According to Anthony Bourdain, Zubuchon is the home of the best Cebu lechon or in his words, “the best pig…ever!” Zubuchon is where you can get the best lechon in Cebu, according to the No Reservations host and chef. Naturally, being a huge fan of Anthony Bourdain, I listened! And listened well I did!
During my most recent Cebu City vacation, I visited Zubuchon – a.k.a. the very same Cebu lechon tasted, featured and praised by no other than world renowned chef and travel show host Anthony Bourdain of No Reservations. Actually, it wasn’t my first time to try Zubuchon. About two years ago, I had my very first taste of this much-talked about lechon Cebu that claims to not have any MSG at all. If you’re wondering why it’s named Zubuchon – well, “Zubu” is the old name of Cebu and “chon” is from lechon.
This was the Zubuchon outlet that my brother and I went to this time around. This Zubuchon restaurant in Cebu is near the Provincial Capitol and just right beside Coffee Dream
Lechon is fire roasted pig. In the Philippines, lechon is almost always served in every special gathering. Cooking lechon may sound pretty easy – the pig’s belly is filled with various spices and herbs (thereby producing appetizing aroma) and the entire pig is slowly roasted for hours under hot coal – but believe me when I say that not a few have failed in really achieving that perfect taste.
Here’s a photo of Zubuchon (took this two years ago). You might immediately notice that the lechon skin isn’t reddish at all and looks like chicharon or brownish deep fried skin.
What makes Zubuchon “different” from other lechon Cebu is that they serve “healthy lechon” – healthy in the sense that the pigs that they use are bred in the backyard and are fed an “organic” diet. According to the Zubuchon owners, they also do not use MSG or any other artificial flavor enhancers. They only use lemongrass, lemons, green onions, siling labuyo or peppers, local sea salt, rosemary and olive oil. The skin is also just sprayed with coconut water as final touch.
Zubuchon Cebu lechon meat is very succulent. The skin is also very tasty.
Check out this paper placemat
If you notice, there’s something about their kamias shake – “to balance the richness of lechon, enjoy it with our kamias shake.” This shake wasn’t part of their menu two years ago and several of my Twitter friends told me that it was good so I ordered a glass.
The kamias shake wasn’t sour at all. In fact, it was sweet but had an acidic tinge. I’m thinking they probably mixed lots of sugar syrup to diffuse the sourness of the iba or kamias.
During this Zubuchon food trip, my brother and I decided to skip the lechon. Instead, we ordered pritchon or pritong lechon or fried Zubuchon lechon. This plate of pritchon was priced at Php 380.00. We also ordered a platter of plain rice (Php 70.00)
That was a good meal.