THE best kind of food is the one that lets its flavors speak out loud. For Sal’s, that’s what it’s all about—food without the theatrics.

Sal’s is a food truck-inspired diner concept that serves comfort fare paired with homemade condiments served to patrons in an outdoor setting. Established in 2018, it is every bit straightforward with dishes simply made out of what its mastermind, Mikel Sala, likes and what is efficient to make.

Having worked in finance for some years, Mikel decided to switch careers moving from Manila back to Cebu, his hometown, to pursue his passion for food, attending culinary school in ISCAHM. He proceeded to work as a cook in Kayu Kitchen + Bar until he founded Sal’s. The idea came into being when Michael and Berry Nikkel of Turning Wheels Brewery, friends of his, opened a tap room and wanted food served alongside its beers. They serve beers, he serves food—a perfect system.

Sal’s selection of burgers and tacos may be the frequently talked about dishes, but one can’t discount its other options including its shrimp poppers and skewers, to name a few. In fact, if one were to go there simply for its fried pickles alone, for instance—no judgment there! No meal at Sal’s would be complete without dipping into its special condiments—chimichurri, house chili sauces and homemade pickles.

Mikel was inspired by the show “Ugly Delicious,” where the focus is making good food without putting too much fuss on the presentation.

“I don’t have too much emphasis on making it look nice. As long as it tastes good, I’m okay,” said Mikel.

Find Sal’s on 24 P. Almendtras St. Mabolo, Cebu City. The kitchen is open from Tuesday to Sunday from 5 to 11 p.m. (S)