Where to Eat in Ilocos: La Preciosa

Second on my food itinerary in a recent trip to Ilocos was La Preciosa. I have heard and read a lot of rave reviews about this place while I was planning the trip, so there was no way I was going up to pass up on the chance of tasting their food. We decided to have dinner here on our first night in Laoag. Since it was a Wednesday then and we were in a province and all, we were worried they might close early. We called to check until what time they’d be open, and were relieved when they said they’d be open until 11PM and can take orders until 9:30PM.

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We took a short tricycle ride to get to the restaurant. We arrived at around 9PM but were surprised that there were still a lot of customers inside. The place was still very clean and well-lit considering it was already quite late.

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When we saw the menu, we were pleasantly surprised at the prices! La Preciosa is considered a fine dining restaurant, but their prices are not expensive at all! Almost everything was below 200PHP, with Crispy Pata being the most expensive at 500PHP. We decided on ordering a couple of their “Ilocano Favorites”: the puqui-puqui (165PHP) and the dinardaraan (195PHP).

Puqui-puqui is the famous (or should I say “infamous” because of the controversy around the name and spelling lol) Ilocano dish of eggplants, eggs, onions and tomatoes. I have never had it before but based on what I had at La Preciosa, I like it! If tortang talong and sarciado married and had a baby, this would be it!

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Dinardaraan, on the other hand, is the Ilocano version of dinuguan. I almost never eat dinuguan if it’s not homecooked, but because of my fear of missing out (haha), I made an exception for this dish. Thankfully I did because I loved it! Unlike the dinuguan I’m used to, La Preciosa’s version has crispy pieces of meat. It’s like eating dinuguang chicharon or dinuguang bagnet if you will. This dish is so indulgent I might have made a mental note to include it in my next confession.

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Now for dessert aka the star of the night! We got La Preciosa’s bestseller cake: the carrot cake (100PHP)! I’m telling you, this is a slice of heaven! I don’t care if you don’t eat carrots or even cake, please do yourself a favor and try this. The cake is moist and light, the frosting has just the right amount of sweetness, and the generous carrot shavings on top give every bite a slightly crunchier texture. If only cakes were easy to transport and travel with, I would have bought boxes of this cake for pasalubong. (Who am I kidding? I’ll reserve one for myself, of course.)

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I only wish they also had more variety of drinks to choose from. We only got coke in cans with our meal because we couldn’t find a special Ilocano refreshment on the menu.

Needless to say, I enjoyed trying out authentic Ilocano dishes here at La Preciosa! I was so satisfied with our dining experience that on my way out, I took a photo of who I assume is Preciosa so I can pay my respects. Thank you, Preciosa, for a wonderful first dinner in Ilocos!

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La Preciosa Fine Dining & Catering Services
Location: J.P. Rizal Street, Laoag City, Ilocos Norte
Website: http://lapreciosailocos.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LaPreciosaIlocos

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