Kusina Maria

Food Blog + Food Shop

Posts Tagged ‘davao food’

Discover #DavaoFood the #SMARTLife Way

Chicken in Coconut Milk cooked in a Bamboo

Nilulot na Manok sa Gata by the Bagobo Tribe of Davao Region

“What is Davao Food?”

For ten years now, I have been blogging and sharing about Davao Food. And that is the question that people often ask me. Truth is, aside from indigenous dishes by the Davao tribes, kinilaw (ceviche), and grilled seafood, I still can’t define what Davao Food really is. Davao Food is a reflection of our “melting pot” culture. Melting pot is a term used to describe the various peoples of Davao. Davao is a proud home to its tri-people, a place where Christian, Muslims, and lumads (indigenous peoples) live and thrive peacefully. Add to that expats, international students, and other visitors from other nations. The Christians in Davao are mostly migrants from other regions of the Philippines. We have a good mix of Tagalogs, Bicolanos, Pangasinenses, Pampanguenos, Cebuanos, Warays, Boholanons, Ilonggos, and Filipinos from other regions. This mix of people is reflected in our cuisine.

Ceviche by Park Inn Davao RBG

Ceviche by Park Inn Davao RBG

Davao Food highlights the fresh produce — various meats, poultry, seafood, fruits and vegetables — of Davao Region, prepared, cooked, and presented in various regional and international cuisines. It’s not unusual to find a Filipino restaurant alongside a Japanese Restaurant, a Chinese Restaurant, an Italian Restaurant, and a Korean Restaurant all in the same street. And yes, we have restaurants specializing in Ilocano food, Halal food, Indigenous Davao food, Kagay-anon food, and other regional specialties. And there’s comfort food everywhere.

Kushiyaki Platter by The White House Fusion Cuisine

Kushiyaki Platter by The White House Fusion Cuisine

This can be overwhelming for Davao tourists. Even locals face a conundrum when choosing an establishment to visit. When people ask me where they should eat, I always ask them back several questions: “What cuisine are you looking for?,” “What’s your preferred price range?,” “Are you looking for a specific dish?”

With the advent of blogs, social media, and mobile internet, food tripping has become more convenient and, to a certain extent, entertaining. You see people post food on Facebook and on Instagram from dusk til dawn. But how exactly can you pick from all these crowd sourced information?

Start off, by doing a bit of research. Just because you saw a restaurant or a dish posted, it does not follow that the one who posted it liked or enjoyed what they posted. Don’t hesitate to ask by commenting on the post or by sending a private (or direct) message. Better yet, take time to research.
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Tomato Mozzarella Penne by Sea Green Cafe

Tomato Mozarella Penne by Sea Green Cafe

Tomato Mozarella Penne by Sea Green Cafe

If you’re looking for a delectable pasta dish, look no further. Sea Green Cafe‘s Tomato Mozzarella Penne is a simple, no-frills pasta dish that will satisfy anybody’s pasta cravings. Well-cooked penne in fresh homemade tomato sauce that’s tangy with a hint of sweet and spicy. The dish is sprinkled with basil leaves which adds a fresh, savory flavor to the pasta.
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Sushi Special by Nonki Japanese Restaurant

Sushi Special by Nonki Japanese Restaurant

Sushi Special by Nonki Japanese Restaurant

Nothing like good sushi to satisfy anybody’s craving for Japanese food. And if you can’t decide which type of Sashimi you love best, Nonki Japanese Restaurant has the answer… the Sushi Special.

The Sushi Special is a platter of Salmon Sashimi (Shake), Tuna Sashimi (Maguro), and White Marlin Sashimi (Kajiki). Sashimi is a type of sushi served without rice. Sashimi roughly translates to “pierced body.” It is prepared by slicing raw fresh fish. It is traditionally sliced thinly.

Nonki’s sushi chef prepares the sashimi in thick but narrow slices. It is served with shreded daikon, slices of cucumber, and sea grape seaweeds (lato in Filipino). I suggest taking a piece of the sashimi with some daikon or seaweeds and lightly dipping it in soy sauce. Some prefer to eat with wasabi, I don’t but don’t let me stop you if you like wasabi with your sashimi.
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Caitlyn’s Dimsum House Favorites

Very few places live up to their hype. And Caitlyn’s Dimsum House is one of the few. Caitlyn’s Dimsum House was one of the booths that was a hit at the 2014 Kadayawan Bazaar. It instantly started a buzz on social media and this encouraged the proprietors to open a restaurant at their take away store.

Caitlyn’s serves dimsum made from fresh ingredients without any preservatives and extenders and with almost no MSG. The proprietors serve dimsum made from their family recipes so you can be sure their dishes are all plump with quality ingredients. The result is delicious dimsum that’s overwhelmingly salty.

Aside from their best-selling Pork and Shrimp Siomai, I have a few other favorites from their menu.

Chef's Dumplings by Caitlyn's Dimsum House

Chef’s Dumplings by Caitlyn’s Dimsum House

The Chef’s Dumpling has a similar recipe and taste to Shark’s Fin Dumpling. The difference is the Chef’s Dumpling has no shark’s fin. Superb.

Fried Spicy Dumplings by Caitlyn's Dimsum House

Fried Spicy Dumplings by Caitlyn’s Dimsum House

For something spicy, the Fried Spicy Dumpling is a delicious treat. It has a great balance of salty and spicy with a hint of sweetness. Eat with rice!

Xiao Long Bao by Caitlyn's Dimsum House

Xiao Long Bao by Caitlyn’s Dimsum House

And here’s the best value for your money Xiao Long Bao in this corner of the world. Caitlyn’s Xiao Long Bao is tasty with the soup and the stuffing bursting with flavor inside a delicate wrapper. It is best eaten with a dipping sauce of ginger and black vinegar. One serving with 8 pieces of Xiao Long Bao is only P170.
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Christmas Gift Ideas for Davao’s Foodies 2014


Like My Davao City has shared their Christmas Gift Ideas 2014. Here’s our list of the best food finds in Davao that are deliciously awesome to serve, to share, and to gift this holiday season.


What’s Christmas in the Philippines without lechon, right? And the best kind of lechon is lechon de leche. My favorite is Beko’s Biik Lechon de Leche.

Beko's Biik Lechon de Leche, Regular and Spicy

Beko’s Biik Lechon de Leche, Regular and Spicy

Lechon de leche is Roast Whole Pork Suckling. Beko’s Biik offers Lechon de Leche in spicy, mild spicy, and regular. I’m not a fan of spicy dishes but the Beko’s Biik Mild Spicy Lechon de Leche has just enough spice to give the lechon more interesting than usual. Lechon Rolls and Mini Lechon Rolls are also available in Spicy, Mild Spicy, and Spicy.

Here’s their price list:

  • Extra Small for 6 – 8 persons – PhP1,700
  • Small for 10 persons – PhP1,900
  • Medium for 15 persons – PhP2,200
  • Large for 20 persons – PhP2,800
  • Extra Large for 30 persons – PhP3,500
  • Boneless Lechon Roll for 3 – 5 persons – PhP1,150
  • Mini Boneless Lechon Roll for 1 – 2 persons – PhP650

What’s even more amazing they accept orders 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Just order 3 hours before pick. Call +6382-227-BIIK (2445) or +6382-2863445 and pick up at Dimsum Diner Guerrero Street, Davao City.

Also perfect for Christmas is the Beko’s Kitchen Dried Lapu-Lapu and Pork Floss.

Beko's Biik Dried Lapu-Lapu and Pork Floss

Beko’s Biik Dried Lapu-Lapu and Pork Floss. Photo from the Beko’s Biik FB Page

Beko’s Biik Dried Lapu-Lapu and Pork Floss is slow cooked for several hours with a variety of spices. The result is a unique combination of flavors: salty, spicy, sour, sweet, and earthy. It is loaded with umami. This is a great gift idea for foodies. Or to serve as an appetizer or side dish for Noche Buena.

Beko's Dried Lapu-Lapu and Pork Floss over rice

Beko’s Biik Dried Lapu-Lapu and Pork Floss over rice

A 295 mL bottle costs PhP400. This is available at Dimsum Diner Guerrero Street, Davao City.

Whatever you order from Beko’s Biik, make sure you have lots and lots of rice to eat it with.

For inquiries and orders, like their page at https://www.facebook.com/bekos.biik.


For your health junkie friend, buy a bottle of homemade Sea Green Cafe Pesto Sauce.

Sea Green Cafe Pesto Sauce

Sea Green Cafe Pesto Sauce

Homemade, wholesome, and utterly delicious. This does not contain any additional chemicals and preservatives. Just pure, unadulterated rich pesto sauce. A bottle sells for PhP200.

Sea Green Cafe and Lifestyle Shop is located at Circumferential Road, Marfori Heights, Davao City. You may contact them at +6382-3054765, +63939-9361081 or at seagreencafe@gmail.com. For more information, like their FB Page at https://www.facebook.com/seagreencafe or follow them on Instagram @sea_green_cafe.


Two of the rising stars of the Davao food scene are locally made cheese and chocolates. And Malagos Farms has both.

Malagos Cheeses

Malagos Cheeses

Malagos Cheeses are processed and made in Davao by Ms. Olive Puentespina. I love all their cheese by my top picks from their cheese selection are the Blue Pepato, Blush, and Red Wine Chevre.

Malagos Single-Origin 65% Dark Chocolate Bar

Malagos Single-Origin 65% Dark Chocolate Bar

One of the best cacao beans in the world is Davao Cacao. It is fast-rising as one of the most prized beans anywhere. We’re lucky that local farms, such as Malagos Farms has made Davao chocolates accessible to the Davao market. For chocolate lovers, give a bar of the Malagos Single-Origin 65% Dark Chocolate Bar. It’s creamy with the right amount of bitterness. The bar is rich but not too rich. A square or two is enough to satisfy any chocoholic’s craving.

In Davao, you can buy these awesome products at the Puentespina Malagos Farmhouse at Bolcan Street, Agdao, Davao City. You may contact them at +6382-2264446, +63917-7001205, and at sales@malagosfarmhouse.com.

In Metro Manila, Malagos products are available at the following stores:

  • Le Gourmet Rustans Rockwell, Concourse Level, Power Plant Mall, Rockwell Center;
  • Le Gourmet Rustans Ayala Avenue, Ground Floor, Rustans Makati, Ayala Avenue, Makati;
  • Le Gourmet Rustans, Shangri-la Mall;
  • The Market, Tiffany Bldg., 156 L.P. Leviste Street, Salcedo Village, Makati City, Contact Number: +632-8872993; and
  • Wine Depot, Westgate Corporate Center, Commerce Avenue corner Filinvest Avenue, Alabang Muntinlupa City, Contact Number: +632-7719463, Website: www.winewarehouse.com.ph.

For more information, visit the Malagos Website at http://www.thegiftfarm.ph and their FB Page at https://www.facebook.com/malagos.chocolate. Follow them on Instagram @MalagosChocolate.


Bistro Rosario, formerly Peter Pan Bakery, has been producing their signature cakes for decades. And they have managed to maintain the taste and quality of their products over the years.

Bistro Rosario Ribonette Cake

Bistro Rosario Ribonette Cake

Decades before the netizens became obsessed with “Rainbow Cake,” Davao was already lucky to have the pretty Bistro Ribonette Cake. It has a fluffy and sweet cake complemented by rich buttery frosting. It is a crowd pleaser for kids and adults alike.

Bistro Rosario Ribonette Cake

Bistro Rosario Ribonette Cake

Make your holidays are more special with a Ribonette Cake. Other picks from Bistro Rosario at their Mango Charlotte Cake and the Mango Cream Pie. And of course, their Classic Butter Roll. Simple, unassuming, but definitely addicting.

Bistro Rosario is located at F. Torres Street, Davao City. You may contact them at +6382-2217780. Bistro Rosario Bakery also has a branch at Tulip Drive, Ecoland, Matina, Davao City. Like their page at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bistro-Rosario-Bakeshop/1536953919876206.


Here’s another homegrown classic, Lachi’s Sans Rival. The Aviles family has been selling pastries in Davao for decades. When they opened the Lachi’s Sans Rival, Atbp Restaurant it instantly became an important foodie destination in Davao.

Lachi's Sans Rival

Lachi’s Classic Sans Rival

Their most popular pastry is their Sans Rival. I have written about this several times. Put simply, the meringue layers are perfectly airy and crunchy and their buttercream icing is sinfully rich. Together the combination is heavenly but not too sweet or overwhelming. One whole Sans Rival is just PhP320.
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Claude’s Le Cafe de Ville

Fillet of Beef Tenderloin with Pepper Sauce

Fillet of Beef Tenderloin with Pepper Sauce

Very few restaurants have survived and thrived in the Davao food scene. There are three key ingredients to these restaurants’ success: great food, awesome service, and consistency.

I was in grade school when Claude’s Le Cafe de Ville opened its doors to the public. It was the first restaurant of its kind in Davao City. Known for their high end fine French Cuisine, Claude’s piqued the interest of Davao’s gourmands. On birthdays and other special occasions, celebrations would be spent eating the culinary delights of Claude’s.

More than 20 years after, Claude’s Cafe de Ville continues to serves unforgettable traditional French, Mediterranean, and regional European home cuisine. The quality of their food has improved over the years.

Shrimp Cocktail by Claude's Cafe de Ville

Shrimp Cocktail by Claude’s Cafe de Ville

The Shrimp Cocktail is the perfect way to whet your appetite. The shrimps are cooked perfectly tender and juicy. It is covered in a creamy dressing and served with lettuce, capers, eggs, and avocado. I love the combination of ingredients. The lettuce and the capers provide crunch, while the eggs add a bit of texture, with the shrimps, and the avocado give a pleasant creaminess to the mix. And the flavors are fantastic individually and even better, all together.
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