We came during the Holy Week and given the deluge of tourist in the region, one could understand why there would be a lot of customers at any given time. And this is exactly why given that restaurants get the best numbers of customers at this time of the season should they prepare themselves well to provide for the demand of the number of tourist that may visit their place.
The restaurant gladly accommodated us (there were four of us), albeit , we were given a table right where the foyer was (I think this was the reception area). The place itself was cozy (in the heat of the summer, they kindly opened the aircon for us in that space). They handed us the menu and got our orders and we waited for the food the be serve while looking around the place,..and waited and waited.
Please know before hand, this review makes me sad because I actually liked the ambiance of the place. The restaurant has a balcony that faces Paoay lake, has a warm modern mexican / spanish feel to it, and the staff were really really nice (I found all Ilocanos really friendly all throughout :)). But our food was served after one and a half hour.
First off, understand that the place is homey and casual and not the usual fine dining concept that may serve your food one at a time over a period of two hours. And this was acceptable to us, too. We never complained regarding the time of the service given that all of us would like to understand that the restaurant was really full. Maybe the taste would compensate for the lateness. (sigh) Maybe.
The food served was just so so. The food could have been better served (maybe) had it not been hastily prepared (the food looked like it wasn't prepared with "love" given that the preparation ran almost two hours, the fried chicken was dry and the vegetable ( I forgot what it's called) was what I would have easily gotten from somewhere cheaper or could have prepared myself. And serving portions were really small for the orders they say is for two. Well, the price is not exactly expensive but not cheap either.
The place is more expensively priced compared with the other places you could dine in in the region.
I'd probably come back here given the chance to visit Ilocos again if only to see if maybe the restaurant's performance was not up to par because of the season.
Otherwise. I'd be glad to just take a sit in the balcony and pay for the view of the Paoay lake with a mug of Ilocos Hot Chocolate ( if they serve it, they couldn't get this one wrong), or a red wine. And maybe a pica from their menu. Or maybe the next time, the Imeldific Chicken may just be a pleasant surprise.
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