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Philippines forum

Where to go to experience local food and sights

Posted by Magen on 1/8/2011 at 16:50

Hi my name is Magen and I am arriving here tomorrow afternoon and I want to know what are the must have local foods found in phillipines other than balut. And also what can I do to truly see how the locals live? Will appreciate some good advice! Thanks!

#1 Magen has been a member since 1/8/2011. Posts: 3

Posted by goonistik on 1/8/2011 at 22:48


When Anthony Bourdain did an episode of "No Reservations" in the Philippines, he was brought to the Pampanga. Specifically, they had Claude Tayag of "Bale Dutung" cook for him and show him around town. If you look it up in youtube, you can see the episode. Google "Bale dutung"

Than Bourdain went to Cebu for some lechon. Bourdain eventually decided that lechon cebu was his favorite roast pig. Better than the babi guling of Bali and the lechon of Puerto Rico.
There are stores that sell lechon cebu in Manila, so you don't have to make a trip for that.

Things to try out
Sisig (One of the best things you can eat with a cold beer)
Spaghetti with Taba ng talangka (not a traditional dish but a recent invention) It is spaghetti cooked with a sauce made from the fat of little crabs.
Sinigang (food in a sour tamarind or guava broth, can be made with pork, fish etc)
Adobo (Abe restaurant has a lamb adobo. A welcome addition to the usual pork/chicken adobo)
Okoy (shrimp fritters)
Daing na bangus
Rellenong bangus
Dinuguan (pork stew made with coagulated pork blood)
Ensaimada (the best one is at Pastelleria Mallorca)
Sans Rival (a daqcuoise based on cashew nuts and buttercream)
Halayang Ube (ube is a purple yam usually used for desserts. The best kind is made with carabao milk)

If you are really adventurous, there is balo-balo. Fermented Shrimp eaten with mustard leaves, grilled catfish, eggplant.

To help you understand some more about the food read this

There are weekend markets in Makati, Quezon City, and Alabang where you can try out all sorts of food.

#2 goonistik has been a member since 7/1/2010. Location: Philippines. Posts: 563

Posted by MADMAC on 1/8/2011 at 22:50

Ask yourself, if you were visiting your home country as a tourist, how would you go about seeing how the "locals" truly live? You can wander around their neighborhoods, but to understand how people really live their lives, you have to take the time to get to know them and develop friendships that allow you access to peoples lives. That takes time, so it depends on how much time you have.

#3 MADMAC has been a member since 6/6/2009. Posts: 6,957

Posted by francis5k on 20/10/2011 at 20:02

though this is too late,i would like to add that wherever you go,every place in the Philippines bursts of local color.every corner is infused with customs,culture,and tradition.food?streetfoods are the best!

#4 francis5k has been a member since 20/10/2011. Posts: 5

Posted by RickWarren on 23/3/2012 at 06:22

Hello everybody,

Thank you for sharing your valuable suggestion, The tour explored some of the nooks and crannies that I would have otherwise never know were there. As a two year Seattle resident, I found it a great orientation to Capital history and offerings. The food was good, the sites visited interesting and the tour guide was very knowledgeable, personable and charming. In all the overall experience was very nice - strongly recommend to visitors and residents alike.

Nice to meet you
Rick Warren

#5 RickWarren has been a member since 9/1/2012. Posts: 21

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