By Kara Santos for Windowseat.ph
Baler, the capital town of Aurora Province, is a haven for surfers. This laid-back coastal town in the North is known primarily for its waves. In recent years, cool cafes embodying the chill surf culture have cropped up in town, making the place a great destination for foodies as well. Here are five hip places in Baler for your post-surfing recovery meals.
Beach House at Costa Pacifica
Beach House is the in-house restaurant of Costa Pacifica, one of the best resorts in Baler. Even if you aren’t checked-in here, you can still enjoy meals in their airy restaurant with a view of their large swimming pool and the beach. Their extensive menu has both Western dishes and those infused with local flavors.
Aside from waffles and pancakes, try the Baler Longganisa, suman (a delicacy made with locally grown purple sticky rice), and Grilled Seafood with Veggies.
Beach House. Costa Pacifica Hotel. 80 Buton St., Baler, Aurora
Baler Surfer Grill
There are lots of native restaurants concentrated along Sabang Beach. Just walk around and you’re sure to find something that appeals to you. One of the most popular places with that distinct “surfer vibe” is Baler’s Surfer Grill, where meat is smoked and grilled under the hood of Volkswagen Beetle!
Aside from good old beach favorites like grilled liempo and fish, try their bestselling Chicken Pinadapa and Bulalo Barbecue (grilled beef with homemade BBQ sauce).
Baler Surfer Grill, Sabang Beach, Baler, Aurora.
Groundswell Cafe at Charlie Does
You can find Charlie Does Surf Shop, which also contains a hostel and small cafe, right behind Costa Pacifica. Groundswell Cafe is a cozy surfing-inspired hangout that serves pastries, cheesecake, a few savory snacks and good coffee. Coffee lovers rave about their Peanut Butter Coffee and Salted caramel Coffee.
Beer drinkers, on the other hand, will be happy to know that the cafe also serves their own microbrewed beer from Baler Brewing Company. Their signature Baler Brew is a light and refreshing afternoon beer with a touch of wild honey. They also serve bottled craft beers perfect for the beach like Summer Sessions from Craftpoint and Tropic Haze from Nipa Brew.
Charlie Does. Buton St, Baler, Aurora
Press Start Cafe
Hidden away from the rest of the main beachfront restaurants, Press Start Cafe located at Surfhouse Baler embraces its natural surroundings with a nipa hut-styled cafe and an outdoor seating area.
The cafe promises to kick-start your beach vacation with flavorful dishes like Blue Fin Tuna Sambal, Tuna Pasta and Beef Pastrami. Everything here is homemade. They even make their pizzas from scratch!
Press Start Cafe. Alley 2, Buton Street, Baler
Another hidden gem in Baler that has gotten good reviews from visitors, Kusina Luntian serves budget-friendly eats in a rustic setting. Their menu is written on a surfboard while meals are served on banana leaves with steamed rice, salted egg and pako (fern) salad.
Kusina Luntian puts a local spin on the names of the dishes including Wapang-wapang na liempo (pork belly barbecue), Akkaw longganisa, Adoooy chicken adobo and ‘Wang patawad na tapa. There are no utensils here! Diners dig in with bare hands for that authentic kamayan beach experience.
Don Badong St., Brgy. Sabang Baler, Aurora
Article originally published in Windowseat.ph