Monday, October 25, 2021

4 restaurants that offer al fresco dining

Staying home may be our best option during this time, but with the abundance of sunny days we have and the permittance of limited-capacity outdoor dining, it’s still good to know we have options for when do need a break from the mundane.

Restaurant owners have embraced al fresco eating, laying out sidewalk tables, rooftop decks or backyard nooks for diners to enjoy their meals in a safe space.

From cozy neighborhood eateries to a waterfront hot spot, here are some places worth visiting—whether it’s for the food or the views--if you haven’t yet:

La Casa Vieja by KKD STK+BBQ

Where: J. Fortich St., Banawa, Cebu City

Business hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily

If you love sutukil (sugba or grilled, tuwa or stew and kilaw or ceviche-style), you’ll love it even more at KKD’s Banawa branch. The rustic charm of the patio mimics the overall vibe of the family-owned restaurant and completes the quintessential Cebuano dining experience. Its crispy pata, lechon kawali, tuna panga, sinuglaw and larang are the real stars of the show here, but there’s so much more on offer, from the classic pochero to the more innovative lechon bilangkad and adobong manok Bisaya. For the stews, both meat and broth are full of flavor after hours of slow cooking, and all ingredients are of the freshest quality, especially the seafood. Some recipes are generations-old, so you know you’re in for an incredibly filling and delicious meal.

Cherry’s The Spice - Lapu-Lapu

Where: Cebu Yacht Club, Lapu-Lapu City

Business hours: 12 to 10 p.m. daily

Other Indian restaurants have tried to stake their claim on authentic South Indian, specifically Hyberabadi fare, but only Cherry’s The Spice has truly mastered and fine-tuned its menu items to exceed diners’ expectations. It has become a favorite among Cebu’s Indian community and locals alike who go weak in the knees for the special mutton biryani. Aromatic rice is generously studded with succulent lamb chunks seasoned with an exquisitely complex blend of spices. The restaurant also plates up kebabs, rotis, gravies, dosas and desserts, and the owners are just as warm and delightful when entertaining guests in the garden area or in the wraparound roofdeck overlooking the Mactan Channel.

Weekend Chophouse and Taproom

Where: 88th Avenue, Gov. M. Cuenco Ave., Banilad, Cebu City

Business hours: 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., Monday to Saturday

Weekend has found a new home in this part of town, and apart from welcome additions on its menu, its customer favorites are back but made even better. You’d be remiss not to try the slew of tasty toasts like the Shooto (mozzarella, prosciutto, truffle honey cream, parsley oil and Gagaioli or roasted garlic and fresh garlic aioli) and the Divine Duck (pan-seared sustainably farmed duck foie gras topped with Granny Smith apples caramelized in watermelon, rum and butter sauce, and chives). The items in the “Proteins” section deserve your attention too, especially the Fat Bastard which is smoked for three hours before hitting the grill and then finished off in the oven. Alongside French beans, ancho butter, Gagaioli and garlic rice, this hefty hunk of meat makes its way to your table in the breezy garden area.

Outback Servo

Where: Ipil-ipil, Brgy. Babag II Road, Cebu City

Business hours: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. (Monday to Thursday); 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. (Friday); 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. (Saturday and Sunday)

This new cafe and brunch spot up in the hills of Cebu offers scenic dining that will make the drive worth it. The family that owns it used to live in an outback town in Australia for two years, hence the name. On its brunch menu are standouts like the Servo Big Breakfast (egg, bacon, sausage, mushrooms, beans, hash brown, tomato and sourdough), Smashed Avo Toast (avocado, feta, salsa and pistachio dukkah on sourdough) and Croffle (three croissant waffles topped with vanilla ice cream). You can also opt for its rice bowls topped with corned beef or naked chorizo, or the Pork Rub Ribs, charcoal-grilled and served with TikTok-famous corn ribs and rice. Outback Servo’s iced or hot flat white and long black, as well as its coffee and cream-based frappes do not disappoint either.


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