(Co- author: Ai-Nhi Trudeau)
Are you planning to visit Puerto Princesa City for the first time? Aside from the well-known Underground River, you can go to other Puerto Princesa City attractions like Palawan Butterfly Ecological Garden and Tribal Village, Baker’s Hill, Kuyba Almoneca, and Palawan Heritage Center to name a few. Or if you just want to explore the city on your own and find yourself famished and with a tight budget, you can seek out carinderias scattered all over the city. A carinderia or turo-turo is a local eatery which offers a wide array of dishes.
If you are along the National Highway, Barangay Sta. Monica, you can check out Tess Canteen which has been in existence since 1986. The place features several dishes. It’s papaitan and Pork Adobo are customer-favorites.
We first tried the papaitan which surprised us with its bitter and spicy taste. Suddenly, we
understood the origin of the name. The cow innards were tender. The bitterness and spiciness of the dish were in good balance. Next, we tried the pork adobo. The meat was easy to chew. The overall flavor was good. Each serving of papaitan and Pork Adobo is priced at P40.00 and P35.00 respectively. The price range of Tess Canteen’s dishes is from 25 to 50 pesos each, but the owner gives considerations to customers that want to buy half the size of a regular serving. The carinderia attracts both tourists and locals. Tess Canteen is open from Monday to Sunday, 6 AM until 8:30 PM.
For those of you who are around the area of Purok Maligaya, Bgy. San Jose, you should try
eating at Zosa Canteen. According to Ms. Marylou who helps manage the place, their dinuguan and kaldereta are the preferred dishes of local customers and tourists/backpackers. The dishes are priced at P30.00 each. Dinuguan, for those unaware, are made from pig’s meat or innards and pig’s blood. If you haven’t tasted this dish before, Zosa’s version of the dish is a good example of a typical dinuguan taste. Since it is located near a school, P15.00 is deducted on chosen dishes to student-customers. Zosa Canteen is open from Monday to Sunday, 6 AM until 10 PM.
Find yourself in the area of BM Road, Bgy. San Manuel? Look for Adina’s Food Production
to order affordable meals. There are a lot of dishes that you can choose from. According to the owner’s son, Jeffbeck, their menudo and adobo are always present in the menu. Each dish is priced at P35.00 and P30.00 respectively. We ordered their adobo dish which proved to be a generous serving.
In the city center, fast-food chains aren’t the only ones open 24/7. If you find yourself in the area of Number 17 Fernandez Street, Bgy. Tanglaw, check out Avie’s Place Carinderia. Its popular dishes are the spicy sisig and Curry Chicken. The sisig which is priced at P30.00 has a quality taste. Their student promo meals include one cup of rice and soup separately, and one serving of dish.
If you’re in the area of the City Coliseum located at Bgy. San Pedro, you can eat at Jeremy’s
Resto, but be sure it’s around lunch time because their dishes sell fast especially their sisig. Even though their price range is higher than the ones mentioned above, their dishes are of good quality.
Carinderias are everywhere. Perhaps it’s due to the Filipinos’ love of food. Nevertheless, you will never go hungry in Puerto Princesa City, as long as, you know where to look.