Throwback photo from PVSPhoto grabbed from Pinky Valenciano-Sison

My cousins on the Abad side, May, Jonas and Samantha are currently in town. We’re catching up with each other, toured the southside of Ilocos, read dates, talked about Paoay Church, munched on traditional Ilocano bibingka and calamay and centuries-old Vigan pipian, checked out Vigan’s new Hotel Luna, shopped for indigenous stuff, marveled at the splendor of the Vigan Cathedral, traversed to Bungro, dipped at Playa Tropical’s pool and ate Batac empanada. Their nephew on their mom’s side (the Enrique side), Anthony Daniel, a 23-year old West Point graduate, hung out with us.

The photo above, with Pinky and May, is so special (thank you, Pinky!). I’m the one with flowers on her hair and May was wearing aviators I think.

UntitledCurrimaoBeach GardenPicture 033CousinsJonasJonas Lazo Abad.Ilocano HouseTupigBibingkaVigan CalesasArarosipPipianSoothing Vigan pipian at Gnadpa’s Inn. We had grilled chicken marinated in karimbuaya leaves (super!), ararosip, pancit bihon,  and grilled mixed Ilocano veggies.Hotel Luna, ViganJack and ReyBumped into Chef Jackie de la Cruz and Rey Retua was with us:)Tilted Hotel LunaSt. Paul CathedralReligiousitySam, May and TonySam and MayTonyTonyPaoay ChurchFamilyPaoay Church

Photographed by May Thomas, Rey Retuta and Blauearth
© Blauearth™ All Rights Reserved 2009-2015

Where Sugar Is


When spontaneity hits, Chef Nic Rodriguez’s Rufino’s is our new go to for desserts. We had the Bailey’s and chocolate cakes first. For dessert, we split a Caesar salad, roast beef pita and Sunny Vigan Pizza. Hahah, I know! An instance when cakes make good appetizers. The ant sculpture just gave me the idea to make ant our totem.

Bailey's Cheesecake and Chocolate CakeCaesar Saladsunny Vigan pizza

The Sunny Vigan Pizza is not for everyone. It has egg in the middle, and normally Vigan longaniza has that quirky smell. The ham bits add a salty kick. It makes a savory breakfast food.

You can’t go wrong with their Caesar salad, one of the best in Ilocos. I already did a post on the roast beef pita a couple of months back. It’s like shawarma with ranch dressing.

I like the cafe’s ambiance better at night. Even the well-lit Paoay Church photographs so well.

Roast Beef PitaRufino'sEugenePicture 436Window ViewPaoay ChurchPaoay doorStone WallThat sucks! Who does that to a UNESCO World Heritage Site?LaoagLaoag by night..

Photographed by Blauearth © Blauearth™ All Rights Reserved 2009-2014

A One Day Cultural Heritage Tour Down South (Vigan, Paoay and Sitio Remedios)

Vigan Pottery

People come to Ilocos commonly for its distinct landscapes with cultural and natural charms. For the first time, I did an all-heritage trail with my Manila-based in-laws. They crave the flavors of old Ilocos.

Vigan Pottery

There’s so much to admire about the richness of Ilocos’s past and present. Vigan wasn’t shortlisted for the New 7 Wonders Cities of the World for nothing.

Ilocos Norte’s Paoay Church is likewise among the UNESCO Heritage Sites in the country.

In the town of Currimao, a heritage village by the sea was built by Dr. Joven Cuanang. Named Sitio Remedios, it comprises several moved and restored houses from the different towns of Ilocos, and its own kapilya (chapel).

BurnayBurnay-making in Vigan

Vigan PotteryLuto-lutuanCockatoosLigayThe Plant VendorVigan in PaintKusina FelicitasMongo at Bagnet

For lunch, we went to Kusina Felicitas (in Vigan) and savored mongo’t bagnet, pipian, Vigan longaniza, igado and crispy pata.

Avocado sorbetes awaited us at Calle Crisologo.

SorbetesAvocado SorbetesManga't  BagoongCalesaSwimwearManokThe Plant VendorPaoay ChurchBougainvilleaNana Rosa's ChichacornNana Rosa

For pasalubong, we headed directly to the source of Ilocos cornik or chichacorn like how Nana Rosa brands her famous chichirya.

Below are photos taken at Sitio Remedios. So refreshing in this day and age.

Sitio RemediosDuyanSitio  RemediosSitio RemediosSitio RemediosSitio RemediosSitio RemediosSitio RemediosSitio RemediosKapilya at Sitio RemediosRootSitio Remedios
Photographed by Blauearth © Blauearth™ All Rights Reserved 2009-2014