Whether it is a family dinner or a Saturday night out with friends, Naga City has quite a lot of choices when it comes to food and drinks. What is nice about the city is that all the hip places are either just a walk or a 10-minute ride from each other. Yes, that is how convenient it is to find places to chill when you find yourself in this city.
It may be small compared to that of Cebu or Davao but it has instantly been considered home for most of the people who have had a taste of its mouthwatering dishes. With a number of good hangout places to choose from, you will feel how relaxed the city is, you would want to go back for more. Or even decide to stay for a while!
Naga City is not called An Maogmang Lugar (the happy place) for nothing! It does not matter if you have lived in Naga all your life or if you are planning a trip with your family or with the barkada, you would need this ultimate guide to all the go-to places to get your eat on:
Aling Cely's Kinalas
Kinalas is a well-known dish in Naga and Aling Cely's serves one of the best bowls. It is a version of mami which has white noodles in hot broth topped with a special brown sauce, finely chopped meat and scallions. It is served with calamansi and some condiments which you can use to adjust the flavor to your liking. Don't want any meat in your bowl? Order the Log-Log instead.
Some of the other Kinalasan you may want to try are Nonoy's Kinalas, Kinalas Twin, Bolofer's Eatery and Enteng's Kinalas.
If you’re a fan of vintage stuff, it would be a delight to your eyes to visit Back Draft. Not only will your tummies get stuffed with good food, your eyes will as well. Feast on some of their best-sellers like their signature Crispy Ulo, Buttered Chicken and their Pizzas while listening to their well-curated music is the perfect way to end your day. The place has a chill vibe which your barkada would enjoy but is also kid-friendly so you can have family dinners as well.
"You've never been to Bicol if you've never been to Bigg's" is a saying you might hear when you first visit. The restaurant has been in business since the 1980s and has become a comfort food among Bicolanos. Must-try are their Tenderloin Tips, Spaghetti, Crispy Chicken, burgers and their Rock n Roll Iced Tea. If you want all of the best-sellers in one plate, order the Bigg Deal which gives you a serving of spaghetti, chicken, and barbecue. Tip: mix all the condiments together to create a sauce for your chicken!
From mouthwatering Bicolano and Filipino food to its trendy decor, Bob Marlin is popular among Bicolanos and tourists which makes it one of the must-visit restaurants in town. For a spread you won't forget, order the Crispy Dinuguan, Bicol Express, Ziggy’s Sisig Krispy and of course, their famous Crispy Pata. You can enjoy all these at their indoor area that's perfect for family gatherings or at their outdoor area if you're planning to stay a little longer and enjoy the live music with your friends. They also have a bar called Cafe Rasta where they serve refreshing cocktail pitchers for only P125 each. This is definitely one restaurant you shouldn't miss when you visit!
Known for their over the top milkshakes like Cookie Monster, Debutant, Sweet Sixteen, Unicorn and so much more, they also serve savory dishes that go well with their sweet drinks. Choose from the cheesy Nachos, Monster Fries, Spam and Fries, rice bowls and sandwiches. There are also board games you can borrow you can play with your friends while indulging in their food!
Home of innovative Filipino dishes, Chef Doy creates classic Bicolano dishes with a twist. Their best-sellers include their famous deconstructed Crispy Kare-Kare, a Bicolano Pasta that packs just the right amount of heat and the Batang Batang Pusit that would make you order extra cups of rice! For dessert, try the Hulog Hulog sa Salabat which is glutinous rice in sweetened ginger tea – perfect for after meals!
This really is not an original Naga creation since its first store is found in Legazpi, but it's pretty popular in the city, as well! What makes it special, you ask? Well, it's the usual Filipino treat but they use finely-crushed iced which almost has the texture of the ice used in the popular Korean dessert, Bingsu. One bowl contains a generous serving of assorted gulaman, sweetened saba bananas, milk, a scoop of ube ice cream, cheese, and leche flan. Who can say no to that huge blob of smooth leche flan that goes with it?
Sure, Naga City has the classic favorites but there are a few quaint restaurants that needs the same attention and Don Rodolfo's Cafe is one of them. They have some interesting dishes on the menu like the Sisig Pasta and Laing Pasta that are both available in solo (P149) and regular (P269) servings. If you want to try something different, order The Black Burger (P200) which has a special black bun and black sauce!
Have you ever found yourself in the city but can't seem to find any healthy food choices? Finally, Fit Fix is here to serve the freshest eats you could find in Naga. If you prefer something light, choose from their salad selection – Chicken Teriyaki, Pork Amino, Seared Tuna and Grilled Salmon. If you want something that's a little more filling, grab a wrap instead – Chicken Moriga, Pork Veggie, Tuna Wasabi and Salmon Rice. They also have fresh juices you can pair with your pre or post-workout meal!
Whether it's a catch up over lunch with friends or a quiet dinner out, there are so many authentic Italian eats you can choose from Grissini's menu. Besides the free ciabatta bread they give, start your meal with the Crema di Funghi which is a bowl of fresh button and shiitake mushroom in heavy cream and topped off with herbed croutons. Their pizza selection are a can't-miss as well, order the Quattro Formaggio, Margherita and Al Prosciutto which are just some of our favorites!
Craving for it while you're in the metro? Don't fret! They also have a branch in Marikina you might want to check out.
Started by a family with a passion for introducing Cantonese cuisine, its name is actually a Cantonese word for very delicious, great or awesome. And a visit to this restaurant located in downtown Naga would make you feel everything all in one bite. The Pancit Guisado, QU Misua, Buttered Chicken, Lechon Macau and Crab Meat Fuyong are just some of their best-sellers. They also have an amazing display of pastries that's a perfect end to a great meal. So, whether you're dining at Hoyeh or having it to-go to bring home to the family, Hoyeh will make any spread extra special.
A hole-in-the-wall restaurant in one of the streets in Magsaysay Avenue, it is a bit tricky to locate it on your first visit but it would definitely be worth it when you have a taste of their Japanese food selection. You won't be able to find something that tastes authentic as their dishes at its price range of P45 to P185. Some of their best-sellers include the Takoyaki, Ramen, Katsudon, Tempura and Kani Salad.
Ask anyone where's a good place to get good pancit or mami, they will surely lead the way to Naga Garden Restaurant. Besides the classic mami – Asado, Beef and Chicken – they also serve Pancit Guisado loaded with toppings, steamed and toasted siopao, and egg pie! If you want to skip on mami and pancit, they have a good selection of viands during lunch. Tip: When you order Asado Mami, ask for extra asado sauce for your soup which makes for a great dip for your steamed siopao!
Tucked inside Back Draft is another restaurant serving mouthwatering eats served on stainless steel plates. Its owner started selling made to order Lechon Belly with his own blend and later opened and expanded its menu with other grilled fares. Peri Chicken, T-bone Steak and Korean Porkchop are just some of their must-tries; each dish has a cup of java rice, salsa or gulay na santol or kimchi and a side of sauce – either peri or sriracha sauce. What's great is all the dishes range from P99 to P149 so you're sure you'll enjoy some good food without hurting your pocket.
Fancy some ihaw-ihaw? Triboo Grill has been a go-to place in Naga for families. They've been in the business for more than 20 years – yup, that's how long they've been grilling meat and the locals have loved them ever since. Other than the grilled fares, they also serve a mean Sizzling Sisig, some popular Filipino vegetable dishes and a Boodle Fight spread which ranges from P1,488 to P2,590 that are good for 5 to 8 people. They also have Merienda sets for sharing and are serving unlimited coffee if you find yourself there in the afternoon.