Food

Not Sure What to Order? Here Are 5 Underrated Foodpanda Restaurants

Discover hidden food gems online.
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2020 ravaged the F&B industry. Countless restaurants shut their doors, and for a long time, it seemed like the dream of opening a homegrown restaurant was shattered for many aspiring food entrepreneurs. But then everything moved digital, and food platforms like foodpanda made it possible to still be inspired by local food startups that refused to be deterred by the pandemic.

We understand the appeal of big brands and fast food, but these don’t always satisfy cravings. If you’re itching for something local and homemade, whether it’s for brunch or a midnight snack, you might be better off with up-and-coming restaurants that are considered “the best of the best” by foodpanda customers in the pandawards.

Here are five underrated Filipino food brands to try on foodpanda.

1| 24 Chicken

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Practically a cult hit by now, 24 Chicken is the hidden gem of Metro Manila. A favorite of families and barkadas, 24 Chicken is the perfect pulutan for late-night (socially-distanced) drinking sessions and family events. It’s best known for serving its various flavored chicken to share, but they offer rice meals as well. One whole serving of its chicken to share is enough to feed your family, your neighbors, and then some, all at an affordable cost. It’s no wonder this is a cult hit.

If you’re craving: fried chicken or something filling.

Must-try: signature Yangnyeom (spicy Korean fried chicken) and Jack Daniels (chicken with Jack Daniels sauce).

2| Mark & Grace Bakeshop

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Sometimes whatever you have in the snack pantry just isn’t going to cut it. If that’s the case, then we recommend Mark & Grace Bakeshop, a quintessential Filipino bakery. Your neighborhood bakeshop on foodpanda, Mark & Grace offers affordable prices for the bread that marked most of our childhoods: hopia, Spanish bread, pan de coco, cinnamon bread, and more.

If you’re craving: nostalgic merienda.

Must-try: hopia ube with sesame seeds and crunchy fried ube.

3| EmoTEAra Café

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A homegrown franchise is always a business worth supporting. EmoTEAra is one of foodpanda’s best finds because it’s had one of the biggest expansions in recent months. It went from one branch in March, 2020, to 20 today in 2021. Perhaps what’s most unique about this local tea shop has expanded to support the owner’s friends and family by giving them franchises, and thus, employment during these hard times.

If you’re craving: something sweet.

Must-try: red velvet milk tea and taro milk tea.

4| Jackson’s Fried Chicken

Jackson’s Fried Chicken is another fun find on foodpanda. As its name suggests, the brand is all about chicken, from its OG fried chicken to its spicy variant to even chicken popcorn, their take on nuggets. But one of its biggest appeals is its variety of guilty pleasure potatoes. They’ve got spiced potato fries, mashed potatoes, and deep fried potato bonbons.

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If you’re craving: chicken that’s not fast food.

Must-try: chicken popcorn and potato bonbons.

5| Yumzie

The downside of takeout is that not all restaurants have everything you want… or do they? Yumzie gets a thumbs up for its hodgepodge of a menu that brings together all our guilty midnight pleasures. Mojos, curly fries, shark’s fin, gyoza, mango smoothies, four seasons juice—you can name any random craving, and there’s a good chance it’s on the menu.

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If you’re craving: everything, but can’t make up your mind.

Must-try: siomai and shark’s fin.

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Anri Ichimura
Section Editor, Esquire Philippines
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