GenSan’s 1st & Only Halal Resto: Fast Service, Topnotch Food
Ida Damo | Oct 04, 2014
Having been highly recommended by the MagTV Na, MagNegosyo Ta, and Magandang Umaga South Central Mindanao TV shows, Tambilawan Restaurant in the Philippines' tuna capital was our target after a three-hour road trip from Davao.
What immediately warmed me to the place was the wooden chairs and native cottages, recycled plastic soda bottles and shoes as pots for the green plants, and the open air dining area.
I witnessed the staff delivering four orders of halo-halo that whetted my appetite.
They were very welcoming and immediately gave us the menu. So began the agony of choosing what to eat among the delectable offerings.
As a halal-certified restaurant, they didn't have pork dishes, but that’s all that they didn't have. They had chicken, beef, and fish dishes.
Service was prompt as they brought in our choice of foodgasmic treats of Tambilawan Sandwich, Chicken Inasal, and Halo-halo. But there was more! Sinigang na Hipon and Chicken Sisig was also served.
Olan TheTravelTeller, my travel buddy for this trip, swears by Tambilawan's Chicken Inasal. He says it was tender and they it marinated just right for the sauce to seep into the meat.
I for one loved my Tambilawan sandwich of scrambled eggs, sausage, tomatoes, cheese, and the special mayonnaise. I highly recommend it when you don’t want to have rice.
The Chicken Sisig was a novelty for me, and even if I have an allergy to chicken and other poultry, I sampled it and ate a good portion of the serving. (I was thinking, I’ll just have antihistamine later.) It was that good.
The Sinigang na Hipon was'nt too sour and tasted of real sampaloc (tamarind), not the powdered mix. True enough, they really used the juice of the sampaloc.
And to top off the meal was the halo-halo that had all my favorite ingredients in it: saging na saba, macapuno, ube, sago, gulaman, leche flan, langka, brown beans, and topped with corn flakes. It was divine because it wasn't too sweet and the shaved ice and milk proportions were just right.
We were delighted with the company of the young husband and wife team of Joe and Kristine Fernandez who own Tambilawan. They were so hands-on with their business which made the Tambilawan Kamayan Restaurant what it is -- a place to have a happy tummy in GenSan.
Oh, and "tambilawan" is a kind of fish and is also the name of Joe’s grandfather.
So when you’re in Southern Mindanao, try this charming little place along Laurel St. and have your fill of their goodies.
How to Get There
PAL and other major airlines fly daily to General Santos City from Manila.
From the General Santos City Airport, Tambilawan is just 15 minutes away and is located along East Laurel St. beside Hotel San Marco and in front of BayanTel Bldg.