Friday, November 03, 2006

Imay's - an export from Bacolod

I had lunch at Imay's today. It is quite an open space with almost no walls. It also has a second level which I was not able to check.

The menu was quite broad and actually made me hungry. We proceeded to order their specialties, Bicol Express and Kare-kare. We also ordered two types of pork but forgot the names, oh and the sisig. We had the Sizzling Stuffed Squid and the Binakol soup. The soup was quite nice, served in a fresh coconut shell and it had native chicken. It is a definite must-have. The Bicol Express was also a winner and everyone on our table loved it. The Kare-kare and sizzling stuffed squid were so-so. The pork chop tasted like the usual fare. And the sisig...the notorious sisig...this one was bad...dark-looking with lots of liver. Just plain YUCK...in my opinion.

Service was quite good, quick. Oh...and the manager is a real doll. Her face alone is worth the visit.

Do check out this interesting place located at Riverwalk, or is that Boardwalk? Diversion Road, Iloilo City.

Hun

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

The "no-name" mongolian grill restaurant

I have always been a fan of Mongolian Grills, you know those eat-all-you-can or heave-all-you-can ingredients in a bowl and you got to pick and mix your sauces and they'll cook it for you teppanyaki style. I find it fun to mix and match these ingredient and sauces and discover new and exciting flavors. So I was really excited when a friend invited me to check out this new Mongolian Grill Restaurant along the new Riverside Complex.

The first thing I noticed when I arrived at the restaurant, was the absent of any prominent sign or the name of the restaurant. Just an orange colored square with some Blue colored smoke in the middle and a small(very small) "Mongolian Grill" below it. It has always been very hard for me to eat in a place not knowing what the name of the place is. So for the first 5 to 10 minutes, I was literally searching for the name of this restaurant. The menu is not much help either, it’s haphazardly done and again doesn’t bare the name of the resto. Overall the place is kinda cozy. The tables and chairs are really sturdy, I guess made of hard wood.

Anyhow, since our purpose of coming was to eat, we hurried to the “buffet” table. We are given two choices, P130 for the small white bowl which you can fill only once(Heave-all-you-can) and P179 for the bigger black bowl(eat-all-you-can). We got the black bowl as we were really kinda hungry. Veggies first on the table, not the freshest ones to me… dark colored carrots, wilted Chinese pechay, and some other dry green stuffs which I didn’t bother to put in my bowl. Then there was some cut up fish balls and tempura(?). Now for the meat… there’s squid, chicken, beef and pork hmmmm no shrimp? So on to the sauces… there was no guide/suggestion for the number or amount of sauces to put in. The waitress and waiters are not much of a help either. Anyhow, we got to the end and had it cooked. While waiting… we browse the menu again and saw that they were also serving some other dishes. We tried their Crispy Pata and Fried Calamari’s. For a P230 crispy pata, I must say that it’s good and the way they cut it is also perfect. But the calamari is just so-so.

So what can I say about this, what’s its name again, Mongolian resto? I can’t really critic on the actual Mongolian dish that we had since I was the one who mixed and matched the sauces, as in all Mongolian restaurants. But we still manage to get our second fill and came out a little bit stuffed. On our way out, we noticed that this resto has a second level, so we checked it out. It is actually a bar with lots of lounge type chairs and many pillows, quite cozy I must say. But then again, this is a food critic blog not a bar critic.


Seth

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Maki Oh Maki

Maki is Iloilo's newest Japanese restaurant. It is located at the space formerly occupied by Sunburst Fried Chicken at the Smallville Complex alond Diversion Road. A real nice location actually. Bordering its perimeter is Regatta Grill, a pretty neat trick to build two restaurants in one space.

The food is reasonably priced. The tempura was priced at less than 200 pesos for seven pieces of small shrimps. I really do not know what to say about this. Small is small, but seven is seven, if you get the drift. Sushi and sashimi dishes were so so. Service was attentive but a bit inaccurate. I saw a lot of pitchers with some green liquid inside, must be some sort of cold green tea.

The interior of this place is very cozy, with lots of white paint and a high ceiling. Certainly a great date place for its ambience. This place looks a bit like the M Cafe at Greenbelt.

Wala ako na busog he he he.

HUN

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Iloilo Bare-bones

Not a real great way to start off my first actual "food" post but I really have to enlighten people on this topic. Bare-bones? Well, yes...let's call all those nipa hut places as "bare-bones". Perhaps you've heard about these familiar names:

-Alan's Talabahan
-Eric's talabahan
-restaurants located along coastal road: Piad's, Joyjoy, etc.
-some restaurants at Villa beach: Ernings, Adrings, etc.

What could we consider as bare-bones? These places don't have solid flooring such as cement or tiles. They usually have soil, bamboo slats, etc. They usually cook with basic burners and always do grill with charcoal (of course!). Service is usually basic...let's say "as needed".

Alan's Talabahan is located in Oton along the main road, just a few minutes after the main road going to Villa. It is currently one of the most popular bare-bones places in Iloilo City, and in my opinion, the best bare-bones place in Iloilo. You have to see the sizes of their oysters. This is a real must-go for oyster fanatics. Do try the steamed and baked oysters. Other notables are the grilled pork chops, grilled squid, and their surprisingly excellent chicken. Each chicken is cooked to order, and you would not believe the juiciness of that stuff! This place is usually very full during lunchtime, so plan your trip well. And remember, it's bare-bones, and this place is as bare-bones as they get!

Eric's Talabahan is located in the Mandurriao district of Iloilo City. This place is one of the most popular places in the city to have your fill of oysters. Other specialties include the pantat sa dahon (catfish in banana leaves) and grilled squid. Faciliies wise, this place is a little bit better constructed than Alan's Talabahan. A word of warning, they usually take an hour to cook your food.

The restaurants located along Coastal Road (Dumangas, Iloilo) have been getting their share of diners recently. Go to Piad's for their popular shrimps, and Joyjoy for their famous squid. In my humble opinion, there really is no point in going to these places just for the food. Everything is about the journey, the slighly long drive, and the privacy that these places offer.

Bare-bones places along Villa Beach are also quite popular. Ernings Manokan has been the hands-down winner for best-tasting Lechon Manok for a very very long time. Though existing for ages, this place still does have a bare-bones ambience to it. Perhaps, the only place left behind by the humongous success of Villa Beach restaurants such as Tatoy's and Breakthrough (both are definitely not bare-bones). Adring's Lechon, also along Villa Beach is also one of the most popular lechon suppliers in the city.

Though bare-bones places usually offer excellent cuisine at very reasonable prices, they are not for the weak of stomach. No HACCP or Servsafe knowledge here, bros. Definitely not for the weak of stomach, nor for Iloilo newbies. These places are mainly just for locals with accustomed stomachs and real foodie visitors who've been around.

Kaon ta!

HUN

Welcome too!

Hi everyone! And welcome to our new blog about the fascinating world of Ilonggo FOOD. In here we will venture off to explore the wonderful world of dinning in the City of Iloilo. We will write about these experiences as we go along and constantly update each and every experience along the way.

My partner, Hun & I, will not only critic the food itself, but also the establishment that served it including its location(accessibility), the service, the ambiance, the price, the cook or chef(including pseudo chefs), and the overall dining experience.

Your comments and suggestions are highly appreciated. You can also send us your dining experiences and we will gladly post these after we verified it.

As I always says when I invite my friends from other places to visit Iloilo 'Come to Iloilo with an Empty Stomach'. I hope that with this blog, we can flush out the undesirable places to eat here and not send our guess home with a Great Stomachache!

Seth

Welcome

Welcome to our fabulous blog! Soon to be fabulous, that is. This blog will be about Ilonggo food, yes glorious Ilonggo food. From the city and province of Iloilo. For all you "foreigners" out there, Iloilo is located in the Philippines.

Iloilo is famous for its rich and delicious delicacies such as Lapaz Batchoy (from the district of Lapaz), Pancit Molo (from the district of Molo), and other cholesterol laden and diabetes inducing delicacies. We do live and die by our glorious food he he he.

About this blog, there's gonna be two of us posters here. Just call me HUN, I'm going to be the fair and objective poster. My partner's name is SETH, I can't say that much about him, but do make your own opinions of him as you read his posts.

Well, this is gonna be it for now. Naga hulat na ang namit ko nga sud-an kay gutom na guid ako. Ciao! Namit!

HUN