now be found in San Juan!
The Coffee Library, being the ultimate go-to place for coffee in La Union, offers all types of coffee from different parts of the world. There’s Italian, Turkish, and Filipino, of course.
They even serve specialty coffee such as their bestselling Egg Coffee. Don’t let the name fool you! It’s actually amazingly creamy and strong. Basically perfect.
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Of course, their main specialty is their many kinds of Vietnamese coffee which are all definitely authentic and a must-try for any coffee lover. Mr. Zarate shares that he chose Vietnamese coffee because of its distinct characteristics. It’s strong but has a unique flavor.
Caphe Sua Da (left), Egg Coffee (center), Caphe Bak Xiu (right)
Their Caphe Sua Da (or Iced Milk Coffee) is for those who like their coffee simply creamy but with the distinct taste of authentic Vietnamese coffee. The Caphe Bak Xiu (or Cofee with Coconut Milk), on the other hand, is a must-try for those who like their coffee sweet and creamy. The coconut milk adds a distinct flavor to the once simple coffee, making it a true party in your mouth.
What’s a good cup of coffee without a hearty meal along with it?
Pho Bo (Php 150)
A favorite of regular customers is their Pho Bo, the classic Vietnamese beef noodle soup that’s just as perfect for a sunny day as it is a rainy one. Believe me when I say that I have never tried any pho as tasty as The Coffee Library’s. It has just the right amount of flavors that your mouth will surely enjoy.
Nem (Php 150)
Another Vietnamese staple that anyone should try at least once in their lifetime is the Nem, or fried Vietnamese spring rolls. These are crispy fried Vietnamese rolls with ground pork, shrimp, mushrooms, and glass noodles matched with the delicious (and authentic) Vietnamese dipping sauce. It’s a great appetizer that will get you excited for the tasty meal that is to come.
Crispy Kare-Kare (Php 250)
If you’re up for traditional Filipino cuisine with a twist, The Coffee Library has their bestselling Crispy Kare-Kare–and it is good. The crunchy addition to this Pinoy favorite is sure to get anyone’s spirits up.
The Coffee Library Cheese Burger
For those of you who want to stick with what you know but still want to treat yourself to something good, The Coffee Library Cheese Burger is the classic burger and fries combo that will make your tummy happy.
Buffalo Wings (Php 180)
The Buffalo Wings is a great choice for an appetizer as well. The tasty spiciness of their homemade sauce will have you licking your fingers after.
Strawberry, Mango, Apple Salad (Php 150)
The Coffee Library also has tasty options for those who want something healthier–such as the Strawberry, Mango, Apple Salad. This salad is by far one of the best salads I have ever tasted in my life, and it actually made me consider eating healthier as long as this is what I’ll be eating. The vinaigrette dressing matches perfectly with the fruits that it all just explodes in the mouth.
Crispy Suman ala mode (Php 95)
And of course, what’s a good meal without some dessert? The best way to cap off all of those meals would be to get the Crispy Suman ala mode. It’s a mouthwatering delicacy of sweet sticky rice wrapped in spring roll wrapper, deep fried and paired with luscious vanilla ice cream. It’s basically heaven on earth.
Smoothies (Php 130)
And because a restaurant near the beach calls for a refreshing drink, their fruit smoothies are a perfect way to cool yourself off after hours of surfing. You can choose between the Sunny Tropical Yellow Smoothie (fresh pineapple, mango, banana, and yogurt) or the Ruby Red Smoothie (fresh strawberry, watermelon, apple/dragon fruit, and yogurt). Either one is great!