#CafeAntonioLB

Sunday, July 27, 2008

This is a No WiFI Zone

At first we thought having WiFi in our cafe would be a great idea. Since we're catering to the people of UPLB, having the Internet available at our cafe would be very convenient for our customers.

But look, this is Los Banos, there is already an abundance of Internet cafes in every corner. At Cafe Antonio, we want our customers to come home and experience the real essence of a coffee shop. You sip your brew, bite on a sandwich, then read a book, play some games, or just talk with your friends and scream at the top of your lungs with delight. All this with no alcohol, just good 'ol ever-reliable caffeine.

Here's what you can do in our cafe aside from ordering and eating:

READ - Our book collection include: The Chronicles of Narnia Series, The World's Most Series, Pugad Baboy comic books, Captain Underpants, and our most read bookLET, The More the Manyer. There are lots more, I just can't remember coz I have a migraine.

PLAY - Our games include: Monopoly, Boggle, Skribbage, Uno, and Chess. We'll try to buy other games.

JAM - We have an acoustic guitar you can borrow and a bongo drum from Banaue. You can also use the toothpick dispenser as a shaker. Just inform the staff if you want to have a free gig and we'll give you the platform.

GO TO THE BATHROOM - We have a comfort room and a wash area.

TAKE PICTURES - You can ask the picture-crazy crew to take your picture and post it on this blog or our Multiply site (www.cafeantonioelbi.multiply.com).

PLAY WITH THE MENU - You can request infinite combinations and customizations with our add-ons. And those we like we can add to our regular menu.

If we had WiFi, customers would just be glued to their laptops.



Watch how Jabez, Retz, and the rest of the Cafe Antonio gang passes away the time at www.youtube.com/cafeantonioelbi

Friday, July 25, 2008


Since there's nothing to do this weekend, I suggest that everybody go see The Dark Knight, if you haven't seen it yet. And if you have seen it, watch it again. There's nothing interesting happening at the cafe these days, except maybe we had our highest sales in 3 weeks yesterday. The Rocky Road's a hit, maybe because of the abundance of toppings. We ran out of vanilla syrup, so the Vanilla Sky is willing to accept new syrups, i.e. Choco-Mac Sky, Hazelnut Sky, etc. Trust me, I'm working on new flavors. I read Appetite Magazine everyday and get inspiration from the cakes I see on a certain shop I pass by to everyday.

Notice...The Joker looks like he just ate a Dunkin Donuts Strawberry-filled. Amazing acting from Heath Ledger, grrrraaabe!!! Wow I think it's my first time to talk about non-cafe stuff. I should do this more often. Hahaha!


Monday, July 21, 2008

More Work for Us

Our janitress, Ate Vivian, has chicken pox. She's absent for a week so Dan, Retz, and I have to clean the cafe once again and wake up early to wait for the ice. So much for the good life... nakakapagod nanaman...

I have no time to blog, my apologies to loyal Cantonnites.

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ChocNut Frothiccino, anyone? We think it's a good idea. Watch out for it. Just tell us if you want it for next month's Flavor of the Month. I have to think of another term for Flavor of the Month, it's kinda old.

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It was Joyce's birthday last week, we surprised her at Mio Cucina. Dang, the pics are in my laptop. We gave her 2 cakes from Karen's Kitchen, try it for yourself on your birthday (www.karenskitchen.com.ph). I'll just grab some cafe pics at our Multiply site (www.cafeantonioelbi.multiply.com) and put it here to fill some space:



Here are the balloons that Ate Faye surprised Joyce with.



Oh there's Yell! Yey!

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Here's the Rocky Road Overload, we put crushed Graham instead of nuts



Yes Mon, that's for you! We take customization to the highest level!

Speaking of customization, you can now:

1. have your teas served either hot, iced, or blended;
2. convert all 6 Cafe Antonio Specials to hot drinks;
3. pump any sauce and syrup or a combination of both to your iced lattes;
4. blend your iced lattes
5. all of this for NO EXTRA CHARGE! Watda?!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Cafe News

We Have eXtended Our Social Network!

After Friendster, YouTube, and Blogspot, we created a Multiply (http://www.cafeantonioelbi.multiply.com/) account. Not yet contented, we opened a MySpace (www.myspace.com/cafeantonioelbi) and FaceBook account to reach out to more people and spread the miracle that is Cafe Antonio.

The impact of the July 6 article in the Philippine Daily Inquirer was huge. People came in telling us that they read about us and decided to give our humble cafe a try.

I hope the article gave "kids" our age a ray of hope that even at a very early age they can start their own businesses and be their own boss. And it's not just a story about taking huge risks, it's a story about having faith in God that He would not let His children down once they sacrifice everything for His will.

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It's been a busy week, I had no time to blog because I had to train and accompany our new janitress, Ate Vivian, every 10 in the morning. But this week Retz, Dan, and I will be coming to work at 2:30 pm so we can have more time to prepare before we open at 4 pm.


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The Blueberry Cheesecake Blended Cream is no longer available for the month of July! We have ran out of blueberries and I guess it would take a long time before you can try one again. Lucky are the few who've tasted it! Jeg was the last person to order it.

We'll try to work on new flavors for next month. Just post your suggestions on the FORUM or comment box.
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Join our forum by clicking "create account" on this address: http://www.network54.com/Index/91910. Post your food and beverage suggestions or just simply share your experiences at the cafe with other customers.

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We will post our videos on our YouTube channel, www.youtube.com/cafeantonioelbi, this week, if Dan can upload them on time. We would also like to expand our online network and try to open a Facebook and MySpace account. Please support us by posting our web banner on your websites. Thanks guys!
We would be turning 3 months old on Monday, we have come a long way thanks to you guys!
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Know us more...
Cafe Antonio - DUMAGUETE's Page
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Here's the HTML code of our WEB BANNER, just copy and paste it on your websites:
<<a href="http://cafeantonioelbi.blogspot.com/" target="_blank"><img src="http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e54/DrmsrXXIII/cae-banner-001.gif" border="0" alt="cafe antonio,cafe antonio elbi"></a>

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Thanks to You, We're in the News!

After only two months, Cafe Antonio - Los Baños is already in the news! We were featured in yesterday's SundayBiz (page B3) section of the Philippine Daily Inquirer. We would like to thank our family, friends, and customers for making Cafe Antonio what it is today, imagine what could happen after a year or a few years. Truly, without God's grace and favor the cafe would not be this successful at a very early stage of the business. Thank you Lord!

We would also like to thank the author of the article, Ate Niña, for choosing the cafe to be the subject of her article.






Fresh grads turn to brewing in Los Baños
By Niña Catherine Calleja


Southern Luzon Bureau


First Posted 20:33:00 07/05/2008


LOS BAÑOS, LAGUNA -- Believing that capital is not a hindrance for those geared towards entrepreneurship, three graduates of the University of the Philippines (UP) here chose to run their own business instead of finding high-paying jobs.
Nica Argañoza, 22, Jabez Flores, 21, and Joyce Hernandez, 21, were classmates at the UP Rural High School in Los Baños.


After high school, the three parted ways not knowing they would again meet and become co-owners of a coffee shop.



Argañoza took a course on hotel, restaurant and institution management at UP Diliman and graduated cum laude, Flores is a sociology major at UP Los Baños, and Hernandez took BS Nutrition at UPLB as well and is now a licensed nutritionist.



Now, the Los Baños branch of Café Antonio, with original branch in Dumaguete City, is a favorite hangout place of UPLB students and professors searching for desirable coffee and food after classes.



Located less than 100 meters from the UP main gate, it has become accessible to members of the UPLB community.


Running for two months now, Café Antonio-Los Baños offers different blends of coffee, pasta, sandwich and pastries.


Lucky jobless
“It seemed time had conspired for us to meet,” Argañoza says.
In September 2007, Argañoza resigned from her five-month work as a catering officer in an international coffee company in Ortigas while Hernandez was about to find work after the results of their board exam were released. Flores was giving so much of his time in studying coffee business and being a “barista.”


A barista is a person trained in preparation of various coffee drinks.


It was Flores who was enthusiastic in putting up his own coffee shop, Argañoza says.
“Jabez was craving for it and we were just persuaded. But we eventually liked the thought of having our own business,” she says, noting that after Flores graduated in college, he participated in the Heny Sison Culinary School’s coffee class and the barista workshop at the Highlander Academy of Coffee in Singapore.


While the three had no jobs, a family friend of Flores asked him to help him out in his coffee shop, the Café Antonio in Dumaguete City, owned by a corporation mostly composed of the Piñeros.


“We thought it would be a good idea to help them and also observe how to manage a coffee shop,” Argañoza said.

“But we were confused after our two-month stay in Dumaguete if we would pursue the coffee shop business in Los Baños,” she says.

The would-be owners thought about it for a while and questions like “How can we raise the money needed? Where is the location? How will we do it?” popped up.


Argañoza recalls that while walking along the street near UPLB campus known as Grove, they saw a vacant space, strategic for a coffee shop, a few blocks away from LB Square, one of the favorite spots forUPLB students’ gimmick.


With the owner’s insistence for them to decide within two weeks, the three partners decided to go on with their venture and started raising the needed funds.

Capital
The owners had to pay P90,000 for a three-month advance and deposit for the place. They also needed another P300,000 for the renovation, and P200,000 for one espresso machine.


They raised the money by asking their relatives and friends to be shareholders of the Café Antonio Corp. and promised them their investment would soon have yields.


“You should be a risk-taker but the business should be well-planned,” she says. “If you’re resourceful, this will be easier.”Customers’ acceptance


On April 14, Café Antonio opened to the public after renovation was completed and everything needed was in place.


Flores says the community in UPLB accepted them quickly that on their first month, their shop was always crowded during peak hours (4 p.m.- 5p.m.)
People say the design of the shop attracts the customers, others also say they like the taste of the coffee.


Café Antonio’s design was a combination of Spanish and modern style. They put antique-looking windows made of wood and capiz on the walls. The lights are also Hispanic but there are modern touches like the couches, tables and glass door.
Flores says they wanted the shop to be a place of comfort.


“We are getting new regular customers every day. Some of them drink coffee here at least thrice a week,” he says.


He adds that visuals like posters and stickers really matter in the business. “It should be visually appealing.”


Another medium, Flores says, is the Internet. They use Friendster, Blogspot, and Multiply in promoting Café Antonio and as means to get feedbacks from their customers.


Café Antonio also placed a stand for books and magazines to stimulate an educational environment.


According to Argañoza, working as the owner is quite difficult because in established companies every paper work has a format, but in their own business, they have to make their own system.


“At this point in time, we just want to improve what we have and try to give the best service that we can give. Eventually, we will be known by word of mouth,” she says.


Copyright 2008 Southern Luzon Bureau. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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FLAVOR OF THE MONTH (JULY)
Blueberry Cheesecake Blended Cream - Php 140.00 (super creamy non-coffee based drink with real blueberries and crushed Graham crackers).