Restaurants

Where to Find the Best Lutong Bahay in The City of Smiles?

Aris Mape
Aris Mape | Sep 02, 2016

Past 9 AM we were already on the road to May’s Garden. I was alive and fresh even after the long trip from Cebu. Thanks to Karmele for making me freshen up in their house, and to her mom for serving my favorite Napoleones and a special Four-Seasons shake.

At May's, we were greeted by Joy, who takes care of touring guests around the 6.2 hectare garden. Their manager, Ria, was also present to introduce us to their staff.

01 ocular check (5)

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May’s Garden is not a large restaurant. It’s more of a posh turo-turo by the side of the road. The ambiance, the design, and the whole setup somehow bring you back home, right in the comfort of your own kitchen. I think it can seat about 25, but outside there are tables for guests who want to enjoy fresh air.

At P350, one can enjoy a buffet of the best lutong bahay, homemade dishes that showcase Negrense flavor. Of course, everything is fresh and healthy, picked from the farm’s gardens and the partner suppliers from all over the province.

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Seafood and veggie lunch (Taken with Huawei Mate S)

Asked if we would take lunch first or the tour, the answer came with no delay. Take lunch!

I got freshly grilled fish, crablets, and laswa, an Ilonggo dish of boiled vegetables seasoned with fish sauce. Karmele, careful not to hijack her diet, got some small piece of chicken and vegetable roll. Mickoi, another picky eater, got almost the same, plus bamboo shoots in coconut milk and crab and corn. Everything was served with organic brown rice, which we all loved for the chewy texture.

Buffet lunch (Taken with Huawei Mate S)
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Organic brown rice (Taken with Huawei Mate S)

 

The grand finale to lunch was a fresh and crispy salad of mango, watermelon, pineapple, and cucumber, and fruit shake— avocado, mango, and malunggay flavors. Thinking we still got space in our stomachs, Ria showed up with tarragon and mint tea, the leaves of which she just picked from the pot by the window of her resto.

It was a sumptuous lunch that sent all of us speechless. Well, I was warned. You go to Bacolod to eat—so said my friend. I felt at that moment that she was totally right.

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Fresh fruits salad (Taken with Huawei Mate S)
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A local berry, aritilis (Taken with Huawei Mate S)
Fresh fruit shakes! (Taken with Huawei Mate S)

Owned by  May Uy, the restaurant is just one of the enterprises pushing the organic movement in Negros. Ramon Uy, the person behind the integrated businesses started his everything from a small foundry (a shop for casting metal), has worked closely with farmers to adopt sustainable farming methods, and bets confidently on the potential of the province to become Asia’s leader in organic agriculture.


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Read the whole story about May's Garden in my blog, D'YAN LANG. My blog advocates mobile photography and was the 2015 People's Choice winner of the Bloggys Philippine Blogging Awards for the Travel and Places Category. It was also the Best Travel Blog and Best Photo Blog as recognized by the Cebu Bloggers Society.


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