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Meet the man behind Duterte coffee art

A trip to a local coffee shop is a treat for the senses: the sound of the coffee grinder, the aroma of the coffee beans and the jazz music in the background. This scene sets The Bunny Baker apart from most coffee shops in Makati City. While most cafés are filled with brown hues and rustic accents, it is a refresher with its pastel colors and artificial clouds.

Behind the counter is barista and owner Zach Yonzon. He has only been in the coffee business for three years, but that did not stop him from taking the reins on drawing portraits with coffee foam.

Zach first gained attention when he sculpted the physique of the then boxer Manny Pacquiao using cake.

He continued making headlines when he painted the face of President Rodrigo Duterte on coffee froth when he was elected in 2016.

“I was hopeful and wanted to show support for the winner,” Zach told The Filipino Times.

“At the time, regardless of who had won, it was important to show support for the president,” he added.

Before he opened his café with his wife, Zach was already a graphic artist. He said that creating digital art was one thing, but drawing on coffee froth was another.

“Definitely more difficult. You can’t put as much detail and because we serve it to our clients, we need to do it fast so their coffee is still hot,” said Zach.

His coffee shop boasts as being the only café to paint on coffee manually. Here are some of their creations.

Boxer-turned-Senator Manny Pacquiao with his competition Floyd Mayweather side by side.

Zach gamely obliges customers who request to have their faces drawn on their coffee.

Still doing it by hand. #latteart #cutestcafe #thebunnybakercafe

A post shared by The Bunny Baker (@thebunnybaker) on

Even customers are happy to post their morning coffee on social media.

Amazing! #thebunnybakercafe #cutestcafe

A post shared by Jiselle Chua (@jisellechua) on

Apart from coffee art, they also specialize in customized character-themed cakes. Their work ranges from classic cartoons to Star Wars characters and Disney princesses.

How far they went with this multi-layered Moana cake?

You do not have to look far to find Dory or Nemo at the top of their cake.

Zach admitted that it was their dream to own a café. Together with his wife Aila, they opened The Bunny Baker in 2015. However, living the dream was not as easy as Zach thought.

“Neither my wife nor I had any restaurant experience so it was a lot of unexpected work. The restaurant business is brutal,” he said.

Zach designs all the cakes and his team executes his vision. They built their cafe out of desire to expand their business but operating the business was not like what he expected.

“It demanded a lot more out of us than we were prepared for,” continued the café-owner.

Currently, The Bunny Baker has a stand-alone branch in Makati City but it may very well grow into a restaurant chain as Zach is a firm believer that the only way to success is to dedicate his time and effort to his work.

“You can only succeed if you put everything into it,” advised Zach.

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