Pamana, Tagaytay – a Family Legacy of Filipino Cuisine


Pamana is the latest Filipino restaurant in Tagaytay. It offers Filipino cuisine based on secret family recipes handed down to Happy Ongpauco, a third generation member of the Barrio Fiesta Restaurant Clan. The concept is similar to Tootsie’s but better executed. Plus, it has a great view of Taal Lake.

(Note on the photo above: This is one of those rare moments I was able to ask my sons to sit down and smile at the same time.)


Sungkaan of Condiments


I like this fancy presentation of the different condiments to add additional flavor to your food. The Datu Puti vinegar taste becomes sophisticated when it is displayed this way.


Pamana Menu


You can order your Barrio Fiesta favorites like Crispy Pata and Bulalo Steak, and even the Adobo Rice of World Topps. But why go all the way to Tagaytay to eat that? The waiters do not have a clue about the story or heritage of the cuisine, so don’t depend on them for suggestions. You can’t go wrong ordering from the Our Family Heritage menu.


Chicken Binakol (P296). Chicken cooked in young coconut juice… Happy’s Friend, Tweet Feliciano Campo’s Ultimate Recipe



If you are tired of the usual sinigang soup, this is a good alternative because it is sweeter in taste due to the coconut juice. It is served inside a coconut shell with additional soup served on the side. It would have been great if the coconut meat was softer and you can eat it together with the soup.

Tinuktok (P275). Minced coconut meat, shrimp and spices wrapped in taro leaves and cooked in coconut milk.



We love to include at least one vegetable dish when we order in a restaurant. The Bicolano in me loves anything with gata and the use of taro leaves (similar to laing) in dishes. The Tinuktok is a bit spicy because of the chili bits inside, so Aidan was not able to enjoy this.

Pamana’s Three Way Adobo (P250). 3 kinds of Adobo from Happy’s three favorite lolas: Mama Chit, Lola Laling and Lola Fely. Chicken adobong puti, adobo flakes and native adobo spareribs — an all-in-one!

Adobo has been served a lot of ways, but this is one of the better ways to serve it with different flavors, texture and personality. The servings in Pamana are always good to share for 2-3 people.

Binagoongang Bagnet (P360). Tita Monchie Biazon’s (wife of Senator Biazon) lechon kawali sauteed in shrimp paste. Their family’s secret recipe taught only to Happy!

This is one of the unique dishes I have seen in Pamana. The lechon kawali is big, with binagoongang sauce that is not too salty. Yummy! I just thought that using bagnet was inappropriate because it communicates a double-fried crunchy lechon kawali but this one was not as crunchy as expected.

Happy’s very own Homemade Dirty Ice Cream (P75?). With real chunks, with pandesal or apa.

We were disappointed with this dessert because it tasted more like ice than ube. The cheese was a yummy touch. Will try the Halo Halo next time.
Where to Sit in Pamana?

The second floor is the main dining area, but it is a bit crowded. The tables cannot be moved and are a bit heavy. Most of the tables on this floor have crochet table runners to add an elegant but homey touch to the dining experience.

You can get the corner table near the window. This one is near the restroom, so a lot of people pass by and natural fresh air does not flow through this table.

This middle table is cool once you open the door and the fresh Tagaytay breeze soothes you while you dine.

The most private table would be this one on the opposite corner near the fake fireplace.

Most people eat outside to savor the Tagaytay fresh air.

The third floor tables have a good view of Taal Lake but are more ideal for after-dinner drinking sessions. The tables here are simple, with no additional designs. Table mats or napkins could easily be blown away by the furious winds on this floor.
You can also go down to the first floor by passing through this heritage staircase.

This is the table you probably don’t want to reserve since it is under the stairs. Bad feng shui…

You can opt to reserve this first floor indoor table instead, which is beside the store and has a sofa area.

If you’re in the mood to try something new in Tagaytay, drop by Pamana and let me know what you think.

Pamana Restaurant

Aguinaldo Highway, Tagaytay City
Beside Boutique Hotel, near the Tagaytay Rotunda
For Reservations, contact Vangie Reyes +63920 856 1970

Live an Awesome Life,

Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2009.

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mobile: +63917-LOVEOAP (5683627)

42 thoughts on “Pamana, Tagaytay – a Family Legacy of Filipino Cuisine

  1. love the review. the place looks great and would love to bring overseas friends here. my main problem though is that one of my closest foreign friends in muslim. thus, is is always a trial to find a good halal place to eat. we went to tagaytay when she and her mom came to visit last may, but had to bring our own food from manila (various seafoods and vegetables), as choices in tagaytay and most other places are quite limited.
    it would be great if you could feature some places that serves those with dietary restrictions, but pamana looks like the next barkada destination. would it beat josephine’s?

  2. Hi Kayenne,
    thanks for the suggestion on featuring places for people with dietary restrictions.
    For the younger generation, Pamana would beat Josephine’s… the latter looks old and became super expensive. Although, I like the garden around Josephine’s…

  3. hI aNTON,
    This will be a perfect place to treat my family on my Birthday this coming March!!! Thanks for this…I’ll be going home next week and I’ll check this place.

  4. hi anton!
    great feature!
    this place used to be a relative’s vacation house. i’m overseas and didn’t know that my uncle had sold it already. i spent many memorable holy weeks there, family memories. i’m a little sad but i look forward to trying this restaurant the next time i go to Tagaytay. i knew the rooms/terrace looked familiar. haha! the final picture of the facade was the “aha!”
    more power to your site. it’s truly awesome!

  5. Hi Anton!
    Pamana is definitely something to look out for in Tagaytay than just the usual spots. I’m eyeing the Tinuktok and Three Way Adobo. Price is not so bad (I suppose this already includes VAT?) 🙂 Chicken Binakol is something new to try… although I like my Sinigang really face-twitching sour.
    Thanks for sharing!
    Between Bites

  6. Hello Anton!
    Is the place kid-friendly? Do they have highchairs? Since you have been around most of the good places to eat in Manila, can you post a blog that features child-friendly places to dine? I’m a parent like you and we have difficulty eating out to places that isnt child friendly. I hope you consider doing it. God Bless

  7. I always forget posting about these things. This place is not child friendly
    and they don’t have a high chair for toddler or kids. I do hope they do
    something about it.
    My kids love stairs these days, so they were happy going from one floor to

  8. My search for a good picture is futile. All of them have people in them! From your pictures, it looks like the first floor was gutted out. There were 3 bedrooms there that you accessed going down those stairs (now with the wall of photos/frames).

  9. Will try this one when we go up to Tagaytay. Looks like another good find bro. I’d have Riza contact you guys for our Chef Bruce dinner date.
    Yup, my sentiment also as I do not eat pork, lard or any pork byproducts myself. So I tend to order mostly seafood and veggies which are quite good specially if you can get them fresh.. Wish we could be like Singapore where food for everybody is available and is no big deal. If Manila and Tagaytay start doing this (having Halal, Kosher, Vegan etc.), we’ll have more tourists, more tourist more income.

  10. I’ll try to check the place next week. yummmy… btw, out of topic, you mightbe interested crocs will be having a great mega sale on March 13-15 up to 80% off, you can post this on biggest bargain blog.

  11. Hi Anton,
    Thanks for this. Do you think I can hold a wedding in here. Because my theme is filipiniana spanish. How many people do you think it can hold. And do you think there is a place to hold a christian wedding at the area in front.

  12. We have lunch in Pamana over the weekend. We chose to sit in the corner table in front of the sofa on the ground floor, nice quiet spot. The only downside was there were many fruit flies hovering around the sungkaan condiment dish -not very sanitary to look at. And the binagoongang bagnet had a very good sweetish bagoong sauce but the meat could use some more tenderizing. The skin was not as crispy as the Ilocos bagnet. The dessert we had, Pinoy fondue, was yummy, pieces of puto, cuchinta, cassava cake for dipping in tsokolate eh. Overall, Pamana is a good place for reasonably-priced delicious Pinoy comfort food .

  13. Warm & cozy place to dine in Tagaytay… Loved the “binagoongang bagnet & Pampanga’s Sisig with Aligue” – best with garlic rice! Had to break my diet with the additional rice I ordered!!!

  14. Went there last week with my family to try this new restaurant in Tagaytay, PAMANA. The place is very nice, very unique, the only place with the “memorabilia” type of restaurant. It’s also very cozy and refreshing just like eating in the comforts of your own house. Food is yummy and tasty just like our Grandparents used to cook them the old fashioned way. The kids enjoyed the rooftop for its spaciousness and my husband loved it for the breathtaking view of the Taal Lake. Will be back to try the other food items…

  15. hi anton! we ate at pamana last sunday march 22 for my advanced birthday lunch. to be fair we enjoyed the food, but the service we got was TERRIBLE. the reason was that alot of happy’s friends happened to be seated at the two adjacent tables to ours. so while the waiters, including the two managers on duty, doted over them, nobody was paying attention to us. we requested glasses of water which took so long to arrive, while on the next table the lady manager was serving rice onto their individual plates and pouring water into their glasses. two of the drinks we ordered didnt arrive until we were almost finished eating. nobody arrived to clear our table before dessert was served until we clearly called their attention to do so. our three desserts took forty minutes to arrive, while the next tables’ numerous desserts were served immediately after they finished their main courses. now, i have nothing against special treatment for your friends. the only thing i expect is PROPER service for the rest of us who are visitors to the establishment, those who went there not because the owner is our friend but because we heard good reviews about it and wanted to celebrate our special day there. good food and good service go hand in hand. i dont care how good their food was, i am not going back because thats not the kind of service i expect from a supposedly good restaurant. true, it might have been a one-off incident because its probably not everyday naman that the resto is overrun by her friends. maybe everyone else’s experience was better than mine. but that was my impression of it from how i was treated when i went there, and because of that, i dont feel like recommending it to anyone. my two cents worth. thanks for letting me share anton!

  16. Hi Vj, thanks for sharing your experience. Pamana is starting to get known
    for having poor service because of the newbie waiters. I do hope they
    improve it soon to avoid similar experiences with other guests.

  17. Hi Anton!
    I’ve been to Pamana 2-3-times in the past couple of weeks with both family and friends and I think both the food and the service are great!
    First and foremost, the food is very good, served in big portions, and come at reasonable prices. Of the different viands I’ve tried, my favorites include the Kare-Kare, Crispy Pata, and Bulalo Steak.
    Second, the staff is courteous. During my intial visit, the manager gave my sister and I a short tour of the place as we waited for our table. The place seems to be always full.
    Third, the concept is well thought of. It was interesting going through the menu of old family recipes. I like the fact that the owners gave credit to the different individuals and families who contributed recipes.
    My only regret was that I did not chance upon Heart Evangelista who I understand is a cousin of Happy Ongpauco. Well, there’s always a next time!
    On an entirely different note, can you recommend any good restaurants in La Union? My friends and I are planning to go surfing there during the Holy Week.
    Thanks and More Power!

  18. Hi,Anton.
    If you like Kare Kare and other filipino food, you might also want to try IFL’s House of Kare Kare also in Tagaytay. It is located along the ridge where Figaro is. Just across it are the rows of restaurants like Antonio’s Grill, Pancake House etc. In the menu are different types of Kare kare like Kare Kare Classic, Kare Kare seafoods..etc. The homemade bagoong and homemade chicharon are very good!

  19. My wife and I ate at Pamana to celebrate Independence Day last June 12, 2009. The
    Ambiance was good and the food was ok except for the Pancit with Lechon toppings.
    It tasted good but was a bit too greasy so we brought home more than half of it for the gardeners we left at home. They liked it so much saying it was so delicious because of the dog meat. I was turned of and felt nauseated. I didn’t know if dog meat was really added to it but my gardeners who were familiar with the taste of dog meat said so. If it was true I felt short-changed and deceived because we were not told the truth.

  20. Anton! 🙂 you forgot to try the super delicious laing and the pamana recipe of helen gamboa, its called the TVJ! 🙂 hope you remember me, im the cousin of Kuya francis! we met at taverna! hehe! more power! 🙂

  21. Hi Anton,
    I’ve been eyeing Leslie’s for my destination wedding reception and I came across your blog.. now it confuses me..haha! I’m gonna be back in Manila to prepare for my wedding and I will surely drop by at Pamana, I wish they also have wedding package.
    Thanks for your wonderful blog.

  22. Our family enjoyed having Lunch here. We were impressed by Happy Ongpauco’s concept of the resto. Can’t wait to go back and pig out again. =)

  23. My husband and I had lunch at pamana today. We really enjoyed the interior design of the whole restaurant, very entertaining because of the old photos in the wall combined with the cool weather and warm lighting of the resto, service of the crew is ok too. Presentation of the food is very pleasing. We ordered the tinuktukan the 3 way adobo and a pitcher of ginger pandan juice. The tinuktukan left an itchy feeling in our throats, being a bicolana, I’m guessing the taro leaves were not cooked 100% and the filling was gingery, and i tasted a combination of squid (not shrimps)onions and a bit too much ginger. When 3way adobo came to our table, it was not hot or warm at all, it was as cold as the tagaytay weather,we liked the crispy pork adobo variety but found nothing especial with the chicken adobong puti and native pork sparibs adobo. Maybe we’ll order something else when we come back.

  24. Good day. i would like to apply as a junior commis to your resto im a fresh grad. ive had my apprenticeship at raintree foodparks resto like momo cafe at ayala and mister jones at greenbelt 5. im now practicing my profession as junior commis under the same company at mall of asia arena. hoping for your kind consideration. thank you and God bless.
    i attached my resume here. thank you.
    Address: Cale Tanauan City Batangas
    Contact No: 09053290029/09296292823
    Email Address:
    Date of Birth: May 31,1987
    Place of Birth: Tanauan Batangas
    Civil Status: Single
    Job experience:
    Junior Commis At Moa Arena May 10- 2012 up to present
    Internship trainings:
    Momo Ayala Triangle February 11,2012
    Ayala Triangle Makati City
    Raintree Hospitality Management March 19, 2012
    Salustiano Tower Paseo de Roxas Makati City
    Mr.Jones March 27, 2012
    Greenbelt5 Makati City
    Educational Background:
    August 2011-January 2012 Global Culinary and Hospitality Academy
    Diploma in Culinary Arts
    June 2004-April 2008 Lyceum St.Cabrini College Of Allied Medicine
    Chef Brian JJ Saycon
    Chef Instructor
    Global Academy Alabang Branch
    Phone: +632 801 9612
    Wireless Phone: +632 736 5606
    Mobile: +63 922 899 5722
    Frederick Arellano
    Chef de Parte of Momo Ayala Triangle
    Mobile: 0917-575-6224
    Vina Angela Luna

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