Taal. It is pretty known for balisong or butterfly knife and barong Tagalog – our national dress for men. In terms of food, they are popular for their Longganisang Taal and Tapang Taal. Searching for noodles, to my surprise, there is actually a Pancit Taal.
Aside from Vigan in Ilocos and Silay in Negros, it is also considered as one of our heritage sites with well-preserved old houses and structures. One of these is the ancestral home of Feliza Diokno, Emilio Aguinaldo’s secretary during his presidency. Feliza Café y Taverna is situated in the first floor of this house serving Filipino cuisine of the olden times.
As soon as we seated, we ordered the two varities of pancit in their menu; Pancit Taal and Pancit 1913 (please see my next week’s post) together with another Taal specialty – Adobo sa Dilaw.
The dishes in this quaint restaurant is the brainchild of their executive chef, Giney Villar. The description for Pancit Taal reads;
“This 1930s recipe according to a distinguished Taaleno used to be a town favourite. Everything to like – miki, pork, shrimp, wood ear mushrooms, water chestnut and spring onion brought together by a unique sweet-salty sauce”
Upon tasting, I would surely say that it is indeed a very delicious version of pancit. The noodles, guisado-style of cooking and garnish may be the same as elsewhere in our pancit nation but some unique twists and added ingredients made it extra special; the sweet and savory sauce, the fresh shrimps with skin-on, the barbecued pieces of pork and the pieces of water chestnut – something I’ve never seen as part of a pancit before.
I feel fortunate to be able to taste Pancit Taal as it is no longer being offered in all the other eateries and restaurants around town. Its existence is also almost unknown to most of us – a dish superior to the familiar Pancit Bihon, Canton or Palabok. At Php.240 per serving good for 3 persons, not bad at all.
Feliza Cafe y Taverna: 6 Felipe Agoncillo At., Taal, Batangas