Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Taste of Davao - Delongtes Restaurant & Yummy

Sometimes, people start out with a specific vision that eventually turns out differently. This is evident in the names of two restaurants we've sampled in Davao City.

Delongtes, for example is named "Delongtes Seafood Grill and BBQ" and though it still is basically a barbecue place, most people order non-seafood. One reason is that they are relatively cheaper. I prefer chicken barbecue most times, then add side entrees like grilled liver or those crunchy calamari. The sauce they use for their barbecues is a delectable mix of mouth watering concoction that drives you to empty your plate.

Delongtes has been in the business for several years already. I remember when they were still a simple eatery similar to dimly-lit turu-turo bars, but they have since upgraded to a posh, sophisticated place with a relaxed atmosphere and laid back charm. Most nights, they employ live music - though quality of their live performers tend to be uneven; some excellent performers, others mediocre. But the salient feature of any restaurant solely rests on the quality and taste of their food. This is where they have absolutely succeeded.

The odd name - "delongtes" - is actually a Visayan word play of "The Long Taste", whatever that means. Their barbecue orders are inexpensive: pork bbq at P26 a stick, liver at P25 a stick, calamares at P230 an order, crispy kangkong (crisp water spinach leaves) at P120 a plate, steamed rice at P20 an order, coke in can at P20, San Miguel Beer pale pilsen at P40, etc.

Delongtes has two branches: one at Tulip Drive beside SM City Davao and another at NCCC Mall. Call 082-2293294 for inquiries.

Chicken and Pork barbecue with chicken liver


Live performers: a great duo that does justice to the songs of Alicia Keys, then suddenly switches to a "Stars on 45" medley. :)


Yummy Chicken and Pasta Haus is a relatively new joint, although its signage outside says it started in 1988. Despite its name (i.e. chicken and pasta), one of its specialties isn't pasta, but the very local dish - pork and chicken humba (pictured below). A plate includes rice and macaroni salad. And it tastes as heavenly as it looks.

What I like about this joint, aside from excellent food, is its minimalist design and how clean it is. Everything glistens. And nothing beats a spotless joint where food is concerned. This restaurant is located at Amigleo Building, along Torres Street.

Finally, we are taking note of the emergence of the dragon fruit in Davao City. Though Dragon Fruit or "Strawberry Pear", also known as "Pitaya" in southeast asia (thanh long in Vietnam, buah naga in Malaysia and Indonesia, kaeo mangkon in Thailand) is quite endemic in Asia, this is almost virtually unknown in the Philippines. But it is gradually making its presence known, although in pricier rates. We first tasted this while visiting Luang Prabang in north Laos. We got the red variety (sweeter, but leaves violaceous stains on your hands and lips). The other variety is the white one. Another side effect of Dragon Fruit: it helps to "move" bowels, like the durian, papaya and pomelo.

This is the Eye in the Sky!

Dragon Fruit is the fruit of a cactus species. The red variety is rich in phosphorus, while the white (yellow) is rich in calcium. It's also believed to lower cholesterol and blood pressure; and when eaten regularly helps prevent cancer (it increases excretion of heavy metal toxins). Though very cheap elsewhere in Asia, it costs P100-160 per piece in the Philippines (almost 4-5x more expensive).

Two Dragon Fruit (Pitaya) varieties.


Ola said...

thanks for showing dragon fruit!
I am hungry after reading this post and it is too early to have a lunch:)

bronwyn said...

i LOVE reading about food and places.. although it makes me hungry.

I was really excited to try dragonfruit, but I've only had the white variety and I was quite disappointed... it's not bad, just a bit bland. is the pink/red one much different? tastier?

eye in the sky said...

@ Ola:

Yes, I thought I'd show the varieties. Me too, makes me hungry. :)

eye in the sky said...

@ wheregirl:

The general taste is really bland, thus it's advisable to eat it before taking anything sweeter, that way you're able to appreciate the very tentative taste. It gets better, gets sweeter as you dive down to its core (center). The pink one is actually "sweeter" (in my own opinion) but not by much... plus it stains. :)

Ramakrishnan said...

Nice restaurant & great display of delicious dishes! Love the dragon fruit. Got this stuff from wikipidia:
A pitaya or pitahaya is the fruit of several cactus species, most importantly of the genus Hylocereus (sweet pitayas). These fruits are commonly known as dragon fruit – cf. Chinese huǒ lóng guǒ (火龍果/火龙果) "fire dragon fruit" and lóng zhū guǒ, "dragon pearl fruit", Vietnamese thanh long meaning "sweet dragon", Indonesian and Malaysian buah naga, "dragon fruit", Lao mark mang gohn (ໝາກມັງກອນ) for "dragon fruit", and Thai kaeo mangkon (Thai: แก้วมังกร) "dragon crystal". Other vernacular names are strawberry pear or nanettikafruit.
ps. I am sure you already know all this :))

eye in the sky said...

@ R.Ramakrishnan:

I've never encountered the dragonfruit in India yet. Maybe its the season I visit the country - usually November/December or March. Or maybe I need to visit the fruit markets more. :)