The H-Lab

All I knew last Saturday was we were going to New Manila to help Maricris look for a place for the discussion of Bill Bryson’s A Short History of Nearly Everything that she’s going to moderate. Well, I asked Joko where we’re going and I just heard her say, “Hwababababa Lab.”

Potek, ano daw? In my head, I decided to call it the H-Lab.

We arrived at our destination– 10a Alabama St, E. Rodriguez. The gate made sure that we were in the right place.


So we went it and saw these shoes before seeing the lab with a name we can’t pronounce. Assstiiiggg. Can’t wait to do this to my old Chucks! :p

The left wing has the tea lab called HAUSBESETZER. So hindi pala Hwababababa. :p Hahaha! According to google, hausbesetzer means squatter in German. I wanted to ask Jetro Rafael (one of the owners of Haus and owner of the resto Van Gogh is Bipolar) why they chose this name, but I was shy to because he was busy gardening. He’s nice but I couldn’t bring myself to interrupt his time with the little oregano plant. :p

The lab’s cabinets are filled with tea, biscuits&crackers, artsy items and other interesting stuff like a set of Make Your Own Absinth and moisturizer in test tubes. The long table has a wide array of tea flavors and munchies. There aren’t a lot of choices found in the menu– only 2 kinds of pasta, a rice meal, a sandwich, several kinds of sausages and quite a few beverages.

The fridge has carabao milk ice candy, Goldschlager in test tubes, ginger beer et cetera. No prob if there aren’t a lot of food yet because the place is new, and really, even if there were only 2 items in the menu, I’d still go there for the art and the ambiance.

All the rooms in the house have contemporary art pieces by Resurrection and by RAA Design that are for sale. I like the room with matchboxes and postcards. 🙂

I sat on this chair because they told me Jericho Rosales bought it and it’s just waiting to be picked up. Hihihihi! *kiiliiiig*

I had coffee with carabao milk in the garden. This section is still under construction but I loved it anyway. 🙂

I would love to go back to Hausbesetzer on a rainy day to enjoy its offbeat coziness some more. I’d probably bring my addicted-to-caffeine/gaga-over-aesthetics friends, Yo and Jap. 

I suggest you bring your friends to 10a Alabama especially those who are like me- in dire of little adventures here in the city! And if you need more adventure, you can check out the house in front of 10a Alabama. 

Makes me wonder if Alabama St. used to be known as Balete Drive.


I only had biscuit and crackers and coffee in Hausbesetzer. Will definitely be back to try the pasta and sausages!


listening to: The Fratellis – Chelsea Dagger

Leave a comment


  1. jokoness

     /  June 13, 2011

    I still don’t know how to pronounce it but I enjoyed the swivel chairs and meringue! 🙂

  2. This ‘Hwababababa’ (hehehe..) lab looks interesting. I do you find out about these places?..=) It’s always refreshing to try out something new.

  3. Ang cooool ng place!!!

  4. @joko kaya H-Lab na lang! Masarap nga yung meringue. Balik tayo! Waaaahhhh!

    @trish how? *turo si joko* nagpapakaladkad lang ako sa kanya. hihihihi!

    @barry gora! attack na! nasa qc ka naman diba? 🙂

  5. Anonymous

     /  June 16, 2011

    Hi Iya, I’m near the area so I just would like to comment that Balete Drive is a different street from Alabama. It is still called Balete Drive though.

    • hehe! yep, someone already told me that balete drive still exists. 🙂 thanks! 🙂

      • Anonymous

         /  June 27, 2011

        good thing you have this blog. I’ m near the area but no idea that this place exists. (As in walking distance lang talaga) Tried it last Saturday and I love it. I brought my daughter (6 years old) and she loves the buffalo ice candy – mango flavor. I tried the avocado flavor, its great but a little bitter. Mas masarap pa rin yung mangga flavor. Tried their coffee and it reminds me of home (I was raised in Mindoro with lots of kapeng barako). Yun nga lang medyo nakakatawa kasi I was not familiar on how it works at first, na sari-sariling timpla pala ito! Buti na lang ate was so helpful and patient in assisting us. For P 99 per serving jackpot ka na talaga sa place na to. I keep refilling hot water on the pot until it tasted more of sugar hehehe. keep up the good work, keep on searching cool places for us. Btw, did you know that the owner of this place also owns Van Gogh is Bipolar restaurant?

  6. wow, this is really interesting! i wanna try going there someday 🙂 i loooove the shoes turned into pots 🙂

  7. HI ANONYMOUS: nice to know that you already went to the place! hehe! oo, very helpful talaga si Ate doon! i put in my entry kaya that the jetro also owns van gogh! :p kaw ha, you just skimmed through my post. hihihihi!

    • Anonymous

       /  July 1, 2011

      ooops sorry, didn’t noticed that. Anyway’s I’m hooked na talaga with this place. not so many people knows where this is so not crowded to make tambay. Very accessible from my place so I made it (for now) my official tambayan. Even my daughter keeps on nagging me to go there to buy ice candy. So off we went the other day with my other older daughter ( My oldest is so inggit na because her younger sister keeps on babbling about this place). Unfortunately for her, it starts to rain when we were on the corner streets of alabama and erod. We got stranded at Pandelites. We were so hungry so we browse the menu of Pandelites displayed outside. We tried their sort of value meal worth P55 per meal, we tried their sisig and liempo meal. Not bad, not bad at all. We also tried their coffee, i tried the cafe americano (P45)because I want to make sawsaw of their toasted chiffon cake (P20), saraaaap for a rainy day! Blessing in disguise na rin that we got stranded here on our way to hausbezetser we found good food for value.

  8. imtheunsub

     /  July 23, 2011

    I’m not familiar with New Manila. Just wanna ask what’s the nearest MRT station (if it is)? Or any idea how to get there from any MRT station?

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