Since we're on the subject of Cebu Lechon from my recent food trip in Chic-Boy, I suddenly remembered my vacation in Cebu last November 2009 where I got myself THE BEST Lechon in the world, as coined by celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain. Owned by Market Manila, Zubuchon boasts of using only the freshest and often home grown organic lemongrass, green onions, chili peppers, local sea salt, and other herbs and spices. To ensure quality of the pigs, they steer away from large commercial piggeries but instead get them from local folks who generally raise their pigs in their backyard. Zubuchon also roasts their pigs the old-fashioned way. Natural bamboo poles replace the mechanical rotisserie plus the technique of puncturing the pig while being roasted to make the skin crispy.
My first encounter with a Cebu Lechon was when I visited a marine sanctuary in Santander, Cebu. The owner of the resort told me that Cebu Lechon is best eaten without any sauce. The pork itself is so flavorful that it can stand on its own without the help of any sauce. The moment I had my first Cebu Lechon, I realized that what the owner said was true. Since Santander is a 6-hour drive from Cebu City, I was able to find another good Lechon in the metro that I visit every time I go to Cebu. The store is called CNT Lechon. There was even a time when I brought back 2 boxes (about 5 kilos/box) of CNT Lechon with me to Manila. So you can just imagine my curiosity and excitement when I learned about Zubuchon. A visit to Banilad Town Center for their Sunday market was already in my itinerary. I told myself that I won't leave Cebu until I've tasted Zubuchon.
This was the old stall. They have a sturdier one now with the logo.
My friend and I bought half a kilo since we're not planning to take it home to Manila. We went back to Casa Escano, the lovely hotel we stayed at, and ate the lechon there (along with the other dishes we ordered in their restaurant, Don Merto's).
One bite of Zubuchon made me instantly understand why it's considered THE BEST Cebu Lechon. The skin was done to perfection that it crackles in every bite. The marriage of herbs and spices was excellent. The roast pork was succulent and insanely flavorful. I can imagine what it would be like to have the whole roasted pig in front of me, taking in the hypnotic aroma of freshly-roasted lechon, hearing the skin crackle in every stab of the knife and sinking my teeth into its juicy meat. Ah, must be heavenly.
*Oh by the way, they're now offering Zubuchon Light. Same taste, less calories. Check it out.
Banilad Town Center
(stall in front of Robinsons Supermarket)
Weekdays: 10am - 7pm (Except Monday)
Weekend: 9am - 7pm
Frozen Lechon Ready to Cook Sisig (P295)
Lechons from Php4,000-Php6,000 (depending on the size)