Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Legazpi City's La Piazza Hotel for Bicol Express

Consistency is a good thing, especially when you had it good the last time. When I learned that we were booked at La Piazza Hotel in Legazpi City, the capital city of the region of Bicol, located at the southeastern corner of the main island of Luzon, I have one thing in mind: order Bicol Express.

As I mentioned here, Bicol is known for its spicy cuisine, with Bicol Express among the more popular of its dishes. Bicol Express is pork stewed in coconut milk and flavored with shrimp paste and siling mahaba (long chili, finger chili).

When I was in the hotel last year (see top photo), I fell in love with its Bicol Expres. It was salty, not the usual sweetish ones of Manila (they say it might be because of the sweetened shrimp paste used, which to me, is an abomination) and spicy, tempered by the coconut milk and pork fat. Tonight was no different--it was straight forward, simple, and well-balanced (see bottom photo).

Highly recommended.
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