Cebu City being placed in quarantine for five months now and counting made us discover a lot of new things. Aside from staying and working at home, I also do some home workouts from time to time. I have also been trying out different foods from new startups and have been doing some food reviews at @chibugankini. This topic is something I really wanted to share with you guys to give you an idea of where to get the best deals here in Cebu without compromising your budget while enjoying good food.
So let’s not make it long, listed below are our personal favorites for the past few months in quarantine. This counts starting from the 1st of June and ending on the 10th of August. We can call it Part 1 for now as I think we would still try more in the next months if the situation doesn’t get better. Feel free to share this with your friends and together, let’s #supportlocal.
Quarantine Favorites from Cebu Local Businesses
1.) Tacodon Cebu
This is actually the very first product that I’ve tried since the quarantine started. Tacodon‘s specialties are their homemade soft tacos and healthy fresh ingredients. Their sauces are to live for too! What I loved the most about their goods is it makes you full but makes you want for more. I even finished four tacos in one seating.
My personal favorites would be their Shrimp and Carnitas.
DOMKATSU had me with their Cheesy Tonkatsu. I’m a fan of Tonkatsu even before the pandemic happened but this is the first time I saw one overloaded with cheese! Not to mention, their tonkatsu is so tender, peppery, cheesy and so good! One box comes in 5 pieces for Php 150. But be sure to order more than one as it gets better the more you eat it. 5 Pieces might not be enough if you’re someone who loves cheese! You might want more!
They also accept party tray orders which I think I’d get one if there would be some special occasion as this is just so good!
3.) Kafe Dely
Filipino snacks would always be one of the best too! And this is something Kafe Dely is really good at. Their specialties are Cheesy Ube Ensaymada and Chicken Adobo Buns which are my favorites. You should give both of these a try, you’ll surely love it!
Their Cheesy Ube Ensaymada’s texture is the softest and is filled with their own home-made ube halaya. It’s then topped with a generous amount of cheese making every bite truly irresistible. I must say this is the best ensaymada so far in town.
As for Kafe Dely’s Chicken Adobo Bun, it’s very fluffy and soft too! This homemade bun is fully loaded with aromatic chicken filling with a pleasant burst of flavors. One bun can already make you full.
Other products to try would also be their Oatmeal Cookies, Chocolate Crinkles, and Cheesy Lasagna.
Now we talk about cookies. Brookies is one of many cookie shops out there who got really good cookies. They have 7 cookie flavors at the moment which I got to try except for the Oatmeal one. Aside from cookies, they also have cinnamon rolls which we’ll try soon and their newest product, Pizookie (pizza size cookie).
My personal favorite would be their Matcha White Cookie. The best! 💯 If you’re a Matcha Lover like me, put this on your priority list. 💚 Their Espresso Cookie is also good!
5.) Rich Cookies
If you’re someone who’s worried about your diet but still want to enjoy some good cookies, you should check out these Keto Cookies from Rich Cookies. Their Keto Cookies would leave you satisfied and somehow want for more. It was soft, chewy and the sweetness was just right and I must say that the chocolate that they used was also so good! Superb! 💯
Also got to try their Chocolate Chip Cookie and it’s highly commendable! I’ve been eyeing on their Red Velvet Cookie too because my friend told me it’s really good, probably next time.
For more cookie recommendation, check out my friend’s Instagram, @cookiecut.critic. She got the best reviews when it comes to Cebu’s cookies.
6.) Grace’s Homemade Empanadas
The next big thing is these empanadas from Grace’s Homemade. They have the best empanada in town! It’s not the usual empanada that you would normally find and even their choices of flavors would make you wow. Their empanada is quite soft and so loaded with filling. It comes in bigger sizes too than the regular one you would see. We only got to try one of their flavors for now which is the Italian Beef Empanada that comes with a cheesy bechamel sauce.
Aside from empanada, they also have a Chocolate Decadence Cake, the newest addition to their products. Their Chocolate Decadence Cake comes in 7 layers of chocolate. It’s made up of chocolate moist cake, chocolate buttercream, cacao nibs, another chocolate moist cake, cacao nibs, gooey choco fudge, bittersweet chocolate shard, and cocoa dust altogether. In fact, it’s the most numbered layers of choco decadence I’ve encountered so far
7.) Kay’s Kitchen
Kay’s Kitchen would always remind me of their Chocolate Fudgy Brownies with Guilang Tablea. Their brownies got the right amount of sweetness and moisture. It would definitely perfect to pair with black coffee or even vanilla ice cream too! One good thing that I loved about them is you can request to make it a little bitter with less sugar or just the normal sugar. Boils down to your preference.
Aside from brownies, my favorite from them would also be their Cheesy Nacho Bake. The combo from Kay’s Kitchen comes with their Nachos and a tray with layers of beef, secret sauce, mozzarella, cheese sauce, and mozzarella again. The tray with layers of goodness was already good alone but the nachos they provided made it more good and so satisfying. Worth checking out!
8.) Amorbella Sweets
Another great find that brought me back to one of my favorite beaches, Boracay, is Amorbella Sweets. When we talk about Boracay, one can think about the famous Calamansi Muffin. And yes! Amorbella Sweets got it for you. Their muffins resemble the one that you can find in Boracay! The sweetness and sourness of the Calamansi were balanced evenly. What’s surprising too is the consistency of the muffin! It’s very fine and soft!! 💯
One of their products that I also loved is their Tablea Revel Bars. Their Tablea Revel Bars is the best. It was oozing with Cacao Flavor! The revel bars sweetness was not that high too and just enough as I requested it to be because I wanted the cacao flavor to power more in each revel bar itself.
9.) Mayang’s Specialty
Have you ever heard of Mashed Potato Lumpia? If not yet, Mayang’s Specialty would be the best place to be! It was also my first time to try a mashed potato lumpia and it was really good. Indeed, a perfect way to enjoy a good and healthy snack too!
Read about Mayang’s Specialty here.
10.) Kwek Kwek sa Private
We as Filipinos have loved Street Foods for many years and with this pandemic, you wouldn’t see these stalls selling one in the streets. But need not to worry now because you can already have it delivered to your doorstep with Kwek Kwek sa Private!
Kwek Kwek sa Private started its operations in 2008 until the present time. And I’m just so happy that they are now taking orders online at a very affordable price! Their main product would be, of course, Kwek Kwek. Alongside Kwek Kwek, they have Cheesesticks, Pork Balls, Mashed Beef, and Hotdog as well.
Full details here.
11.) M. Louise Bakeshop
Making it up to our favorites too is M. Louise Bakeshop’s Banana Loaf. Their Banana Loaf is indeed a good value for money. The first thing that will catch your attention with M. Louise Bakeshop would be their packaging. It’s wrapped in a banana leaf and we just loved that the touch is very local. 🍃
We got their Oats, Nuts, and Choco Chip Banana Loaf. The loaf was also consistent with its softness, and with every bite, you can really tell that it’s jam-packed with real good bananas!! I also loved that it was not that sweet making the banana flavor power more in the loaf itself. One of the best banana breads in Cebu!
12.) Chef Jade
Who would miss the famous Ube Cheese Pandesal! This trendy Ube Cheese Pandesal has been everywhere here in Cebu but have you ever tried this pandesal from Chef Jade? If you haven’t tried it, then you’re missing it out!
Chef Jade’s Ube Cheese Pandesal simply separates itself from the other versions that you can find around the metro. It’s loaded with cheesy goodness and ube halaya filling. The pandesal itself was also soft. It’s only Php 550/dozen (promotional price) and Php 600 for double trouble cheese. You should try it! The best! 💯
13.) Chef Joshua’s Kitchen
Make some noise to all cheesecake lovers out there!! Chef Joshua’s Kitchen is the next big thing. No joke! Chef Joshua’s cheesecake flavors are to live for. And if you’re someone who’s not sure as to what flavor to get, you could avail this cheesecake sampler from Chef Joshua’s Kitchen for only Php 450.
The cheesecake sampler comes with 9 flavors: Matcha, Blueberry, Espresso, Original, Oreo, Strawberry, Bibingka, Mango Swirl, and Choco Marble.
My personal favorites would be the Espresso and Choco Marble! So good! And aside from the cheesecake sampler, you can also order the whole cake of these mini versions. Feel free to check out their socials.
14.) Chubby Cat Sweets & Pastries
Chubby Cat Sweets & Pastries is another business that started this quarantine. Their main product is Red Velvet Sandwich, a unique sandwich that you wouldn’t normally see around. The sandwich is made up of red velvet flavored buns and cream cheese filling. And to tell you, their sandwich gets better one bite after another! Best enjoyed when chilled.
15.) Vincois’ Dessert Corner
Are you having a hard time choosing which to enjoy from Leche Flan and Mango Float? Why not both? This Graham de Leche from Vincois’ Dessert Corner is one to try! The idea came from the normal mango float but this time around, instead of mangos, we’re putting a sweeter touch with a whole Leche Flan on it. This is even only for Php 100! So affordable!
Aside from Graham de Leche, they just introduced their Chocolate Dream Cake. I’m just so happy too to be one of the first few people to try it! To give you an idea, their Chocolate Dream Cake is layered with Chocolate Moist, Chocolate Pudding, Melted Chocolate, and Cocoa Powder. I loved that their version is not too sweet, just the right amount of sweetness. ❤️
16.) Yummies Cebu
If you’re someone who wants to enjoy good food that won’t hurt your budget, Yummies Cebu is the place to be! Almost all of Yummies Specialties don’t go beyond Php 150. And what I like so much about Yummies is that with the food that you are getting, you can really tell it’s a good value for money!
My personal favorite from the foods that I got to try from them would be their Lumpia Shanghai. It comes with 10 pieces of Lumpia for only Php 55! And what I loved so much about their Lumpia is there was a sweet-savory taste on the lumpia itself. It was loaded with pork filling too and it’s not an “all-wrapper” lumpia. Their sweet chili sauce would make it perfect. Must try! Check out their other menus too, you’d surely love it!
For this month of August, Yummies Cebu also has a new campaign called “Food for a Cause“. In partnership with #LigonTandaganon, a charity organization that aims to raise funds for Jacinto P. Elpa National High School (JPENHS), Yummies Cebu will be donating a percentage of their sales in the whole month of August. The amount raised will be used for the JPENHS’ reproduction of educational modules for this academic school year.
17.) The Offbeat Local
The Offbeat Local prides itself with their Thai Specialty Drinks. And if you’re someone who’s been looking to enjoy authentic Thai drinks, then The Offbeat Local got you covered! Priced at only Php 130/bottle, drinks to try from them would be their Thai Pink Milk, Thai Green Tea, and Thai Milk Tea.
Aside from Thai Drinks, they also sell some coffee favorites: Cafe Latte, White Chocolate Hazelnut, and Caramel Macchiato. Be sure to check them out on their socials. ❤️
18.) Sushi and Friends
I’ve been really eyeing to try this trendy sushi bake for quite some time now and it just happened that I can’t as I’m doing a low-carb diet. And as far as we know, most ingredients used in a normal Sushi Bake are not diet or keto-friendly. But good news! You can already enjoy it guilt-free with Sushi and Friends.
Sushi and Friends recently introduced their Keto Version of Sushi Bake. The keto Sushi Salmon-Kani Bake from Sushi and Friends used cauliflower rice as a substitute to the normal Japanese Rice. After having the caulirice as the base, it’s then covered with Tamago Egg and topped with Salmon bits and Kani. Instead of also using a normal mayonnaise, they used a Kewpie Mayo as well which is a Keto-approved ingredient. 💯
19.) La Didings
Another favorite this quarantine season is La Didings. La Didings is a business whose main kitchen is in Talisay City, Cebu. Their specialties are all home-made and focus more on Filipino cuisine.
We got to try two of their specialties, their meatballs and longganisa. Both were savory and so good! For the longganisa, it is totally different from those that you can buy easily in the supermarkets. It’s peppery and it kinda tastes like the skinless longganisa in Vigan. As for the meatballs, I loved that there was an element of surprise!! Aside from it was meaty, it even got cheese inside! This would be an awesome dish for breakfast.
20.) PARES Republik
From the name itself, PARES Republik, their main specialty would be Beef Pares. For some, Beef Pares may not sound familiar as this dish is rare to find here in Cebu. Beef Pares is served as a budget combo meal that is perfect to pair with garlic fried rice in the sidestreet stalls of Metro Manila. And now, it’s finally in Cebu with PARES Republik!
Aside from Beef Pares, other specialties of PARES Republik would be their Beef Kare-Kare and Garlic Shrimps.
Full details here.
21.) Niña’s Lamaw and Siomai
One of Cebuano’s favorites, Lamaw, is now up with another version from Niña’s Lamaw and Siomai. Their Lamaw is uniquely different from the normal ones that you can easily find around as it comes in different variations. Aside from the normal combo of rice, shredded chicharon, boiled egg, and siomai, they also have a shanghai lumpia as an alternative option.
Full details here.
Facebook: Niña’s Lamaw and Siomai
22.) Drei’s Food To Go
If you’re looking for a good pulutan on your inuman session, Drei’s Food to Go would be the perfect find! Their sisig is the best! We got ours on a spicy version and we just loved it so much that it was rich in spices. Not to mention, their serving is also big! Indeed a good value for money. 💯
Aside from sisig, their Cheesy Baked Scallops is one to try. You can tell that their scallops are good because it smells so fresh! Not only that, but it’s also loaded with real good cheese and the saltiness is just right. For their other specialties, feel free to check them out on their socials.
23.) Never Not Hungry
Another food entrepreneur that we got here is Never Not Hungry. They are known this quarantine to be one of the best shops that sell Takoyaki in Cebu City. Their Takoyaki comes in Seafood and Vegetables. You can also have it assorted if you want to try both flavors.
We got to try both their Seafood and Vegetable Takoyaki and both were good. It was made better with the sauce they provided too.
From the name itself speaks POWER. If you’re someone who’s into healthy living, on a fitness journey or doing some sort of diet but want to enjoy good food, POWER got you. Most of their goods, or should I say all of their goods are diet-friendly.
Their Angus Beef Gyudon is to live for. It’s really good! It’s tender, juicy, and rich in flavor. It would be perfect to pair with their Cauliflower Fried Rice too. Definitely worth checking out. If you wanna go vegan, they also have Vegan BBQ Pulled Pork.
Other healthy products to try would be their Frozen Cauliflower Pizza Dough and their Frozen Cauliflower Gnocchi. Would love to try these soon if I got plenty of time to cook.
Adding up to our great finds this quarantine season is Ohmybrownies. Their main goods would be, of course, brownies. And if you’re looking at leveling up your brownie gaming, Ohmybrownies would be the perfect match for you. These handcrafted gourmet brownies are all locally homemade.
In Ohmybrownies, you can enjoy your treats here in four mouthwatering flavors: Classic, Green Tea, Nuts Overload, and Cream Cheese. Please be guided that it would be one flavor per box.
Their brownies are so soft and I love how moist these brownies are. The toppings for each flavor are on another level too! My personal favorites would be their Classic and Green Tea Brownies.
To complete the experience, pair it up with some of their cold brews: Premium Green Tea Latte, Premium Cold Brew White Latte, and Premium Cold Brew Black.
26.) The Coffee Mobile
And of course, we’re not ending this without any coffee recommendation. Yes, we know that there are many shops that sell coffee out there but I just wanted to share with you these cold brews that I got to try recently from The Coffee Mobile. Their cold brews are very affordable and the quality of the brews is even very smooth and good.
They do have three available options for you to choose from; White Elixer, Black Elixer, and Gold Elixer.
If you’re someone like me who loves Black Coffee, their Black Elixer would be the best. But if you want it to be bold and creamy, then you should go for the White Elixer. And lastly, perfect for kicking off the weekend nights would be their Gold Elixer, a rum-infused cold brew.
That’s it! These are our quarantine favorites here from the 1st of June and ending on the 10th of August. But don’t worry as we might possibly add a part 2 of this because there are still many good and interesting foods to try in my list. And if you also have any suggestions and any good food recommendations for us to try, feel free to comment it down below.
If you happen to already try some of the foods that I have listed, let us know as well how was your experience and together, let’s continue to #SupportLocal