Ilocos Adventure: Hidden Garden Restaurant

After a long road trip and going around Bantay Bell Cave, our tour guide Kuya Lino asked the group if we would like to proceed to Baluarte or we prefer to have breakfast first. The whole bus was unanimous in our choice: Food food food! You know how sometimes you don’t realize how famished you are until somebody mentions the prospect of eating? Yup, that was one of those times.

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According to our itinerary, we were to have our first meal in Vigan at Hidden Garden Restaurant. It was a huge place filled with beautiful plants and flowers. They actually had a hidden garden behind where plants in pots are for sale. Since we were all hungry, we opted to place our orders first and just explore the place later. I saw a banner that said Hidden Garden was chosen by TV show Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho as one of the top restaurants that serve the best Ilocano dishes.

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Posing for a photo after placing our orders
Posing for a photo after placing our orders

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And then our orders arrived!

What's the best first meal in Ilocos? Bagnet, of course.
What’s the best first meal in Ilocos? Bagnet, of course.

All six of us ordered bagnet, Ilocos-style lechon kawali. It was sort of our self-imposed “welcome to Ilocos” meal. Personally, I thought their bagnet wasn’t as mind-blowing as I’d hoped it would be, but any meal shared with friends is always good.

Instagram that shit
Instagram that shit

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We were given some time to roam around the place before we were asked to get on the bus to go to Baluarte.

Playing with the condiments section
Me and Jesrell playing around in the condiments section

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Noreen, Mark and I might have overused the beautify feature of Mark’s awesome phone. Hehe.

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In hindsight, we probably should have ordered different dishes at Hidden Garden, instead of all of us going for bagnet so we could at least try their other stuff. After all, it’s not everyday we get to eat there, right?

Anyway, with full tummies and childlike excitement, we proceeded to Baluarte, the famous outdoor zoo in Vigan.

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