Monday, April 02, 2007
Mactan Island, Cebu
Near Mactan Shrine and Shangri-la Hotel
Seafood cooked in Sutukil style
Nyss - 3/5
Geus - 3/5
Sutukil came from the words SUgba, TUla, and KInilaw. These three words are the names of the most popular types of cooking in Cebu. Sugba is grilled, Tula is a soup-based dish (Tinola in Tagalog), and Kinilaw is mixing raw seafood with vinegar. There are a lot of restaurants in the Sutukil area. Geus and I chose the first one mainly because they had more customers (more customers mean better food) and they had more fish variety.
What makes Sutukil unique is the fact that first you would have to choose the seafood you want cooked. After you choose the seafood, the attendants would weigh it and they would ask you how you want it cooked. For fish, you can either have it grilled or cooked with butter or with black beans or with sweet and sour sauce. For seashells, you can have it grilled or cooked in butter. For squid, you can have it cooked Adobo Style or Calamares Style. And the list goes on. You can actually just ask them to cook the seafood you bought in any way you want to.
Geus chose Lapu-Lapu and we had it cooked with Sweet and Sour Sauce. The fish was great because it was fresh but the sweet and sour sauce was not that good. They only put carrots and a little onion so you don't really feel the sweet and the sour flavor.
I chose Greenshell and we had it cooked with butter. It was surprisingly good. They grilled the greenshells first and then they put butter and grilled it again. If I were to go back, I'd still choose this dish.
It is only here in Cebu that I got exposed to different kinds of seaweeds. One seaweed is what locals call Guso. The scientific name of this seaweed is Eucheuma spinosum. I know this because my officemate has a seaweed farm and he said that Guso is also used to make carrageenan. The Guso was made into a seaweed salad which is basically just seaweed plus vinegar, onions, tomato, spring onions, and a dash of salt. The Guso salad was good but it was a little bland for my taste. I wanted it to be more sour but I think for normal people(meaning, those who do not drink vinegar just like I do, hehe), the taste would've been just right.
Sutukil is just an ordinary carinderia type restaurant so do not go looking for fancy tables or a nice view. The restaurant only has monobloc tables and chairs. The restaurant has three levels and of course we chose to eat at the 3rd level. There were lots of people so it was hard to find a table. The view on one side was of mangrove plantation but the other side had a view of houses from the neighboring squatters area. Some people would feel guilty eating good food and thinking about how the families from the squatters area would eat. But some people might also forget that fact because of the delicious seafood they are eating.
The service was okay. You would have to wait a long time for your food to be cooked but that is just normal since they would cook everything from scratch (clean the seashell, gut the fish, etc).
Years ago, there is still a wet market outside where the fish and other seafoods are slightly less expensive. Today, the restaurants have their own "wet market" so the price is a little steep.
We paid a total of Php 355.00. Not bad for what we ate but do you know that half of that amount was due to the cooking fees? The cooking fee was a little expensive considering that they don't really put a lot of ingredients in the food.
Nyss - I will go back again if I am craving for fresh seafood.
Geus - I like the fresh air, the view and the food. Only missing here is a hammock.