Before you jet off to far continents, make sure you’ve explored your own backyard. Take a trip to the 7,107 islands, revel in the view and indulge your taste buds. Steer away from the usual deep fried fast food and introduce your kids to authentic Filipino food and finer cuisines. Read along for a Foodie’s Travel Guide to the Philippines:
Home of the sinful, heart-attack inducing bagnet which can be compared to lechon kawali only crunchier. Bagnet goes well with Pinakbet (vegetable dish) just to counter the deep fried guilt. You should also try Dinardaraan (their version of dinuguan) and Dinengdeng, a clear soup with ginger, vegetables and meat. Buy vigan longganisa and empanada at Plaza Burgos as pasalubong.
- La Preciosa
La Preciosa is a house turned restaurant. They serve authentic Ilocano food. Try the Bagnet with KBL (kamatis, bagoong, lasona), poqui-poqui and the dinengdeng.
Rizal St., Laoag City, Ilocos Norte, 2900 Philippines.
- Café Leona
Try the Vigan longganisa and empanada
Mena Crisologo St. Vigan, Ilocus Sur, Philippines
- Saramsam Ceafé
They serve good fusion food such as Saramsam Pasta (mangoes and KBL) and dinardaraan empanada to name a few.
N. Corpuz Building, Rizal cor. Hizon Streets Barangay 7-A, Laoag City
+63 77 7715825
- Herencia Ceafé
They put a spin on old favorites. Try the pinakbet/bagnet/longganisa/dinuguan pizza.
McArthur Street, Bgy. 14, Sangladan, Paoay, Ilocos Norte (in front of Paoay Church)
Tel. 077- 614 -0214
Thanks to the beautiful breezy weather of Baguio, you can expect to find an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables. Try picking out strawberries from fields, drinking strawberry taho, bringing home peanut brittle, choco flakes and ube. Grab a cup of Chocolate de Batirol in Camp John Hay and Benguet grown coffee to have that warm and fuzzy feeling.
- Café de Batirol
See how hot chocolate is made and enjoy it after with a plate of hot suman.
Igorot Garden, Camp John Hay Baguio City, Benguet Philippines
- Bliss Café
Eat as much as you can sans the guilt because Bliss Café offers delicious vegetarian food.
G/F Hotel Elizabeth Gibraltar St. cor. J. Felipe Baguio City, Benguet Philippines
- Cafe by the Ruins
Enjoy Italian, Western and Filipino food. Make sure to try the strawberry wine.
23 Chuntug St. Baguio City, Benguet
- Pizza Riccio
Try their pizzas and pastas. They also deliver within the city.
Governor Pack Road (Baden Powell Inn)
Bicol is known for spicy, gata based dishes. They’ve managed to put a spin on old favorites to attract younger generations. There are fusions available such as laing pizza and pasta. Don’t forget to buy Pili nuts as pasalubong.
- Mr. Crab Restaurant
Sample the chili crabs, bicol express and other spicy dishes.
Cabangan, Legazpi City
- Small Talk Café
Small Talk is a home turned restaurant. Enjoy Bicol specialties with a more modern twist such as Pinangat pasta, Laing ravioli, etc.
Dona Aurora Street,Legaspi City, Albay, Bicol Region
+(6352) 480-1393 or 437-8708
- Bob Marlin
They specialize in seafood and crispy pata. The restaurant has a very laidback, province vibe that’s very relaxing.
Magsaysay Ave. Naga City, Camarines Sur
- Bigg’s diner
Enjoy the vintage keepsakes in this diner themed restaurant.
- Red Platter
Steaks, chops, ribs and cakes
Magsaysay Avenue, Naga City, Camarines Sur, Bicol
- Chili Peppers
Filipino and western food that’s value for your money.
Corner Rizal and Dona Aurora Streets, Bicol Region
Bacolod is synonymous to manukan country and sugar. Bacolod is the home of authentic chicken inasal. Make sure to eat at Manokan country for the ambience. Bacolod has a good selection of dessert places to choose from. Make sure to bring home a box of napoleones and piyaya.
- Manokan Country
A strip of restaurants serving Chicken Inasal. Aida’s manukan is one of the most established. Try their chicken inasal with garlic rice.
Reclamation Area, Bacolod, Philippines
- Pepe’s Grill
You should try their scrumptious beef salpicao and ribs either with rice or mashed potatoes on the side
Piazza Sorrento, Lacson Street, Bacolod, Visayas
Classy, sophisticated looking restaurant but the price is very reasonable.
21Lacson Street, Bacolod, Visayas
Try these dessert places which offer cakes, pastries and Bacolod delicacies:
Lourdes – C Bldg. Lacson St., Bacolod City, Negros Occidental
B.S. Aquino Drive fronting Riverside Hospital, Bacolod City, Negros Occidental
Doll Building, 6th Street 034-4336586
25th Street corner Lacson, 034-4340269
Try to visit the infamous “SuTuKil” restaurants and there you’ll find seafood heaven. SuTuKil is short for Sinugba (grilled), Tula (broth based soup) and Kilaw (raw meat in vinegar). Don’t leave without trying the distinct Cebu lechon. It’s like no other lechon you’ve tried in Manila. Eat it with puso (rice wrapped in banana leaves). Try Cebu’s version of lumpiang shanghai, Chinese ngohyong. It’s made with ubod, singkamas, meat and spices then deep fried. Buy crispy danggit and dried mangoes as pasalubong.
- Casa Verde
This is Cebu’s version of a diner. You’d be surprised to see how cheap the food here is considering how good and big the serving is.
Sutukil is Cebu’s version of dampa, only with a whole lot more seafood choices.
Located right beside Lapu-lapu shrinein Mactan
If you want a taste of Cebu, better eat at Pino’s they have a good spread of Filipino food with a twist.
Wilson Street, Lahug, Cebu
Mexican Food made with the freshest, quality ingredients. They also serve a variety of Mexican drinks including tequila and margaritas. It’s a laidback, sophisticated lounge with a bar, perfect for dinner and drinks.
Crossroads, Banilad, Cebu
Davao is known for good tuna, seafood and fruits. Make sure you take home a box of durian and pomelo.
Lachi’s is sure to cure your sweet cravings. They’re known for good sansrival. They also serve cheese cakes, chocolates and variations of sanrival such as mocha and durian.
Door 1-H VAL Learning Village, Ruby Street, Marfori Heights, Davao City
- Harana Restaurant
Harana restaurant has three parts, one serves Filipino food, one serves Mongolian food and the last one is a grille. This is a good family place, offering a variety of different cuisines and they house a large play area for kids.
F. Torres Street, Davao, Mindanao, Philippines
+63 82 221 9021
- Luz Kinilaw
Luz Kinilaw is famous for none other than their tuna kinilaw. This restaurant is also popular for it’s ambience. It’s situated by the sea, so you can enjoy your meal while inhaling fresh sea air and looking at the scenery.
Salmonan, Quezon Blvd., Davao City
- Sunburst Fried Chicken
There has been much buzz about Davao’s sunburst fried chicken. Although it’s also available in other cities in Visayas and Mindanao, it originated from Davao and we all know there’s nothing like the original. Kids love fried chicken and Sunburst offers that as well as other side dishes such as chopseuy, chicken gizzard, chicken skin, etc.
Tiokno Ave., Davao City
- De Bonte Koe
This is a very homey, laidback Dutch restaurant that offers European dishes such as steaks, pasta and an exquisite wine selection.
Habana Compound, Rizal Street, Davao City
- Belly’s Grill
Expect good old ihaw-ihaw with Davao’s fine tuna and seafood. They also have the usual Filipino grill favorites such as sisig, inihaw na baboy, pusit, manok at isda.
Quirino Ave cor. Mabini St., Davao City
If you can’t find the time to go to these destinations, there are alternatives within the Metro. Weekend markets are popping up. There’s the Salcedo Market, Mercato Centrale and the Friday midnight Banchetto Market in Ortigas. You can also take a short roadtrip to Tagaytay and enjoy the breeze while eating hot Bulalo. Do you have your own foodie destinations? Care to share them?