Binondo Food Crawl: Piece of the Past Through the Palette
Last February 8, 2016 people celebrated the Chinese New Year. And the streets of Binondo were filled with the dragon puppets dancing with the deafening sound of drums and people who were looking forward to eat some of the hidden gems of Binondo. Food crawl is one the must-do in the world’s Chinatown. Food crawl in definition is a multi-stop investigation of the best restaurants, meals, or specific item on the menu.
Carlo and I went around before lunch time and we were quite shocked to see people queuing lines mostly in Binondo’s popular spots like Wai Ying and Dong Bei Dumplings. Our first stop was of course the Shanghai Fried Siopao in Ongpin Street. This place isn’t just about their Fried Siopao (P17) but they also sell freshly cooked Bicho-Bicho (P15). They serve their fried siopao steaming-hot. It is savory and satisfying even without a sauce. Also, their bicho-bicho is served piping hot and yes filling too! After that we just walked our way to (I forgot street name) and stumbled upon a food truck. Yes, a food truck in Binondo. This food truck is called The Cheese Steak Shop and sells Philly Cheesesteak. I was still hungry for more and became a bit curious of its taste so that’s why I decided to try it out. I ordered their 10” Classic Philly Cheesesteak (P399) and we were both surprised of the simplicity of the flavor yet it was still distinct. The sweet and hot peppers added made a huge explosion of flavor in every bite. What I really noticed with their Italian roll is its freshness. And to top it off, I ordered their Deep Fried Snickers (P65). Well, it was quite expensive for its small serving but believe me it was a safe haven in every bite.
Shanghai Fried Siopao
Fried Siopao (P17)
The Cheese Steak Shop
Classic Philly Cheesesteak (P399)
Deep Fried Snickers (P65)
For the third stop, we tried the Tasty Dumplings restaurant in Norberto Ty Street corner Yuchengco Street. It is beside the Binondo church but I think it’s not their main branch. Honestly, Carlo and I expected for a wide selection of dumplings and to our disappointment they only sell a few. But that didn’t stop us from trying their food so we ordered Fried Dumpling rice (P118), Sweet and Sour Chicken rice (P133) and Winter melon juice (P55). Surprisingly, their Fried Dumplings rice was really the bomb. The secret sauce they poured over the rice made it really tasty and savory. Although the Sweet and Sour chicken rice and Winermelon juice were quite downers.
Fried Dumpling rice (P118)
Sweet and Sour Chicken rice (P133)
After a carb loading kinda lunch we opted to sidetrip first in Divisoria and do some light shopping. We made a lot of walking for us to burn the carbs that we had. After almost a 3-hour walking and some shopping we were hungry again. We went to Wai Ying’s branch in 168 Mall. Their main branch was flocked by too many hungry foodies in Benavidez, Binondo. Wai Ying is our favorite restaurant because of its humongous servings and tasty dimsum. We ordered the usual Hakaw (P80), Cold HK Milk Tea (P55), Asado Siopao (P70) and Beef Mami (P120). As usual, we were satisfied with the quality and taste of Wai Ying’s food.
P.S. I couldn’t imagine the world without the sumptuous food made by the Chinese people.