Comfort Food Quick Stops
Bacolod Chk-n-BBQ House
In Sta. Rosa, Laguna, Bacolod Chk-N-BBQ House at Crosstown Mall, along Sta. Rosa-Tagaytay Road, offers the kind of value-for-money eats that are becoming rarer and rarer these days, with The Pecho Chicken (Php 115), Garlic Rice (Php 30) and Sago't Gulaman (Php 60).
1st Colonial- Tagaytay
On a chilly, foggy day in Tagaytay, 1st Colonial at the Ground Floor of Magallanes Square Hotel, offers a real treat: Php200* for a bowl of bulalo soup, which can be good for 2 for moderate eaters (plus the soup is refillable).
1st Colonial is also dubbed the “Home of the original Sili Ice Cream" from Bicol, boasting some unique ice icream flavors, Bicol cuisine, and Tagaytay's Bulalo & Bangus.
* Rate indicated here is true at least during the time of posting.
You've Got Baked
In Laguna Belair 2, Santa Rosa, Laguna, You’ve Got Bake offers quite some hearty meals that seem spawned from a super creative mind. The Club Sandwich or the Chicken Salad Sandwich are filling enough as they are pretty, and even nicer when downed with a cold glass of Raspberry Juice or Calamansi Juice.
Stuffing the stomach, however, may be a purpose harbored by the starved. True food romantics will easily spot the display of assorted cupcakes at the place, and see in this an almost forbidden, self-indulgent orchestra of sweet edible accompaniment for a memorable finale.
Romulo Cafe, at the lobby of Azumi Hotel in Alabang, features food that's fab. Dining here is always a pleasure as the menu itself seems like a glaring tribute to ingenuity that's solely purposed for the palate.
The restaurant was put up by the heirs of Carlos P. Romulo, the illustrious statesman and author, as they hoped to share to the public some preserved mementos that tell of the many facets of the great man, particularly the aspects of home, kitchen and comfort food. It does raise curiosity…like, "What was the favorite lunch of the guy who played a critical role in marshaling our country through its full independence?" One will find quickly that it's Filipino comfort food made fabulous.
Ginataang Kohol, the Pinoy-style escargot cooked in coconut milk and served without shell, is a heart-warming winner. The Crispy Pork Binagoongan (crispy deep-fried pork cooked with tomatoes and bagoong) and the Mixed Bicol Express (pork, squid, shrimps, and clams cooked in coconut milk) are unforgettable. Also try the Pomelo Salad (green salad with pomelo and salted egg, drizzled with Baguio-strawberry vinaigrette).
Henann Regency Boracay
When in Boracay, check out the Seabreeze Cafe buffets at the Henann Regency Resort & Spa, formerly the Boracay Regency Beach Resort & Spa. This place regularly hosts what is perhaps the most extravagant buffet in the island, and is also known for its "dancing chefs".
However, don't let the pervading gaiety and the grandiose architecture sidetrack you from the real mission: the feast. Seabreeze Cafe's international buffet offers a plethora of food that'll surely satisfy anyone. And topping the selection is the regular grill, where soft, juicy beef morsels are generously apportioned…enough to bloat stomach's with meat…solely with meat.
You can even have these delicious steaks with clams and scallops and beer while enjoying a breath-taking view of the sea. It's a steak lover's delight, and something that shouldn't be missed when in this festive island paradise.
For those who prefer the quaint and classic, and don't really need an elaborate, fancy ambience to dine, but just a nice and quiet nook, good food, and amiable company...easy contentment can be found in Casa Roces in Malacanang.
The ground floor of Casa Roces features Kape Chino, a coffeehouse with an outdoor wooden deck, a dessert bar, and a memorabilia and accessories shop.
A satisfying, early dinner suggestion: Lengua in Mushroom Sauce, Pork Stew Binagoongan, and a couple of glasses of Mojitos by flickering candlelight at Kape Chino's al fresco.
Casa Roces also offers a good assortment of cakes that can be had in whole or junior size. Try the Chocolate Caramel, the Dulce de Leche or the White Chocolate Sans Rival.