Leonardo's Carnivore Lechon: The Ultimate Lechon for Meat Lovers
Maritess Canlas | Sep 17, 2015
To me, lechon is the undisputed star of every grand Filipino celebration. A fiesta for example isn't a fiesta without the iconic roasted pig as its main course. Since I only get to taste really good lechon during say Christmas, I quickly jumped at the opportunity to have lunch with foodie friends at the Heirloom Kitchen.
Nard Aquino, whose family owns Leonardo's Lechon, had made special arrangements with his chef Erica, owner of Heirloom Kitchen, to serve their famous Carnivore Lechon there. Yes, with emphasis on carnivore.
From the outside, the lechon looks like any high quality, well cooked, highly delicious dish. Nard is quick to mention though that they only use native pigs of a certain age from a certain region in the Philippines to maintain the quality of their product. Organic native pigs as they are known. He said that the older the pig, the thicker the fat that is attached to the skin. I believe him since his family has been the lechon business since 1947.
Okay, now back to Leonardo's famous Carnivore Lechon.
Then things started getting a bit more exciting when Mang July, Leonardo's master litchonero, began carving the lechon. He moved like a Samurai warrior, calm and precise. At that point, all eyes were on Mang July, a long-time employee of Leonardo's.
You could hear "ooooohs" and "wows" when steam and aroma started escaping from the lechon. I couldn't wait to see what's inside.
Then it was time for the reveal and out came the lechon stuffing. Leonardo's Canivore Lechon had not one but 3 sausages. It had Kielbasa, Italian and Hungarian. Guess what? It didn't stop there. They even included slabs of bacon. And you know what they say about bacon, right? Everything is good with bacon.
Check out this platter of goodies. Thin crispy skin, tender pieces of pork meat, flavorful sausages and potatoes that soaked up all the herbs and juices of the meat. The lechon even without the stuffing was drool worthy. Then again, Leonardo's Carnivore Lechon was quite a culinary experience really and definitely a first for me. People have got to try their lechon.
BTW, at Leonardo's, you get the whole pig and every order even comes FREE with dinuguan. A special recipe that Nard's family has been preparing for years.
If photos aren't enough for you, here are a couple of videos from fellow foodie Don Elvina.
You have got to also try Leonardo's pork barbecue. Their barbecue is juicy, tender, flavorful with generous amount of sauce. I mean why go through the hassle of preparing your own barbecue when you can order from Leonardo's. If you want to impress your family then get from there.
Then there's their Heirloom Bacalao who's recipe has been handed down from generation to generation. According to Nard, that it was a tradition of their family that the bacalao dish is only cooked twice a year, one being every Lent. Good thing for us though that we can order the special Heirloom Bacalao from Leonardo's Lechon every time we feel like it.
89 J. Basa Street, San Juan, Metro Manila
02-7243068 / 02-7269828