Monday, November 8, 2010

Finally Visited La Loma, THE Lechon Capital

Its been there for a long time, I have lived in the metropolis for also a long time, and I have never actually seen this street where the lechon houses are lined up! Well I went there and OMG, lechon there are and salivate you will! If all the ‘whole’ cooked lechon I saw could have been gathered together, they’d easily be a platoon! Well, if I include those whole pigs waiting to be cooked, those that were already packed for delivery and those that were already being chopped in the many lechon stores… all the lechon I saw could probably be a battalion hehe. Yeah am exaggerating… But this was the first time I got to see so many whole cooked and uncooked lechon. Wow.

Where is it? At the famous La Loma district of Quezon City. Or is it Manila? Or both? I think it’s the border of the two cities, whatever! Driver just asked around and voila we were there! The district though is more famous for something else far from lechon hehe. It is where the La Loma Cemetery (north cemetery?) is located and probably the biggest in this country because across a street is the equally big Chinese cemetery. But many a metro manila resident who has ordered lechon would have noticed that their lechon came from a store in that area or one that has a branch there (its always written in the package!). I don’t know yet why, but I am almost sure, there is no other place in this country with so many lechon makers in one place. Thus, I believe them calling the district as “Lechon Capital”.

We Started at NS Amoranto St. There is an arc declaring the place as Lechon Capital of the Philippines. The lechon makers dot both sides of the street all the way to Blumentritt and there are also those in Calavite St. Some are famous, some are not, some are cooking just a few, some a lot! Why did I go there anyway? Why not?! I was actually just curious and taking a chance if I could watch how they make lechon to meet the demands of the metropolis as opposed to lechon making that I have seen many times during parties or fiestas in the provinces. In a metropolis, especially during weekends, there’d be hundreds of folks who’ll need lechon, right?! In the provinces, seldom.

Fun watching the place left and right. Oh, most lechon in this area do not anymore use bamboo poles but steel pipes! Yes, the one you would use for your water system from the main source to your house hehe. They cook their lechon on long concrete pits filled with charcoal where the lechon poles are placed crosswise. Then they start rotating the poles as the pigs slowly brown from the heat. Yummm! Oh, one pit of a big lechon maker is already a bit “automated” – the poles rotate via a chain mechanism just like in the lechon-manok grillers! Of course we ate some lechon there as we could not stop the salivating. And it was not meal time! So, since we just came from the Lung Center Sunday Market where we bought strawberries, we partnered it with the lechon. Hmm, wonderfully weird combination hehe!

And, I could not help it… ordered one whole lechon to take home with nary an occasion! K lang, Sunday naman hehe!

Okay now... I can sense some Cebuanos and Batanguenos ready to protest about the 'lechon capital' thing hehe. Yes the Cebu lechon is tastier... yes the Balayan lechon is tasty too... ha, even the Tacloban lechon has more of the herbal flavours! Then again, the production quantity over at La Loma is just overwhelming and you can see it out front by the side of the streets. While in Cebu, those lechons are made at some 'private' hidden places and gosh they even hesitate if you asked permission to watch the process (di ba mga taga-Talisay, di ba?). So let us give it to La Loma for now, aight?!

Lastly, judging from what I see on the web, the lechon parade at La Loma every month of May is fantastically funny crazy outrageous than anywhere else. Yep, even if I compare it to the one in Balayan. So am waiting for that month to see for myself!


  1. I always wanted to try out Mila's Lechon. If only I can visit La Loma..

  2. Lechon picture on Top is @Monchies Lechon store in Laloma, thanks