10 Restaurants That Are Worth the Drive

You can't possibly explore on an empty stomach, can you?

PHOTO BY Marikit Singson/Hans Fausto

(SPOT.ph) Sometimes you just need a respite from chaotic city life and get some R&R. And because there’s bound to be worthwhile food stops in the nearby towns, going for a road trip to recharge your batteries isn’t that bad—hey, it’s the next best thing if you missed that seat sale. So whether you’re headed east, north, or south, key in any of these must-visit, out-of-town restaurants on your navigation system and let your palate do a bit of exploring. After all, you can’t travel on an empty stomach!

Antipolo

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Burrow Café

Any city-dweller would love the change in scenery at Burrow Café, where their garden-like setting will make you feel like you’re outdoors even if you’re not. Here, you can enjoy a lot of tasty meals like the Tender Beef Tapa, which lives up to its name. Made with fork-tender yakiniku-style Japanese beef, it’s served with garlic rice and milky scrambled eggs. After that, linger some more for their coffee and desserts—the Dayap Crème Brulée features a soft and creamy custard with a zing of citrus and fresh-fruit slices. You're sure to end up lounging in their comfy hammocks after that filling meal.

Burrow Café is at 113 Beverly Hills Avenue, Beverly Hills Subdivision, Antipolo City.

PHOTO BY Crescent Moon Café and Studio Pottery Facebook page

Crescent Moon Café

Aside from the fresh and cool Antipolo ambience, what will make your drive to Crescent Moon Café worthwhile is their unique food offerings. Order any of their Southeast Asian-inspired à-la-carte dishes like the Twice-Cooked Pork Belly with Adobo Mulberry Sauce, a succulent pork dish that comes with red rice and a side salad with peanut-lime dressing. On weekends, visitors can enjoy Crescent Moon Café’s healthy buffet, which includes appetizers, like their best-selling Alagao Salad, a wide selection of entrées, red rice, and Antipolo’s signature delicacy, suman served with ripe mango slices. Don’t miss the opportunity to learn pottery when you’re here—or you can simply buy handmade crafts from their store!

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Crescent Moon Café is at L. Sumulong Memorial Circle, Sitio Parugan, Dalig, Antipolo City.

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Yellow Bird Café x Kitchen

Practically every corner is IG-worthy at this trendy backyard-style café—from the beautifully plated dishes, to the interiors that feature a vertical garden, a tiled staircase, and an eye-catching red brick wall. New on the menu are the Baby Back Ribs, which are cooked for eight hours and served with French beans and baby potatoes. Those looking for something light might want to try the Sesame-Crusted Salmon Fillet with miso, wasabi mayo, Sriracha honey, and rice. Yellow Bird Café also has a lot of coffee options that are made from their customized La Marzocco espresso machine. Their homemade cheesecakes are perfect with a cup of joe, too.

Yellow Bird Café x Kitchen is at Lot 3, Block 2, Mission Hills Boulevard, Mission Hills Subdivision, Dalig, Antipolo City.

Pampanga

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Café Fleur

You can’t go wrong with Pampanga, food-wise—after all, it’s the culinary capital of the Philippines. Learn to say manyaman (Kapampangan for “delicious”) when you sample Café Fleur’s unique offerings like the Crispy Pork Belly + Truffle Macadamia Kare-Kare, which has rice and homemade bagoong on the side, and Tamales Pampanguena, or steamed rice flour with annatto oil, salted egg, and edible flowers. A good drink to try when here is the Batirol, a rich, hot drink made with Malagos chocolate from Davao. To make the road trip even more worthwhile, you can grab delicacies and other pasalubong items from their display shelf.

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Café Fleur is located at The Garden, Dycaico Ancestral House, Sto. Rosario, Angeles City, Pampanga.

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B&B Grill

You would think that B&B stands for “bed & breakfast,” as it typically does, but the one in Pampanga is totally different. It’s a restaurant that refers to barbecue and beer, which basically represents Filipino nightlife culture. At this casual eatery, you’ll see a steady stream of smoke from the grill starting late afternoon, until way after midnight. Feel like you’re in an episode of Bizarre Foods when you sink your teeth into grilled delicacies like isaw baboy, betamax, and paldeut or chicken ass. There are also off-the-grill specialties that make for good bar chow, so bring your buddies along and drink—and eat—the night away.

B&B Grill is at Richthofen Street corner Hensonville Homes Subdivision, Angeles City, Pampanga.

Taal, Batangas

PHOTO BY Mari-An Santos

Tampuhan Café

Many think that Taal is where Taal volcano and lake are located. In fact, it’s an entirely different town in Batangas that has a lot of heritage homes and even the largest Catholic church in Asia, the Taal Basilica. It’s also home to Tampuhan Café, which dishes up popular Batangueño food like lomi (thick egg-noodle soup). If you happen to stay at the eatery’s cozy bed and breakfast, order the Tapsilog, Longsilog, or Hunghangsilog (spicy Hungarian sausage –silog), and start your day right before exploring the little town.

Tampuhan Café is at Calle Marcela Mariño Agoncillo, Taal, Batangas.

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Cavite

Calle Real

It’s not just about the food at Calle Real, but the location, too. Situated in an old ancestral house that was built in 1922, the restaurant has now become a culinary destination in Tanza. You’ll enjoy Filipino favorites such as the cheesy Beef Kaldereta, crackling Pork Binagoongan, and savory Tokwa Sisig. But what’s popularly eaten in this area is the Calandracas, a soupy noodle dish that’s normally served during social gatherings. Don’t miss the restaurant’s version, which has glass noodles and a hearty mix of protein and veggies.

Calle Real is at 8 Sta. Cruz Street, Barangay Poblacion 2, Tanza, Cavite.

Tagaytay

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Sartin

You might forget about stopping by your favorite bulalo spot on your next drive to Tagaytay once you get a taste of Sartin’s creations. The restaurant’s chic interiors also reflect how they present their modern-Filipino dishes. Familiarize yourself with their three featured cuisines: Tagalog, Ilonggo, and Kapampangan. Don’t worry about getting out of your comfort zone and trying something you haven’t encountered before while here—some great options are the Valenciana, an Ilonggo version of the classic paella, which has turmeric-stained rice, and the Longganisa Bao, stuffed with Pampanga-style longganisa and pickled veggies.

Sartin is at Summit Ridge Hotel, Kilometer 58, Gen. Aguinaldo Highway, Maharlika West, Tagaytay City.

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Lime & Basil

Who would’ve thought you’d find good Thai cuisine in Tagaytay, of all places? At Lime & Basil, indulging in traditional pad thai just got better thanks to the restaurant’s relaxing country-style vibe. The Kaeng Deng Kha Moo will amaze your senses at the first sight of its crispy pata drowning in fragrant red curry sauce. The Kao Pad Saparod, on the other hand, is a beautiful dish made of fried rice topped with pork floss and served in a pineapple boat. You definitely won’t be disappointed here since the food delivers both in presentation and taste, not to mention Tagaytay’s cool weather adding a pleasant touch to the whole dining experience.

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Lime & Basil is at 9014 J. Rizal Street, Sikat, Tagaytay City.

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Marcia Adams

Tagaytay is home to a number of destination restaurants and Marcia Adams is one of the more popular ones in the picturesque city. Diners come here to enjoy the restaurant’s rustic ambience, which allows them to be close to nature. You’ll see mismatched furnishings, quirky knickknacks, floral décor, and foliage from the garden at this fine-dining restaurant. They’ve got Angus steaks and lamb chops, but a more wallet-friendly option is the Grilled Aromatic Pork—tender, well-seasoned, and simply tasty. We recommended you make a reservation so you'll be sure to get a table!

Marcia Adams is at J. Rizal Street, Sikat, Tagaytay City.

 

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