This time around, I went to Iloilo to check out the food scene.
Vinnie and FGM Cindy were with me.
The airport was very clean! We were so surprised! Getting around Iloilo is a little difficult if you do not have a car. We had to hire a taxi to take us to our hotel.
We checked in a Injap Tower....
across SM Iloilo.
We used the same cab to go to Tatoy's Manukan Restaurant near the bay.
I LOVE Tatoy's!!!!!!
Especially the Chicharon Bulaklak.
We also ordered.....
Lechon Squab (native chicken)
Grilled Blue Marlin - I want to eat it again!
Green Mangoes with Ginamos
After dinner, we asked the cab driver to drop us off at SM so we could start buying our pasalubongs.
The next day, I woke up very early. I went to La Paz Public Market.
I enjoy going to the palengke! .
My suitcase was filled with my loot from the market.
Batwan - I just bought for Tita Ope, Cat and for myself.
Ginamos - their version of bagoong. 3\4 K.... gave some to my neighbors as pasalubong.
Guimaras mangoes and tuyo!
I ate La Paz Batchoy at Netong's located inside the market.
The puto manapla was so good! I should have bought some to bring home.
The waiter told me to dip the puto in the soup.
I had my 2nd breakfast at the hotel. It was a simple buffet spread. I tried the pancakes.
At first I was very wary.... how could they cook good pancakes????
The hot plate had melted butter and they were cooking the pancakes on it! GREASY!!!!
NOT! Ohhhhh I was so surprised the pancakes were moist, soft and fluffy!
I am so used to eating dense and dry pancakes in the provinces but not at our hotel. PLUS! They used caramelized muscovado sugar instead of pancake syrup! It tasted like molasses.
After breakfast, Mona arrived from Manila. We headed to Breakthrough Restaurant near the bay.
BUT...... before going to Breakthrough, we passed by Tatoy's to buy Chicharon Bulaklak.
We wanted Mona to try it.
It was not as crispy as the night before but still, we ate it all.
The restaurant's view was beautiful.... you can see the water while dining al fresco.
We ordered a lot of food.
2 platters of Butter Garlic Scallops
Grilled Managat Fish, it can only be found in the waters of Iloilo.
Pinangat na Laing
Vinnie bought food to take home to Manila. Her flight was in the evening.
Lunch at Breakthrough was just ok.
Then we went around the city to go to different pasalubong shops.
I tried the famous siopao from Roberto's.
Bought different kinds of Biscocho and broas!
Barquillos from Deocampo was the best!
When I came home from Iloilo, after unloading my suticase at home, I went to Rockwell to buy ice cream so I can enjoy my barquillos!
We just discovered you do not have to go around the city to buy delicacies to take home. You can buy almost everything at the airport!
When Vinnie left, we just had dinner at Shakey's. No more native food for us.
The next day, I had the same pancakes for breakfast. They also served Sunpride longanisa. I better remember the brand. The next time I go to Cebu, I am going to buy it in the supermarket.
As usual, I was overweight again! Hahahahaha
Friends wanted me to buy food stuff for them but I could not possibly buy more. The problem is, before leaving Manila the weight was already 9 kilos. I only had 6 kilos to spare. I bought fresh produce from the market so that was the culprit. I do not like to hand carry things but I was forced to put the box of barquillos and blanket (my security blanket) inside my travelling bag.
We were at the airport quite early because Mona and I wanted to be transferred to FGM's flight because it was earlier than ours.
I know there was a nearby Tatoy's. I could not get the chicharon bulaklak out of my mind. I had to eat it or else I will go crazy!
As soon as I dropped off my luggage at the counter, I immediately called Tatoy's to order chicharon. I told them I was at the airport and to please make it crunchy. I also told them the chicharon I bought yesterday was not that crunchy.
I hired a taxi to take me to the restuarant.
When I got there, my order was waiting for me.
It was still hot I could hardly hold the bag!
Even the driver was going crazy because of the delicious aroma eminating from the paper bag. I gave manong driver a piece.
Cindy and Mona were so surprised that I got back very fast!
I let Mona try a few pieces, the rest was all mine!!!!!!!!!
Paper thin chicharon so crunchy!
Imagine, I ate chicharon bulaklak 3 days in a row!!!!
What is so surprising about it???
I do not eat chicharon.
I do not like chicharon.
It is not my favorite food.
But the chicharon bulaklak of Tatoy's Manukan if cooked right???
I will eat it over and over again.
So..... ask me.... Do I want to go back to Iloilo?
But maybe just a day trip is enough.
Will go to the market in the morning to eat batchoy and puto, buy in the palengke, have a long lunch at Tatoy's Manukan near the bay then head back to the airport.
Buy all the pasalubong at the 3rd floor.
By the way, the staff at the Iloilo International Airport was so helpful! I am not used to people being nice to me!
In Manila, if a stranger is extra nice to you, be cautious!
But in Iloilo, it is the nature of the people to be nice and helpful without expecting anything in return.
So.... yes.... I am going back to Iloilo!