02 Jul2006

Waway’s, Legazpi

by Marketman


One of the better restaurant meals we had in Legazpi was a lunch at the upscale turo-turo place called Waway’s. After two pretty bad meals at other restaurants the previous day, wa2I was really hoping this would be a decent lunch. It was. At the turo-turo counter I went a bit wild and ordered clam soup for our party of 8. The soup was excellent, a nice flavorful both with fresh clams and green onions. I also ordered this superb squid in gata (coconut milk) with some siling mahaba (long chillies) that was tender, creamy and a bit on the sweetish side due to the coconut milk and a touch of spice from siling mahaba. Apparently they remove the ink sacks from the squid before cooking this dish so the sauce remains creamy not grey or black…it was so good we ordered a second round! We also got lato salads which were super fresh…almost too fresh, as I found they were too reminiscent of a nearby reef…the liquid that popped out of the globules bordered on being too much of a good thing.


We ordered delicious rellenong crab that I wa3haven’t had in a while but which Apicio mentioned in a recent post so we got an order of 4 pieces. My mom used to make very good rellenong crab but I haven’t made it myself. That dish was gone in a flash so we ordered 4 more. Served with acharra, it was delicious and so much less taxing than peeling your own crabs. I could have used some ketchup though I didn’t need it enough to look up from the rest of the meal to go in search of some. We got several large prawns that were fresh but overcooked as they almost always are at restaurants and they didn’t bother to remove their intestinal tract which ruins it for me… We also ordered some blue marlin that was good but not great.

As if that wasn’t enough food we got several orders of bicol express that was okay and better than others we had had elsewhere. wa5Another vegetable that we tried was malunngay and sitaw in gata with flaked pagi or manta ray. Yikes! I don’t normally eat rays as they are so majestic looking in the water and somewhat endangered I would think but I didn’t realize that when I saw the dish. Frankly, it tasted very good and I would have it again if I didn’t feel bad for the rays… We also got an order of bistek tagalog that was forgettable and some lechon paksiw that was mediocre, thinking we needed meats to round out the meal. With lots of rice this was a somewhat over-the-top turo-turo meal. I ended it with a ripe mango (imported from Cebu, I was later informed), but the rest of the table ordered buko pandan to end their massive meal. At PHP2000 for 8 people, with drinks and dessert, I thought this was tremendous value. If you are ever in Legazpi and in search of a restaurant, try Waway’s…all the tricycle drivers seem to know how to get there!




  1. millet says:

    wow, sarap! and yes, MM, i agree, it was over the top (hehe..but of course, there were 8 of you!). my mom-in-law used to make ginataang pagi with plenty of malunggay. i have asked her to teach me this and she has shown me about two times, but i can never bring myself to clean that ray, so…i better not show my husband your latest post, else he starts pining for ginataang pagi.

    Jul 2, 2006 | 9:29 am


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  3. Apicio says:

    I came accross somewhere that a certain species of manta ray is being cultured in the Philippines (which actually is the principal supplier) for its skin which after processing is called shagreen and is used primarily in high-class leather work. Another sting ray skin is also processed and are called galucha in French and is actually used in custom production of impressive looking shoes that are even more sought after than exotic reptile leather by, of course, people who can afford them. Just to think that we used them prodigally as very effective emery board for gradeschool handicrafts.

    Lump crab meat which reduces to simple assembly the making of tortang alimasag (or crab foo yeung) is available here but even more costly than lobster meat and only if you have connection with the right restaurant supplier.

    Off Topic: We celebrated Canaday Day here with Marketman’s grilled swordfish in lemon butter and capers, tasty, beautiful and healthy which will certainly more than compensate for churrasco and callos and capirinhas that’s not going to happen since our favoured team (Brazil) was eliminated in the quarter finals. Oh, the acid that the lemon provided also did wonders to lift a mediocre white wine to tolerable sip-ability. We also paused to recall what special thing we did to celebrate Filipino Day two weeks ago and I remembered I made do with Mexican Manila mangoes and paired it with Tagalog suman (not sweet), a match made in heaven that is much much better tasting (imho) than the far more popular but mundane Thai sticky rice and mangoes.

    Jul 2, 2006 | 9:36 am

  4. markymark says:

    interesting site u got here… pls visit..http://markzchannel.blogspot.com it’s a new pinoy entertainment blog

    Jul 2, 2006 | 1:40 pm

  5. Marketman says:

    Apicio, some of the world’s most expensive shagreen items are being made in Cebu. One of the top manufacturers is a French guy who has exquisite stuff. Mostly it’s for export but I had a chance to acquire one of his boxes and it is a treasured objet. Canada Day menu sounds good to me… We are out of town at the moment and the food selection where we are leaves something to be desired…but back to Manila soon. Millet, I have never prepared pagi as a dish…and the rays seem too beautiful to me to eat, but I’m sure I could get over it…

    Jul 2, 2006 | 1:55 pm

  6. honey says:

    preparing kinunot na pagi:

    boil the pagi with a little salt. flake it. boil some malunggay leaves in coconut cream until reduced to about half. add the flaked pagi meat. reduce liquid some more. add coco cream and some sili (you can slice it first or drop it whole). salt to taste. boil until you achieve the creamy texture.

    the skin of the pagi is delicious in kinunot as it becomes jelly-like. however, some parts of the skin has some “sandy” particles which is not very pleasant to eat. you can scrape it off after you’ve boiled it. some boil it separately from the reast of the meat so the grains don’t get into the meat. i just dump it all and then scrape it when i’m flaking the meat. some also cubed the boild meat. i like it flaked as it’s softer and goes very well with the gata

    Jul 2, 2006 | 8:29 pm

  7. honey says:

    sometimes, the markets here sell shark meat. i’m not sure if it really is shark meat but we also use it as a substitute for pagi when making kinunot

    Jul 2, 2006 | 8:32 pm

  8. Apicio says:

    I think the cartoon is Far Side and it showed two sharks conversing, the caption is “I’m going on the South Beach diet.” Another one that comes to mind at the mention of shark is the same two sharks but the caption is “Did I not see you at the feeding frenzy last night?”

    Jul 2, 2006 | 9:40 pm

  9. Doddie Householder from Korea says:

    Another off-topic MM. I just wanna repost this for Gonzo:


    I couldn’t find your email so I will post my mother’s celphone number here. Her name is Cora Pacion and her number is 0920-221 7162. You may also contact her through my Dad’s email rodypacion (@)yahoo.com Please take out the ( and ) when you type in the email. Their business is called Pacion Foods and they produce the ff.:
    fish lumpia
    custard bread
    pineapple upsidedown cake

    I think there’s more but I lost track. Just to give more history on my parent’s business, my mother has been making tocino/tapa/longganisa for more than 15 years now. She comes from a long line of Cavitena cooks who are know for our fiesta cooking. Hope you get a chance to try out her stuff. I miss it so much – it’s been almost 3 years since I had them.


    Jul 2, 2006 | 11:23 pm

  10. MasPinaSarap says:

    Lato salad is the same as Arorosip, no?

    Jul 3, 2006 | 2:31 am

  11. RST says:

    Yes, agree on the superiority of suman w/ Manila mangoes over Thai mango/sticky rice.

    Lato is also called arorosip. BTW high-quality brined and vacuum-packed lato is available here in the US at various Asian groceries. In Chicago, I get it from Tai Nam in the Argyle area. An excellent treat when simply dipped in sukang Paombong, or alternatively, in a simple olive oil/key lime dressing.


    Jul 3, 2006 | 5:32 am

  12. grace says:

    I’ve eaten pagi only once (in bicol too). they cubed the meat and made adobong pagi; we didn’t know what meat it was and only realized it was pagi coz they were laughing at my little sister who was asking for more “adobong baboy”.

    the markets in Naga do sell shark meat, but i’ve never acquired the taste for kinunot.

    Jul 3, 2006 | 12:53 pm

  13. honey says:

    I forgot. in making kinunot na pagi, you have to add kalamansi juice after putting coco cream. you can do away with the kalamansi if you’re using libas leaves as a substitute for malunggay

    Jul 3, 2006 | 8:19 pm

  14. Apicio says:

    To Honey, What is “libas” leaves? Is it like alagaw?

    Jul 4, 2006 | 9:33 am


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