Archive for Elian Habayeb

Philippine Music: Tune In To Music and Wine Radio

Posted in All About The Philippines, Duke420 Articles, Philippine Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 6, 2009 by South Arts Festival

Ines Cabarrus and Elian Habayeb of Music and Wine Radio

Ines Cabarrus and Elian Habayeb of Music and Wine Radio

Music and Wine is an event hosted by lovely couple Elian Habayeb and Ines Cabarrus at Martini’s at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel (Manila) every Saturday night. Elian Habayeb provides the music, and Ines Cabarrus provides the wine.

Music and Wine has been going on for over a year already. As can be expected, Elian Habayeb is the resident deejay of the evening, churning up some really cool tracks to maintain a funky ambiance while Ines Cabarrus showcases a few select wines for the evening. If you want to try the featured wines of the night, you’ll just have to show up at Martini’s. But if you want to hear the kind of music that Elian Habayeb plays, then you can catch a dose of it at Music and Wine Radio, which is the official podcast of M&W.

Music and Wine Radio launched their maiden episode on July 30, 2009, with a set put together by Elian Habayeb that featured tracks from Frankie Feliciano, Kerri Chandler, Teddy Douglas, Joe Claussell, Innervision, E-man and many other top house music artists from New York and Chicago.

On their second episode (August 26, 2009), Elian Habayeb featured artists like Tortured Soul, Quentin Harris, BKNY, India Arie, Studio Apartment and Carla Prather in a very ecclectic set of wonderful party music.

On the third episode of Music and Wine Radio released on September 17, 2009 (my birthday), Elian Habayeb put together a wonderful compilation of true downtempo lounge music, fusing together some smooth R&B, jazz and Latin lounge music.

The fourth installment of Music and Wine Radio was recently released on October 1, 2009, and it featured some deep house music exclusive from Chicago, New York and New Jersey.

All four episodes are readily available on the Music and Wine Radio site, and you can easily subscribe to it via I-Tunes, and it’ll automatically be updated on your I-Tunes library and ready for uploading on your I-Pod. Best of all, it’s free!!!

So you can get the latest lounge and house music as masterfully compiled by Elian Habayeb, and very much catch a glimpse of what you would listen to if you go to Music and Wine at Martini’s.

Personally, I really like the sets of Elian Habayeb. I may not be a regular attendee at Music and Wine, but I was there when it launched, and am a frequent customer from time to time. The music never fails to captivate me, and certainly Elian Habayeb really knows how to put a good mix together. And of course, there’s Ines Cabarrus, who is a very dear sister to me. She’s an expert on wines and alcoholic beverages, being an instructor of wine and beverage at the prestigious Enderun College. Yes, the lady knows her drinks, and even has a few cocktail creations of herself at the menu of Martini’s. Both Elian and Ines are also the co-authors of Manila’s Best Kept Restaurant Secrets, which is an awesome coffee table book that showcases some of the best restos in Metro Manila. So yes – Elian and Ines do know what they’re talking about, and are certainly very expert and capable on the field of Music and Wine. It’s what they are deeply passionate about, and you can certainly feel that good vibe on every Saturday night at Martini’s, and you can surely catch a glimpse of that vibe when you tune in to Music and Wine Radio.

What are you waiting for. Go!

Philippine Lifestyle: Manila’s Best Kept Restaurant Secrets Awards Night

Posted in All About The Philippines, Duke420 Articles, Philippine Events, Philippine Lifestyle, Philippine News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 4, 2008 by South Arts Festival

Ines Cabarrus and Elian Habayeb

Ines Cabarrus and Elian Habayeb

Ines Cabarrus and Elian Habayeb shared their passion for good food through a coffee-table book called Manila’s Best Kept Restaurant Secrets. The book, of course, was a hit among food-lovers all over. But then the question that most readers kept asking was – “So, what is your favorite restaurant?”

Elian Habayeb and Ines Cabarrus had a difficult time answering the question, and eventually they left the decision to around 80 capable judges that consisted of restaurant owners, top chefs, educators in the hospitality industry, columnists, food critics, magazine editors and food lovers to hand out points on whom they believed were the best restaurants in Manila.

There were 22 award categories all in all with around 4 top restaurants in each category, and all the winners were presented and awarded just recently at the Enderun College campus in Fort Bonifacio with an event aptly titled – the First Annual Manila’s Best Kept Restaurant Secretes Awards. The MBKRS Awards was billed by Ines Cabarrus as “the Oscars” of Manila’s restaurant industry in terms of the prestige a restaurant would gain from the votes cast by the 80 very capable judges.

Of course, the award itself is a boost to Manila’s restaurant industry, but I personally wouldn’t go so far as calling it “the Oscars.” While it may have been a star-studded cast among the restaurant industry’s finest, there could have been a lot of improvements with the presentation of the awards, which could’ve used a healthy adrenalin boost in the visual area, maybe showing pictures of the restaurants and the concoctions that have made them famous.

Nevertheless, the event had a glorious red carpet that led to a buffet tent that was catered by 10 awesome restaurants, covering every imaginable taste for your palate from Italian, Spanish, Japanese, Asian Fusion, Persian, Filipino and Thai food. There was also an overflow of awesome wines from 3 major wine distributors, and even an after party at the very trendy NUVO right after.

But, of course, the MKBRS Awards are all about the nominees and the awards, and the winners include the following:

  • Best Italian Restaurant – L’Opera
  • Best French Restaurant – Je Suis Gourmand
  • Best Spanish Restaurant – Terry’s Selection
  • Best Continental Cuisine – Lolo Dad’s
  • Best Steak House – Elbert’s Steak Room
  • Best Japanese Restaurant – Sugi
  • Best Filipino Restaurant – Abe
  • Best Thai Restaurant – People’s Palace
  • Best Chinese Restaurant – Zong
  • Best Central European Restaurant – Old Swiss Inn
  • Best Specialty Restaurant – Hussein’s Persian Kebab
  • Best Bistro – Sala Bistro
  • Best Enoteca – Barcino Gourmet
  • Best Fusion Cuisine – M Cafe
  • Best Newcomer – Aubergine
  • Best Restaurant/Bar – NUVO
  • Best Wine List – Cav
  • Best Hotel Restaurant (International Buffet) – Spirals (Sofitel)
  • Best Hotel Restaurant (Fine Dining) – (will update once Ines reminds me who won)
  • Best Hotel Restaurant (Specialty) – (will update once Ines reminds me who won)
  • Best Chef – Ariel Manuel
  • Lifetime Achievement Award – Larry Cruz (posthumous)

Philippines Fun Wall will have an exclusive interview with Ines Cabarrus in the very very near future, and we will talk more about the book Manila’s Best Kept Restaurant Secrets and other things, so keep a watch for that.

In the meantime, of course you are more than welcome to try out the restaurants that were awarded and see for yourself if these restos do live up to their reputation as being the best. You can also view the other nominees of each category at the Manila’s Best Kept Restaurant Secrets Multiply site.

To make an online purchase of the coffee-table book Manila’s Best Kept Restaurant Secrets, then go here.

Philippine Events: DANCE! at Embassy Fly Features Wendell Garcia, Kevin Ruiz and Elian Habayeb

Posted in All About The Philippines, Duke420 Articles, Philippine Dance, Philippine Events, Philippine Lifestyle, Philippine News with tags , , , , , , , , on August 27, 2008 by South Arts Festival
Dance! At Embassy FLY

Dance! At Embassy FLY

I received an invitation to an awesome party at Embassy Fly from my good friend Elian Habayeb, who is one of the coolest people when it comes to deejays, parties and events. Anyway, I’m posting the event invitation verbatim as was written.

All I can say about it is that DANCE! is an awesome concept, and is going to be a hit event. No social butterfly-ing here, just sweat it out and dance!!!


Even though Manila has a vibrant nightlife, this doesn’t necessarily mean it has much of a “dance” scene. Yes, people go out and drink and party, but people are seldom seen really dancing. In other cities, such as New York, San Francisco, London or Sydney, people sweat it on the dance floors of clubs for upwards of 5 hours, resting only long enough to go to the restroom and get a drink to cool them down. There was a time when such dancing existed in Manila, the age of ABG’s and seveneightorange from 1998 to 2003. Although today there are bigger and more posh clubs with louder sound systems and fancier VIP sections, the raw therapeutic dancing is all but nonexistent.

The mission of the organizers of DANCE! – DJs Wendell Garcia, Kevin Ruiz, and Elian Habayeb – is to basically “bring dance back” to Manila by holding a unique monthly party that focuses on the dancing and minimizes other distractions. Similar monthly parties are now being held in major cities all over the world but, aside from a select few great parties, there is nothing really like this in Manila. One look at the full dance floor on any night this event is held and it becomes clear what the organizers are trying to do.

It’s a simple formula really: bring people who enjoy dancing together, get them in a venue with a good dance floor and good sound system, and play the best dance music in the world. The person that isn’t dancing his heart out by the end of the night needs to check if he has a pulse.

DJs Wendell, Kevin and Elian have a rich background in performing at and organizing such dance events. With musical influences from New York and Chicago to Toronto and Berlin, the trio has rocked clubs before and are now ready to do it together in an epic monthly event that is expected to build a considerable cult following. But this won’t be about their efforts, this will all be about you and every member of the underground dance community coming together and leaving the stress of daily life on the dance floor.

DANCE! won’t be confined strictly to its venue at Embassy FLY, it will also reach a potential 12 million listeners on the radio through its live broadcasts on Manila’s #1 R&B radio station WAVE 89.1 FM, and will reach global audiences through its broadcasts on internet radio stations and through coverage on MTV.

Manila’s not gonna know what hit it!

You are invited to the launch party on Thursday August 28.

The time has finally come for the underground dance community to come together

DANCE! -The last Thursday of every month at Embassy FLY

No cover. Dress comfy.

(Live taped broadcast on WAVE 89.1’s “The Blue Room” Saturday 11pm to 3am)

Music and Wine Saturdays at Martini’s Mandarin Oriental

Posted in All About The Philippines, Duke420 Articles, Philippine Events, Philippine Lifestyle, Philippine Music, Philippine News with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 6, 2008 by South Arts Festival
Elian Habayeb and Ines Cabarrus

Elian Habayeb and Ines Cabarrus

For the past few months, lovebirds Ines Cabarrus and Elian Habayeb have been hosting Music & Wine Saturdays at Martini’s Bar in the Mandarin Oriental Manila in Makati City. Their concept is pretty simple – Ines Cabarrus features a wine for the night, and promotes it to be tasted while Elian Habayeb spins some wonderful music to set the pace for the evening. Of course, Ines and Elian do it naturally well.

First of all, Ines Cabarrus teaches wine and beverage at Enderun College, a hotel management and culinary arts school based in the Ortigas Center, and undoubtedly she is naturally fond of the bacchic arts and exercises. She co-penned the coffee table book Manila’s Best Kept Restaurant Secrets along with Elian Habayeb, and together they wrote about some of the best restaurants around Manila and put it together in a book. And for the very privileged few, Ines is also a founding member of the S.S. Alcoholics. YAR!

Next, Elian Habayeb knows his wines as well as an enthusiast for culinary delicacies among other things. Of course, his fame around Manila is that of a deejay, who spins some captivating music that adds that extra oomph to any gathering. And yes, as partner to Ines, he himself is also part of the S.S. Alcoholics. YAR!

Since they started doing this weekly Saturday gig at Martini’s, I’ve had the opportunity to party with them on several occasions. Needless to say, the crowd at Martini’s is an eclectic mix of fun people who really know how to have a good time. Last Saturday (8/2/08), I was there again after maybe a month of being away. Still the same crowd who have gotten to know each other quite well, and still a cozy sociable atmosphere with great music courtesy of Elian and great wines as suggested by Ines.

For that particular Saturday, the wonderful suggestion was an Australian wine called from the Rosemount Estate. The blend labels from Rosemount was what was offered, blend basically meaning that the wine was created by combining two grape varieties to give a distinct flavor. For that particular Saturday, the crowd at Martini’s were able to get a taste of Rosemount Semillon Chardonnay and Rosemount Cabernet Merlot.

I am so thankful to Eric Kahn, the Senior Marketing Manager of Future Trade International, for allowing me to sample the Rosemount wines, which he exclusively imports to the Philippines among with other wines and alcoholic beverages, including Grey Goose Vodka, Bacardi Rum and so much more!

Nathalie Danks and Ines Cabarrus

Nathalie Danks and Ines Cabarrus

The Rosemount Semillon Chardonnay is an excellent light white wine that combines the lively citrus aroma of the Semillon with the fig and melon taste of a Chardonnay. Meanwhile, the Rosemount Cabernet Merlot is a thick red wine that has the blackcurrant flavours of cabernet contrast perfectly with the plummy fruit of merlot. Yummy!

Of course, good wine tastes even better with good company, and I was happy to be in the company of good friends Ines and Elian, Incubus concert posse Miguel and Djuna Rocha, the birthday girl Nathalie Danks (Bless you!), drinking partner Angela Trillo, poker playmate and (just recently) karaoke partner James Calero Aspinall, high school buddy Paolo La’O, master of the universe Gio Bacareza, long-time-no-see friends Jay Cochin, Boompy Martel, Robbie Dinglasan and Matt Lim, (thanks for finding the hoodie I left behind), and lovely gals Clu Alvarez, Tanya Escaler. Oh fuck, I did it, I made it into a society column!

Anyway, until the next time for Music & Wine at Martini’s!