Mano-mano in Zambo

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Saturday, May 31, 2014


WE HAD around four hours to spend in Zamboanga City as we wait for our flight to Davao from Tawi-Tawi, Thursday morning. So what do we do?

An early lunch so we can have some time to go around the poblacion and drop by its barter trade center sounded like the best itinerary. We asked the bellboy at the Garden Orchid Hotel Hotel, where we booked a day room, where we can eat.

He recommended Mano-mano in Santa Maria. It’s just a tricycle ride away as anywhere else in Zamboanga City is a tricycle ride away. But yes, it was a short ride.

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There were just three of us, Haydee, Karen, and I, as the two boys wanted to look for sati (barbecue).

Greenfield Mano-Mano Restaurant is an open-air restaurant of predominantly wood and bamboo and serves Filipino food.
Having been gorging on fresh seafood in Bongao the past two days, we shared one craving: baboy.

Thus, top on our orders was crispy pata (medium). But we still haven’t had our fill of seafood, and so we got the seafood platter, and topped this with ampalaya-radish salad.

We would have wanted to order more, except that we know we can’t consume them all.

As it was, what we ordered was already more than enough, but we managed to eat most of them. Sayangrin.

Price-wise, the orders are huge. That’s the luxury of being in the outskirts where food is still cheap.

Everything was good, including the ampalaya-radish salad. The crispy pata had the perfect crispiness outside while maintaining the juicy parts near the joints. The seafood platter is a generous array of kinilaw, fried malasugui or tangigue fillet, crispy shrimps, baked imbao, grilled shrimps, and calamares. The salad went perfectly with the two fried viands.

The place was just filling up, and it seems that it really fills up, as we ended our early lunch. I noticed a row of fried chicken orders waiting for the waiter to bring them over to the customers. That made me wonder why. Their fried chicken must be good to elicit such number of orders. But then, we were just on a very short trip, and so I just have to keep that question in mind.

By the way, service is fast considering that the food still had to be cooked. It was just what we needed for our short layover.

Mano-mano is along Gov. Ramos Avenue in the Santa Maria area or just tell the trike driver, they know.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on June 01, 2014.

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