There is a new playground in the city! Noriter is literally "playground" in Korean translation.The first Noriter Cafe originally started out in Dumaguete City but they changed the name to 2Story Kitchen. Back in college, we used to be regular customers of the said cafe for a variety of good reasons. So now that we are based in Cebu, we kind of missed that quirky Korean cafe vibe and at last after a few months of anticipation about this cafe coming to Cebu, it has finally opened late last month.
The moment you go in, you'll immediately notice that this isn't your ordinary cafe here in Cebu. The interior is cozy and youthful. It's no wonder that it has been attracting a lot of young people, the last time we dropped by, it was packed by a bunch of them. If you're the kind of person who likes to go to a cafe to read a book or to do your homework and prefer a peaceful quiet environment, this might not be the perfect place for you on a weekend. During these days teenagers of all forms and character gather together creating an aura of energy and excitement rather than the peace and tranquility that some of us might prefer.
Unlike your traditional cafe, the setup is more like of a dollhouse. You'll find huge teddy bears, decks and floor cushions that matches the theme of each deck instead of the usual "coffee table and chair". This adds a more homey atmosphere to your cafe experience. There is a significant amount of effort put into interior design and art. You'll find pictures clipped on a man-made tree, colorful signboards, and other unique pieces reflecting mostly of Korean cafe design. If you're a fan of K-pop expect that you'll hear it playing while you're hanging out in the cafe.
They have a wide range of options for beverages be it hot or cold, canned or blended, and with the stuff that we ordered, I'd say it is actually worth your cash. The cold mango smoothie was amazingly indescribable. It was simply good and can easily give you that refreshing coolness that you need on a warm day. The frozen mocha frap was no extra-ordinary drink when compared to similar products from other coffee shops (e.g. Starbucks, Coffee Dream, etc.), but when you hear about the price you might raise an eyebrow, and when you finally see how it's presented, then a smile appears on your lips. They're still working on improving the selection for food and snacks that you can order. I hope the choices will be as fun and exciting as what they have in Dumaguete.
We have a few issues with the cafe though which certainly does not make it an absolute "epic fail" but impacts our experience when corrected and improved. The cafe is so cool that we want more of it, and so we find it lacking a little bit in size and space. With that said, when it gets a little crowed the temperature spikes up.
With an fun set-up and cozy feel, there's no doubt that Cafe Noriter Cebu will be a great hit, as it already is. The view from the outside stirs curiosity that urges your legs to walk towards it and take a look, ad before you know it you've already fallen for its trap. The space that Cafe Noriter occupies now used to be a boring spot, but now it has earned its place in the map. With a little more improvement on space, ventilation and options, Cafe Noriter will surely be your regular hangout place.
( Cafe Noriter is located along Arch Bishop Reyes Avenue, near Ayala Center Cebu and right across Hotel Elizabeth.)