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Bacolod Food Trip: 21


For our recent Bacolod trip, I really didn’t do any planning which was refreshing for a change. I credit all our food recommendations to my cousin Hanna and my parents who also gave their list. With no hard evidence, we attacked the last on whims with no restaurant greater than the other. Going to the famous Manookan country is of course non-negotiable.

21 along busy Lacson street was on our list and we went there without any expectations. My other cousin Paola actually thought it was a carinderia based on some of the things we heard. Haha In her defense, we were talking about La Paz Batchoy and she thought 21 was a specialty place like Manookan country. Lo and behold, we step out of the car and was surprised to see a sit down dinner place.

The ambiance and interiors were cozy. It was the first kind of restaurant we’ve tried in Bacalod since we got used to casual restaurants, coffee shops and of course those one of eateries on the side of the road. Their menu was extensive and had fusion dishes we were excited to try. It was difficult to narrow things down but we made an effort to pick dishes that weren’t common.


Toasted Ravioli (P95)
Chef’s own fusion of American, Italian and Asian influence sprinkled with parmesan and parsley served with cheese sauce.

We don’t normally get appetizer but we were pretty famished. This was pure evil; something fried and dipped into cheeeeese? Heart attack! Haha It’s a good kind of evil though, absolutely delicious man! In fact, we ordered it again when we were drinking.


Squid Terriyaki (P210)
Stuffed squid on a bed of black rice drizzled in teriyaki sauce.

Uhm I don’t like squid so I didn’t taste this one. My cousin Hanna vouches for its heavenliness though.


Pasta Sukiyaki (P195)
Oriental sweet pasta topped with tempura tofu.

I love sukiyaki and was curious how Restaurant 21 would spin this dish. I was expecting something more Italian but was relieved that it wasn’t. They used noodles that were thicker than the ones traditionally used. Unsurprisingly, I enjoyed this dish immensely. The noodles though weren’t as hot anymore but the tofu was hot. The tofu also was the perfect complement to the sweet dish.


Porkchop ala Bicol Express (P160)
Deep fried porkchop in cassava batter with mixed vegetables simmered in coconut milk.

This dish delivers; it is exactly how it is described. The porkchop’s exterior was crispy and the inside juicy. You could taste the spicy kick after a couple of chews and BAM! Bicol express!



The best margartias EEEEVVVEEEEERRR (P80-120 per glass)

We tried the regular and special margarita and loved both equally. You could taste the tequila and the salt which was blended beautifully in the drink. This is HAPPINESS in a glass. I’ve never tasted a margarita like this – it’s like slurpee for adults. As in, THE BEST EEEVVVEEERRR!

 


Restaurant 21 is a definite MUST when in Bacalod. Hands down one of the best experiences we had during the trip. I dream of going back for 21 alone!

Photos by Rica de Ramos.
Additional photos by Hanna Liwag and Restaurant 21.


Restaurant 21
21st Lacson Street, Bacolod City
A producer by profession, Rica De Ramos is an over-packing pop culture sponge with a penchant for food, travel, fashion and everything lifestyle related. Though often mistaken for a foreigner (Hey Joe!), she's proudly Pinay.

Read more about her adventures at
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