Planning to go on a special food trip this weekend? Head over to Laguna, which is home to a floating restaurant, a heritage cafe, and many other one-of-a-kind dining spots perfect for family bonding. As Pope Francis once said, the dinner table is where families get to “nourish true and everlasting love.” So we’ve listed five My Pope-approved restaurants in Laguna that you and your loved ones will surely enjoy.
Kamayan sa Palaisdaan (Bay)
Imagine sitting inside a nipa hut floating serenely on a giant pond. Picture yourself happily digging into your meal while a band serenades you and your loved ones. Sounds good? Make it a reality by dropping by Kamayan sa Palaisdaan, where you can get your fill of crisp labanos salad with edible fern, juicy pork liempo, and the doughnut-shaped kakanin, pilipit na kalabasa. Oh, and did we mention you can also go fishing in the pond and have your catch expertly grilled? Kamayan sa Palaisdaan sure does offer an all-around enjoyable experience for the entire family!
Ted’s Kitchen (Sta. Cruz)
If you’re set on going to Pagsanjan Falls or Lake Caliraya, be sure to stop by Ted’s Kitchen. Located along the Sta. Cruz National Highway, the restaurant, with its masterfully crafted signages, walls, and furniture that evokes the countryside vibe, is hard to miss. Ted’s Kitchen is known for burgers, steaks, and all-day breakfast meals. Remember to leave room for their pastries—you wouldn’t want to be too full for their cream-filled, pistachio-dipped cannolis! Intimate and cozy, Ted’s Kitchen still somehow manages to create a wonderful space for kids, where the little ones can play with toys and even have their drawings displayed!
Seoul Kitchen (Los Banos)
You may be in Laguna, but this dining spot will take you to South Korea! Seoul Kitchen in Los Baños specializes in classic Korean food that is usually served in Hongdae, South Korea. But more than its tasty dishes, Seoul Kitchen is well-loved by customers because of its artistic vibe. Upon entering the restaurant, guests are immediately greeted with fashionable art that is similar to what is usually found in shops in Hongdae. Its colorful interiors—as vibrant as the friendly smiles of its staff—make every guest feel welcome and excited to sample their hearty bibimbap and refreshing bingsu!
Arabela is known as the best Italian restaurant in the area. The family-owned resto with its low ceilings and soft lighting has a warm, homey ambiance that’s conducive for lingering over a slice of chocolate ganache cake and some piping hot coffee. Its walls, adorned with paintings and photos from the owner’s travels to Europe, will transport you to the most picturesque sites in Italy. Initially, Arabela only served cakes and brownies, but over the years, as the restaurant became more popular across Laguna, the restaurant expanded its menu and added specialty pasta, pizza and salad recipes.
Sulyap Gallery Cafe (San Pablo)
Travel back in time and experience heritage dining in Sulyap Gallery Cafe in San Pablo, Laguna. The restaurant is an ancestral house that was transported from Tiaong, Quezon, and was restored piece by piece in San Pablo, Laguna. It houses different antiques, brandy barrels, and other historic finds. As you marvel over their heirlooms and handicrafts, taste their best-selling Southern Tagalog dishes: Kulawong Puso ng Saging, with its smoked flavor coconut milk, and the deep-fried Lechon Kawali, with their traditional grilled liver sauce. Cap off the meal with a cup of frothy Mocha Layered coffee and a slice of Dark Davao Chocolate cake. Now, how’s that for a perfect dining experience?