Where Baguio Locals Really Eat


This month, Baguio will host thousands of tourists that will make the trip to enjoy the crisp weather and fanfare of the Panagbenga Festival. You will probably find crowds of people lining up outside various restaurants along Session Road alone! However, instead of going to the priciest places or franchises that you’ll see everywhere else in the country, anyway, why not maximize your Baguio experience by tasting some of the city’s homegrown fare? Consistently, these restaurants have these factors in common: affordable prices, huge portions, and a consistent crowd.

O' Mai Khan
This pioneer Mongolian Barbecue buffet haven continues to draw the lunch crowd with this specialty. But it also has many other meat and seafood dishes, with amusing names to boot, that keep diners coming back. Visit their dessert display for a wide selection—though, in our humble opinion, the key lime pie always takes the cake! (Upper Session Road)

Average meal: P250 per person

Good Taste Restaurant
Don’t be discouraged by the long line even for take-out orders. The service at Good Taste is fast and food rolls out of the kitchen systematically. Their menu selections are varied and prices are very affordable. Usually, families and friends gather here—the servings are huge, so don’t dare to go alone. Highly recommended: Chopsuey, buttered chicken, and fried rice. (Branches: 8 Lapu-Lapu St., Cariño St.)

Average meal: P150 per person

Jack’s Restaurant
Best known for its Jack’s Rice—with rice, chicken, and chopsuey all in one plate—the concept has been imitated in different restaurants, with names depending on the restaurant’s name. Old Baguio folk don’t mind squeezing into the small booths to eat heartily. Jack’s has expanded to several branches all over Baguio as well as Benguet. (Branches: 49 Upper Mabini Street, Magsaysay Street)

Average meal: P100 per person

Pizza Volante
Whether it’s to satisfy a late-night craving or to eat an early, hearty breakfast before the day begins, Volante’s doors are open all day for students and yuppies. Aside from the pizza and pasta, their platters are also bestsellers. We highly recommend the Choco-Vanilla Affair, a warm chocolate cake topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. (Branches: Session Road, Camp John Hay)

Average meal: P200 per person

Teahouse
Pancit by the bilao and Teahouse’s various cakes draw crowds. During the Christmas season, lines extend to the sidewalk on Session Road. Don’t leave without trying these: Chona’s Delight and Streamline Cake. (The Streamline Cake is something of an informal “official cake” for any occasion.) (87 Session Road)

Average meal: P150 per person

50’s Diner
People wait in line on any given day to eat at this near-authentic diner. The booths, jukebox, and movie posters on the walls are just what you’d expect in a 1950s diner. Servings here are huge, even for individual orders of fried chicken or pasta. For breakfast, dare to take on the Pancake Tower with your friends. And remember, it would be a crime not to have some cocktails or milkshakes with your meal. (Leonard Wood Road)

Average meal: P200 per person

Ebai’s Cafe & Pastry


Located very near the Victory Liner terminal and right beside the Genesis Bus terminal, Ebai’s is a favorite spot for loading up after a long journey or a pasalubong stopover before heading home. The coffee-and-cake combo is unsurpassed. They have classics like apple walnut and carrot cake, but also new lemon passionfruit cake and strawberry chocolate cake. But aside from the desserts, the meals are also worth the wait. (Upper Session Road)

Average meal: P200 per person

Sage
The new kid on the block, Sage is small enough to be a cozy date place or chikahan venue. Each dish is meant for sharing, served with an abundance of fresh herbs and spices. You can go on a gastronomic world tour, with delicious Nachos and Chimichangas, Shepherd’s Pie, and Bulalo Steak. Warning: you may have no more room for dessert after this! (95 Military Cut-Off)

Average meal: P250 per person



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