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Binalot Express Wrapped In Banana Leaves Binalot

By: Nathalie Santos – Dayo

It’s always feel good eating out in fancy restaurants, being able to specify how you want your steak to be cooked, with a glass of wine on the side. But there are times that I crave for Filipino food, served the traditional Filipino way with a price that is very affordable.

In these times of craving, I turn to one establishment – Binalot Express. This store serves all time favorite Filipino food wrapped in fresh banana leaves and recycled paper. Their stores are accessible because most of them are conveniently located inside the malls.

Binalot’s Packaging Binalot’s Packaging

Last Monday, I was craving for Filipino food. I got to SM Cubao and my first choice was to eat in Binalot Express. My husband was down with allergies and there were quite a number of things that he could not eat. We went to scout for places and still ended up sitting at one of the tables in Binalot Express.

We walked to the cashier and placed our orders for our lunch, this time we both had the Tapa-Rap Sarap.

Spicy Stir Fried Beef CutletsSpicy Stir Fried Beef Cutlets

There’s really no explanation to it, but Filipinos love to eat food wrapped in banana leaves. Binalot’s packaging made the Tapa truly an enjoyable Filipino meal. The hot rice was topped with the tender beef cutlets, and on the side, there were slices of tomatoes and half of a salted egg.

The other dishes that I normally order are Vivo Tocino (sweetened cured pork or according to, the translation is bacon) and boneless daing na bangus (fried milk fish marinated in vinegar, pepper corns and garlic). The boneless milkfish is a real treat for almost everyone who loves to eat this fish since typically milkfish has a lot of small “bones” that are hard to spot thus making it quite hard to eat the fish.

For our drinks, we had Sago’t Gulaman

Ice Cold Sago’t Gulaman Ice Cold Sago’t Gulaman

Sago is made of starch from the soft, spongy part of Sago palm trees. Gulaman on the other hand is made from dried seaweeds.

This refreshment is very popular in the Philippines, especially during the hot summer months. It’s sold almost everywhere, at roadside stalls, food carts even in restaurants like Binalot Express.

If you want to experience traditional all time Filipino favorites served the traditional way, the way to go is Binalot Express.

Filipino Favorites that they offer

Anytime Inihaw na Baboy (grilled pork), Bongga Longanisa (chorizos or sausages), Vivo Tocino (bacon), Pride Tilapia (fried St. Peter’s Fish), No Bones Daing na Bangus (boneless fried milkfish), Fiesta Adobo, Sinigang with a Bang (sour stew, usually made with tamarind), Sisig na Makisig (stir fried pork jowls with fresh onions) and Bistik na Walastik (Filipino version of beef steak).

All of the above mentioned dishes are very affordable at a price range between seventy pesos (Php70.00) and ninety pesos (Php90.00)

For side dishes

You can choose between You Bet Pinakbet (sautéed vegetables which include eggplants, string beans and squash) and Along Came Talong with Bagoong (fried eggplant served with shrimp paste)


The dishes included here are the all time favorites which are paired with Adobo rice. Bangusdobo (milk fish), Longgadobo (sausages/chorizos), Tapadobo, Tocidobo and Tipidobo. All of which are served wrapped in banana leaves and recycled paper. The meals also include drinks and a fried egg, prices range from fifty-five pesos (Php55.00) to seventy-five pesos (Php75.00).

Drinks to choose from

They serve iced tea, soda and the favorite Filipino refreshment Sago’t Gulaman

Eating at Binalot does not just give one an authentic Filipino dining experience. It also helps the environment and supports farmers by reducing the use of styrofoam cups and plates since the restaurant uses banana leaves (which they buy from the farmers) and recycled paper for their packaging.




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