Where To Eat In Manila, As Recommended by Mayor Isko

Yorme knows the best food spots!

For people living in Metro Manila, the city of Manila isn’t always top of the mind when you want to go on a food trip, especially with neighboring cities like Bonifacio Global City and Makati City which has restaurants and cafes left and right. But if you want to fall in love with Manila’s old school charm all over again, there’s no one better to ask than the mayor of Manila himself, Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso or also referred to as “Yorme”.

In an interview with Summit Media journalists, he shared his food recommendations with Yummy.ph. Check out his list of food spots, which you can only find in Manila:


1 Ugbo, Tondo

Yorme’s first recommendation is none other than the popular tumbongan in Ugbo Street in Tondo. Tumbong is a soup dish made by combining marinated and boiled pork intestines, onion leeks, and fried garlic. He says you should also go there for the dila ng baboy (pig tongue), lechon, and kamto (beef soup).


At the end of Ugbo street, you can find old-school halo-halo, too. According to Yorme, you can find it there every day. “365 days in a year. Umulan o bumagyo, may halo-halo.”

Photo by Facebook/Grand Cafe 1919

2 Grand Cafe 1919

Yorme says, “If gusto niyo naman ng medyo chill-chill, naka-air condition, at may ambiance, go to [Grand Cafe] 1919.” Grand Cafe 1919 was formerly the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) building but was revived as a cafe and retained the bank’s original facade. Inside you can find photos of old Manila lining its walls. 

What to try when you’re in Grand Cafe 1919? Besides the mouthwatering desserts, you should treat yourself to their signature 4 Cheese Pizza. The cafe has its own dough recipe, baked to a soft crust, topped with cheddar, mozzarella, Parmesan, and cream cheese cubes.

Grand Cafe 1919 is located at Juan Luna Sreet, Binondo, Manila.


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Yorme was spotted eating the Beef Tendon at The Great Buddha Cafe
Photo by Facebook/The Great Buddha Cafe

3 Binondo

If you’re serious about your Manila food trip, nothing beats going to Binondo and stuffing yourself with Chinese food. Yorme says, “Kung gusto niyo ng hopialahat ng uri ng hopia [nandoon].”

He also recommends The Great Buddha Cafe found inside the relatively new Eng Bee Tin building. Yorme specifically mentioned the dishes that have the tender tendon in them, even jokingly saying it is a “pampaliwanag ng bahay” (a.k.a. heart-attack-inducing dishes).


Thinking about what to cook next? Join our Facebook group, Yummy Pinoy Cooking Club, to get more recipe ideas, share your own dishes, and find out what the rest of the community are making and eating!

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