Friday, April 13, 2007

AUTHENTIC SPANISH CUISINE IN MANILA





















Wise men say to be careful with what we wish for, because most likely we'd get it.

And so it was for an authentic but casual Spanish restaurant right in the midst of Manila that I fervently wished for ever since moving back here. Not a fancy restaurant in tony Greenbelt or Rockwell, mind you. Just a simple and accessible eatery like those Chinese restaurants in Binondo.


Well, guess what? There is one. Los Ambos Mundos on Florentino Torres Street near corner of Claro M. Recto Avenue. I read about it at Carlos Celdran's site yesterday morning, and by lunchtime I was enjoying a plate of delicious lengua estofado.

I'm not going to say more about this great find, for Carlos' entry says it all.


Now, you may wonder what the above photograph is all about. You see, besides four fish tanks, the restaurant's owner also keeps two pet pigs for good luck. It's sister Chinese restaurant right across the street, Wah Sun Cantonese Cuisine, also has two huge pigs and a monkey. How about that, folks?


The airy interior.




The restaurant staff.




The guard pig, Dagul, by the entrance.


.

posted by Señor Enrique at 4:22 AM


35 Comments:

Anonymous rhodora said...

Wow! Wild pig? So aptly named 'Dagul'! :)

April 13, 2007 7:29 AM  

Blogger U.T.O.Y said...

ang kyut neto señor...hope it's legal to pet such pigs...I WANNA HAVE ONE!!!! hehehe

April 13, 2007 7:55 AM  

Anonymous LAR said...

Love the photos, as always! Galing nang 1st and last shots. Sana kasinggaling kita. :)

April 13, 2007 7:56 AM  

Blogger Sidney said...

It's sister Chinese restaurant right across the street, Wah Sun Cantonese Cuisine, also has two huge pigs and a monkey.

Are you sure it wasn't the Manila Zoo? ;-)

Hahahaha... I love that last picture!
Simply amazing!
No wonder I love this city!

April 13, 2007 8:38 AM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

They surely looks like those baboy damo, Rhoda, that my dad used to hunt up in the mountains of Subic, but much smaller, though.

But Dagul and his three other buddies are all docile. I sometimes wonder how Dagul earns his keep when all he seemed to do while I was there was sleep. How can he possibly keep guard of the restaurant ... hehehe.

April 13, 2007 8:55 AM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

When I was a kid, UTOY, my aunt gave me a pig as a pet, and much to my suprise, I found out pigs can be just as smart as dogs.

I gave my pet pig a bath once a day. He was so clean my aunt allowed him inside the house, which was unheard of back then even with pet dogs.

Here's the link to the post about my pet pig:

http://senorenrique.blogspot.com/2005/11/my-life-with-pig.html

April 13, 2007 8:59 AM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

Thanks, LAR! BTW, if you live in Metro Manila, you have to come and check out these animals. The sight of the pig and monkey together was quite amusing.

April 13, 2007 9:01 AM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

Oh, I forgot to mention, Sidney ... they have made cages of birds outside, too!

The two pigs of the Spanish restaurant were inside and difficult to photograph. They're let out in the mornings and late afternoons. Dagul is actually the pig from across the street which isn't the sunny side of the street.

You have got to pass by that place.
Wait a minute, let's meet there next week maybe.

Have a good weekend!

April 13, 2007 9:05 AM  

Anonymous rhodora said...

Dagul is no different from some 'sikyos' out there.. sleeping on their posts.. hehehe.

April 13, 2007 9:09 AM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

Correction:

I meant: "they have many cages of birds ..."

I really should proofread my responses before posting them :)



You are right, Rhoda. I've seen many security guards (very early mornings) sleeping on the job. So, I guess Dagul is merely trying to fit the bill ... hehehe!

April 13, 2007 9:36 AM  

Blogger Senorito<- Ako said...

Pigs ?? It's an actual pig ! I can't believe it. :)

April 13, 2007 9:57 AM  

Blogger Senorito<- Ako said...

Hey your hawking awards left and right !! :) Congratulations ! :)

April 13, 2007 10:00 AM  

Blogger christine said...

ok, that is just the cutest pig!!

April 13, 2007 1:10 PM  

Anonymous tutubi said...

ei senor,

pigs are actually smarter than dogs. pigs also love themselves to be clean always. the domesticated pigs turn into the hairy ones in a few weeks time to look like wild pigs-- that's one of the fastest "evolution" you can witness for animals.

so much for the bad image of pigs, huh?

April 13, 2007 1:42 PM  

Anonymous kyels said...

Wild pig?!

OMG, that is just so cute! Hehe.

April 13, 2007 1:42 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

Yes, S.A.! They're real pigs -- four of them. And I bet with their owners as restaurateurs, they eat better than the average city dweller.

Thanks :)

April 13, 2007 2:05 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

You should see the other three, Christine. The father is much bigger than Dagul, while the other two are smaller and cuter :)

April 13, 2007 2:06 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

If I owned a domesticated pig now, I'd probably get one of those elctric clippers and give my pig a buzz shave regularly, Tito. The pet pig I had loved to be given a bath and scrubbed clean. No wonder.

I knew they are as smart, but didn't know they were, in fact, even smarter than dogs. Wow!

April 13, 2007 2:09 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

A domesticated wild hog now, Kyels ... hehehe. They better not let them loose out in the wild; they wouldn't how to feed themselves now.

April 13, 2007 2:10 PM  

Anonymous rhodora said...

I wonder, what are the names of Dagul's father and siblings? And mother?

Really intrigued by this pig... hehe.

April 13, 2007 3:05 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

Give me a couple of days, Rhoda, and I'll find out for you. I'm supposed to go back there anyway to give the staff copies of their pics which I had promised I would.

I was really impressed by their friendliness. It's obvious they're used to media people coming and taking pictures all over. Nanay, the manager, told me they had to open once at 3 in the morning to allow the TV crew of Unang Hirit to set up for a live feed ... and yes, Dagul and his entire clan of were prominently featured as well; getting their due minutes of national fame :)

I'll get as much info as possible and take additional pics. You might want to write a feature for PD. This restaurant has a rich history worth reading about.

Oh, yeah ... supposedly, the workers and residents in the neighborhood are so used to these animals chilling on the sidewalk in front of the two restaurants that no one would fuss over them or poke their big bellies. Apparently, people are more wary of the feisty monkey that stays close to Dagul's father ... hehehe.

April 13, 2007 3:30 PM  

Blogger sheilamarie said...

hahaha... gotta bring hubby to that place to enjoy the cuisine, and luis to enjoy the animals. LOL! Dagul!

April 13, 2007 4:30 PM  

Blogger sheilamarie said...

p.s. will try to keep luis as far away as possible from the monkeys. LOL!

April 13, 2007 4:32 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

I was told Dagul and the others don't bite at all so, Luis is safe. I'd be worried about the feisty monkey who is protective of Dagul's father.

I've a feeling you and your hubby will enjoy thise local version of Spanish cuisine :)

I trust Luis' wound is healing well. Ay, mga bata nga naman!

April 13, 2007 4:36 PM  

Anonymous rhodora said...

Thanks, Eric. Pakitanong na rin kung saan galing si Dagul and family... just curious :)

April 13, 2007 5:43 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

That's a good idea, Rhoda!

April 13, 2007 6:32 PM  

Blogger dave (",) said...

I also have a kinder attitude towards pigs thanks to the influence of my college friend. Pigs are her favorite animals (and I know you might make associations, but no, she is far from being fat; take note: favorite animal, not favorite food). Interestingly, her boyfriend likes frogs, so they come across as Miss Piggy and Kermit, haha.

Incidentally, I like birds, so I would have taken more interest in those birds in the cage, especially if they can talk.

April 14, 2007 2:45 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

Hahaha ... that makes them a great couple then, Dave.

I think they were either pigeons they have in those cages, though not sure. I would like to have a talking bird as a pet myself. My sister has quite a colony of lovebirds.

April 14, 2007 7:21 PM  

Blogger RONALD said...

Wow! Yung Wah Sun ang favorite restaurant namin simula nung bata pa ako,Sun Wah pa ang name noon. Binata pa lang daw ang father ko kumakain na siya dun.

Nung last na uwi ko diyan kumain ulit ako kasama ko misis ko, nakita ko nga yang baboy damo. Pag umakyat ka dun sa itaas ng Wah Sun makikita mo andami pang mga animals dun, meron mga snakes, birds and may crocodile pa!

April 16, 2007 8:01 AM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

Hi Ronald!

Sa dati nilang lugar maaaring kumain na din kami ni Papa noong bata pa ako. Siguro masarap nga, ano?

Nasabi sa akin ng isang kaibigan sa camera club kahapon lamang nga madami nga daw iba pang hayop sa second floor ny Wah Sun. Hintayin ko bumalik si Sidney at kunan namin ang mga collection nilang hayop. Thank you!

April 16, 2007 9:20 AM  

Blogger cuthbert said...

kuya,

galing ng picture mo sa pig ah. ok sya.hehehe.

April 18, 2007 10:28 AM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

Hey Cuth!

Next time we do annother Manila EB, let's stop by either one of these two restaurants for lunch ... to eat and take pictures of the animals!

Nino has been here before he told us.

April 18, 2007 10:32 AM  

Blogger reyd said...

Hahaha, nice of you to show the hidden charms of Los Ambos and Sun Wah, kakatawa yung Chinese pig(Meishan breed?)at suwerte nga yan, the pigs eat all the leftovers. :)

April 24, 2007 11:35 PM  

Blogger Senor Enrique said...

Hi Reyd!

No doubt they're the best-fed pigs in town ... hehehe.

At first I thought they were wild hogs, but turns out they were originally from Vietnam. Is that Meishan?

April 25, 2007 6:02 AM  

Blogger reyd said...

The pig looked like meishan breed, hindi lang kulubot yung skin ni Dagul. I've eaten Vietnamese pig and they look like and that most likely bred from China.
Those restos literally would be the place to pig-out. LOL!

April 26, 2007 9:34 AM  

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Life in Manila as observed by a former New Yorker who with a laptop and camera has reinvented himself as a storyteller. Winner of the PHILIPPINE BLOG AWARDS: Best Photo Blog in 2007 and three Best Single Post awards in 2008.

 
 

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