Pilipinas Food Trip #10: Mang Inasal

It’s quite hard to miss Mang Inasal (Mr. Barbecue), the fastest growing  barbecue fastfood chain in the Philippines.  There are more than 300 branches nationwide and in October 2010, 70% of Mang Inasal was acquired by Jollibee Foods Corporation.  Having said that, you can almost be sure that where there’s a Jollibee, a Mang Inasal shouldn’t be too far away. *wink*

I don’t recall if we had a chance to eat at Mang Inasal in Iloilo when we visted the city in 2006.  But during our short but sweet vacation in the Philippines very recently, we made sure we did.  We had our Mang Inasal fix in Laoag City, at the Robinsons Mall Ilocos Norte, on the night we were driving back to Manila.  I’ve always been a fan of “inasal” (barbecue), which, funny as it might sound, reminds me of weekend overtime work in Makati when I was still a newbie architect. :P  And this is what I would always order, Pecho (chicken breast), otherwise known as Paborito Meal #2…

I have to admit, there is something comforting about skewered barbecue chicken with rice wrapped in banana leaf on the side.  It’s home-y. :)  I always dip my chicken in a  mixture of calamansi, vinegar, soy sauce with a crushed chili pepper. *wink*  Hubby, being not so big on chicken breast, had the Paborito Meal #1, which is Pa-a or skewered dark chicken meat.

My daughter had the Sulit Meal #1, which is 1-piece chicken leg, also with a side of rice…

Mang Inasal is always filled to the rafters specially during lunch and dinner times and it’s success can pretty much be summed up in two words: UNLIMITED RICE!  For every rice loving Filipino, rice, which costs about Php 26.00 in other inasal serving restaurants, unlimited rice is such big bonus!  Think of all the pesos you’ll be saving, specially if you can easily down 3 cups of rice! There’s unlimited soup, too!  Panalo (winner)! :)

Here are your typical inasal condiments of soysauce, chicken oil and vinegar…

What does one do with the chicken oil?  Drizzle it on the rice, of course!  We would have loved some baticolon (chicken gizzard) and chicken liver, too, but they were out of stock at the time of our visit. Bummer.

For dessert, my niece had Mais con Hielo topped with Ube ice cream and a barquillo…

My sister-in-law, on the other hand, had a little bowl of Minatamis na Saging (sweetened bananas), which was also topped with ice cream…

Yum!  This meal was a fitting farewell to an “amazing race” in Ilocos, whose ruins, I hope, are asbestos free (you can’t blame me for being fearful of Mesothelioma!).

I’m happy I have all these food memories to hold on to, while we recover from our vacation and save up all over again for the next one. ;)


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