Earlier this year, I had the opportunity to go back to one of my favourite cities in the Philippines; Cebu City. During this trip, I also had the chance to dine with No. 9, a restaurant that specialises in combining traditional + modern way of preparing food.
This was taken from the façade of the restaurant. Would you believe that this house is already 50 years old? Cool, I know.
The interior is also as interesting as the exterior of the house. All the furniture was just amazing, and it makes a great ambiance for the whole restaurant.
This ceiling is probably my favourite part. I mean, just look at it. These wood designs and the lighting complements each other, and is not too overpowering with the whole look of the inside.
Here is another photograph of the lights that I liked so much.
As I sat onto my chair, one of the staff immediately handed me over their cocktail menu. There was a lot of fun and interesting drinks, but I settled for a classic drink but with a spin.
This drink is called the ‘Cocojito’. It is composed of coconut rum, mint leaves and lime. It tasted really good, plus the coconut flavour gives the drink its refreshing feeling.
As they were preparing my food, I asked if I could look around and take some more photographs. So here is something from their terrace.
I also loved this painting on the wall. It seemed very home-y and somewhat familiar.
Before the main dishes, they served an appetizer of bread with a dip and my Cocojito.
This is called the ‘Turkish Eggs’. Funny because my next destination is actually in Turkey, ha! Anyway, it was composed of eggs, garlic, yogurt, harissa and sourdough.
You have to mix everything together to get a better taste of the whole dish, and then you dip your sourdough in it. It was very good and it had a very unique taste to it. Also, the harissa was popping in this dish.
Ah, here is another one of my favourite designs in the interior of the restaurant.
Now this dish is called the ‘Pulpo’. It basically consists of squid adobo and potato. Oh, and the red paste you can see on the sides of the bowl was tomato paste.
I originally thought that it was going to taste weird because who cooks squid with potatoes? I mean, who does that? But I was wrong. Everything mixed beautifully in my mouth and the crunchiness of the potato was very good. I think I finished this whole bowl of Pulpo is about three minutes. It was that good.
This dish is called the ‘Calabaza Salad’. It has pumpkin, arugula, pickled apples and migas.
Okay, I have to say that I did not like this very much. Not because it wasn’t good. It is because arugula (in general) leaves a bad taste in my mouth. I tried eating it without the arugula and I liked the pumpkin and the pickled apples.
I still could not stop eating my Turkish Eggs. Oh, you have to know that I tried recreating this special sauce at my house but no luck, it tasted disgusting when I did it. I guess No. 9 has the magic that is required to make this beautiful dish.
I was nearly finished eating the toppings of my Calabaza Salad but still not touching the arugula, ha!
Now this is the star of the show. It is called the ‘Brick Chicken’ and it made with chicken (obviously) and romesco sauce.
I felt bad that I did not get to finish this meal because I was just too full. But the chicken was really, really juicy and the skin was crunchy. The sauce was reminiscent of Kare-Kare but it had a distinct taste to it. They complement each other and I still dream of this chicken to this day.
I went to the bar to say thanks to all the people who served me that night. As I was about to leave, they actually stopped me because they said that they also prepared a dessert for me. It was actually so thoughtful and come on, who doesn’t like dessert?
I took my dessert to the bar and ate it there. This is called the ‘Crema Catalana con Mango’. It was made with custard, burnt sugar and mangoes.
As I broke into the crunchy sugar top, I asked if it was the same as a crème brûlée. They said it was similar but not quite. The custard underneath the sugar and the mango was perfectly cool and it wasn’t as sweet which was nice. The sugar on top was hard enough to hear that soothing crackle when you hit it with your spoon. Plus, the mango was a very nice touch to it. I loved it!
Everything about No. 9 is magical and delicious. From the decor to the food, it was all superb. I recommend dropping by No. 9 to everybody who is considering or is living in Cebu City. Good food at a completely reasonable price.
SUGGESTION/s: I guess the only downside is that there wasn’t as much light outside the house so it made it a bit hard to find. I mean, I went there at night and my Uber driver said he wasn’t familiar with the place. But it was a good thing that I had my Google Maps. Very handy, indeed.
DIRECTION/s: I actually came from a hostel called Hostel 7 which is in the heart of Cebu City. If you need the directions, just click HERE.
If you ever find yourself in Cebu City, please do yourself a favour and drop by No. 9. I promise you that you will never regret it! You can also visit their website by clicking HERE. They have the best food, great ambiance and very, very good people working there. Drop by and see for yourself!
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“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.”
Proverbs 1:7 NIV