Cebu is the melting pot of the Philippines. In fact, it is called the Queen City of the South – also known as the Island of the Pacific. As beautiful as the beaches that surround the island, Cebu is one of the most diverse place in the country. Eating out is a lot of fun. Expect the unexpected, dare is a must and of course, keep that appetite coming.
How diverse Cebu is?
Cebu is the second largest province in the Philippines in terms of population, but third in terms of area. Though Philippines was at first occupied by the mayans, muslims and other ethnicity, the arrival of the Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan in 1521 influenced the Philippines particularly Cebu. Magellan brought not only religion to the country but also it affected the language and food.
If you visit the restaurants in Cebu and you know little Spanish, you can always ask for a ‘kutsara’ (spoon) and ‘tinidor’ (fork) from the waiter. I am pretty sure you get what you want. You might to give a shot the all time Filipino breakfast favorite ‘chorizo’, a type of pork sausage. If you wish to sound sophisticated and wanted to show off, you can pay your bill in Spanish. ‘Dos mil quatro centros peso’ that is two thousand four hundred peso.
After the Philippines was freed from the Spaniards, the Americans took over. This explains why half of the Filipinos can speak English quite well. Not only that the Spanish invaded the Filipino’s kitchen but also the Americans. You will never miss to find an American restaurant in every corner of the city. Hello, McDonalds!
Just like our friendly neighbors, South Korea and Japan, Filipinos love noodles. Guess where we got that influence? No, not from the Koreans nor the Japanese (though Japanese also invaded the Philippines briefly) but we got it from the Chinese. I have not met a single Filipino who hate ‘bihon’ and ‘pancit’. Bihon is a sauteed rice noodles, while Pancit is a sauteed egg noodles. These two dishes are always in the Filipino restaurant’s specialty.
Different Restaurants Found in Cebu City
What do you feel like for dinner tonight? Continental? Italian? Japanese? Or, you feel like going on a healthy Persian food. Have a big appetite and want to hit the buffet restaurant instead? With soaring economy, Cebu City has been one of the favorites of the investors. Numbers of tourists is also increasing. Hotels and restaurants are sprouting like mushrooms.
Cebu City is also a favorite destination not only for the beach bummers but also for the food-hunters. The city has a lot of hard-to-find restaurants and be surprised about how good their foods are. Though opening a restaurant can be a challenge but if you know the tickles of the locals, then you are in business.
The influence of the invaders remain – you can easily find an authentic Spanish and American restaurants. One of the food-hunter favorites is the old Arano’s Restaurant, which serves one of the best paella in town. Oh yea, the New York’s finest pizza from Yellow Cab, my personal favorite. Burgers and steak so American isn’t it?
For the past years, Koreans somewhat invaded Cebu informally. Reminded me of my Korean friend that if he was rich, he would buy Cebu. Korean food had grown on me. Besides who would say no to the unlimited side dishes? You only get it in a Korean restaurant. Oh, samgyeupsal!
Pizza and more pizza in any sizes and shape. Of course, different prices as well! From Filipino-style pizza, to American, and to most pizza restaurant wanted to claim ‘the authentic Italian pizza’. Do you know that pizza was ‘arguably’ from Greece? Oh well recently, I have noticed more Italian restaurants in the city. And I am loving it!
Bon appetit! Feel like going on French this weekend? French restaurants are the favorite of the aficionados. A quick selfie while holding the glass wine, post it on Facebook and viola! Feels like a king! How would you know that he is drinking cheap French wine anyway?
Though my friends are still not acquainted but Japanese restaurant is the latest fad in the city. I could use a bowl of Japanese seafood ramen right now. Unlike Kimchi, but sashimi never agreed my palate. How about Japanese buffet lunch or dinner? Itadakimasu!
Obviously, Cebu City has thousands of Filipino, Thai, Malaysian, Viet, Indian and other Southeast Asian restaurants. Add Chinese to the list. However, there are only a few Mongolian restaurant. One thing that I can promise, you will never be starved! Remember: keep that appetite coming. Oh you might want to try ‘balut’!