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Discovering Malate's Best Eats: A Culinary Guide to the Philippines

Nestled in the heart of Manila, Malate is a neighborhood renowned for its vibrant cultural tapestry and equally colorful culinary scene. This historic district, with its blend of old-world charm and modern flair, offers food enthusiasts a unique tasting journey through various cuisines. From local Filipino specialties to international dishes, the streets of Malate are a gastronomic playground waiting to be explored. Whether you are a seasoned foodie or a curious traveler, our culinary guide will lead you through the best eats Malate has to offer.

1. Dive into Authentic Filipino Cuisine

Aling Sosing’s Carinderia

No culinary tour of Malate is complete without a visit to Aling Sosing’s Carinderia. This humble eatery, often overlooked by tourists, is a favorite among locals. Here, you can savor the rich flavors of adobo, kare-kare, and sinigang, dishes that tell stories of Filipino life with every spoonful. The experience is authentic, complete with dining at wooden benches and enjoying your meal amidst the hustle and bustle of local patrons.

Purple Yam

Reinventing traditional Filipino dishes with a modern twist, Purple Yam is a must-visit for those looking to experience Filipino cuisine with a contemporary edge. Founded by chefs Amy Besa and Romy Dorotan, this restaurant serves up innovative dishes like ube pancakes and slow-roasted pork belly that will surely tickle your palate.

2. Street Food Delights

Adriatico Street

Walking down Adriatico Street, you'll encounter a plethora of street food vendors selling everything from isaw (chicken intestines) to balut (fertilized duck egg). These delicacies might challenge the uninitiated, but they offer a taste of the Filipino spirit and hospitality. Don't miss the chance to try taho, a sweet treat made from silken tofu, arnibal (syrup), and sago pearls, usually sold by vendors in the mornings.

Mang Larry’s Isawan

A renowned institution, Mang Larry’s Isawan offers some of the best grilled pork and chicken intestines in town. This spot is perfect for an adventurous evening snack. The lively atmosphere and delicious, affordable bites make it a popular choice among students and tourists alike.

3. International Flavors

Bistro Remedios

For those who enjoy a blend of the local and the international, Bistro Remedios is the place to go. This restaurant offers a cozy ambiance and dishes like binukadkad na plapla, a beautifully butterfly-cut fish, alongside international favorites. Their crispy pata (deep-fried pork leg) paired with a cold San Miguel Beer is a combination that can’t be missed.

Cafe Adriatico

Cafe Adriatico, which has been a cornerstone in Malate’s culinary scene since 1979, brings together a rich history and a diverse menu that features Spanish, Filipino, and even American dishes. Their paella and classic Filipino hot chocolate are standout dishes that offer comfort and culinary delight in equal measure.

4. Fusion and Innovation

Nakpil Street Eateries

Nakpil Street is lined with eateries that exemplify the innovative spirit of Malate’s food scene. Fusion restaurants here mix Korean, Japanese, and Filipino flavors, creating unique dishes that are both familiar and excitingly new. For a taste of this culinary creativity, try a kimchi adobo or a sushi bake with a local twist.

5. Sweet Treats and Cool Treats

Carmen’s Best Ice Cream

After exploring savory dishes, head to Carmen’s Best Ice Cream for dessert. Known for using the freshest and finest local ingredients, Carmen’s offers flavors like ube halaya, and their unique take on halo-halo ensures a delightful treat to cool down with in the Manila heat.

Dessert Comes First

A quirky dessert cafe that’s as sweet as its name suggests, Dessert Comes First is a haven for those with a sweet tooth. Dive into their innovative desserts like the mango cheesecake or the chocolate lava cake that perfectly blends gooey and crunchy textures.


Malate's culinary landscape is as diverse and inviting as its culture. From street corners offering traditional Filipino snacks to upscale restaurants serving fusion dishes, Malate is a neighborhood that welcomes all kinds of eaters. Our guide only scratches the surface of what this exciting locale has to offer. So the next time you find yourself in Manila, venture into 말라떼 맛집, and let your taste buds lead the way in discovering the true essence of Filipino dining. Whether it's your first visit or your hundredth, Malate's best eats are sure to provide a memorable culinary adventure.

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