Don Juan Boodle House

Don Juan Boodle House

Taal is known for its preserved cultural heritage and old ancestral houses that’s why it is given the title “Heritage Town”. Its municipality and people are hand-in-hand in taking care of these tourist spots as they are intent on preserving history and our traditions.

Alongside its locals and ancestral houses, Taal is also known for its authentic Batangueño food. And what field trip would not be complete if you will not sample the local delicacies.

Don Juan, the first boodle house that serves native Taal delicacies, is a big hit and the first tourist destination for food tripping.

Interview with Eli AndresIn an interview with Eli Andres, the manager of Don Juan:
“Don Juan is known for Taal’s Specialities; Tapang Taal, Longganisang Taal, Pork Barbeque, Fried Tawilis, Adobo sa Dilaw and Sinaing na Tulingan. All the foods that we serve are fresh and no preservatives. We came up with Don Juan for people to acknowledge the way of how filipino’s eat, with their finger licking and eating from banana leaf serves as the native way. All served in one boodle and eating as if you’re at home. Knowing Taal for being a heritage town, there are visitors coming all the way from Visayas, Lipa and Batangas.”

Their Boodle comes in three servings namely: Inihaw Boodle, Don Juan’s Boodle and Taal’s Specialties Boodle that are all good for 4 to 6 persons.

“We came up with Boodle because of the old ways on how soldiers used to eat, with bare hands and banana leaf. Eating together with more people is more fun specially sharing the best food we can serve,” added Eli Andres.

We were served with a boodle of Taal’s Specialties namely Tapang Taal, Longganisang Taal, Sinaing na tulingan, Inihaw na Baboy, Adobo sa Dilaw, Fried Tawilis, Ginataang Sitaw Kalabasa served with sliced tomatoes, onions, pickled papaya and steamed rice known as Taal’s Specialties Boodle. Serving us the boodle made us realise it is better to eat with our bare hands and chatting made it fun that helped us to be closer with one another. Laughs and bonding were worthwhile and also the food made it suitable for the fun we had.

“It made me feel the true Pinoy essence that is something we can be proud of and eating together in a meal is very mush important for Pinoys especially when the foods served adds falvor to bonding,” said Andrea Josa Suazo of WowBatangas.

We got to taste different portions of food which we had never encountered before like the Fried Tawilis that can be eaten whole and non-stop picking of the crisp of Tawilis. Another that was so undeniably delicious was Tapang Taal; it is a local dish that is marinated just like the Longanizang Taal, but it is thinly sliced and diced pork served as tapa.

Pampering up with their deserts; Leche Flan, Fried Suman with chocolate spread, Halo halo and Sago’t Gulaman, you’ll find yourself in the middle of the Green Field, breathing fresh air. We were much fascinated by the deserts that was served for us and was really enjoyable to eat. One serve of their desert wasn’t enough to fill our stomach but it was a joy to taste their delicacies.

“Eating at Don Juan is like eating at home and it makes you wonder the fresh breeze of the forest. That’s how Don Juan made me feel. The rich delicacies of Taal promises that wherever you are, you’re at home,” said Nicole John Martinez of WowBatangas.

The inside of Don Juan’s restaurant is patterned from the old houses of Taal. Don Juan is a restaurant that brings the family together in one meal and they encourage eating with bare hands, which is as Pinoy at it comes. Not only that, barkadas and group of friends and tourists will also enjoy dining here.

Contact Information:
Telephone: (043) 302-2486 , (043) 740-1828
Moblie: 0922-803-8855
Address: Calle J. W. Diokno St. Taal, Batangas 4208 Besides Taal, Public Market
For more information, visit their website:

And more food articles at

Written by: Maria Celina Valencia
Photos by: Nicole John Martinez

WOWBatangas Team – JR Cantos, Maria Celina Valencia, Andrea Josa Suazo, and Nicole John Martinez

Paradores Del Castillo Hotel

Paradores Del Castillo Hotel




cropped-EDITED-LATEST-LOGO2Paradores is a term used in Spain for a historical building, monastery or castle that has been converted into a government-run luxury hotel.  Parar or Para means to stop and stay. The original owner’s Spanish-Filipino surname del Castillo means “castle.” In deference, the new owners named this bed & breakfast boutique hotel Paradores del Castillo, which literally means- “stop at castle.”


The Famous Foods and Crafts of Taal, Batangas

The Famous Foods and Crafts of Taal, Batangas

Aside from being known for its rich history, Taal, Batangas has a wide variety of foods and crafts that Taaleños (people of Taal) are really proud of.

               Upon visiting Taal, Batangas, be sure to experience tasting their native products such as:


Empanada – It consists of ground pork with potato and carrots wrapped in a soft and delicious crust is considered to be one of the best-tasting versions of this Filipino version of the pocket sandwich.


Longganisa has a distinct taste from being marinated in secret ingredients. The meat is flavored with adobo marinade and garlic. The meat is not finely-ground and contains chunks of fat. It is slightly salty and would fall into the deredaco garlicky (or mabawang) category. This can only be bought at the Taal market.


Aside from bulalolomi, and kapeng barako which Batangas is known for, there’s another must-try when you head down here in the province – the tapang Taal.

Usually, when you hear the word tapa, you would think of beef. But in Taal, their tapa is pork marinated in soy sauce with garlic and calamansi. Last week, I had tapang Taal for three straight meals. It’s best paired with fried rice and kapeng barako. Have it dipped in vinegar with onions and chilis. Yummy!

The best thing about having a delicacy or a dish that became a best-seller is the opportunity for the locals to have it as their own livelihood. There are lots of Taal locals selling this tapa and eventually they have been gaining frequent patrons from other neighboring towns and even from other provinces.


Panutsa – It’s Batangas version of peanut brittle – made of caramelized brown sugar and whole peanuts. This sugar-loaded delicacy will surely give you enough dose for a sweet fixation. It may sound common, but Taaleños boast that their peanut varieties are tastier. It comes in different sizes, most commonly in the size of an 8 inch plate.


Suman or rice cake – This is wrapped in banana leaves is also something one should not miss. They say what makes it extra tasty is the fact that it was mixed for several hours in order to achieve a desired consistency.

The suman salehiya which is made of boiled sticky rice is a perfect merienda specially when eaten with tsokolate brewed from tableyang-taal, the distinct chocolate ball ground from cacao mixed with brown sugar.


Burdang Taal (Barong Embroidery) refers to the long tradition of hand embroidery since the turn of the century executed on fabric, especially on jusi and pina, and more popularly sought for the Barong Tagalog worn by the Filipino gentleman. Burdang Taal is also done for ternos and gowns and has a wide range of clothing lines from infants to adults, for both the male and female customers. Other fabrics are also used like cotton, linen and ramie. It is also used to accent garment accessories and home décor items.

Taal is known for, Burdang Taal , its fine hand-embroidered Barong materials, pillow cases, bed covers, table cloths and napkins. The finest burdang Taal are found in workshops and stores at Barangay Niogan and at the public market. The most popular embroidered materials are for making the barong tagalog and saya , the country’s traditional costumes for men and women respectively. There is a wide choice of materials from the expensive semi-transparent Piña made from pineapple fibers, jusi made from silk, gusot mayaman from ramie, cotton and synthetic fibers.


Balisong (Butterfly Knives) – This is a another Batangas’ pride. In the Wikipedia, it is described as:  a Philippine  folding pocket knife with two handles counter-rotating around the tang such that, when closed, the blade is concealed within grooves in the handles. In the hands of a trained user, the knife blade can be brought to bear quickly using one hand. Manipulations, called flipping, are performed for art or amusement.

One would usually find Batangas butterfly knives stalls on the highways of Lemery and Taal where one could directly buy balisongs. These knives  are of various sizes, from a key-chain to beinte nueve – (the standard size) up to a garden-cutter size.

                          Alah eh, ay tayo na sa Taal!

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