Guilty as charged!
I always took the "guilty" in guilty pleasure to be a little tongue in cheek, more of an admission that you are going to be quoted as jumping on the bandwagon (amongst the foodies), or that we are going to get teased again a little when the relatives find out. Well, we don't mind. Lol.
To outline our short take on Dumaguete's food tourism, as what I have promised at our family's recent travel post, I've listed the following food joints found only in the flourishing city that's central of Negros Oriental.
This list is but a fraction of their ever-growing food industry.
1. Waldo's Bar, Antulang Resort, Siaton
Perched on a cliff with a view of the ocean, your worries will sure be left unspoken of. Though a drive or ride at the dirt-road of 9 kms off the main road, once you reach the undiscovered haven, you will realize that what you will be having for lunch will all be worth the wait. The P 200 worth of consumable fee included in your P 300 walk-in charge can duly fix up ones' hunger. With dishes varying from Continental, Filipino and Italian dishes. The staff are very accommodating and always right on your side for a good service. With the staff speaking English and finally Tagalog- cause no one in Negros would speak in Tagalog, but they can understand you pretty well.
Food is hefty enough for sharing and priced competitively. There is also food packaged for group of diners. Since our group is 9 we all had P1,800 worth of consumable amount for our lunch.
Top choice: One whole fried chicken, made the Visayan way.
Waldo's version of Ceasar Salad.
2. Gabby's Bistro, Rovira Rd, Bantayan, Dumaguete City
both Kuya and Ate (my two older kids) had big cuppies of Tiramisu.
The newest kiddie-themed nook inside the bistro.
What we loved about the place was the artsy-craftsy side of the Dumaguenos expressed here. Every spot have a different character to it yet all are quirky and captivating. Best enjoyed of course with the plethora of dishes the have on their menu. Which we still have to try in the near future.
3. Lab-as, Flores Ave. cor E.J. Blanco Dr. beside Hayahay, Dumaguete City
Good thing Lab-as is air conditioned but still not enough sitting available. We waited a bit to get seated and finally had us placed at the back most part in front of the comfort rooms.
We figured they serve great tasting food since like Hayahay it was jam packed. When you enter you will notice right away a guy playing with the piano at one corner, so get to enjoy good music while you wait to be served. Let me also warn you that people in this part of town are not welcoming. You get to wait for your food for about 30 mins. But let's judge the food instead.
Lab-as means fresh. So you may expect dishes to be made from fresh ingredients including seafood. The menu has a wide range of seafood dishes, which included sushi and sashimi.
Make sure to also order their specialty, Dumaguete Express. A mix of fish, squid, shrimp, swimming in creamy cooked gata. what makes this dish extra delish is the shredded coconut meat mixed with the other green leaffies like "dahon ng sili" and spinach. The specialty doesn't end there, it was then topped with bagnet and browned garlic. Now were talking!
4. Breakfast at Island Leisure Boutique Hotel
Like any other hotel accommodation, Island Leisure includes a set breakfast meal.
They have three kinds of sets.
Bacon, egg and toast; and Corned beef with egg and steamed rice.
All the different breakfast sets come with either a glass of orange juice or a cup of brewed coffee.
I love the splashes of blue, yellow and orange the main branch. This time the staff have displayed the true Dumagueno character of being gentle, hospitable and cheerful.
The menu was a spectacular show of festive traditional Mexican dishes and other cuisines with Mexican fusion. With categories as, Appeteasers (A good twist for appetizers), Fresh Salads, From the Steaming Pot, Mexican Mooon, Pork, Beef & Chicken, Fish, Sausage Meal, Pasta, Side Orders, Pizzas.
Creamy white sauce with bacon and mushrooms topped with cheese.
6. Sans Rival, inside Robinson's Place.
7. Sta. Teresa Restaurant, Hibaard Rd., Dumaguete
Like the other restaurants famous here, the Turo-turo characteristic is defined here as well. The same concept actually applies at Sans Rival Bistro. You choose your kind of food displayed in the counter, they heat it up and then the waiters serve it at your table. More of like an upscale version of a turo-turo (karinderia type) with an exemplary laid-back homey ambiance.