By Abigail Javellana Bacolod is a foodie haven and food is central to the MassKarra Festival experience. Check out our list of favorite local finds… Bacolod Series in Our Awesome Planet: • BACOLOD FOOD TRIP: Eat Like a Local in Bacolod! • MASSKARA: Our Awesome Guide to Bacolod’s MassKara Festival! • SILAY FOOD GUIDE: What to Eat in Silay & KAON TA! Food Festival? • LAKAWON: Negros’ Secret Paradise Retreat & TawHai Floating Bar! • 10 Awesome Places to Visit Around Bacolod! • White Hotel vs. Hometown: The Old and New Backpacker Hotels in Bacolod City! • BACOLOD PASALUBONG: What to Bring Back Home from Bacolod? CHICKEN INASAL Bacolod is home to the famous chicken inasal. The charcoal grilled chicken can be found all over the city from Manokan Country, Chicken house, Chicken Deli, Masskara Chicken and many more. Manokan Country is a strip of Karinderia styled restaurants situated across the parking lot of SM Bacolod. The establishments practically all serve the same stuff- grilled chicken parts and nothing but. Order: Paa (thigh part) P75, pechopack (breast) P80, Tina-e (chicken intestines) P25, isol (chicken bottom) P65 and bul-o (chicken skin) P25. Aida’s is considered the best by the locals and is usually packed on the weekends. We love the “carinderia-ambiance” that makes our experience more authentic. We heard the more famous and better-tasting dishes in Bacolod are actually found in simple restos such as Aida’s. Inasal Chicken is first marinated with Sinamak (Negros vinegar), ginger, onions, garlic and spices and based with anato oil while grilled over an open flame. Inasal can be found throughout the Western Visayas Regions of the Philippine Archipelago. Jah showed us how Bacolodnons prepare their dipping sauce with squeezing two calamansi limes, pour sinamak/langgaw, and then add a few drops of patis(Hiligaynon term for soy sauce) for flavor and color. We love Aida’s chicken, we feel that it has a more savory taste, maybe because it was marinated up to the bone. There is no shame in eating with your bare hands and… Don’t forget to pour chicken oil all over your rice. Talaba (P50/order). We also ordered local oysters called, “talaba” found in the beaches of Roxas Iloilo. The savory milky creamy treat is best paired with local vinegar sinamak/langgaw. Besides the vinegar, our friend Jah told us to drink soft drinks as well to minimize the chance of upset stomachs. You can also order oysters at seafood pala-pala restaurants in the city. 🙂 AIDA’S CHICKEN – Manokan Country Fr. M. Ferrero St., Nenas Rose II, Bacolod City 6100 Phone: +63 34 433 8727 Operating Hours: Sun-Sat 7:30am–3am Another go to inasal house we tried is Nena’s Beth found along the strip. We heard that the restaurants along Manokan Country use the same marinade for the chicken. If you’re not after the ambiance and the crowd, I suggest trying other inasal grills also. NENAS BETH- Manokan Country Fr. M. Ferrero St.,, Nenas Beth, Bacolod, 6100 Phone: +63 34 433-8830 Operating Hours: Sun-Sat 6:00am–3:00am Paa (thigh) (P75) *rice not included One of the chicken restuarnt that has made inasal popular is the Chicken House. We noticed their inasal has a very aromatic smell and it’s skin perfectly roasted to crisp. Order: Paa (thigh part) P75, pecho (breast) P78, Spareribs P95, isol (chicken bottom) P30. Spareribs (P95). Besides ordering their Inasal we never fail to order their Spareribs. Tips: We prefer to pair it with garlic rice only. No need for chicken oil. CHICKEN HOUSE Araneta Ave, Bacolod, Negros Occidental Phone: +63 34 433-4623, +63 34 434-8201 24th Lacson Street, Bacolod, Negros Occidental Phone: +63 34 434-9405 One of the newly opened resto’s is Masskara Chicken. It’s interiors a bit classy compared to usual inasal joints. Our teammate Boom preferred Masskara Chicken’s inasal because it was much juicier and tender. Order: Paa (thigh part) P75, pecho (breast) P75, Bul-0 (chicken skin) P25, isaw/tina-e (chicken intestines) P25. Bul-0 (chicken skin) (P25). I liked the unhealthy crunchy and chewy Bul-o (Chicken skin) 🙂 Isaw/tina-e (chicken intestines) (P25). We love the Bacoleño version of isaw (chicken intestines) called tina-e brushed with achuete oil, we find it a much cleaner way of eating chicken intestines as they are cleaned inside out. Be sure to dip it in vinegar. Masskara Chicken B.s. North Drive 6100 Bacolod City, Philippines Phone: +63 34 435- 1749 Overall, all the inasal joints we tasted were at par. Me and Sean loved Aida’s, Boom loved Masskara chicken and Jah likes Chicken house, it all comes down to personal preference. 🙂 PALA-PALA SEAFOOD RESTAURANTS Pala-Pala is similar in concept to the “Dampa” of Manila or the famed “Sutukil” of Cebu. Customers get to choose from a wide variety of freshly caught seafood and have it prepared and cooked in the style of your liking—be it grilled ,fried, baked or served on a Sizzling hotplate. Popular seafood restaurants include Aboy’s, Diotays, 18th Street, Ting-Ting’s, Enting’s, Ading’s Pala-Pala, Hyksos and Imay’s. Aboy’s is one of my favorite places when it comes to local seafood. The establishment started as a small eatery serving basic grilled meats and seafood back at 1992, now it seats to more than 250 people offering a wide variety of favorite local seafood fares. Order: Blue Marlin (P 484 – 1 kilo), Scallops, Pangat (local version of Laing P120), Squid fats (P185), Kinilaw (P160), Locos (grillef squid P70/piece) Blue Marlin (P484) – 1 kilo. My favorite go to place for Blue Marlin is at Aboy’s. Perfectly grilled fish with a buttery taste that slightly melts in your mouth. Kinilaw (P160). Kinilaw is raw fish marinated in vinegar. They used Tanguigue (Spanish Mackarel) mixed with vinegar, onions, garlic, ginger, calamansi juice, salt and pepper. It is commonly eaten as a appetizer or pulutan. Squid Fats (P185). Using squid or cuttlefish it’s fats are squeezed out and then sauteed in adobo style. The flavors were intense and very flavorful. Though we had mix reviews with the dish. (Some loving it while others didn’t.) ABOY’S Liroville Subd., Singcang, Bacolod City Phone: +63 34 435 0760 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org 18th streets Pala-Pala restaurant’s inspiration comes from the pala-pala market on the 10th street downtown Bacolod City. Recommended dishes are the Grilled Blue Marlin (P640.00/kilo), Tangigue Kinilaw (P700.00/kilo), Black Pepper Shrimp or Garlic Butter Shrimp (P950/kilo) and Scallop (P170). Pepper Shrimp P321 (P950/kilo). Fresh shrimp sauteed in pepper. We like the sauce and the strong burnt peppery and sweet flavors. Scallops P170. Yummy juicy Scallops topped with butter and garlic. 18TH STREET PALA-PALA Cor. 18th – Aguinaldo St., Bacolod City Phone: +63 34 433-9153, +63 34 709-1267 Diotay’s Eatery, is a humble carinderia feel resto serving pala-pala style seafood dishes (sugba, tula, etc.) and turo-turo.We loved the fast service and reasonable prices. Order: Diwal (P320- twelve pieces are about 1/2 kilo), Garlic Butter Shrimp (P280 1/2 kilo- 2 dishes), Adobong Squid (P260 1/2 kilo- 2 dishes) and Sinigang Lapu-Lapu (P280 1 kilo- 2 bowls) For more info, visit the Facebook page: DiotaysEatery Diwal (P320- twelve pieces are about 1/2 kilo). Translating from Hiligaynon as “sticking out tongue” Diwal are known as “Angel Wings” in English as they resemble a pair of wings when opened. Diwal are endemic to the coastal waters of Negros and Capiz and are highly regulated by local governments. They are rare to find in local markets making them a delicacy in the region. They have a similar taste to mussels and a texture of a fresh oyster giving it a distinct flavor. They are usually baked, steamed or grilled and topped with fresh garlic. They are usually found in local seafood restaurants and can come pricey due to being rare. Garlic Butter Shrimp (P280 1/2 kilo- 2 dishes). We noticed all the tables ordering the garlic butter shrimp, and so did we. 🙂 We liked it. The dish was a little sweet because locals would usually cook their shrimps with either Royal or Sprite. DIOTAY’S 12th st., Gatuslao, 6100 Bacolod City, Philippines Mobile: +639 4881-40037 Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DiotaysEatery CANSI Cansi (P270) is a dish that is found in Negros. It has similarities with Bulalo (Filipino Bone Marrow Soup) and Sinigang (Filipino Sour Soup). True Cansi is made with beef the shank that is boiled tender in a bone broth which is soured by the Batwan Fruit, a fruit that is indigenous to the Negros. (Sharyn’s Cansi House P270) Typically it is eaten with rice dipped in soy sauce (called patis in Bacolod), kalamansi and chili. But we prefer to pair it with rice only. It’s a kind of comfort food for the locals and we recommend it to anyone visiting the region. SHARYN’S CANSI HOUSE C-58 Narra Avenue, Capitol Shopping Center, Bacolod City Phone: (034) 433 1374 Mobile: +639 405 3969 Facebook: sharynsbacolod You can also try Ero’s Cansi just a store away from Sharyn’s. ERON’S CANSI HOUSE #66 Narra Ave. Capitol Shopping Center, 6100 Bacolod City Website: www.eronscansihouse.com Email: email@example.com Phone: +63 34 435 2213 Facebook: EronsCansiHouse Operating Hours: Mon-Sun: 8:00 am-10:00 pm KBL (KADIOS, BABOY, LANGKA) KBL (Kadios, Baboy, Langka) (P128). If you’re going to ask the locals where you can get the best KBL (Kadios, Baboy, Langka) in town. they will point you to Sandoks. Sandok is a casual restaurant serving home cooked caldo and comfort food. KBL is a favorite local dish composed of pigeon peas, pork, and green jackfruit. The pork is boiled until tender and the broth has a distinct sour taste from the fruit batwan and kadios which is used in the base. The batwan is a native fruit only found in the Negros Region and is used in many local dishes. SANDOK COMFORT FOOD Main: Narra Avenue Operating Hours: Mon-Sat 7:30am-8:30am Facebook: sandok.bacolod Phone: +63 34 703-2513 Branch: O Residences, 6100 Bacolod City, Philippines Operating Hours: Mon-Sat 7:30am-8:30am https:sandok.bacolod Phone: +63 34 703-2513 BATCHOY Batchoy originated in La Paz, Iloilo a neighboring city from Bacolod. The Filipino favorite dish was made not only by what was available but was was left in the market (pork intestines, pork skin, liver). The broth is simmered for hours that gave the soup such rich aroma and taste. Then topped with thin wheat noodles and crush pork crackling. It’s a cholesterol and uric acid nightmare but a delightful treat now and then. Special Batchoy (P90). One of the best places to get Batchoy in town is at 21 Bar and Restaurant. We loved the batchoy, it was very savory with a slight sweet aftertaste. We heard their batchoy’s broth is most thick and savory during 2pm in the afternoon. 🙂 21 RESTAURANT 21st Lacson Street, 6100 Bacolod City, Philippines Operating Hours: Daily 7am – 7pm Phone: +63 34 433 4096 Mobile: +639 08891-3588, +639 32257-5175 Facebook: 21-Restaurant E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.21restaurant.com BACOLOD FUSION We loved dining at Mushu Asian Restaurant, it was a great experience to sample some original and unique dishes they offered. Master Chef JP Anglo remained true to its Asian tapestry with creating recognizable dishes and giving them a slight twist. Order: Sizzling Cansi (P195), Chicken Inasal Sisig (P175), Salt and Pepper Squid (P175), Crispy Dilis (P95), Pritchon (P195). Pritchon (P195). We liked the Pritchon (Fried Lechon) pancake with hoisin sauce, which we find is the Filipino version of the traditional Chinese Peking duck pancake. Chicken Inasal Sisig (P175). Inasal Sisig is inspired by the Bacolod Chicken Inasal. Instead of a regular inasal they turned it into sisig. We loved it, regardless it being healthier than regular pork sisig, it was still very flavorful and one of our favorite dishes we tried in Bacolod. Sizzling Cansi (P195). The Sizzling Cansi, is the famous cansi soup. They took it out of the cauldron and placed it in a sizzling plate with the addition of batuan gravy. MUSHU ASIAN RESTAURANT & LOUNGE Azotea Building, Mandalagan, 6100 Bacolod City, Philippines Operating Hours: 5pm -1am Phone: +634 703-1022 Facebook: mushu.bacolod.3 BACOLOD BBQ Bob’s is one of Bacolod’s favorite family restaurants. For many Bacolodnons Bob’s is a place you’d visit to taste a piece of home. It was started by Dr. Homero Sicangco in 1965 in Bacolod. It is an institution similar to Aristocrat here in Manila. They are popular for their American menu: Sate babe Pork BBQ, Baby Back Ribs, and Burgers. Order: Sate babe Pork BBQ (P121), Baby Back Ribs(P272), Fruit Punch (P102), Lumpia Frito (P74), Fish Fillet in Black Butter Sauce (P264), Sizzling Bangus (price according to size) and their Mongolian eat-all-you can buffet (P320/head). Sate babe Pork BBQ (P121). The Sate babe is their most popular dish that gave rise to Bob’s claim to fame. Tender pork barbecue grilled with peanut butter sauce (Sate Sauce). I liked how it had a the sour twist in the end and a more peanutty taste. Baby Back Ribs (P272). One of our teammates loved the ribs so bad that others didn’t get the chance to try it. 🙂 Their tender pork ribs are marinated in homemade barbecue sauce then grilled with perfection. We liked how you can taste the BBQ sauce on every strand of meat that easily falls off the bone. Fruit Punch (P102). Also, order one of Bob’s famous drink. The fruit punch contains chunks of mango, watermelon, coconut flesh, but what makes it special are the Ubod bits. BOB’S RESTAURANT B.S. Aquino, North drive, 6100 Bacolod City, Philippines Facebook: BOBS-RESTAURANT Phone: +63 34 434-2409 La Salle/+63 34 709-7646 Gaisano City/+63 34 708-0807 Robinson’s Place Lacson SM City BACOLOD DESSERT! Being the Sugar Capital of the Philippines, it’s no surprise that Bacolodnons love dessert. It is home to many pastry shops offering a wide variety of ridiculously affordable and generous mouthwatering cakes! A must try experience when visiting Bacolod. In my opinion, Calea has the best cakes in the city. The cakes were amazing, but the service and management were not at par. Price range from P600-P800 and P85- P100/ slice. White chocolate cheesecake (P90/slice, P835/ 1 whole). My favorite and also one of the best sellers is the white chocolate cheesecake with raspberry sauce on the side. It’s creamy goodness, with the sweetness balanced by the tangy raspberry sauce. Choco Mud Pie (P100/slice). Ice cream lovers would be delighted with the Choco Mud Pie. Chocolate ice cream cake with thick chocolate syrup sprinkled with oreo like crushed cookie crumb, and walnut silvers. It’s choco heaven goodness with just the right amount of sweetness. CALEA G/F Balay Quince, 15 Lacson St., Bacolod City, Negros Occidental Operating Hours: Mon – Thur 8AM to 10PM, Fri- Sun 9AM to 11PM Phone: +63 34 433-3143 G/F The District North Point, National Highway, Talisay, Negros Occidental Operating Hours: Mon–Sun 9:00 AM–9:00 PM 1st Level, Robinsons Place Bacolod, Lacson St, Bacolod, 6100 Negros Occidental Phone: +63 34 441 0505 NSA Felicia’s Choco Cake (P85/slice). Locals would point me to Felicia’s for the best chocolate cakes in town. The yummy cake was moist with just the right amount of sweetness. 🙂 NSA Butter Sansrival (P80/slice). Also, order their other best seller the Sans Rival. I liked that it wasn’t too buttery and sweet for my taste. FELICIA’S PASTRY CAFE 6th lacson street, DOLL building, 6100 Bacolod City, Philippines Operating Hours: Sun-Thu: 9:00 am-11:00 pm, Fri-Sat: 9:00 am-11:45 pm Phone: +63 34 709-1123 Mobile: +639 27140-7892, +639 2898- 6253 Facebook: Felicias.pastry.cafe E-mail: email@example.com Frozen Brazo de Mercedez (P90). What also won over our sweet tooth is Ann Co’s frozen Brazo de Mercedez. 🙂 It is a frozen cake with layers composed of egg white, yummy yema filling, with sugary graham crackers on top. Ann Co Cakes Lacson Avenue corner 12th Street, Bacolod City, Negros Occidental, 6100 Phone: +63 34 441 7196 Facebook: anncocakes Tip: Conveniently these cake shops are located just a few shops away from each other in the Lacson Strip. 😉 HOW TO MAKE PIAYA VLOG! (Piaya Workshop at Bong Bong’s Factory) Piaya is Bacolod’s #1 pasalubong treat! Join @Abi.golucky as she goes on a factory tour at Bong Bong’s -one of the oldest piaya bakers in Bacolod! Being the Sugar Capital of the Philippines, trying out the local sweet delicacies are a must! This is one activity the kids would love to experience when visiting Bacolod, since affordable and mouthwatering sugary desserts is what the city is known for! https://youtu.be/O3Rg_q-OHdI (Watch Video) You can book the piaya workshop via Bong Bong’s Official Facebook, or call and message their office (034) 704 1275 | 09228606767. Rate: 60php/head only. Min of 15 pax max of 50pax (The Factory is closed on Sundays) *Please book in advance for availability BONG BONG’S Bongbong Villan Building Corner Pauline Street Alijis Road, Bacolod City, Negros Occidental Landline: (034) 704 1275 Mobile: +639228606767 Website: www.bongbongspiaya.com.ph And what is a visit to the Sugar Capital of the Philippines without a cup of fresh Sugar Cane juice. (P20-P70 depending on size) Overall, we loved Bacolod City’s MassKara Festival! From Bacolod Food trips, heritage tours, colorful parades, vibrant costumes to endless street parties that last until the morning. Our experience wouldn’t be as fun without the smiling faces of the people of Bacolod. Bacolod Series in Our Awesome Planet: • BACOLOD FOOD TRIP: Eat Like a Local in Bacolod! • MASSKARA: Our Awesome Guide to Bacolod’s MassKara Festival! • SILAY FOOD GUIDE: What to Eat in Silay & KAON TA! Food Festival? • LAKAWON: Negros’ Secret Paradise Retreat & TawHai Floating Bar! • 10 Awesome Places to Visit Around Bacolod! • White Hotel vs. Hometown: The Old and New Backpacker Hotels in Bacolod City! • BACOLOD PASALUBONG: What to Bring Back Home from Bacolod? BACOLOD CITY Facebook: Bacolod-City-Public-Information-Office Phone: +63 34 434-6751, +63 34 432-1997 Website: www.onebacolod.com E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Live an Awesome Life, Abi with Boom and Sean Team Our Awesome Planet Disclosure: Our #BoomingBacolod experience was courtesy of the Bacolod City Toursim office. Read Our Awesome Planet Complete Disclosure Policy here. P.S. We do believe in the saying after your visit in Bacolod, you’re sure to gain 5 pounds and a smile! Thank you Bacolod City Mayor’s Office and the Bacolod Tourism Office for a wonderful #BoomingBacolod exerience. Especially to Mayor Monico Puentevella and Mr. Rocky Puentevella for showing us what Bacolod City has to offer. Cheers to a successful Masskara Festival!