A Swedish Midsummer

A good Swedish Midsummer is, in my mind, among the best things of the year. Usually it rains, and usually it’s a last minute option. But occassionally, there is this invite to one of your friend’s country houses for a proper traditional Swedish Midsummer bash with Midsummer’s pole, boozy herring lunch, childish games and partying till the sun goes back up at something like 3 a.m. This year was one of those rare pretty much perfect Swedish Midsummers. Pics below.

Midsummer party setting. No electricity, no heating and no running water. Lots of pretty little cabins, lots of beer, plenty of schnaps, sea access and a great sauna made up for any first world inconveniences though.

Pre-Midsummer dinner.

Picture perfect sauna.

Slightly crooked Midsummer’s pole which is what we circulate doing our pagan dances, such as the classic “tiny frogs”.

Traditional herring lunch with pickled herring, boiled new potatoes, Västerbottens cheese pie, egg halves, sour cream, chopped chives, salmon and crispbread.

Un-traditional but nevertheless delicious pavlova.

Sunset at 11 pm:ish.

Day two was spent on below jetty tanning/sweating out the Midsummer alcohol.


Sunset.

Eating in Monaco


Got back from our trip to Monaco last week, and though I’d share what we had, and what you too could eat in Monaco.

Although we only visited for four days, we did a fair bit of eating.

Le Louis XV – Alain Ducasse à l’Hôtel de Paris

One of the “must dos” in Monaco if you are okay with spending €300-400 (minimum) on a dinner for two. I’ve wanted to go there for a long time, so we decided to splurge to, for the first time, visit a European three michelin starred restaurant.

Upon arriving, we were the first guests of the night, which was a little bit intimidating initially. Although staff were quite relaxed so we were too.

Prices are quite high as mentioned, but you do get quite a lot for your euros. We ordered five dishes in total – a shared starter (€45), two mains (approximately €100 each) and two desserts (€36 each). A bottle of red wine was €60 and a bottle of water €7. In addition to our five ordered dishes we received 9 various kinds of food items and dishes, each.

French fishes with Mediterranean herbs.

Stocafi, a Monegasque dish with salt-cured cod, fennel sausage, tomatoes and olives.

Milk-fed lamb, red leaves lettuce salad, tiny spelt and herb pesto.

Guinea fowl cooked in the fire place, green peas and morels.

Soft chocolate cake, cocoa/nib.


Coffee candy.

Rum baba, lightly whipped cream.

Apart from what is above we had two kinds of sorbet (green apple-rucola and yuzu), roasted almonds and homemade chocolates.

A fantastic experience both in terms of ambience, food and service.

Café de Paris

A Monaco classic, located just next to the casino and an exceptional place to people spot, watch the expensive cars (and their owners/renters). Because of this also sort of a tourist trap with steep prices, at least so I’ve heard. Fortunately it wasn’t all that bad and we had a really nice dinner at prices relatively close to a meal in for instance Stockholm.

Sirloin with fries and béarnaise sauce (that is much better than it looks) costed €31.


Steak tartare with fries, also €31.

Enjoyed with a bottle of wine and a shared dessert we paid slightly over €100 for two in probably the best location in one of the most expensive places in the world.

Amici Miei

Closer to our hotel, the Columbus we found Italian restaurant Amici Miei, meaning “my friend” as we learned from the friendly owner.

First up, delicious mussels.

Raviolis with truffle, porcini and ricotta in a creamy sauce. Really, really delicious.


Delicious grilled lamb with a few basic but well cooked condiments.

Again, prices were relatively high, although less so than Café de Paris. Two beers, a 50 cl bottle of local wine, a shared starter and two mains costed us around €100.

More food in Monaco

Honorable mentions goes to Le Comptoir at Place D’Armes were we had delicious sandwiches and coffee for breakfast. It is below the hill where the palace and the aquarium/Oceanographic Museum are located.


Mozzarella & ham sandwich at Le Comptoir.

Another recommendation is to visit Carrefour where you can buy snacks and drinks. They had bottles of Champagne (yes, actual) from €10.

Another quite nice place was Bilig Café which had decent food at decent prices. A crepe with lemon and sugar was €4 and a Salade Nicoise was €15.


Salade Nicoise and crepes at Bilig Café.

All in all, Monaco was a very nice destination for a four day getaway. The ultra luxury is mostly located around the casino, in the rest of the city/country you can find nice food and drink at relatively decent prices.

Time to travel to… Monaco

I have the somewhat odd but also quite fun hobby to try to visit all the countries in the world. Now it’s time for number 73, namely: Monaco!

Haven’t managed to get further than the Lufthansa Business Lounge in Frankfurt yet, but I’m working on it!

Looking forward to four days of nice views, lots of delicious food and possibly a glass of champagne or two.

Birthday weekend

Turned one year older last weekend, and chose, maybe not that surprisingly, to celebrate with a decent amount of food and drink. Below are a few pics from the birthday dinner.

Wine! The spectacularly tasty Charles “Champagne Charlie” Heidsieck, Juris (Austrian red) and a Brunello di Montalcino. Good stuff!

Steak tartare on grilled sourdough with dijon mayo, red onion, chives and capers.


Grilled lobster with chive butter. Oh so good. The smoke from the grill really worked well with the sweet lobster meat and the herb butter.

Grilled steak with marinated gem lettuce, fries, grilled vegetables and truffle mayonnaise.

Dessert: weed tarte tatin. No, not the weed some smoke, but weed as in stuff you pick from the side of the road. Well, actually my mother does that. And it resulted in this delicious weed tarte tatin.
The Sunday was my actual birthday, and it started nicely with nutella, cream and strawberry waffles for breakfast.

Moving on to Italian cold cuts in the sun.


And finally, my favourite dish in the entire world (sort of at least): Bolognese, served with garlic bread, Martelli spaghetti, parmesan cheese and red wine.

Eating in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

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Recently visited South America for a three week trip which started on New Years Eve in the fantastic city of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. Except for fabulous beaches, friendly people and the world’s largest urban jungle there is plenty of good food to be found.

We arrived the legendary city early new years eve, and went right away to meet two friends for some jetlag-beating sunshine, beer and prawns on famous Copacabana Beach.

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Grilled prawns with garlic and lime at one of the Copacabana beach restaurants.
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Caipirinhas (lime, sugar and Cachaça – Brazilian sugarcane liquor similar to rum) enjoyed at a beachside bar on Ipanema Beach. 
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Not surprisingly, many restaurants in the Copacabana and Ipanema areas were fully booked, and lazy as we were we hadn’t made any prior reservations. Fortunately we found Stambul (yes, without the “I”) in Ipanema. A Turkish restaurant that had one available table for four hungry Swedes. Not the most genuinely Brazilian first meal of the trip, but hey, the food was great and they even had a Capoeira performance on the street the restaurant was on.
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After our Turkish dinner, we walked down to the beach were the famous fireworks were to be at midnight. A guy on the beach offered to rent us four beach chairs, and so we did. The guy then took us trough the crowd and set up our beach chairs smack bang at the water’s edge with amazing views over the fireworks paired with a couple of mean Caipirinhas. The party then lasted into the morning hours, and despite Rio’s reputation, we had no trouble at all running around along the beach till 5 a.m. On the other hand there was a massive security presence as well as lots of people out all night long.

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Morning after visit to the Sugarloaf mountain and then a hearty delicious lunch at Galeto Sat’s with mixed meats, Brazilian specialty broccoli rice, fried, vinaigrette (sort of like pico de gallo), eggs farofa and a couple of local beers together with a (seemingly) bunch of happy hungover locals.
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Another lunch was at Devassa in Ipanema. A nice Brazilian buffet with seafood rice, pastels (similar to empanadas), black bean stew, chicken and various salads.
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One of the best meals of the entire South America trip was at Churrascaria Palace. A “churrascaria” is a restaurant serving grilled meat, usually offering as much as one can eat with waiters moving around the restaurant with the skewers, slicing meat onto the guest’s plate. Churrascaria Palace offered a really nice churrasco with an initial buffet of starters such as high quality cold cuts, fresh oysters, cheeses, nuts, salad and similar. After the starters the churrasco followed. We had tenderloin, fillet mignon, chorizo, lamb, chicken, chicken hearts, ribs, grilled cheese and more. Everything was really delicious and we basically rolled out after finishing. No desserts were tried.
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The following day we went on a food tour that we found on TripAdvisor. The tour company is called Eat Rio and the idea is tours that get you to know Rio by “strolling along the streets, eating the food and rubbing shoulders with the locals”.
DSC_0280First stop was at Nova Capela in the Lapa area of Rio. We had actually visited Lapa the night before to check out the famous nightlife, and it was fun to be back during day time when it was much calmer (and you actually paid attention to the buildings and not just the party crowds). Anyway, at Nova Capela we had some delicious fruit juice that I of course forgot what it was, and “Bolitas de Bacalao” deep-fried cod croquettes that was really, really good. 
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A stop at the fruit and vegetable market in Gloria neighbourhood.
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Some amazing mango was had at the market.
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Then we went on to “Tacaca do Norte“, an Amazonian restaurant, where we had Amazonian soup with salty prawns and jambú (a numbing Amazonian plant) in a slightly tart broth. The cool thing with the jambú was that it was mildly narcotic, numbing our lips and changing flavors. The result was that the accompanying Amazonian Cerpa beer tasted salty. Very cool. If you had “Kava” in the South Pacific, this was similar. We also tried a tasty crab dish as well as a proper Acai bowl.
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The final stop on the tour was Severyna de Laranjeiras where we had a couple of (delicious) dishes as well as drinks. We tried delicious pastels (the Brazilian version of empanadas) which is deep-fried and filled with everything from prawns, to meat or cheese. The ones at Severyna was amazing, especially dipped in chilli sauce. We also had baked prawns, prawn stew, slow cooked meat, pumpkin, black beans and finally a splash of clarified butter to make everything extra delicious. A couple of fruits from the fruit market was also used to make passion fruit caipirinhas. A very delicious end to a great tour.
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After food tour-visit to the favela Babilonia and the bar “Estrelas da Babilonia“. The visit featured an initial climb into the favela by motorbike taxis and then a walk following the stars on the ground showing the path to the bar. It was slightly tricky but we were rewarded with great views over Rio de Janeiro as well as cold beer. On the return trip down we walked.

Rio – what a great city
As most people, I have read about violence and crime in Rio, and in the beginning we were very careful with hiding our cellphones and leaving our camera at the hotel during night time. But we felt safe pretty much all of the time and had no trouble what so ever. Police and security presence were high in most areas we went to. Of course though, you need to be aware of your surroundings and you should not flash expensive phones etc since there is definitely crime happening although we weren’t affected. But we really enjoyed our visit to Rio de Janeiro with its friendly inhabitants, great scenery and fantastic food.

Eating in fantastic Singapore

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After our recent visit to Manila and Boracay, we ended the trip with a visit to one of my favorite cities in the world: Singapore.

We flew sort of direct (a short stop in Cebu, then back onboard the same plane) from Boracay with Singapore Airline’s “low cost” affilliate Silkair, which proved to be very nice. They had a wireless onboard entertainment system that you could use on your own device (no wifi though), tasty food and complimentary drinks.

I’ve visited Singapore once before, and by then I had the idea that I think many have of a futuristic little city country with harsh laws, extreme cleanliness and a general feeling of surveillance. I did not get that feeling at all when visiting fortunately, and neither did I this time. They have harsh punishments for certain crimes, true. But as a foodie destination I really love it. It’s clean – yes, but more in a no-rats-and-no-trash-in-the-water kind of way than in a scary way. Anyway, we began our trip by using the limo company Blacklane for the first time. They are sort of like Uber, but you can pre-book them which is handy. A friendly guy named Herman picked us up in a spectacular Mercedes and we were driven to our hotel Sofitel So Singapore for not much more than a taxi. We used a discount code though, but they are easy to find by a quick google search. In our fancy ride from the airport, driver Herman told us about our hotel being very close to Lau Pa Sat, a large outdoor (and indoor) food market in the middle of the Singapore CBD. Anyway, below is the best we had.

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Blacklane pick-up from Changi Airport. Complimentary food advise was given.

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Bak Kut The aka “meat bone tea”. A tasty, spicy broth with pork ribs and condiments. Had at Ng Ah Sio in Marina Bay Sands mall’s food court.
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Chicken and prawn satay (grilled skewers) with peanut sauce, cucumber, raw onion and a pitcher of Tiger Beer. So good.
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Grilled beef satay.
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Built in the 19th century, Lau Pa Sat or Telok Ayer Market has for a long time provided food to hungry visitors. These days, they close the street in the evenings when the satay stalls lit up their barbecues where they produce some of the best skewers I’ve ever had. The atmosphere, prices and food was actually so good that we spent four out of six nights at Lau Pa Sat. Either for food, or just for a beer on our way back to the hotel.
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One of Singapore’s most famous dishes: The Chilli Crab. A giant steamed crab that is then stir-fried in a spicy and sweet chilli sauce and served with “mantou” deep-fried buns that you use to soak up the sauce. Chilli crab is a messy but fantastic experience of sweet crab meat, spicy sauce and crunchy fluffy mantou buns. Don’t forget to buy napkins from the vendors.
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Really delicious Korean fried chicken at “4 Fingers Crispy Chicken”. The kimchi coleslaw was spectacular in its obvious tastiness.

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Fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, fold again, fold, fold, fold AND fold. DTF’s dumplings are folded at least 18 times. And they are crazy delicious.
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Dan Dan noodles (spicy sesame and peanut) DSC_0447
Chilli and cucumber salad.

DSC_0444Sautéed water spinach.
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Taiwanese pork chop with egg fried rice.
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Xiao long bao.

Din Tai Fung is an old favorite of mine since my student days in Sydney where first got our addiction. Din Tai Fung is a Taiwanese chain of restaurants that these days is operating in both Asia, Australia and the US. They just opened shop in Dubai, so they’re at least moving towards Europe. A few of their outlets (at least in Hong Kong) has been awarded Michelin stars, and that is despite not being particularly fancy or expensive.

Din Tai Fung’s most famous dish is the xiao long bao aka the soup dumpling. XLBs are basically dough that is folded at least 18 times and wrapped around meat and jellied meat broth, that melts when the dumplings are steamed. That means that when you bite into the dumpling you will experience light dough, meat, and soupy broth at the same time. You will also get the sensation of dipping them into the DIY dipping sauce of hot chilli paste, soy, ginger and black vinegar. It is ridiculously tasty and I try to visit Din Tai Fung each time I’m at a place who has one.

We ate at Din Tai Fung Marina Bay Sands and it was delicious, of course. Except for the XLB, Din Tai Fung also have a few other dishes that’s really delicious. Our standard order is above water spinach, chilli-cucumber salad, spicy dan dan noodles, and Taiwanese pork chop with egg fried rice. Washed down with a Taiwanese beer it is definitely one of my all time favorite meals.
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Light show every night (free) at Marina Bay Sands. Bonus views of the pretty CBD skyline all night long.
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There’s actually decent beaches in Singapore. This one on Sentosa Island.
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Above is Hainanese chicken rice from vendors “Tian Tian chicken Rice” and “Ah Tai” in Maxwell Food Centre. When I last visited Singapore there was a chicken rice war between the two, since Ah Tai used to work for Tian Tian but then got fired/resigned and started his own shop in the same hawker centre. Last time I thought the rebel chicken rice stall Ah Tai had the better version, this time I’d say that Tian Tian had reclaimed the Hainanese chicken rice victory.
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Lunch at Lagnaa in Little India. Tasty butter chicken, palak paneer, jeera rice and naan.
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DSC_0753One of the last dinners of the trip was at Equinox restaurant. Equinox is located in the Swissotel Stamford building, located on the 70th floor. The food is not fantastic, but still very tasty, and the view is really to die for. Above is a rib-eye steak with marrow bone, black truffle butter and black truffle mac n’ cheese (that was amazing). Prices are quite high, but are kind of worth it since food is good and view’s as mentioned fantastic. If you’re after view but do not want to pay 100 SGD for a steak, you can do like we did last time and visit the adjacent New Asia Bar for a drink instead.
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Delicious Godiva Soft Serve ice cream at Godiva, Suntec City Mall.
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Our last dinner in Singapore was at Yayoiken Japanese restaurant. The place is very high tech and you order and pay for all food and drinks through a table-side tablet. We had tonkatsu, tempura prawns and gyoza which all were really delicious. Prices were really good too.
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A visit to the “Arab Quarter” where we visited the beautiful Masjid Sultan Mosque and had a tasty falafel at House of Kebab.
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Then it was time to fly home. The flight from Singapore to Bangkok offered this sunset as well as Charles Heidsieck champagne and lobster thermidor onboard Singapore Airlines.

Gothenburg and Trattoria La Strega

Currently enjoying Gothenburg and Hotel Clarion Post during a mini break in Sweden’s second city. Below are a few pics from the stay.

Take away Danish open sandwiches (smørrebrød) from Jacob’s at Stockholm’s central train station. The smørrebrød was then enjoyed onboard the MTR Express train to Gothenburg accompanied by a bottle of Henriot Champagne bought at the train cafe.

Halv special or half special, a Gothenburg classic with sausage in a bun with the addition of potato mash.

Breakfast at Clarion Post.

Clarion’s rooftop pool and view.

Amazing dinner at Trattoria La Strega. Cold cuts for starter, then king crab pappardelle and finally tiramisu. A bottle of “Bandita” Barbera d’Asti to drink. The crab pasta was probably the best meal I’ve had this year.

Best hamburger sauce (or dressing) recipe ever

Cheeseburger with onion rings, fries, Lagunitas Pale Ale and burger sauce

I’m, like most people I reckon, a big burger lover, and hence from time to time I like to make my own burgers (or eat them at various places, but that’s another story). When I lived in Australia, I came across a really simple recipe for a burger sauce, or dressing as we call it in Sweden, that really elevated our homemade burger creations to the next level.

What you need:
2 dl (~ 1 cup) Good quality mayo (make your own or use store bought)
1 tablespoon of ketchup
1 tablespoon of mustard
1 tablespoon of minced/really finely chopped onion (shallots work well)
1 tablespoon of finely chopped gherkins (pickled cucumbers).

Mix all of the above, then let rest in the fridge for half an hour or so. Then put on your burgers, and enjoy. Works great as a dipping sauce for the fries too.

Quick “Greek flavoured” omelette


Cooked just for myself the other day, and lazy as I tend to be when I’m solo-eating, I wanted something really quick to make, yet tasty. I had been craving feta cheese tarte for some time and I realized I got almost get that, in the shape of a feta cheese, tomato, olive pie:ish omelette. I also microwaved another omelette for lunch the day after and it was really good as a lunchbox meal.

What you need (one omelette):

3 eggs, organic ones usually taste better

About 50 grams of feta cheese

About 20 grams of rucola (arugula/rocket)

1 tomato, sliced thin

Pitted olives, use your favourites

Olive oil for frying

Dried oregano

Salt and black pepper

A splash of water

How to do cook it:

1. Whisk/beat the eggs in a bowl. Add a small splash of water and season with salt and pepper.

2. Heat olive oil in a pan, distribute the tomato slices evenly in the pan and sprinkle with oregano and just a little bit of salt.

3. After a minute or so, reduce heat to medium and add the eggs, tilt the pan so the mixed eggs are evenly distributed.
4. Add rucola, olives and crubled feta cheese. Cook until the egg has firmed up in the bottom but is still a little runny on top (if eggs should be cooked through where you live, you should obviously do that though. In Sweden it’s okay to eat raw eggs).

5. Gently remove the omelette from the pan using a spatula. If you want to you can fold it, I had mine open.

The best Boracay food and restaurants

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Sitting on the plane bound for Singapore at the moment and thinking back on the Boracay experiences from the last seven days. Boracay, as you may know, is an island in the South China Sea, mainly famous for its pretty beaches, more specifically “White Beach”.

Prana Restaurant
But if you know me, you know it won’t be just beach life. One has to eat too. On Boracay, we stayed at the Mandala Spa and Resort, situated among lush greenery on top of a hill overlooking the ocean. Since we arrived quite late we opted to have our first meal there, a miniature tuna dish and healthy Thai red curry with whole grain rice in the resort’s Prana restaurant.

Mandala Spa and Resort
Mandala Spa has a massive focus on health and relaxation. So much that we were upgraded to a “Digital Detox Villa” that lacked both wifi and a TV. Even worse, the mini bar was only stocked with things like dried mango, healthy nuts and organic wine. That is no wifi, no tv and no beer. I felt like I was part of the movie “Couples’ Retreat”. Fortunately things improved. The TV, i could not do much about, but we cheated on our digi detox-room with locally purchased sim cards. To be honest, the reliability was quite poor, but it worked better than no internet at all (to the resort’s defence there was free wifi in the lobby). We also bought local beer from the local super market, and abrakadabra, the only-organic-wine-issue was a thing of history as well.

In all seriousness, the Mandala Resort and Spa is probably one of the better places I’ve stayed in, and despite I can’t really live without internet, the villa, the surroundings an the staff was really great. The food’s a bit expensive though, and portions are a bit small. You do feel however, that there is some serious thought into the options, all I tried was quite delicious despite being made extra healthy. Especially their breakfast dishes were really delicious, although slightly pricy compared to other options on nearby White Beach.

The food of Boracay

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Above: tuna main course, as well as quinoa pancakes with mango for breakfast at Prana, Mandala Spa and Resort.

If healthy holistic food is not what you’re after in Boracay there are several other options waiting for you. We did quite a lot of research before our trip and tried a lot of different places on Boracay and being an island, there aren’t any fantastic food experiences, but still very good food to be had. Below are my favourites.

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Above: Choriburger, wonut and giant pancakes at Sunny Side Cafe.

Sunny Side Cafe

Our first day we had dinner at the Sunny Side Cafe. The Sunny Side Cafe has (at least) two sister restaurants on the island, Spicebird and Super Magic Burger, and is a modern hipsterish coffee shop meets restaurant. They are serving western-style breakfast dishes like French toast, pancakes, grilled sandwiches and really good coffee as well as twists on local favourites like the Chori-burger, a delicious spicy chorizo burger with a sweet and spicy tomato dressing, served in one of Sunny Side’s fluffy brioche buns. We actually went back several times to the SSC and enjoyed both their eggs benedict made with perfectly poached eggs on English muffins with hollandaise and thick cut bacon. I also tried their ginormous pancakes with cream cheese and mango. Sort of pricy for Boracay, but very good food and drinks. Not to miss is also their dessert “wonut”, which is a deep-fried waffle which we opted for having served with fresh mango, whipped cream and nutella. So unhealthy, so delicious.
Prices: $$$

Location: pretty close to station 3


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Above: Pandan pancakes filled with “lechon” suckling pig, as well as stir-fried lechon at Mesa.

Mesa
Mesa is a sort of fancy Filipino restaurant chain that we saw both in Manila and on Boracay. One of the perks of eating at Mesa Boracay is that they have extended the restaurant (although many White Beach restaurants did this) on to the beach itself. So you sit on the beach itself enjoying dinner. From my experience this is something you usually have to pay extra for in certain resorts. So I found it very nice. Anyway, the food at Mesa is very nice and especially so is the crispy lechon. Lechon is basically a roasted suckling pig, a very popular dish in the Philippines. At Mesa, you order from 1/6 of a lechon (which the two of us did) up to an entire pig. The lechon is served two ways, sliced in pandan pancakes and then the remaining lechon is stir-fried in chili and garlic. Sort of like peking duck. Except for the pandan pancakes that were on the dry side, the both dishes were really delicious. The stir-fried suckling pig (note that they stir-fry the already crispy roasted pig) was really something. Best dish we had on Boracay, but also the most expensive at around 1 000 ++ Php.
Location: Close to station 2 at the Henan Resort (former Boracay Regency).
Prices $$$

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Above: Pizza at Aria.

Aria
One night we did a short break in our Filipino eating experiences since we were both desperately craving pizza. We did a little research about the local pizza situation, and based on empirical evidence from a walk-by combined with written reviews we went for Aria restaurant. Aria is an Italian restaurant located adjacent to D’ Mall near Station 2, and I read good things about their truffle pasta, but it was pizza that was the focus of the night. We ordered a Greek pizza, with olives and feta, and a “Diavolo” with mozzarella and spicy salami. Pizza’s were surprisingly great and I really enjoyed mine. The dough was nearly perfect but the mozzarella cheese could have been better.
Prices $$$

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Above: Smoke Resto, bulalo and crispy pata, at Smoke Resto.

Smoke Resto
When visiting Manila, one of our taxi drivers started chatting with us about Filipino food, and I asked him about his favorite dish. “Bulalo” he answered, and as it happened, Smoke Resto on Boracay had been awarded for the best bulalo in the entire Philippines. Smoke Resto is an authentic Filipino place situated in sort of an alleyway just off White Beach. We arrived quite early and was immediately seated at a table, however just a couple of minutes later the place was full and a line had formed. We ordered (of course) the bulalo, which is a soup with beef shanks and marrow bones that are cooked for a long time to make a really flavoursome broth as well as melt-in-your-mouth-tender meat. I can see why they won their award, a seriously tasty soup. We also tried “crispy pata” which basically was a deep-fried “schweinshaxe” or pork shank, and we also had their beef in dark soy and garlic sauce served with rice. All their dishes were quite simple in look and ingredients, but so tasty, as well as inexpensive. An added benefit was that the place felt really authentic, much more so than many places on the White Beach Strip.
$$

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Above: Garlic fried chicken at Gerry’s Grill.

Gerry’s Grill
We visited Gerry’s Grill first in Manila and then again on Boracay when we learnt of its existence. Food was as good as in Manila and we tried their pancit noodles, their pork floss adobo, garlic fried chicken, water spinach and grillad pork skewers. Everything delicious, although not spectacular. Prices are very good though.
$$
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Above: D’Talipapa market action as well as our prawns that was bought at the market and then cooked at Sababi Paluto restaurant.

D’ Talipapa and Sababi Paluto restaurant
The local wet market on Boracay is called D’ Talipapa and is located along the main road a few blocks from White Beach. We had a bit of a struggle to find it, but if you walk up to the main road along the street up from White Beach that passes a McDonald’s, you’re on the right way. When you reach the main road, turn right and just walk a couple of meters until you see signs to D’Talipapa. You can also reach it through the alleyways from White Beach strip. Can’t really give a good description for that though. Well, the experience then. We visited quite early in the day, and the market was quite relaxed. The idea is that you purchase fresh or still alive seafood or fish from the vendors, you need to haggle a bit. We did not reach that great of a deal, but we were happy with the small discount we got as it was a fun experience first and foremost. We bought a dozen of prawns and went to the nearby Sababi Paluto restaurant since they had the most customers. Paluto means that they cook the food you bring according to your instructions, and we got a small menu with prices for the different options available and opted to have our prawns sautéed in butter, garlic and a hint of chili. The food took a little while to arrive, and meanwhile we could enjoy watching the grill chef cooking others guest’s whole fish fillets, making us regret only buying prawns. The food arrived and was really delicious. Although the prawns were slightly expensive, having them cooked was not, so all in all it turned out to be one of our both best and most inexpensive meals of the week on Boracay. Very recommended both for the experience and the tasty food.
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Above: Real Coffee Boracay’s chicken sandwich, coffee, juice and kalamansi muffin.

Real Coffee Boracay
They have dishes like grilled sandwiches but are famous for their kalamansi muffin which I found was the best of the things I tried. Coffee is also better at Sunny Side (above).
Location: just outside D’Mall with views over the beach from second floor.
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Above: Juice at Jonah’s fruit shake.

Jonah’s fruit shake
On main road, so a bit of treck through alleys if you’re going from White Beach as we did. Worth the walk though, ask a local if you can’t find it. Note: it seems like there was (or still is) a Jonah’s on White Beach itself, but we couldn’t find it. So we walked from about Gerry’s Grill towards the main road and managed to find it after asking a few locals. It’s not far, and the fruit juices and shakes are delicious.
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