This is up-to-the-minute news for all the foodies out there. A few days ago, my little insider, Brandon, the gourmand, told me there is a new taco place in town, so off we went last night… until we learned it actually opened that very same day we went.
Papa Pau’s Diner, the innovator of the “binalot” concept in Laoag, is back in their original home; and this time around, within the blossoming restaurant row on the eastern portion of Rizal Street. A far cry from the old Papa Pau’s at the ground level of the Ilocano Heroes Hall Building, the new Papa Pau’s is spacious, and it has this welcoming, comfy ambiance.
Though they still maintain their branch in Batac, within the Mariano Marcos Memorial Hospital and Medical Center (MMMHMC) complex, the owners decided to come back to Laoag with fresh ideas in addition to the “binalot” they are known for. “Binalot”, which means wrapped, originated from the Tagalog region. An old practice in the countryside, hot meals wrapped in banana leaves are brought to the fields for farmers to savor during their brief midday rest. The banana leaves seal in the heat making the rice with any viand more appetizing and oozing with aromatic goodness. Half a decade ago, inspired by the tradition, they introduced their own take with great success. They have binalot Bistek, or Adobo with rice, Tapsilog, Tocilog and Longsilog, priced within P60-P75.
A Filipino restaurant with a contemporary eclectic design
Today, they have added Ilocano fusion dishes like PPP (Papa Pau’s Pancit with Ilocos chicharon), Sizzling Squid stuffed with Ilocano longaniza, Paulina’s Crispy Pata a la Bagnet, and Pinakbet with Bagnet. Their snacks, P45- and up, include Tacos, Nachos, Mushroom Melt Burger, Papa Pau’s Patatas (potato fries with special dressing), Pancit Malabon with thick rice noodles, Mama Grace Filipino Style Spaghetti, etc. Their hot, hot items, Kapangpangan style Sizzling Sisig and Dr. June’s Sizzling Pork Spareribs, marinated in a secret sauce, are still there.
A post-dinner, and with just a four hundred peso budget for the six of us (P200- from me and P200- from Ericke), all we could order — a pitcher of red iced tea…
and three servings each of Nachos and Mushroom Melt burger. Success! We still had change for tip.
Oh, a coffee bar! They Have Filipino coffee bean varieties like Benguet, Barako, Kalinga, Sagada, etc.
Food for the eyes, photos by Dr. June Orosa, an EENT specialist at the MMMHMC, hang on the wall
More food for the eyes: Ilocos Norte treasures, still by Dr. Orosa
The owners beam with pride. From right to left, husband and wife Paulo Magsino and Grace Orosa-Magsino, and their business partner, Miss Joy Orosa.
Papa Pau’s Diner can accomodate 50 people for functions and parties. They also have a porch dining area which can sit 32 people. You can find them in Laoag at Rizal corner D.M. Castro Streets.
Welcome home, Papa Pau☺
Photos by Blauearth Copyright © Blauearth™ ALL RIGHTS RESERVED