Lechon (Roast Pig) Hopping in Cebu, Philippines

If you feel some kind of a bore during your trip to a city, why don’t you try food tripping. Break the spell of being sleepy sitting inside a vehicle travelling for hours.  Take a breath and feed your stomach. It’s not hard to do. Just order what your mind is telling you what to harass and devour for the day. It could be exciting, if not, very exciting! Follow, whatever gray matter you have, in commanding you and let your tongue pester or enjoy whatever you have in your mouth. Organic or non-organic. Dry or slimy. Salty or sugary. Moving or spiritless. Whatever.

Although not as mouth-watering as green mangoes with bagoong and tamarind with salt are influencing your taste buds, roasted pig or lechon is a nice, delicious, but a  calamitous choice for a breaker.  It is, for those suffering from high blood pressure.

At last, my 4th Cebu trip made the pigs’ cry more memorable than the last. Asking for more to chow down would make the doctors richer and student nurses have their times more fascinating pricking my skin for  blood tests and wrapping my biceps with cloth bulging with air for a blood pressure reading. So, I set a limit to three brands or names of a kind.

El Corazon. The Trip. 

Hiring a taxi from Lapu-Lapu city to Talisay city was not a squandering of budget. It was a frugal use of time, a budgeted one. With the drizzle continuing during those hours and a heaven pouring angrily in coming back, was a safe and a practical choice of commuting from the journey in search of a dead pig skewered from the mouth to its ass prepared and cooked in different styles.

The city ordinance of Talisay city prohibiting tricycles, “trisikads” (bicycles with sidecars) and other similar transportation from using or plying the highway road is an excellent way to prevent accidents in the city. They are only allowed to cross the highway making use of the inner streets as their main thoroughfare. Also, no parking on both sides of the highway is enforced.

Alighting from the taxi in front of the entrance door was a delight to the waitresses. Smiles broke loose as I marched with a dramatic entrance. I was their lone zombie character of the hour pretending to be a local. Asking for the menu list and ordering was quick  as they gave me tips on what to order.

It was served with pickled vegetables and  sinigang soup.

Well, the lechon was  tasty and delicious. It was a savory experience but, the lechon sauce was not the perfect pair. It tasted like mashed radish with vinegar and salt. The lechon itself looked like a kawali-cooked one.

The newly opened restaurant is located  at :

CnT Lechon. Rama Ave., Guadalupe, Cebu City.

I have talked with several taxi drivers in Cebu and they all agree about the taste of CnT. Nobody have mentioned Zubuchon or El Corazon. One driver has cited about Rico’s Lechon saying it’s the best tasting lechon in Cebu. I can’t agree more because I haven’t tasted it yet.

No wonder, only a few kilos left at this time. I’m lucky enough there was some for a 2 PM lunch. The surge of customers were back in their offices. Everybody has devoured the best pig in town. It was a wipe out.

 My CnT lechon re-enforced pandesal.

This is the real roast pig! The looks, it’s lechon! The taste, the original taste! Heavenly crispy skin! You need just a mixture of soy sauce, vinegar and siling labuyo then, you could call an ambulance and park it outside the restaurant and wait for a heart attack! Who cares! No one cares for now. Tomorrow is another day and I’m not sure if I can come back. Can I bring a kilo in Heaven? Rice, please!

Indeed, God made the pigs for Human consumption to survive! Did He invent CnT Lechon? “One kilo, please! For take Out!” Can’t stop eating.

Do you have a day old pandesal or any bread for that matter? Stuff it with CnT lechon, sandwich spread, lettuce leaf, and tomatoes and Voila, you have a delicious hearty Pan de lechon!

CnT Branch Outside SM Cebu

small photo by : clickthecity.com
CnT Lechon can be found at 1377 Rama Ave, Guadalupe, Cebu City. You may call 6332) 254-4249, (6332) 254-6641 for inquiries and reservations.
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Zubuchon. Back to Lapu-Lapu city.
Since SM city Cebu is just across the road, I preferred to catch a taxi there. The rains have stopped and running was not an option but a must do. It has stopped raining and I might get caught in the middle of the road when it starts pouring again. So I have to hurry up. The traffic was the worst thing that could happen on somebody’s trip. Cebu was doing its widening projects and the vehicle’s movement was at a snail’s pace. I decided to drop by Zubuchon Quezon Highway where it is just a minute walk from where I was staying. So, the third lechon tasting has materialized. I have to walk home as fast as I could so I could take my medicines before those lechon that I have eaten could react in my system.
I think Anthony Bourdain was right. Zubuchon has a little edge over CnT. It’s a bit tasty but not salty. Just the right amount of saltiness and it has  richness in flavor which I can’t described in words. 
The next time I’m in Cebu I’ll really take time to try Rico’s Lechon. Maybe it is the underdog for the title, “The Best Pig Ever” as Anthony Bourdain has claimed. Is his claim says it all?  Try lechon hopping while in Cebu and rate for the best!
Zubuchon

ZubuchonMactan

 ML Quezon Ave. National Highway, Airport Terminal Road, Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu(032) 505-0130
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Buho Resort, Camotes island, Cebu, Philippines

 

The Philippines will never ran out of appeal and charm to would-be tourists. In Central Visayas alone, an island lives up to its name as the island with more attractions to boast of. Camotes island has caves, waterfalls, white sand beaches, lakes, excellent resorts and most of all has its gentle people to speak of. This is one of its come-ons when  beaches on the rocks are what we are talking about. Buho Rock Resort in San Francisco, Camotes.

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Camotes island is a two-hour ferry boat ride from Danao city, Cebu. Plan your vacation now. Camotes is waiting for you.

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Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary, Philippines

Olango island is a sanctuary of the largest concentration of migratory birds in the Philippines. So far, there are 97 species of these birds are in the island, half of which are migratory and the rest are resident birds.

I was asking the people there in the sanctuary if I was on timing with the migration and I learned that the birds are flocking to the area between September to November and from February to April. As he was explaining, he pointed to me the bird resting on a branch just above my head. ( See the picture above). I can’t get a clearer picture because the bird was behind the leaves.

This is the observatory deck. You should bring powerful lens to get an excellent zoom portrait of the birds. My visit was a little bit off season so, I didn’t get much view of the birds.

Low tides are the best times to come here so, timing is very important to watch them en masse. They feed on small fish, snails, worms and other marine lives left on the sand flats after the water has receded. There were egrets, dowitchers, sandpipers, and plovers species that were sighted.

Seldom do I find fishes in an aquarium at the places I visited. Olango island is the exception. My guide took me here in Asinan, Sabang to view some species of decorative fishes. There were a lot of fishes but I selected only a few colorful ones to be photographed.

The walkway to and from the pier of Olango.

Tricycles and motorcycles abound just before you exit from the pier.

In the background is Lapu-Lapu city as seen from Olango island.

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Port of Pilar

Pilar Port, Ponson island, Camotes is nearer to Ormoc City in Eastern Visayas than Cebu, the province where it belongs.  Majority of folks from Camotes buy their supplies from Ormoc city rather than from Cebu because of its proximity, besides, it’s a direct trip to Camotes. In the picture, that  is the type of vessel that services Ormoc city and Camotes. It is a two-storey boat and will pose danger to passengers if the weight distribution and overloading are not checked very well.

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Taoist Temple – Beverly Hills, Cebu, Philippines

Being the center of worship for the followers of Lao Zi, the ancient Chinese Philosopher who founded Taoism, this Temple is open for worshipers and non-worshipers alike for free. The site, Beverly Hills Subdivision, is overlooking the city of Cebu and is three hundred feet above sea level. Built in 1972 by Cebu’s Chinese community, this is a favorite tourist destination of the city.

Inside the perimeter, there’s a souvenir shop, a chapel, a library, a wishing well and a statue of a Chinese man fishing. It is forbidden to take  pictures together with the Chinese saints or even as a background.

This is the parking area. With its grand gate, this could be mistaken as the entrance to the temple if you are a first timer visiting the place. The arch is huge and with the help of the guard who is ready to receive and welcome visitors, he would advise the driver to proceed and park his vehicle inside with no parking fee.

If you are entering from the upper level of the hill’s front entrance gate, you will pass this Great Wall of China replica.

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Simala Shrine, Sibonga, Cebu, Philippines

It started in Simala, Sibonga, Cebu when Fr. Ma. Martin of the Marian monks made a pilgrimage to Simala. The shrine of the Virgin Mary was just a small structure that caters to a small number of pilgrims mostly from  Sibonga at that time. The adjoining towns barely knew of the shrine but when a miracle occurred – the Virgin Mary’s crying with real tears,- the news spread like wildfire and throngs of devotees and non-devotees flocked to the place to witness a once in a lifetime miracle.

In a short time, by word of mouth, the Simala Shrine became a by-word among Catholics and more and more devotees started their own pilgrimage to the Monastery of the Holy Eucharist. As more and more people were lured to the miracle of the Virgin Mary, the place became congested and overcrowded with the Faithful visiting the shrine. Donations became the practice. Small amounts were dropped into donation boxes until the wealthy who are Catholic believers gave their own kind of donations. Even companies donated in millions. Some shared their prayers and services. Soonest it grew wide and big, lovely and charming, beautiful and gorgeous, to magnificent and marvelous man-made structure.

During my visit, construction was in progress. I wonder, if all machineries will stop, all workers will rest and the announcement will be heard that everything is finally finished. How grand would this shrine be? How noble and gallant Man has taken steps to honor, respect, praise and believe the Virgin Mary as the mediator between Man and God thru Her intercession?

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“Coraza’s Cliffyard Resort After Typhoon Haiyan…”

After typhoon Haiyan battered the Visayas region, this rocky unfinished beach resort, Coraza’s Cliffyard Resort, maintained its beautiful physical appearance despite several structures were destroyed. Until now, as of this writing, it has not been repaired for lack of funds. If given the chance to be repaired with the right amount of capital, this beach could make the island of Pilar, Camotes its rightful place in beach development. It could hasten the growth of the island and give employment to its people with the influx of tourists, both domestic and foreign.