Do you want to explore some provinces in Mindanao? Did you know what is the top restaurant in Zamboanga city to visit and try their specialty?
Many of the tourists outside the country or even the local tourist are hesitant to travel to Mindanao. Terrorism is the biggest threat to tourist safety and an ongoing problem in the Philippines.
However, just like in any other country, there are some parts of their place that are unsafe for tourists. When you hear Mindanao it doesn’t mean that all the provinces located on this island are dangerous and unsafe for tourists. One of these provinces that is safe to visit and to explore by tourists is in Zamboanga. Zamboanga is one of the busiest and important port cities in the Philippines. According to Philippine history, Zamboanga is named after the Malay word “ Kembangan” which means “flower garden”. The city is also referred to as “ Asia’s Latin City” because of the Hispanic influence. As a result, until today you can see around some Spanish colonial establishments in the city.
If you are into culture, history, tradition, and culinary exploration then visiting Zamboanga city will be the perfect destination for you. There are a lot of travel agencies where you can book accommodation and guide you before you travel to Zamboanga city. They will guide you where to stay, where to go, what to do and where to eat during your tour. If you are able to visit Zamboanga, you will be amazed that this city has so much to offer. There you can discover Spanish-era Forts, old churches, mosques, heritage buildings, waterfalls, white-sand beaches, and many more. Zamboanga will also offer you a lot of local food that is a must-try.
Here is the best restaurant in Zamboanga that will satisfy your cravings and experience different international cuisines and their culture.
Best Restaurant In Zamboanga City
This is one of the best and recommended restaurants in Zamboanga city. A seafood restaurant that served many kinds of local dishes cooked in Chavacano style. Among all the dishes served in this restaurant, the most popular is “Curacha”.
A deep-sea giant crabs that is almost the size of the child’s face. Most of the locals visit this restaurant to taste “curacha” with Alavar’s famous sauce that is made from coconut milk, curry, and other spices. A perfect combination of the thick and juicy meat of the crab and deep into the sauce of Alavar’s sauce.
Aside from this, there are also dishes you must try at Alavar. These are the Dinuguan cooked Chavacano style( pig’s blood), prawn curry, Paella Chavacano, pinakbet Chavacano style, and many more. Alavars restaurant is definitely a must try to visit, not only with the curacha with alavar sauce but also the homey and relaxing ambiance of the place. You will also be able to experience the culinary culture of Zamboanga.
#2 Tsokolate Restaurant
Craving for something sweet? Tsokolate Restaurant in Zamboanga will satisfy your cravings while you are in the city. A great budget-friendly place to visit, because most of their desserts and meals have affordable prices but are rich in taste. Tsokolate restaurant serves sweet cakes, pies, and pastries that you can partner with a hot brewed coffee. Aside from the sweet desserts they also serve affordable hot plated meals that you will surely enjoy. The place also has a cozy ambiance, a cool interior, and a vintage place. A great place to hang out with your family and friends while enjoying the food.
#3 Dennis Coffee Garden
Most of the tourists visit Dennis Coffee garden for their authentic Sulu coffee, and they call it Kahawa Sug which means coffee of Sulu. A homey Tausug “merienda” place that has a cozy ambiance. This restaurant offers you a taste of authentic Sulu food and culture. Dennis Coffee garden originated in Jolo, Sulu in 1962 which serves superb Tausug dishes. They offer a set meal that is good for 5 persons, and this is called Dulang. A set meal is served including rice that is wrapped in banana leaves, cucumber, and sambal. This set meal is also served Tausug dishes like Chicken Pianggang( chicken marinated in choices of spices), Beef Kulma (beef cubes in mild curry paste), Tiula Item ( beef in a broth of roasted coconut and spices), and the Utak- Utak (fried fish cake).
Moreover, if you are looking for some delicacies, this restaurant also offers a different native pastry that is called Bangbang. The pastry is placed on a small plate where you can try it all. Bangbang includes Jualan( fried bananas that serve in a sweetened dip) Daral (moisture-rich crepe with a sugary coconut filling), Pulihmandi ( purple rice balls shredded with coconut flakes), Panggi (soft and chewy flour rings), and Apam ( Sulu’s version of pancake). Tasting these kinds of meals and dishes gives you the experience to taste and embrace the culture of Zamboanga.
#4 Paseo Del Mar And Palmeras Restaurant
For those travelers who want to taste some refreshing dessert, you can find it in Paseo Del Mar. This restaurant is one of the popular restaurants for all the local tourists or even some tourists outside the country. Paseo Del Mar is popular for its dessert called Knickerbocker, a refreshing dessert that is similar to Pinoy Halo-Halo.
But compared to halo-halo that is served with canned fruits, Knickerbocker serves with fresh fruits. Including melon, watermelon, mango, apple, and pineapple that make this dessert special. The restaurant also offers affordable platters that are good for a large group. You can choose from a platter of street foods or a platter that has a variety of dishes.
#5 Bar Code
If you are looking for a place to hang out at night while you are in Zamboanga, BarCode restaurant is the answer. This is a perfect place to chill and relax while having your dinner. This restaurant serves meals that are specialized in popular Filipino food. However, if you are looking for some local dishes they also offer a few Tausug dishes. Like chicken piangang, tiula itum soup and beef kulma.
The place where you can enjoy eating and having some drinks with your friends. While listening to the good music performed by the talented local musician. Bar Code restaurant has two branches, one is located in Rizal street Zamboanga City. The other branch is located in Paseo De Mar, an outdoor restaurant located at the seaside boulevard. A great place to eat while enjoying the view at the seaside and loving the sea breeze.
#6 Country Chicken Restaurant
One of the oldest restaurants in Zamboanga city that has operated since the 1970s. If you are looking and want to try some international cuisine. Country Chicken Restaurant is a perfect place that serves both Filipino and Spanish dishes that every tourist will surely love and enjoy. This restaurant is popular and visited by many tourists because of the famous seafood paella. That is the best seafood paella in Zamboanga city that is a must-try.
Country Chicken Restaurant also serves inspired Italian cuisine like pasta and pizza. But of course, for those loyal to Filipino food, this restaurant also serves some Filipino dishes including crispy Pata.
#7 Bay Tal Mal
Bay Tal Mal is one of the restaurants in Zamboanga that serves Halal Moro cuisine and Tausug dishes. Bay Tal Mal comes from the Arabic word ‘Bayt-ul Mal’ which means House of wealth. Don’t skip this restaurant if you travel the city if you want to try and experience the taste of Halal food. The restaurant has the ambiance of a Moroccan interior. Bay Tal Mal restaurant is the perfect place for you to taste Muslim food, which is a must-try, and discover their culture. Have a feast experience in their Latal meal, a variety of platter that serves Tausug dishes. The big bowl that is served in the middle of the platter is Tiula itum.
There are also other dishes surrounding the platter, these are beef piyassak,beef kulma , chicken piyanggang, chicken kiyaliya, kiyaliyah kapayah, calamares and fried fish. This platter is good for the group of travelers that has 4-6 persons. If you want to partner those Tausug dishes with rice you can have it by separate order. Rice is usually wrapped in banana leaves. You may also like their famous Chicken Rice Sambal while dipping the chicken in the Sambal sauce.
#8 La Vista Del Mar
This restaurant also serves seafood, which is one of the favorite places of most local travelers and other tourists that are seafood lovers. La Vista Del Mar also offers their unique and popular dishes, just like in Alavar Restaurant. Here in La Vista one of the famous dishes that is served to tourists is Ensalada Chamba. A healthy bowl of goodness with a combination of some ingredients such as diced mangoes, sliced eggplants, cucumber, salted egg, and many more. The thing is when they make this dish they just all combine the said ingredients but come up with a great and delicious meal. All the ingredients blend perfectly together and this is appropriate for its name Chamba, which means a stroke of luck.
Aside from this dish, this restaurant also serves a lot of the region’s heritage cuisine that is a must-try.
#1 Harley’s Food And Craft Beers
Harley’s Food And Craft Beers is a Halal resto that offers famous craft beers. This is one of the popular restaurants in Zamboanga. A great place to hang out with friends and family. While enjoying their Asian Halal food partner with a variety of craft beers. A motorbike-themed- restaurant that has a total of 9 craft beers. It’s a good thing that you will visit the restaurant by group, so you will be able to taste all those craft beers. Some of the best-selling craft beers are Harley’s El Chonngo Blanco and the Sultan coffee stout.
#2 Vista Del Mar Restaurant
Vista Del Mar Restaurant is a popular picnic place for local tourists and other visitors. This restaurant is a two-story hut right by the sea with a huge open air. The perfect way to eat your meals while loving the sea overview and its Seabreeze. For those seafood lovers, this restaurant is a great place for you. They offer one of their most highlight dishes which is then steamed curacha that comes with a delectable dipping sauce. When they serve the dish, they have their own way to crack the shell, by pressing the plate down to the curacha.
Aside from this, they have also offered some dishes that will satisfy your cravings. Choose your seafood dishes with crispy fried shrimps, grilled squid, and bake imbao clams. You may also want to taste their house specialties, such as Ensalada De Chamba. But don’t forget to take the seafood and other foods moderately. Eating too much food is also not healthy for our bodies.
Zamboanga City became the melting pot of various cultures of Muslims from the Middle East, Spanish, Chinese, Indonesian, and even Visayan cultures. This is the reason a lot of doofs here and delicacies are mixed. The result of the combination from different ancestors people. The fact is also the people are able to cope with it and this is the reason why even their food is being influenced.
Another thing about the place is it’s rich in traditions from the ancestors. There are many people who get amazed because of the various things that they are holding from the past. Another fact about Zamboanga is there are many tourists spot. Most of the time, the clearest and cleanliest water which you can either swim or just take a picture on it.
There are a lot of reasons, why you should visit this place with your entire family and friends. If you are looking for a place where you can explore mountains, hills, food, and beaches this place suits you!
Also, for those individuals who have this thought always that the place has a lot of crimes. There are some of the provinces here which are very peaceful and you don’t need to worry that much. So, do you want this province to explore? There are many travel agencies to help you do that today!