EXCLUSIVE: Inside Rachel Peters' Well-Loved Siargao Café, Bake
First-timers in Siargao are typically recommended to experience island hopping in Guyam, Naked, and Daku Islands, Sugba Lagoon, and Cloud 9—the list goes on. But apart from the beautiful sights in Siargao, its food scene is worth checking out, too. Metro.Style visited one of the well-loved cafés in this paradise, and it made our vacation even more special. Welcome to Bake.
Owned by Miss Universe - Philippines 2017 Rachel Peters, Bake has been serving breakfast comfort food for tourists and locals in the area since October 2016. From its cozy and chic interiors to its simply delicious offerings, it's easy to see why it has become a favorite hangout spot of many.
Bake specializes in breakfast food. Now, who doesn’t love a big plate of a protein-packed meal, a chicken and waffles combo, or a mean cup of joe anytime of the day? Most of us do, and it’s the opportunity Rachel saw when she decided to finally pursue what she calls her "passion project."
The beauty queen and entrepreneur first visited Siargao in 2015, and distinctly recalls this scenario: “I remember getting up early for a boat trip one morning, rushing to get a cup of coffee and after four stops at different places coming to the conclusion that no one, yet, catered to coffee lovers.” Back then, Rachel describes the island as “really raw,” with only a few restaurant options around. With this experience, she devoted the following months conceptualizing the coffee shop of her dreams.
Beach, coffee, and interior design are the three things Rachel loves the most, so all these elements contributed to the whole inspiration and concept behind Bake, which is a short walking distance from the oceanside. All day, the aroma of freshly brewed coffee and the stylish and homey interiors put guests at ease.
“Bake is a place that provides visitors with a place that is a respite from the heat of the island, giving guests the comforts of home, hence the sofas, bright colors, aircon and good coffee,” Rachel tells Metro.Style.
Entering Bake is like entering your own living room. “I’m a Pinterest freak so I looked around a lot and tried to incorporate many different styles I like,” Rachel shares. And the result? Sleek, modern, and visually rich interiors, with touches of contemporary furniture and vibrant accents—from plush sofas to warm wood elements to potted and hanging indoor plants. One won't be able to resist its charm; every nook is Instagram-worthy. Oh, and you certainly won't miss Bake’s resident mutt, Kobe, who you may catch playing with his favorite toys or lounging in front of the counter like a boss.
“Our Big Breakfast is the ultimate comfort food and energy boost that many surfers choose in the mornings. We also did a Pinoy version for foreigners to be able to try our breakfast favorites! Our chicken sandwich, Kimchi Fried Rice, and chicken tacos are a few of my other favorites,” Rachel, a brekkie lover, says. There are also freshly-baked pastries for those who love sweets—must-tries are their fudge brownies, chocolate chip cookies, and cakes whose flavors vary daily.
But the star of Bake’s incredibly yummy menu is definitely the so-called "Rachel’s Fave:" The minced chicken with a spicy, citrusy flavor dish is an ode to her childhood in Thailand, and it’s addictive whether you choose to pair it with rice or lettuce cups. Bake's coffee selection is pretty impressive, too; Rachel’s go-to cup is Mocha. “I feel like coffee is one of the things that all cultures and nationalities have in common. It brings people together and so that was our main priority—to serve a good cup of coffee,” she says.
Despite her numerous commitments in and out of Manila, Rachel is a hands-on businesswoman. Together with her boyfriend Migz Villafuerte, they constantly exchange ideas on how the place should evolve—from the setup to the menu even to the tiles used! But Rachel, being the passionate and hardworking lady that she is, juggles a full-time job in Manila while handling most of the important things at Bake, such as ordering stocks from suppliers, sending the goods to Siargao every few weeks, and even playing barista or waitress at the café! She credits part of the success of Bake to her Auntie Andy and Elsie, who run the café when she’s not around.
This modern woman is truly an inspiration, showing everyone that you can achieve your dream as long as you put your mind and heart to it.
Photographs by Cielo Fernando