POISON Doughnuts @ Hydra Headquarters in Manila!

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POISON is a coffee and doughnut shop by Chef Miko Aspiras in collaboration with Charles Paw, the Hydra Design Group by Dan Matutina, and La Marzocco of the Yardstick group. The name is a play on the whole villain theme of Hydra (from the Marvel Cinematic Universe) with poison as a weapon.

Here’s what to expect at Poison…


POISON Coffee and Doughnuts 
The Alley, Karrivin Plaza, 2316 Chino Roces Extension, Makati City
(Near Toyo Eatery near Pasong Tamo Extension)

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Poison’s ambiance is inspired by the Japanese anime Ghost in the Shell, and an anti-thesis of the “instagrammable” well-lit coffee places in the metro.

Here’s your Poison Menu.



They have curated donut flavors with simple ingredients and no over the top toppings like:

• Blueberry Glaze (₱50) Blueberry glaze…and something strange
• Salted Dark Chocolate (₱50)64% dark chocolate and traces of sea salt
• Boston Creme (₱70)Vanilla mousseline and homemade marshmallow stained with dark chocolate 



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Vanilla Glaze (₱50). Just vanilla bean glaze. Nothing suspicious about that.

This isn’t your fluffy kind of donut. It’s made with sourdough and brioche so you’ll notice some airiness, but it has a good bite. You’ll enjoy its simple flavors. 


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I like my long black hot coffee (₱110), which pairs very well with the donuts.


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All the dough is handmade by lead sinister artist Chef Miko Aspiras, who aims to make the best-tasting donuts in Manila.

Other flavors include:
Blueberry lemon (₱70)Lemon curd filling overdose with blueberry jam and blueberry glaze
Egg Custard Brulee (₱70)Burnt sugar exterior injected with dark brown sugar custard
Garam MasalaGaram Masala (instead of Cinnamon) laced with spiced sugar


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Although the ambiance is dark, I love the high ceiling, which gives a comfortable dining experience that makes you want to hang out. 


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Dan Matutina showed us around the Hydra Headquarters, which houses the 5 leading design groups in Manila.


About Hydra

Hydra is a multi-headed design firm, forged by independent studios with a common passion for creativity, craft, and collaboration. As separate studios, we work in small, nimble groups; as Hydra, we have the strength to take on bigger projects as a unit.

Each studio brings forward distinct points of view and is recognized for work in brand identity, print and publications, websites, packaging, illustration, moving images, broadcast, space planning and interiors. Hydra digs deep into every creative challenge and transforms it into products/services with profound insight and impact.

For more info, visit https://www.facebook.com/pg/hydradesigngroup/ or http://heyhydra.com.



Take a peak into The Underworld to get the scoop on the new restaurants about to open from the Charles Paw group.



This is the new home of the Tasteless Restaurant group, responsible for the hip, progressive restos in the Metro.


About Tasteless

Tasteless is a progressive group of restaurants.

We build modern, contemporary concepts that understand the cultural, technological, and culinary landscape of this generation. That’s the straightforward definition, but in order to best define what something is, sometimes it’s better to explain what it isn’t.

Tasteless does not take itself too seriously.
Tasteless does not copy anyone.
Tasteless does not follow trends.
Tasteless does not veer away from the unconventional, playful and ironic.

Yet, Tasteless doesn’t just build restaurants: we focus on innovation, design, and creativity in food. We want to lead the restaurant industry by pushing what’s possible.

To date, we have several concepts under our umbrella: Le Petit Souffle, Scout’s Honor, Freezer Burn, Wrong Ramen, Hole in the Wall, Fowlbread, Bad Bird, Ping Pong Diplomacy and The Beef. In addition, we also operate franchised brands such as Hanamaruken Ramen, Kushikatsu Daruma, and have established friendly partnerships with other concepts like Your Local and Hey Handsome.

For more info, visit http://tasteless.ph/.


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This is where Dan designs signature custom pieces and hatches his evil plan to conquer the world.

About Plus63 Design Co.

Plus63 Design Co. works with homegrown and international businesses, start-ups and organizations. We tell their stories through design, keeping our process simple but never holding back on creativity. We love to experiment with designing custom pieces that enrich and strengthen the brand experience. From stationery to objects, we enjoy adding a new twist to the usual.

For more info, visit http://plus63.com/.



I love Inksurge and how they tell a visual story of the brand.


About Inksurge

Inksurge creates visual identities, websites, packaging, print materials, and other design oddments aligned with our passion for creation. Every project is taken on with a deep understanding of the subject, attention to detail, and meticulous crafting so that every output is distinct and unique. The immersive way we work is our trademark and has gained acclaim from both the local and international design scene.

For more info, visit http://inksurge.com/


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This secretive design group provides the interior design expertise for the Hydra team.


About KM Design

KM Design designs environments that transform people to a mood, a disposition, or a special place. We give a lot of thought to space planning and design—engaging the users in the process, working with the brand identity (whether of a person, a product, or a service), and translating the identity and movement to the space it occupies. We aim to create visual order and a natural flow of users the space serves.

For more info, visit kminteriordesignmanila.squarespace.com



Acid House is the lead design group that created the concept for Charles’ new concept called Cuba Libre.


About Acid House

Acid House works on various concoctions of static and moving imagery. We take it from concept, development to the final renders of the work. We are directors, designers, illustrators, animators and sound designers rolled into one formidable team.

For more info, visit http://wearetheacidhouse.com/


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Don’t forget to stop by for coffee and Chef Miko’s donuts the next time you’re by The Alley (and say “Hey Hydra!”).


POISON Coffee and Doughnuts 
The Alley, Karrivin Plaza, 2316 Chino Roces Extension, Makati City
(Near Toyo Eatery near Pasong Tamo Extension)


Live an Awesome Life,


Founder, www.OurAwesomePlanet.com  

Disclosure: Our meal was courtesy of our friend, Charles Paw. I wrote this article with my biases, opinions, and insights. 

P.S. I’m excited for the opening of Cuba Libre and Pizza Express in Manila before the year ends!

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