Tim Hortons opens in Manila

From the north to the tropics, popular Canadian coffee and doughnut chain Tim Hortons finally opens in Manila.

I always thought that Tim Hortons was a restaurant rather than a coffee shop. So my expectations were crushed when I learned otherwise. I thought that by having the Canadian brand here, I would be able to sample authentic poutine!

I was not disappointed, however, because I was surprised how it has more choices than regular coffee shops, has unique doughnut flavors, and coffee prices that are super affordable.

Tim Hortons uses 100 percent Arabica beans
Regular brewed coffee starts at P70

Tim Hortons was founded by hockey player Tim Horton in 1964. It first opened in Hamilton, Canada and now has more than 4,000 branches worldwide. The Philippine branch is the first in Southeast Asia and was brought here by TH Coffee Services Philippines Corp., headed by its president and CEO Enrique Yap.

“Filipinos love coffee and doughnuts. We feel confident we’re going to succeed in the Philippines. Also, Filipinos like to try something new as well. We believe we got an excellent product and service. We make things fresh in the store, which is another key advantage that we have,” he says.

The modern interiors
Tim Hortons’ modern interior

Mr. Yap says that about 90 percent of the menu is originally Canadian. Ice blended drinks are something unique in the local menu because Filipinos love their cool drinks. The hot drinks are a must try, too. The “double-double” is a Canadian coffee standard popularized by Tim Hortons. It’s a cup of coffee with double cream and double sugar. The blend is perfect for the Filipino palate.

Drinking coffee here will not break the bank. Regular brewed coffee starts at P70 for a small and goes to P95 for a large (venti size) while cappuccino starts at P95. The priciest hot drink on the menu is a large café mocha at P130.

When it comes to doughnuts, there’s a lot to choose from. Recommended flavors are the classic honey cruller, vanilla dip (peppered with colorful sprinkles), and maple glaze. Present during the launch, Miss Universe Canada 2016 Siera Bearchell recommended the sour cream glazed doughnut. Classic doughnuts cost P40 each and P380 for a dozen while the signature doughnuts cost P50 each and P500 for a dozen.

Tim Hortons Philippines offers iced and iced blended drinks, items the original Canadian menu doesn't have
Ice Capp (cappuccino) P135

But probably the most popular are the Timbits or doughnut holes. The Timbits cost P10 each and P350 for 50 pieces.

The menu also extends to lunch meals. No rice meals, however. The lunch menu is composed of sandwiches and wraps. Must try is the steak and cheese panini, chicken bacon ranch wrap, and crispy chicken sandwich. Combo meals include a small iced coffee and potato wedges.

Tim Hortons also serve fresh salads (Caesar and garden) and homestyle soups (chicken and vegetable).

The coffee shop is set to open eight more branches in Metro Manila by June of this year.

Read my Manila Bulletin Lifestyle article here.

The first Tim Hortons branch is now open at the upper ground level, Uptown Place Mall, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City / Facebook/TimHortonsPhilippines

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