Dessert of the Week: Mocha Butter Cake

Photographs courtesy of Vargas Kitchen

For chocolate and coffee lovers, here’s a freshly baked three-layer mocha butter cake with the right chocolate-coffee blend, lavishly cloaked in thick mocha buttercream icing. Its creamy and luxe texture has a nice hint of espresso with a base that offers a smooth and buttery mouth-feel.

It’s actually the butter cake base that makes this confection extra special. Vargas Kitchen has been known for its delicious butter cake for more than three decades now. Through the years, VK has come out with various cake products with butter cake as its primary base.

In fact, VK started its food business with only Butter Cake and Brazo de Mercedes on their product list.

“Those were the signature neighborly desserts our Lola Mameng always gave to those closest to her,” shares chef Inez Gamboa, third generation owner of VK.

Gamboa recalls how her Lola Mameng’s kitchen always smelled of freshly baked goods and the unmistakable scent of butter — the prefix to all things delicious.

“Our Lola Mameng was really the inspiration behind VK because she was able to perfect each dessert in the kitchen,” Gamboa adds.

Mocha Butter Cake.

These desserts have served many families’ food cravings for many years, and it was Gamboa who took on the challenge of continuing her grandmother’s legacy and tradition of making freshly baked desserts for all occasions.

“Cooking has always been my passion even at an early age,” she says. “I would constantly wind up in my lola’s kitchen helping either Lola Trining or Lola Talia with the polvoron, making the fresh pasta of our carbonara or even just a simple homemade pizza.”

Later on, it became her sort of an after-school past time in high school to help her mom with the books and the orders.

“That started my unofficial assignment of taking care of a home-based business born out of our Sunday lunches and big family get-togethers. After college, the entrepreneur mindset really set in and that was when we seriously started joining bazaars until we opened our first VK store in Rustan’s Makati in 2008,” says Gamboa.

Although there are numerous butter cakes already in the market today, VK’s classic butter cake differentiates itself with its soft, fluffy texture and a buttery finish that really lingers after every bite.

VK’s Mocha Butter Cake is simply a twist on the classic Mocha Chiffon Cake.

Butter Cake.

“Growing up the mocha cake was one of my favorites,” Gamboa says. “The only difference now is that we decided to do the butter cake as its base with a coffee flavor to add to the indulgence of a mocha cake.”

The Mocha Butter Cake is one of VK’s popular go-to celebration cakes.

Mocha Butter Cake sizes are seven-inch round cake, P1,350; and four-inch round cake, P600. Order a day in advance through or contact any of its branches Rustan’s Supermarket Ayala, The Marketplace Rockwell, Rustan’s Supermarket Shangri-la Mall and South Supermarket Alabang.

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