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Uncovered Dining Destinations in Tagaytay

Tuesday, January 07, 2014
When city dwellers tire of muggy Manila, they drive about two hours south to enjoy the more pleasant climes of Tagaytay. The real lure of the place is Taal Volcano, famed for having a lake inside its crater, and another
 


Island within that lake. It’s a bit complex, but in short, there’s a really spectacular view, so you can imagine all the hotels, restaurants, and even a casino and ferris wheel jostling for space along the ridge. And what do you do when you finally get to Tagaytay? Why eat, of course (the national pastime)! Here are seven must-visit dining destinations worth the drive:

1. Antonio’s
This much-beloved, multi-awarded fine dining restaurant by TonyBoy Escalante is what established Tagaytay as a dining destination. Located just off the main road, it’s a bit of an adventure for first-timers, but you’ll be handsomely rewarded by the bucolic setting, elegantly chic interiors, impeccable service, and decadent cuisine—a combination of traditional Filipino and continental, touted to be the best in the country. The Lechon de Leche comes highly recommended (call in your order at least one day in advance).

Open for lunch and dinner, Tuesday to Sunday. Strictly by reservation only; phone +63 (917) 899 2866 or
+63 (918) 899 2866. Located at Purok 138, Barangay Neogan, Tagaytay.

2. Sonya’s Garden
The delightful shabby chic style and charming garden setting make this a beloved getaway for dates, girl bonding, and family get-togethers. The eat-all-you-can, sit-down-style set menu (P683/person, lunch and dinner) features fresh, organic produce from the garden (you’ve been warned, hardcore carnivores). We particularly love the bottomless, freshly-squeezed dalandan juice, and always pick up some freshly-baked Spanish bread from the Panaderia on the way out. Love the relaxed vibe? Check into Sonya’s Bed & Breakfast and enjoy free Art of Doing Nothing Lessons (seriously).

Located at Barangay Buck Estate, Alfonso, Cavite. For reservations, phone +63 (917) 532 9097.



3. Bag of Beans

A favorite coffee pitstop on the way to the beaches of Batangas, Bag of Beans is also a homey bakery and restaurant (recently renovated to include function rooms and quaint courtyard). The all-day breakfasts, pies, and Mr. Beans cheeseburger are especially popular. Don’t forget to take home a bag of Barako coffee, or if you have a taste for the exotic, try the world’s rarest brew, Civet Coffee/Kape Alamid!

Good to know: Affordable buffet deals are offered on weekends and public holidays.

Located at: 115 Aguinaldo Highway, Mendez Crossing West. There is a second branch near the Tagaytay rotonda which is less quaint minus the garden setting, but significantly mosquito-free. Phone +63 (46) 413 4356.

4. Josephine
If you’re hankering for the taste of home-cooked Filipino food, head on over to Josephine’s. This “Home of Fresh Seafood” offers traditional cuisine the way our Lolas (grandmothers) made them. Grab a seat at the view deck, and order family style—seafood, the delightfully sour Sinigang soup, kare-kare, chicken adobo, and anything inihaw, then top it off with the Halo-Halo Espesyal. Burp.

Good to know: Weekend breakfast (P410+ per person) and lunch (P495+ per person) buffets are currently available, with a P100 discount on price if you clean your plate!

Located at Km. 58 Gen. Aguinaldo Highway, Maharlika West, Tagaytay City. For inquiries, phone +63 (2) 871 5627.



5. Marcia Adams
For a taste of Tuscany in Tagaytay, visit Marcia Adams. This enchanting estate feels like a “discovery” and has been drawing raves for its delicious fare, attentive service, and idyllic vibe. The menu is a mix of French, Italian, and Mediterranean, everything exquisite and made with love by the restaurant’s namesake, Filipina chef Marcia Adams, who runs the place with her sommelier husband Neil.

Good to know: By reservation only; phone (+63) 917 8011456. There is a consumable cover charge of P700 per person; only cash payments are accepted.

Located at JP Rizal St., Barangay Sikat, 4123 Alfonso, Cavite (on the border between Tagaytay and Alfonso). For more information, email marciasresto@gmail.com.

6. Cliffhouse

Your group can’t decide where to eat? Park at Cliffhouse, wander around the restaurants on the charming grounds, and see what catches your fancy. There’s the casual and cozy Café Breton for sweet and savory crepes, Fire Lake Grill for fancy steak, and the perpetually packed Buon Giorno for a romantic Italian dinner (reserve the Opium Bed!). Or, simply order a scoop from the Fruits in Ice Cream kiosk and enjoy the verdant view.

Good to know: Reservations are recommended at Fire Lake Grill phone +63 (46) 483 2069 and Buon Giorno phone +63 (46)  483 2102. Do stay overnight and book one of the four luxury suites at The Inn at Cliffhouse phone +63 (46) 483 2093. Located at Km 58, Aguinaldo Highway, Maharlika East, Tagaytay.

7. Breakfast at Antonio’s

If you happen to find yourself in Tagaytay but didn’t have the chance to make a reservation at Antonio’s, you can enjoy the next best thing: Breakfast at Antonio’s. At this rustic but chic clapboard house on the ridge, you’re treated to a gorgeous view of Taal while feasting on all-day breakfast fare—from comforting croissants and jam, to classic favorites Eggs Benedict or a Reuben, complemented by a cup of French Press coffee or hot chocolate. Don’t forget to take home their homemade fruit jam and marmalade, burnt syrup, and lemon curd.

Open everyday from 7 AM to 9 PM. Located along Aguinaldo Highway, Barangay Bagong Tubig. For inquiries, phone +63 (46) 413 0738.

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