Mom's Bake Shop is aptly named. Baked goods? Check. Home-like atmosphere? Check.
You do, in fact, feel like your mother is here - urging you to eat just a little more, pinching your cheeks and accusing you of getting too thin.
So, listen to her and dig in. There are tons of Filipino standards to choose from, each one sounding more tantalizing than the next. Mom's, which has been open for more than 20 years, is especially known for pancit palabok (noodles with shrimp) and the Shanghai spring rolls - thin, cigar-shaped crispy indulgences.
Other favorites are the lechon kawali (crispy fried pork) and the pancit bihon, rice noodles, pork, shrimp and veggies. Prices range from around $10 to about $14.
Not in the mood for the savory? Try one of the many baked goods up for grabs. Coconut cakes bring in everyone from the neighborhood and beyond. Mom's requires two days notice for a specialty cake, though they can sometimes turn it around in less. Other favorites are the custard and milk flan doused in caramel syrup and Jalea, a popular purple yam used in Filipino cooking.
Or, instead of getting your cake to go, you can just have your special event at Mom's. A large banquet room is often filled with birthday parties, anniversary parties and family gatherings.
Though the atmosphere here lacks coziness or really any specific style, it's charming in its own, cavernous way.
Average cost: $10-$20
Centerstage Reviewer: Christy Bonstell