Two2Travel Bicol Chili Shake

HOT! Chili & other things in Bicol

It is easy to spot quirky food in Bicol without even trying. Random blaring signs like chili shake for sale greet you at almost every corner, so it’s fairly easy to give in to curiosity.

And in times like this when the summer sun is boring down on you, there’s no better diversion than an ice-cold concoction—and when in Bicol, that cold concoction happens to be HOT too.

Two2Travel | Chili and other things





TINUTONG ICE CREAM

P79, 1st Colonial Grill
Rizal Ave., Old Albay District, Legazpi City

Two2travel | Chili

Imagine tutong—that burnt part of cooked rice—on your ice cream. At 1st Colonial Grill in Albay District, Legazpi City, tinutong ice cream takes on a gritty brown color with brown tutong bits. Bicolanos turn the tutong into coffee, which explains the strong mocha flavor of the ice cream. It’s ice cream with a subtle burnt smell lingering in your nose, only that this one is actually yummy. In fact, of the five ice cream flavors we had tried that day, the tinutong was the collective favorite.

SILI ICE CREAM

P79, 1st Colonial Grill
Rizal Ave., Old Albay District, Legazpi City

Two2travel | Chili

The tinutong ice cream, however, is not the most popular ice cream flavor of 1st Colonial Grill; this is. Sili, chili, chili peppers. In a cold dairy product. Sweet, hot, cold, all at the same time. It comes in fiery pink and is topped with two pieces of chilies to drive home the point better. At the first spoonful, it tastes like any ice cream should—sweet, cold, creamy, soft. Count one to two seconds and your tongue starts to burn from the chilies blended in the dairy. The spicy kick was just right, and the logical thing to do after the first spoonful is to take another, and then one more.Did we like it? It was new, exciting even. Just like eating with chili is not for everyone, this is also something not everyone will eat on a regular basis—probably. BUT! It is yummy and unique and worth it for a first taste!

MALUNGGAY ICE CREAM

P79, 1st Colonial Grill
Rizal Ave., Old Albay District, Legazpi City

Two2travel | Chili

Nobody particularly liked the malunggay except Owen, who also happens to be fond of Yellow Cab’s pistachio ice cream. Incidentally, this malunggay flavor tastes almost like this particular pistachio concoction (I love all pistachio ice cream variants EXCEPT Yellow Cab’s, which is just disgusting and smells like Baygon). I liked the sili better than the malunggay, although I prefer the Malunggay Sherbet I had in Ilocos a few months back. Milk + malunggay probably don’t go well?

CALAMANSI ICE CREAM

P60, 1st Colonial Grill
Rizal Ave., Old Albay District, Legazpi City

Two2travel | Chili

Imagine eating cold calamansi concentrate—more on the sour side than the sweet side—and you have 1st Colonial’s calamansi ice cream. It’s not your usual dairy flavor and is actually addicting (but that’s just me talking. Owen didn’t like it. Well he could keep his malunggay!).

PILI ICE CREAM

P79, 1st Colonial Grill
Rizal Ave., Old Albay District, Legazpi City

Two2travel | Chili

Pili is another local product you’ll find everywhere in Bicol—candied, raw, or mixed with other spices as a condiment. As an ice cream, it’s sweet and nutty and creamy. In fact, it’s so sweet, nutty, and creamy that the novelty of it immediately wears off. It’s just like any other flavor, although still worth trying out the first time.

BUKO SHAKE WITH CHILI

P65, Cagsawa Ruins

TWO2TRAVEL | Bicol | Chili and other things

It’s simple—throw in red chili pepper with buko shreds, ice, and milk onto a blender, and you have this hot-cold beverage. We had it in one of the souvenir stalls at Cagsawa Ruins at 7 in the morning (one big serving costs P65, which we divided to small cups), and when it’s that hot, you’ll forget your routine coffee fix and go for this instead. Like the sili ice cream, the spicy kick sets in as an aftertaste.

DJC HALO-HALO

Supreme: P85
DJC Halo-Halo, in front of Gaisano Mall, Legazpi City

TWO2TRAVEL | Bicol | Chili and other things

My mistake was ordering a Supreme DJC Halo-Halo after dinner. The serving was huge—good enough for 2 to share—and so I was only able to finish one-fourth of it because I was already too full. It’s a shame because the halo-halo was delicious. The ingredients were generous—homemade ube, leche flan, ube ice cream, coconut shreds, gulaman, macapuno, sago, and langka (jackfruit) topped with cheese. I wouldn’t be surprised if no sugar was added. One of the best halo-halo I’ve ever had!

Got any weird hot-cold food finds anywhere else? Do share!

Two2Travel

Owen Ballesteros & Nikka Corsino are trigger-happy travelers from the Philippines. They both swear by the sharpness of Nikon and almost always carry a packet of instant coffee when traveling. Photography is their bread and butter, their passion, and sometimes the only thing that prevents them from killing each other. If you have offers of work, collaborations, or an endless supply of instant coffee, please drop them a message here.

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