Our Tagaytay-Nasugbu Highway Family Restaurant Hopping
May 17, 2019
by Myra Butac
Being a single parent is not easy, especially since this entails raising a family on your own. However, it brings about unequalled joy and pleasure when you see your children enjoying your company while doing activities you all love.
In my family’s case, we all love to eat and travel all over the Philippines. Therefore, even if it will cost me an arm and a leg, I do my best to make each holiday with my kids very memorable with amazing sights and scrumptious dishes. With that in mind, we recently decided to visit three popular native restaurants along the Tagaytay-Nasugbu highway on a recent “staycation”. Each of these eating places is highly recommended by either the locals, online reviews, or even by both.
So let’s start with the priciest restaurant on our tour and then go down the list from there, shall we?
Depending on your hotel or rented residence’s location, you might end up doing a bit of travelling to this well-known restaurant. Everyone is familiar with it since it has several branches in Cavite but none is located in the Tagaytay city proper.
You can choose to commission one of the local tricycles near your place to get you there, but expect the fare to be a bit steep. They might even charge up to 5AUD give or take. If you’re near any of the malls in Tagaytay or Tagaytay Junction, best take a public utility jeep or bus that’s on its way to Indang or Mendez and you’ll only pay about Php10-20 (around .20-.30AUD) per head.
There’s nothing eye-catching about this restaurant when viewing it from the outside. Once you enter though, you’ll see a native-looking dining hall that’s oozing with charm, along with individual native huts for more intimate meals.
We chose to stay in one of the huts and rang for the waiter, using the installed sorbetero bell. We decided to order some of their desserts since we’ve already eaten prior to the visit. Even more so since this native restaurant is quite famous for its sweets and pasalubong.
Halo-Halo & Macapuno Cheesecake
We ordered their special Halo-Halo and macapuno cheesecake and they are both quite divine. The Halo-Halo was served inside a newly-opened and husked young coconut and easily fed the four of us. Of course, the coconut water was removed to accommodate this dessert’s large amounts of sweetened red beans, nata de coco, saba, macapuno strings, shaved ice, sugar, milk and ice cream. The young coconut’s meat is so tender you can scrape it off the sides easily with just your spoon. Best that you mix this well along with the other ingredients inside the coconut shell before you take your first bite.
However, the macapuno cheesecake was the real winner of the night. The topping was made out of sweetened macapuno strips with its clear and luscious syrup. Meanwhile, the cheesecake had a unique salty take to it. The mix of these two layers, along with the thick and crunchy crust, created a symphony of taste and texture in your mouth that would stay there even after you’ve eaten. It was just so good that we ordered two more pieces to take home with us. We even revisited the place a couple of days later to buy more of this heavenly cheesecake.
This famous native restaurant features a large open dining area with long tables and a great view of the Philippine’ beautiful Taal Lake. Simple and unpretentious, Bulalo Point caters mostly to middle-class diners but their food is so good even tourists have posted online praise for their bestsellers.
If you’re already familiar with Balinsasayaw, just carefully cross the busy Tagaytay-Nasugbu Highway from there and you’ll eventually find this infamous and highly recommended eatery. As a matter of fact, we first ate our main meal here before transferring to Balinsasayaw for dessert.
The minute you enter the premises, you’ll be greeted with friendly waiters and a fantastic view of Tagaytay’s lake. If you want to maximize the nature-filled scenery, ask to be seated near one of the large windows. You may have a hard time finding an open table if you come in during meal times so try to arrive an hour early.
Special Bulalo and Bulalo Kare-Kare
For the record, the locally-coined term “bulalo” pertains to a certain cut of beef that includes the bone and its marrow. These dishes may be fatty but it’s extremely flavorful and can be highly addictive for those who love beef. It’s this kind of dish that Bulalo is quite well known for. We ordered two of their highly-recommended main dishes, which were the Bulalo Kare-Kare and Special Bulalo. The Special Bulalo is highlighted by being served in a local native clay pot or tapayan. The four of us easily demolished both dishes and were extremely satisfied by its volume and taste.
Even with an extra serving of rice, we kept the bill to less than Php1000 which is around 30AUD. And they did not scrimp at all with the quality and taste of their dishes! Considering the affordability of the food, the beautiful view and their accommodating staff, Bulalo point is definitely a place we plan to go back to.
If you’re aiming for down-to-earth and simple native cooking with affordable options, then this is the perfect place to visit. Even if they still feature private nipa huts and native décor, they are clearly less elegant than the first two restaurants. However, as mentioned before, if you’re just out to enjoy each other’s company over delicious and freshly-cooked dishes while staying within a budget then you won’t go wrong with this place.
This restaurant is right beside Balinsasayaw so no way can you miss it if you’ve already visited the area before. Coming from Mendez, it would be before Balinsasayaw but if you’re coming from Olivares, you’ll see it right after.
We opted to sit in one of the more native nipa huts that were installed near the Tagaytay-Nasugbu highway itself. Admittedly, it’s airy, charming, cool and very rustic, but can be a bit problematic for diners who don’t want to be exposed to vehicular traffic and emissions. They offer a number of native food items that aren’t included in the other two restaurants’ menus, plus a number of kare–kare variations with different cuts of beef to choose from.
The cheaper versions consist of beef tripe and skin. We opted for a middle ground variety of this dish and got kare–kareng pata, which is made with beef leg slices with its bone and marrow included. Its sauce was delectably lip-smacking and the vegetables were clearly freshly harvested. The beef was a little chewy but it did not disappoint when it came to how scrumptious and juicy the slices were. Also, their serving can easily feed five famished diners.
This makes D’Bas a go-to staple should you want to invite a number of family and friends for a mouthwatering meal. We plan to go back here with more members of the family in tow.
More To Come…
If you love to visit foreign places and eat their native delicacies and dishes, you can never go wrong with these amazing restaurants. After all, Tagaytay is not only popular for its beef dishes but is an internationally famous tourist spot. You only need to Google this enchanting town to see how glorious the views are, how friendly the people are and how fresh and airy the surroundings are.
I assure you, even if you’re not that interested in eating your heart out, you can still find a number of other refreshing and revitalizing reasons to make your visit to Tagaytay truly memorable and worth your time.
My next blog post will definitely prove this to you so watch out for it!