Wednesday, March 6, 2019

At Casa Simeon, Albay: Where Heirloom Dishes and Good Sleep Awaits


Just last year, I had a wonderful experience at Albay.  It wasn't my first time to tour Albay, as our family had a memorable one around Legazpi and the neighboring towns of Albay, back in 2012.

Read about our Albay joint here.

Also, I was one of the media representative to cover the 2016 Palarong Pambansa as hosted and initiated by the Department of Education.

I've seen throughout the moving of years how the province of Albay developed, especially it's capital, Legazpi City.  I have also witnessed how the nation raved about their Bicolano cuisine and found Albay to be a foodie destination.  No wonder why everyone have been going there and having an awesome experience as well.


Thanks to the Department of Tourism's invitation to witness the launch of KAIN NA!, their new food tourism campaign I was able to discover yet again Albay in a whole nee light. 

After the afternoon flight from Manila to Legazpi, the tour guide set us off to the famous boulevard near Embarcadero and after driving for less than an hour we reached Bacacay, a municipality in the eastern slope of Mt. Mayon. 


We stopped at an ancestral house made into a heritage Bed and Breakfast place.  It was owned by the late Simeon and Beatrice Alparce.  Now, it is managed by Jessica Calleja and her husband Chef Rico, who is the descendant of the Alparce.   

According to the staff, almost all of the architectural motif have been preserved in the building despite the regular typhoons that come.  You can see the tremendous Spanish colonial influence in the building and you can just feel the historical value of it, however, they were able maintain it in a way that the guests will have a very comfortable stay, complete with cable channels and WIFI in the rooms.


The main door leading to the guest lobby and their romantic library.



On the second floor, with an elegant staircase leading to the veranda and the dining hall is the Cucina Beatrice.  It's a restaurant that opens daily from 11AM to 9PM where one can experience heirloom recipes.

Breakfast buffet
And where every guest who spent the night to indulge in a hefty regional Bicolano breakfast.


One of the go-to food here is the Biniribid na Churros, which was also highlighted during the Kain Na! event of DOT.  It is Bicol’s version of the Pilipit but made softer and airier. It is made of  rice flour with coconut shavings, deep fried like that of churros and coated with sugar, and is best paired with hot and thick Tablea.

Casa Simeon can also host you certain cultural activities right in their own vicinity or a tour around Albay.

One of the activities you can do at Casa Simeon is banig-weaving.


Woven baskets are one of the major products of Bacacay.

They use Karagumoy, the local name for the pandan family, which grows to more than six feet tall. The strips from the long leaves of the plant is dried,  flattened, and dyed before being woven into mats, hats, fans, and bags. 


You can also play with the owners' pet dog, who is very kind and accommodating.

To show how they value the dishes they offer, they can have you in a cooking demo with their chef. 


We learned how to cook Tinutungang Manok, a classic Bicolano dish where the main ingredient is native chicken which is stewed in smoky coconut milk. What’s so special in this dish is that the grated coconut is slightly burnt on hot charcoals before the milk is extracted, thus giving the sauce a smoky flavor. Not to mention the spicy creamy sauce. It's flavor is heightened with lemon grass and unripe papaya. 

Tinutungag Manok
For breakfast, there is a lot of choices...




These dilis are  must to have so don't let this day pass without trying these crunchy delights, dipped in their equally yummy vinegar and eaten with steamy rice.



CASA SIMEON

Address:  #1 Bes St, Brgy 13, Poblacion,
               Bacacay, Albay 4509 Philippines

Phone: +63-915-982-6135 | +63-917-506-3554

Email: visitus@casasimeon.com or
casasimeon.philippines@gmail.com

You can also visit their Facebook Page

6 comments:

  1. Very nice read to your blog which is related to heirloom dishes and Casa Simeon, Albay. Thanks for posting this detail here

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  2. I love the laidback atmosphere, looks really relaxing, yummy food as well. Any other things to do there?

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  3. I love the laidback atmosphere, looks really relaxing, yummy food as well. Any other things to do there?

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