The Higalaay Festival a.k.a. Cagayan de Oro fiesta has kicked off in CDO. The extended Martial Law in Mindanao obviously didn't deter the Cagayan de Oro local government from planning and organizing the Higalaay Festival 2017. In fact, this year's Higalaay CDO Festival 2017 is part of the ongoing #BusinessAsUsual campaign of the CDO government.
Anyways, if you have plans of joining the revelries, a list of the core events of the 2017 Kagay-an Festival / CDO Fiesta / Higalaay Festival can be found below.
August 3 to 5 - Mindanao Fashion Summit, Rotunda of Limketkai Center
August 8 - ASEAN Landmark Lighting, Kiosko Kaawasan, Divisoria
August 18 to 20 - Cowboy Festival / Horse Show, CDO Uptown
August 18 to 29 - Kahimunan Regional Trade Fair, SM Downtown
August 20 - Kagay-an Festival...
My first visit to Taiwan is still pretty fresh in my mind. Obviously, I really had so much fun in Taipei, Jiufen and other nearby Taiwan areas for me to still remember that oh-so-lovely vacation! Guess what's a big part of those lovely memories? Yup, the FOOD! Taiwanese cuisine is absolutely delicious (and we're not just talking about xiao long bao, people!).
This is why I'm thrilled Tien Ma's opened a branch in Cagayan de Oro! Tien Ma's CDO serves Taiwanese cuisine. Founded by a Chinese couple, the first Tien Ma's branch is located in Retiro, Quezon City. The brand's rise to popularity sure is fast - they now have branches in Libis, Makati and now, Cagayan de Oro.
By the way, Tien is the family name of the female owner. Ma is for "mother." Ergo, Tien Ma means Mother Tien or Mama...
These days, given stiffer and more aggressive competition, it's really pretty cool if you see a business withstand the test of time. One of the brands that has really proven that they're worth their salt is Bigby's. My family and I have long been fans of this brand. In fact, I raved about their pork steak, boomerang shrimps and caramel cheesecake back in 2008! (OMG :D)
Now on their 18th year, Bigby's has truly captured the hearts of many diners in both Visayas and Mindanao.
To celebrate this awesome milestone, Bigby's will be holding what they're calling the "Super 18th Anniversary Buffet" on December 8, 2016. And, yes, the anniversary buffet will be available in ALL OF THEIR BRANCHES: Ayala Centrio Mall and SM City (Cagayan de Oro), Ayala Center Mall Cebu, SM City Cebu, Abreeza Mall...
So okay, you're excited to fly to Cagayan de Oro and experience the sights and sounds of the city - from white water rafting to checking out a nice CDO wine shop that has a really awesome wine library to staying in a modern, spacious CDO hotel room near tourist spots, you feel you're super ready! You have your itinerary down pat and then you just realized - hey, wait a minute, kapeng mainit - you still have a few hours to spare!
Worry not, folks! I have a great recommendation for you - why not join the Best of CDO Food Tour? It's a 4-hour, 4-restaurant dining experience I'm sure you'll enjoy bragging to your friends back home about! Get your appetite ready because the next few minutes will be eye candy and will cause your tummy to growl ;)
See? I told you. This is sinuglaw and Caga...
If you've been to Zamboanga City, Mindanao, have dropped by popular Alavar's Seafood Restaurant and have tried their extraordinary Alavar sauce, then you'd understand why I just had to visit their latest branch - their second in Cagayan de Oro.
Located at the Cucina de Oro Compound, Limketkai Drive, Alavar's Seafood and Grill CDO is owned by the very same folks in Zamboanga. The first branch of Alavar's CDO is located along Aluba Road, Macasandig and just a few weeks ago, they opened their branch downtown. Alavar's CDO Limketkai branch is a lot more accessible since it's just a few moments away from Limketkai Mall.
Alavar's is best known for its sauce which goes best with rice and various seafood dishes. Because of the popularity of the sauce, Alavar's now sells them in bottl...
My family and I like dining out. We have favorite restaurants - one of which is Sunburst Fried Chicken.
We've been fans of the brand for so long - I remember first trying their famous fried chicken back in the 80's! Since then, my family and I frequently patronize Sunburst. Even when we're traveling and we see a Sunburst branch in that city, more often than not, we make sure we visit that, too.
My family and I even have favorite orders - Sunduo (2 piece chicken), extra rice, extra coleslaw, pansit molo and their popular Chick N Crackers. Sometimes I also order the fried livers. Whenever we're at Sunburst, walang diet!
And so because we like the food at Sunburst Fried Chicken, we somehow expect that the people who prepare it are also in good spirits as they work, right?
I HAVE AN UPDATE about the opening of Yakimix CDO! I first tweeted about Yakimix CDO on our way to the sneak peek of The Nest, a new lifestyle and food hub along Corrales Avenue. We were at a stoplight and the huge "Soon To Open: Yakimix Cagayan de Oro" billboard was just a few steps away from me. Naturally, I took a photo for Twitter (follow Mindanaoan on Twitter) and another one for Snapchat (follow Mindanaoan on Snapchat)
A lot of people retweeted it, tagged their friends and asked me all about the opening date etc. Sorry, folks, I don't know the exact opening date yet. Yakimix CDO opened last February 12, 2017 and Mindanaoan.com got invited! I have a video for you all. Check this out:
Please subscribe to my YouTube Channel :)
What I do know is that the sushi and smokeless gril...
There are lechon belly shops in Cagayan de Oro and then there's Manoy's Boneless Lechon. Although they opened for business just recently, Manoy's Boneless Lechon CDO is really fast getting everyone's attention - including that of local celebrities, influencers, business and media personalities.
The reason for this is because Manoy's lechon promises carefully prepared fresh, quality meat with generous herbs and spices cooked to perfection in that distinct Cebu style. The meat is very tasty and flavorful and the skin guaranteed crispy!
And because it's boneless, every kilo is sure to be value for money.
Try Manoy's Boneless Lechon today and see why everyone's talking about it! Manoy's Boneless Lechon is truly changing the game in Cagayan de Oro. Try them once and you won't look ...
My family and I have a new favorite restaurant in Cagayan de Oro. It's where we share and enjoy the BEST crispy pata in CDO and other bang-for-the-buck meals - Pete's Patriots Filipino Gastropub.
Located along Rosario Strip within the Limketkai Center area, Pete's Patriots CDO is a newly launched Filipino Gastropub restaurant - the first of its kind in the Philippines. Pete's Patriots aims to provide Kagay-anons the Manila lifestyle bar and dining experience by providing mouthwatering food, quality service and edgy ambiance.
Incidentally, Pete's Patriots is owned and operated by the Red Crab Group of Restaurants - with restaurants such as Seafood Island, Red Crab and other Manila based concepts such as Murray's New Orleans, Clawdaddy, Teddy's Burgers, Johnny Kahuku Hawaiian Shrim...
KINGS International Delicatessen and Bakery is arguably Cagayan de Oro’s best kept secret. KINGS’ main branch, tucked in front of Kingston Lodge along Masterson Avenue, just a few meters past the Xavier Estates gate, has long been attracting a legion of loyal clientele including foreigners, tourists and employees of nearby offices. With so many customers, you’d wish they’d open a store downtown, yes? Thankfully, KINGS listened and they now finally have a branch along the busy JR Borja Extension.
KINGS International Delicatessen and Bakery recently opened at Door 4, Great Spot Arcade (same building where The Wine Cellar and Oliver's Pizza are), serving filling and delicious meals as well as fresh breads and pastries as early as 7 AM.
Unlike their main branch, their new store h...
Aren't there just days when you want your favorite food delivered right at your doorstep? How about instances when you have unexpected guests and you want to serve something good, familiar and delicious?
Thankfully, one of our favorite brands, BonChon, now offers food delivery! BonChon CDO can now deliver your favorite BonChon goodies anywhere around Cagayan de Oro City.
Just a few days ago, BonChon Centrio CDO sent me a feast! I couldn’t help but give in when a friendly staff member delivered 24 pieces of real good, piping hot chicken and fries right at my doorstep! Trust me, it was an offer that was so difficult to turn down!
It was a Friday so BonChon sent me the "Wings and Fries Friday" feast. It is the BEST chicken and fries deal!
I tried the new crunchy garlic var...
Have you ever gone out of your way just to check out a cafe or restaurant simply because you've grown curious of all the seemingly mouthwatering photos they post on social media? That's exactly what I did on a Friday when I went to try Kafe Al Fresco CDO.
I often see food shots taken from this unassuming little cafe in Sta. Cecilia Subdivision, Gusa, Cagayan de Oro (which is a good half an hour away from my place) and since I like trying out new places and sharing the experience with a friend, I invited Em. Fortunately, she was game to tag along. And off we went to Kafe Al Fresco.
Kafe Al Fresco CDO is actually a makeshift structure turned into a quaint cafe of sorts. It's located within a compound that also has a row of apartments owned by the Hojas family.
And, yes, it's in ...
During my most recent visit to Korea, I noticed so many chicken and beer food places. I later found out that eating chicken and beer (maekju) is a very big part of the Korean food culture. Hence, the many chimaek or (chicken+maek) restaurants all over Korea. In popular Seoul tourist spots like Myeongdong alone, you'll probably spot a number of chimaeks along every street.
So when I learned that Chicken 678, one of Korea's popular chimaeks, is set to open a branch in the Philippines, I was pretty interested. Perfect time to reminisce all about my trip to Korea! I was all the more interested when I found out that their first ever Philippine branch will be in Mindanao! How cool is that?
Chicken 678, owned by well-known Korean MC and comedian Kang Ho-Dong, has opened a branch at the Grou...
Ever since I first visited Korea, I've fallen madly in love with Korean food. I love how healthy and clean-tasting (i.e. not oily, very flavorful) Korean dishes are. So I'm pretty happy to know that there's a restaurant in Cagayan de Oro that serves good and pretty affordable authentic Korean food.
Located along Masterson Avenue, Secret Garden Restaurant is owned and managed by a friendly Korean, who even had a big smile on his face as my friends and I entered the place to have dinner.
There were tables and chairs at an open space but there were also smaller, airconditioned rooms. My friends and I opted to stay outside. The huge overhead fan was enough to keep us comfortable.
We were served complimentary kimchi, pickled vegetables and spiced tofu. Oh, how I miss kimchi! And how I ...
Just writing about this is making me swirl with happiness! Pancake House has finally re-opened along the North Concourse of Limketkai Mall, Cagayan de Oro City!
After a temporary halt in operations a few months ago (due to the expansion of the newly-opened Globe Gen3 store), Pancake House CDO is finally back!
What are your favorite Pancake House offerings? Mine are the cheese pancake, caramel banana walnut waffle (with bacon strips on the side, please!), almondigas soup, classic pan chicken and the seafood gambero! And yours?
See you at Pancake House CDO!
Tucked inside the Divisoria Arcade along R.N. Abejuela Street is a treasure - a quaint cafe that specializes in freshly brewed teas, milkshakes, pasta and sandwiches, special mix milk teas and budget-friendly wok specials.
Jia Cha Cafe is the product of owner Joy Lim's passion for cooking. Her love for cooking is so great that she decided to quit her job, enroll in renowned Chef Heny Sison's workshops and, with the blessing of her dad, opened Jia Cha Cafe.
Joy told Mindanaoan.com that she personally takes care of everything at the cafe - from sourcing ingredients, designing the interiors and developing more delicious, budget-friendly meals.
A good example of Jia Cha Cafe's flavorful but affordable food is the Hokkian spare ribs meal (photo below). A steal at only Php 85.00! Pair i...
Mindanaoan.com is the very first to break the news --- BonChon Chicken, the company behind the global Korean-style fried chicken craze, is set to open their Cagayan de Oro City branch on November 28, 2014 at the First Level, Garden Area, Centrio Mall! I received this exciting update from the franchisees themselves :)
BonChon, which means "my hometown" in Korean, will open their very first branch in Northern Mindanao this month. They first entered the Mindanao market when they set up shop in Davao about two years ago then later in General Santos City.
BonChon Philippines Managing Director Scott Tan himself will be in CDO for the launch.
And here's more good news - be among the very first customers and be qualified to receive FREEBIES! There will be a private function in the morning...
Bon Appetea, a milk tea and waffles store, has opened its first Cagayan de Oro branch! Located at the 1st Floor, South Concourse, Limketkai Mall (at the Rotunda area), Bon Appetea CDO offers milk teas, fruit teas, Yakult teas, frappes, fries and waffles.
Apparently, Bon Appetea has established quite a following because when I started promoting about their upcoming opening via the Mindanaoan Facebook page and my Twitter account, A LOT of excited fans sent messages.
Bon Appetea Limketkai CDO now occupies the area where that stall that sold popcorn and cotton candy used to be.
Check out the wide array of drinks and food offered by Bon Appetea: (prices are affordable!)
I was invited to the opening (thank you Jon!) a few days ago and I think I was the very first one to ever ...
Sinuglaw or sinugba + kinilaw (grilled pork belly and fish ceviche), to me, is one curious, interesting, weird but delicious dish. I mean, look, you have raw fish salad mixed with charred meat and then embraced together by vinegar, tabon-tabon and a colorful, merry mix of ginger, onion, chili and other spices. Party in your mouth!
Now if you've tried sinuglaw in Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines, then you'd agree with me when I say that it's definitely one of the tastiest in the country! So tasty that there's an annual Sinuglaw Festival in CDO!
Yes, folks, for 2 glorious months, we can all taste sinuglaw prepared various ways. The Sinuglaw Festival 2014 CDO is a signature event of the Cagayan de Oro Hotel and Restaurant Association (COHARA) and a prelude its yearly-flagship event, KUM...
There are stalls that sell grilled liempo and then there's Liempo King. Needless to say, based on the title of this blog post alone, you'd know that Liempo King has garnered a lot of checks and thumbs up in my book! You just simply have to try their lechon liempo and find out exactly why they're KING!
The first time I tried Liempo King, I knew right after that I will be a regular customer. I loved their specialty - the liempo na lechon. It's a lovely, fragrant, succulent gastronomic experience. How could it not be? Liempo King only uses premium meats and other fresh ingredients grown locally. They infuse special secret herbs and spices (these cause the Liempo King lechon liempo's distinct aroma) that truly make your taste buds sing!
The liempo skin is also very crispy! Truly reminds ...
Here's how to spend quality time with family and friends in Cagayan de Oro City. Bring them to Seda Hotel Centrio Misto Restaurant for delicious Sunday lunch buffet!
For only Php 499.00 per person, you can feast on a delectable buffet of local and international dishes. This special Sunday lunch buffet at Seda Hotel CDO Misto Restaurant runs from 11 AM to 2 PM.
Reserve a table! Call (088) 3238888
You can also book a room at Seda Hotel Cagayan de Oro here
Tokyo Tokyo CDO is finally open! The very first Cagayan de Oro City branch of Tokyo Tokyo opened last November 29, 2012 at the 2nd Floor of Limketkai Mall but I was pretty lucky. The night before the grand launch, Mindanaoan was among the very first to try their signature dishes - I was invited to a special gathering of friends from Tokyo Tokyo and the local media community.
By the way, a few days before its grand launch, Mindanaoan shared the news about Tokyo Tokyo Cagayan de Oro via this blog post. I was pretty stoked especially since I frequently visited Tokyo Tokyo back when I was still working in Manila. My "usuals" over at Tokyo Tokyo are the shrimp tempura, maki, pork tonkatsu and miso soup. Of course, the popular and truly delicious Tokyo Tokyo red iced tea is never far behind.
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