Monday, May 11, 2015

Best-kept restaurant secrets in Batangas

I've been eating my way through Batangas for quite some time now and so I list some of the restaurants I am planning to revisit at some point.

L'Atelier at La Chevrerie, Mabini
A one-Michelin star gem in a most unexpected place, I stumbled upon a review of this restaurant while I was searching for good places to eat. And to think that I've been in Anilao a lot for the past year! The food was high quality thanks to the man behind the kitchen, Chef Larry. Because the restaurant is quite popular to people in the know, it's kind of difficult to reserve a table to eat there; the restaurant is always full! When I ate there the first (and only, so far) time, I had steak with mashed potatoes... and the dish tasted so good! 

Anilao Beach Club, Mabini
I am starting to feel at home in this resort. The food is a major contributing factor to why I'll return time and time again. My favourites are the chicken cordon bleu (with mashed potatoes) and the chilli con carne (with nachos). These are so well prepared that I haven't even thought of trying the other items in the menu (well, except for sinigang... but I always eat sinigang). But aside from the food, I particularly like the friendly atmosphere exuded by the staff. 

Kambingan sa Ruz Ville Restaurant, Padre Garcia
Gotong Batangas is a famous dish and I couldn't believe I tried it for the first time, ever, in April. I've always thought that goto is like congee, with rice cooked in excess water with beef tripe... which is the version I often eat in Laguna. However, the Batangas goto just had savoury soup with beef tripe; there was no rice in it. It tastes like bulalo for me, another Batangas delicacy. But what makes the goto in Kambingan special is the impression that it's home-cooked over firewood. It's a very different vibe from typical restaurant food. Maybe the truck-stop atmosphere also helped... 

Johanna's Grille, Bauan
Sizzling frankfurters were delicious! Apparently, this restaurant is known to the beach crowd that frequents Anilao because everyone I saw eating there was sun-kissed, rosy-cheeked, and tanned. Also, divers recommended the place when I was searching for a good place to eat.