Taal is known for its preserved cultural heritage and old ancestral houses that’s why it is given the title “Heritage Town”. Its municipality and people are hand-in-hand in taking care of these tourist spots as they are intent on preserving history and our traditions.
Alongside its locals and ancestral houses, Taal is also known for its authentic Batangueño food. And what field trip would not be complete if you will not sample the local delicacies.
Don Juan, the first boodle house that serves native Taal delicacies, is a big hit and the first tourist destination for food tripping.
In an interview with Eli Andres, the manager of Don Juan:
“Don Juan is known for Taal’s Specialities; Tapang Taal, Longganisang Taal, Pork Barbeque, Fried Tawilis, Adobo sa Dilaw and Sinaing na Tulingan. All the foods that we serve are fresh and no preservatives. We came up with Don Juan for people to acknowledge the way of how filipino’s eat, with their finger licking and eating from banana leaf serves as the native way. All served in one boodle and eating as if you’re at home. Knowing Taal for being a heritage town, there are visitors coming all the way from Visayas, Lipa and Batangas.”
Their Boodle comes in three servings namely: Inihaw Boodle, Don Juan’s Boodle and Taal’s Specialties Boodle that are all good for 4 to 6 persons.
“We came up with Boodle because of the old ways on how soldiers used to eat, with bare hands and banana leaf. Eating together with more people is more fun specially sharing the best food we can serve,” added Eli Andres.
We were served with a boodle of Taal’s Specialties namely Tapang Taal, Longganisang Taal, Sinaing na tulingan, Inihaw na Baboy, Adobo sa Dilaw, Fried Tawilis, Ginataang Sitaw Kalabasa served with sliced tomatoes, onions, pickled papaya and steamed rice known as Taal’s Specialties Boodle. Serving us the boodle made us realise it is better to eat with our bare hands and chatting made it fun that helped us to be closer with one another. Laughs and bonding were worthwhile and also the food made it suitable for the fun we had.
“It made me feel the true Pinoy essence that is something we can be proud of and eating together in a meal is very mush important for Pinoys especially when the foods served adds falvor to bonding,” said Andrea Josa Suazo of WowBatangas.
We got to taste different portions of food which we had never encountered before like the Fried Tawilis that can be eaten whole and non-stop picking of the crisp of Tawilis. Another that was so undeniably delicious was Tapang Taal; it is a local dish that is marinated just like the Longanizang Taal, but it is thinly sliced and diced pork served as tapa.
Pampering up with their deserts; Leche Flan, Fried Suman with chocolate spread, Halo halo and Sago’t Gulaman, you’ll find yourself in the middle of the Green Field, breathing fresh air. We were much fascinated by the deserts that was served for us and was really enjoyable to eat. One serve of their desert wasn’t enough to fill our stomach but it was a joy to taste their delicacies.
“Eating at Don Juan is like eating at home and it makes you wonder the fresh breeze of the forest. That’s how Don Juan made me feel. The rich delicacies of Taal promises that wherever you are, you’re at home,” said Nicole John Martinez of WowBatangas.
The inside of Don Juan’s restaurant is patterned from the old houses of Taal. Don Juan is a restaurant that brings the family together in one meal and they encourage eating with bare hands, which is as Pinoy at it comes. Not only that, barkadas and group of friends and tourists will also enjoy dining here.
Telephone: (043) 302-2486 , (043) 740-1828
Address: Calle J. W. Diokno St. Taal, Batangas 4208 Besides Taal, Public Market
For more information, visit their website: www.donjuanbarbeque.wix.com/donjuan
And more food articles at WOWBatangas.com
Written by: Maria Celina Valencia
Photos by: Nicole John Martinez
WOWBatangas Team – JR Cantos, Maria Celina Valencia, Andrea Josa Suazo, and Nicole John Martinez