Candid Coffee: From cart to cafe

“Candid is about being filter-free, non-pretentious. It’s about being honest and straightforward.”

by: Audrey C. Alegre

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“Coffee is simple yet so deep.” That’s how Lorenzo Castillo, owner of Candid Coffee, describes it. “Candid is about being filter-free, non-pretentious. It’s about being honest and straightforward.” Lorenzo recognizes that not everyone is interested in coffee science, “and that’s all good.” For Lorenzo, good coffee is coffee that tastes good to you.

And so with Candid Coffee, Lorenzo aims to bridge third wave concept with second wave business model, making specialty or premium coffee more accessible to all types of coffee drinkers.

Since 2017, Candid has provided the morning brew for patrons of the bustling Sidcor Sunday Market in Eton Centris. Amidst hundreds of stalls selling items from clothes to cooked food early on Sunday morning, Candid found its place bringing premium coffee closer to the people.

Consistent with this commitment, Candid has a coffee cart for private events such as weddings, birthdays, and even brunch house parties. Through its Office Pantry services, companies can enjoy fresh coffee and pastries right inside their premises.  

Candid Coffee roasts their own beans, ensuring quality and freshness. As supplier to other coffee shops, roasting small batches on demand, Candid also helps coffee shop owners manage their cost and inventory.  

From coffee cart to showroom

Candid’s travelling cart gained a following, and people started asking for the shop location. At that time there was none, but with increasing demand, Lorenzo saw the logic in establishing a headquarters that is open to the public. Now, people can all visit Candid Coffee’s roasting commissary and showroom along Congressional Avenue Extension in Quezon City.

This cozy showroom has their roasting machine in full display. Beside it is the coffee bar, opposite a table ledge with high stools — the perfect spot for those who like spending me-time with a good book and a good cup of coffee. More social types may find their niche at the carpeted area with a few seats and a small table. With two of the four walls made of glass, natural light fills the space.

Candid’s must-try drinks are Single Origin, 3rd Wave Coffee Hipster Starter Pack, and D.O.M. True to its name, the Single Origin uses beans like Mt. Apo and Atok, brewed via pour-over. The 3rd Wave Coffee Hipster Pack is a set of three:  a hot Americano, a hot Babycino, and a cold Dirty Horchata. The D.O.M. or the featured Drink of the Month can range from a Dark Peppermint Mocha to a Vanilla Cold Brew topped with almond milk foam.

Non-coffee drinkers also have plenty of choices, such as Thai Milk Tea, Matcha Tea, Lemonade, and others.

From showroom to cafe

The roasting commissary and showroom that has been serving coffee drinks, has recently added savory food items, turning the place into a full-fledged café.

Staying true to its brand identity, its food menu is also straightforward. “Simple products, but paying close attention to its preparation and details”, Lorenzo says about the food items that he personally developed for the café.

The Morning Toast is evidence of this ‘paying close attention to preparation and details’ that Lorenzo speaks of. Freshly toasted sourdough, slathered with Greek yogurt and shredded carrots, layered with French beans sautéed in garlic butter, topped with poached egg and sprinkled with Himalayan sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Simple ingredients put together thoughtfully and prepared carefully.

They also serve 100% Sourdough Pizza. Their menu reads “This organic leavener is a prebiotic that contains vitamins, enzymes & micronutrients that cannot be found in commercial instant-yeast-based dough. It can help with digestion and regulate blood pressure.” Sourdough Pizza comes in three flavors: Creamy White Pepperoni, Garlic  Smoked Cheese, and Chicken Pesto.

Completing the maiden food menu is the Grilled Chicken Pasta. This dish is made up of grilled chicken breast (marinated in buttermilk, espresso powder, and herbs and spices) and pasta of your choice: Alfredo, Marinara, or Pesto.

If you’re the health conscious type, you would appreciate the calorie and protein count indicated on the menu for each dish.

With coffee drinks priced between P90-P180 and food between P120-P180, Candid Coffee’s café is a no brainer go-to choice for premium coffee and satisfying meals.

Honest and straightforward. A perfect environment to enjoy your cup of coffee.


Candid Coffee
Haven Building, Congressional Avenue Extension, Quezon City
Instagram: @candidcoffeeph

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Candid Coffee: From cart to cafe