If you’re looking for an authentic Filipino dining experience – your best option is always to ask the LOCALS. Throw away your guidebooks and continue reading. In our quest to find the best spots in Metro Manila offering the best Filipino dishes, we interviewed different locals from all walks of life (taxi driver included) living around the metro.

Locals were asked to name their top restaurants where they would normally bring their foreigner friends to taste genuine Pinoy dishes.The survey also requires them to reveal their budget & recommended dishes. And here’s what we have gathered.

Abe - Filipino Dishes *Photo Taken From: ljcrestaurants.com.ph
Abe Restaurant – If you’re after for a Filipino gourmet taste with a class. Go to Abe Restaurant. Serving mostly Kapampangan dishes (from Pampanga which is the Culinary Capital of the Philippine) are the specialty of the restaurant. This restaurant belongs to the LJC Group known for upscale restaurants offering delectable Filipino cuisines.

Address & Contacts: Level M3, Trinoma Mall, North EDSA, Quezon City 901.56.91 or 901.56.92 Click website for other branches
Business Hours: Monday – Sunday / 11:00 am – 11:00 pm
Website: www.ljcrestaurants.com.ph/abe/
Average Budget: Php400/Dish
Recommended Dishes: Binukadkad na Crispy Pla-Pla, Paco Fern and Tomato Salad, Knockout Knuckle, Lamb Adobo with Popped Garlic, Bringhe, Abe’s Chicken Supreme.


Fely J's - Filipino Dishes *Photo Taken From: ljcrestaurants.com.ph
Fely J’s – Another restaurant owned by the LJC group. The interior walls decorated with photos and paintings of the late Fely J’s featuress a traditional Filipino house in the 70’s. It’s homey and warm ambiance gives out a Filipino culture feel. But wait ‘til your teeth sink in to their special dishes like Fely Js Dilis-cious Rice & Tilapia with Sweet Plum sauce.

Address & Contacts: 2nd Level, Greenbelt 5, Ayala Center, Makati
Business Hours: Monday – Sunday / 11:00 am – 11:00 pm
Website: www.ljcrestaurants.com.ph/fely-j/
Average Budget: Php300/Dish
Recommended Dishes: Felys Temple Crab, Tilapia with Sweet Plum Sauce, Tufo in Sampan Boats, Cassava Bibingka with Buko, Bam-I, Fely Js Dilis-cious Rice.

Filipino Dishes - Dampa *Photos: Seaside Dampa Macapagal Blvd/Facebook; Pusit by Market Manila; Sinigang Belly by Sarangani Bay; Arusip by Glenda Ramos-Frazer/Pinterest; Tilapia by junbelen.com
Seaside Dampa Market – Never leave the country without tasting its seafood. And the perfect place to get a wide array of fresh sea produce here in Manila is in Macapagal Boulevard. Buy your own seafood, bring it to one of the restaurant and let them cooked the way you want it. Let Sharmila Paluto Restaurant, Julie’s Dampa, Aling Tonya’s & Claire Dela Fuente cook seafood Filipino dishes for you at a reasonable service charge.

Note: It’s best advised to bring a Filipino friend to do the buying and negotiating as several incidents of overpricing to foreigners are recorded.

Address & Contacts: Macapagal Boulevard, Pasay City
Business Hours: Monday – Sunday / 11:00 am – 11:00 pm
Website: None (Facebook Page)
Average Budget: Seafood – Varies / Cooking Service – P100 – 200/dish.
Recommended Dishes: Stuffed Squid, Baked scallop, Sinigang na Bangus Belly, Ar-Arusip Salad, Sweet & Sour Lapu Lapu, Fried Tilapia With Mango Salsa

Filipino Dishes - R&J Bulalo *Photo By: thecuisineuer.com; Daing by Ton Cocoba; Pancit by filipino-dishes.org; Tawilis by Ilona Nimo; Tapsilog By: Empoy Dakot
R&J Bulalohan – No need to go to Batangas to savor a Bulalo (Beef Shank) Soup because you can enjoy it nice and warm here in Mandaluyong. Tucked in the busy street of Boni Ave, this casual alfresco restaurant epitomizes good Pinoy Friday Night Out. The place can be packed with many patrons including celebrities (Boy Abunda included) so better contact them to reserve your seats.

Address & Contacts: Maysilo Circle, Plainview, Mandaluyong City (533-4811)
Business Hours: Monday – Sunday / 24 hours
Website: None (Facebook Page)
Average Budget: 150/dish.
Recommended Dishes: Bulalo, Fried Boneless Daing na Bangus, Pinakbet, Tapsilog, Fried Tawilis (Freshwater Sardine which is only found in the PH), Pancit Bihon.

Filipino Dishes - Kamayan*Photo By: tripadvisor.com.ph
Kamayan – still can’t get enough of Filipino cuisines? Well, here’s another pillar of Philippine dining experience. Kamayan Restaurant showcases grandest & finest of regional specialties around the Philippines. What we like about them? Aside from the ala carte dishes, they also offer all-Filipino Food buffet which is like table hoping from islands to islands of the country. For only Php435 (Lunch & Dinner) you get to enjoy centerpiece of all the Filipino festivities.

Address & Contacts: Glorietta 3 • EDSA • West Avenue • Padre Faura
Business Hours: Monday – Sunday / 10am – 10pm
Website: www:kamayansaisakidads.com
Average Budget: 250/dish
Recommended Dishes: Kamayan Lechon de Leche, Seafood Soup, Kamayan Pritson, Crispy Pata, Halo-Halo, Puto Bumbong.

So there you have it – five different restaurants where you can have the best and finest Filipino dishes around Metro Manila.

Didn’t find your favorite restaurant here? Hit the comment button and let us hear your vote!

*Photo Cover by www.budgetbytes.com