Great Dishes at Ilang-Ilang Restaurant in Binondo

Ilang-Ilang restaurant is one of our top favorites when it comes to great dishes, ambiance and service.

This is one of the century-old restaurants within Chinatown district in Manila. The name of the restaurant was derived from the name of the street which is Ilang-Ilang.

The operations began in 1910 as panciteria or noodle house becoming full fledged restaurant in 1945.

Do not get confuse with Cafe Ilang-Ilang in Manila Hotel which open a little bit early and is located within Manila Hotel. The place also a a big function room which can accommodate between 250 to 280 people at any given time.

Great Dishes

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dishes

friedrice

Ilang-Ilang fried rice

Ilang-Ilang fried rice– The rice had Chinese chorizo, beaten eggs and pieces of meat topped with chopped spring onion leaves.

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lumpiang shanghai ala Ilang-Ilang

Lumpiang Shanghai ala Ilang-Ilang– is one of the favorite dishes that is usually serve in many restaurants in the country.

There are many stories behind the fried pork roll which is usually called lumpiang Shanghai. One popular tale is that the fried spring rolls takes its origin from Shanghai, China and was popularized by local Chinese restaurants in Manila.

Another tale is that the fried spring rolls began its humble origins from Filipino-Chinese immigrants in Chinatown, Manila. Where it was serve and introducing them to many places giving the pork rolls an international appeal and name.

Their version is slightly different with large portion of pork meat and ideal dipping condiment is the tomato ketchup.

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chami noodles

Chami – This is another Must try noodles dish, when you are within Chinatown district. Their noodles are the fat ones with pork, cabbage, pieces of meat, pork liver and topped with spring onions.

buttered chicken

fried buttered chicken

Fried Buttered Chicken– This is one of the Must try cuisine serve in restaurant. This is serve hot and you can taste the butter. The portion is big and you can taste the butter.

What we liked about the restaurant is the attentive staff, great dishes and ambiance.

The restaurant also is listed under popular review sites tripadvisor, munchpunch, zomatoph, yelp among others.

Address: 551 Ilang-Ilang street, Binondo, Manila

Contact : (+02) 241 9297, 241-92-98, 242-32-66

Cellphone: 0922 841 9298

Operations: Everyday 8:30 am to 10:30 pm

A Trip to Ambos Mundos at Florentino Torres Street in Santa Cruz

 750 Florentino Torres Street , Santa Cruz, Manila, Philippines

 Ambos Mundos

Whenever we have some foreign , local guest, students and convention guests from other parts of the country. We would try this restaurant in the heart of downtown Manila.

menus are written in black board

 Ambos Mundos means BOTH World  I must say , not just The best of East and West but the  best of Asia, Latin America and Europe ! The restaurant was founded in 1888 making it one of the oldest still existing in Manila.

students from Cavite province

I am very happy for this batch of students successfully defended their thesis and graduated few months ago.   One of them also collects postcards and stamps which is a common denominator of our hobby.  The team leader was the one who contacted me for a day tour of old restaurants that are located in Manila.

group of students from Del La Salle Univesity and College of Saint Benile and their balikbayan uncle from the United States

lawyers from the United States , Singapore , stamp collectors , heritage advocate

We would always pay this restaurant a visit , This is one of Manila’s best kept secrets . I personally thinks that what makes this good restaurant is it maintained its old world charm amid the hustle and bustle of modern metropolis .¬† We did a tour with some Postcrossing Philippines Eye Ball 2011

Some of the restaurant specialties

This seafood paella is a MUST for those people who crave for Filipino- Mexican- Spanish dish. According to some of my international guests and culinary chef, The Ambos Mundos variety had richer , more flavorful and more appealing to the eyes compared to their Cuban, Mexican , Peruvian and even Colombian paella.

The local counterpart had shrimps, mussels ( tahong ) , clam ( tulya ), shrimps, chunks of pork meat ,  hard boiled eggs and topped with marine crabs / blue crab ( alimasag ). I do not think that they add saffron in the dish.  The rice had some tomato sauce   , This is a bit different.

The only downgrade is the marine crab / blue crab which does not have much meat . The rice is a little bit mushy and  It would take between 20 minutes to 30 minutes before they can serve the paella dish .

Paella – Small cost around Php 650 large Php 1,250

Lengua estofado with camote  ( deep fried) in special sauce ( Ox tongue with sliced sweet potato ( deep fried ) in special sauce )

This is another dish which originated from Latin America and Spain . The Ambos Mundos version had thick sauce and sweet potatoes ( deep fried) .

Lumpiang ubod with think sauce

 Lumpiang Ubod is a type of spring roll that uses local coconut palm heart  as the main ingredient -( julienne, allumette or thinly sliced   )  with  carrots, picama ,ground pork , shrimps and fresh lettuce wrapped in crepe . It come with thick sauce and crush peanuts  .

Foreigner guests and balikbayans would compare the price and its taste between a commercialized version and this version still wins hands-down.

Related article: lumpiang ubod ng niyog

Lumpiang Shanghai ala Ambos Mundos

Lumpiang Shanghai ala Ambos Mundos РThis is one of our favorite menus along with its asado and fried chicken .  It is meaty and prefect combination to their chili paste , matching calamansi ( local citrus fruit )  and a little bit of soy sauce !

Pork Asado ala Ambos Mundos- This is another MUST Try, Since it takes a long time preparing the asado , This is sold per kilo basis, smallest order is 250 grams or 1/4 kilo . It had a special sauce

Yang Chow Fried RiceMorisqueta Tostada  is a  Hispanized  fried rice derived from the Chinese.

Kare-Kare – It is kind of ox tail stew with peanut sauce ,vegetables, which include (but are not limited to): eggplant, pechay , string beans and with shrimp paste .

Nido Oriental Soup– This is not the authentic bird’s nest soup which uses swiftlet’s nest made of saliva ( balinsasayaw )¬† as the main ingredient, They used pork soft tendons ( litid ng baboy ) with quail eggs, chicken eggs, corn starch and flour to thicken the soup.

Since early 2013 , Wah Sun / Sun Wah is closed , customers can order their menus at Ambos Mundos . Asado , Yang Chow Fried Rice are specialties of Wah Sun

How to get There :

The location of the new restaurant is near Claro M. Recto Avenue and about  5  minutes walking distance from  LRT line 1 ( Doroteo Jose station ) and about 8 to 15 minutes walking distance from LRT line 2 ( Recto- Isetann station).

Among this restaurant long list of celebrity clientele includes Dolphy, Chiquito ,German Moreno, Philip Salvador, Alona Alegre, Pacquito Diaz, Rene Saguisag among others.

Operations: Open Everyday from 8:00am to 9:00pm  except Holy Week

Address:750- 752 Florentino Torres St., Sta. Cruz , Manila 1003 ,Philippines

Phone Number (+63 2) 734-1160 / (+632 ) 734-41-08
Facebook Page: Ambos Mundos
Note: portion of  Florentino Torres Street is still under construction

Different Lumpias ( Spring Rolls ) from the Philippines

Quezon City , Philippines

Chinese style -lumpia from Sincerity Restaurant, Binondo

Lumpia is a common term for any egg roll , spring roll , vegetable rolls that is Chinese in origin but through centuries of assimilation and adaptation to suit the local taste, preference, availability of the ingredients and due to health reasons¬† . There had been different¬† varieties of the lumpias in the country. It is more popularly called ” spring roll” since most of the vegetables used in the ingredients are grown in spring and it is normally eaten as a festival food during ” Spring Festival ” which coincide with Chinese New Year .

I have some relatives and friends who lives in Malabon / Navotas areas and some of them called¬† it ”¬† Sumpia” . I do not know where did they get the name but somehow the name eventually evolve .

Lumpiang Shanghai ala New Toho Restaurant ( This is one of the favorite meal of Dr. Jose Rizal) РThe New Toho Restaurant  had more meat compared to the regular lumpia.

The recipes, both fried and fresh versions, were brought by Chinese immigrants from the Fujian province of China to Southeast Asia and became popular where they settled in Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines.

Lumpiang Shanghai ala Ilang-Ilang restaurant

Lumpiang Shanghai is one of the MUST Try menu at the Ilang-Ilang Restaurant in Binondo . It is bigger compared to the other Lumpiang Shanghai in Binondo area.

Lumpiang Shanghai is not a spring roll that came from Shanghai , China.  It was more of a marketing style to lure people asking for a more specific name to the spring roll. It is sometimes called Lumpiang Baboy because of the main ingredient , which is ground pork meat. But according to some Filipino-Chinese , people name these spring roll to Shanghai because of the many Fujian, Cantonese, Taiwan dishes in the country.

Shanghai is more cosmopolitan and urban in nature which makes this dish more international appeal. Hence it was called ever since.

Globe Lumpia located in 740 Raon St. ( Gonzalo Puyat street ), Quiapo, Manila.

Globe Lumpia or Lumpiang Sariwa is the most popular spring roll hole in a wall type of eatery near Quiapo church . I usually order 2 to 3 Globe lumpia . They are one of the cheapest in Manila. Their special ingredient includes julienne papaya , jicama  ( picama/ singkamas) , sayote/ chayote with generous topping of crush peanuts, finely chop fresh garlic and their special sauce. The most busy day is friday and on weekends. It is best to accompany the lumpia with softdrink like sarsi or sprite.

The store had been there since 1956 .¬† The price increased from 20 centavos in the 1950’s to Php 18.00 . The restaurant can only accommodate between 15 to 20 people. I would always frequent the place since i¬† just lived just a few blocks away, until a few years ago. Some television shows like Kris TV, Kapuso Mo Jessica Soho , Ceasar Montano and even Dolphy are some of the famous clientele of the place.

Lumpiang Bangus – Milk Fish Spring Roll

Milk Fish Spring Rolls or Lumpiang Bangus may have traced its origin to the milk fish producing provinces of Pangasinan, Sarangani, Davao area.  The main ingredient is from milk fish fillet . This is a healthy spring roll , But compared to the regular Lumpiang Shanghai or Lumpiang Frito РThis is more expensive . In a recent food fair, I also have tasted Lumpiang Tahong ( made from mussles ) from Cavite province. There is also Lumpiang Kanduli or Creme Dory spring roll. These are some of the spring rolls that i have tasted .

There are mostly fried , wrapped fresh with the cooked ingredients which consists of vegetables and some meat. Most people refer Chinese -style lumpia because of the main filling is made of sauted chopped carrots, green beans, tofu, bean sprouts , mushrooms, sayote ,crush peanuts , fried and crush vermicelli noodles, hoti ( type of green seaweed ) , lettuce leaves ,wansoy ( chopped coriander leaves) , with sweet sauce or slightly spicy sauce. Some would like more more fresh chopped garlic included in the wrapper , some do not like fresh garlic and wansoy ( chopped coriander leaves ) . BUT i loved them.

Lumpia Puso ng Saging (  banana blossom spring rolls)

Lumpia Puso ng Saging or Banana Blossom Spring Roll is not popular in mainstream Philippine culinary palate , But once you tasted it , you will be a convert . It is one of the alternatives for meat and oily deep fried spring rolls. The ingredients is quite common especially when you come from a province where there are a lot of banana plants in bloom.

The common variety of banana blossom is  the saging na saba ( a type of plantain) .  I have tasted this lumpia in a gathering of some senior citizen which prefers this type of lumpia compared to lumpiang shanghai  . This is the same with Lumpiang Kabute ( Mushroom Spring roll) In mushroon growing areas , They used 2 to 3 types of mushroom , chop them finely combined with tofu , carrots and spices. They can be a good alternative to the usual fried lumpia.

The dipping sauce is very varied too, Some use ordinary vinegar with some finely chopped garlic, shallots , chilli peppers and ground peppers. Other favorite condiments includes, banana ketchup, soy sauce with vinegar with finely chopped onions, chilli peppers and calamansi .

The banana blossom lumpia is much cheaper to make compared to the mushroom lumpia .  One big banana blossom only cost between Php 15 to Php 30 in local wet market ( depending on season and availability )

Lumpiang Shanghai by Ambos Mundos

Ambos Mundos is one of the oldest restaurant in Santa Cruz, Manila area . The restaurant offers Filipino, Chinese and Spanish dishes . One of the fave is their Lumpiang Shanghai .

Lumpiang Ubod / Sariwa by Max’s restaurant

Lumpiang Ubod ng Niyog- This is one of the most popular spring rolls being offered by Goldilocks, Max’s restaurant , Kunina ni Kambal among several others. The main ingredients are the young coconut¬† heart are sauteed with shrimp and pork, rolled in crepe-like wrappers made with flour , egg and cornstarch. Special coconut farms specifically for the production of palms. If unavailable , Picama /Jicama¬† / Singkamas can be used to substitute .

home -style lumpia

The author have tasted at least around a dozen or so variation with different types of ingredients and preparation. I have an aunt who prepares Filipino- Chinese style of lumpia with 18 ingredients .  I tried to collectively write about the different types of lumpias that i have eaten , mostly in Metro Manila . But i think that there are more than a dozen  of spring roll variants.

This is our home-style version of lumpia- It is our way of combining different ingredients and cooking styles. The wrapper is home made .

Lumpiang Tagalog by Kusina ni Kambal

The cheapest and one of the most underrated ones are Lumpiang Frito / Lumpiang Toge or Lumpia Gulay ( normally fried )  Рwithout the wrappers, The dish is called Lumpia Hubad or Lumpia Tagalog. 

lumpiang frito  is also called lumpiang gulay ,lumpiang toge

They are commonly sold as street foods all over the country and price range from Php 4.00 to about Php 40.00 in posh malls. Spring rolls or lumpia ingredients vary from one family to another . It may also due to the availability of the ingredients.

Mann Hann restaurant serve lumpia. Delis like Little Store, DEC, or sunday market bazaar regular Yen Ching , New Po Heng near Binondo church , GLOBE lumpia in Quiapo , Maki Place, New Eastern Restaurant along Ongpin street, Sincerity in Yuchengco street ( formerly called Nueva)  , Polland , Baliwag Lechon among others.

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