Siomai. Fried Siopao. Tea Eggs. Champoy. Lumpia. Hao Flakes. Hopia. Adults can easily be swayed to join you in this trip with the prospect of eating all these stuff, but how about the kids? Does Chinatown have the same appeal to them?

I started off with Chinatown being the oldest Chinatown in the whole world. Like the “Sangleys” or Chinoys of pre-Hispanic era living in the area now known as Intramuros. Then the Spaniards came, and the Sangleys were driven out of the Walled City to live across the Pasig River. Or how about the Binondo Church being where our very first Saint Lorenzo Ruiz served as altar boy? We started off with a visit to this Church and Mamu just had to have this trivia drilled into their heads. πŸ˜‰

Inside Binondo Church Where San Lorenzo Ruiz Served As Altar Boy

From Binondo Church, we stepped out and got ready for our walk. But not without pointing out the area (Masangkay) towards all those dilapidated ancestral houses where Rizal’s parents lived after having been evicted from their home in Calamba, Laguna. With that, I promised to stop with my history lessons. Three historical tidbits enough for this morning. Enough.

Dumplings from Dong Bei @Yuchengco Street off Ongpin

This is a food trip. And that’s a promise. First order of the day is to show the ‘elves’ that there are dumplings other than the ones from Hen Lin. πŸ™‚

Siomai at P80 for 10 pieces?

We were a few minutes too early, and had to wait for Dong Bei @Yunchengco Street off Ongpin St. to open at 10am. Hungry for our taste of Chinese food, we watched and waited. Those dumplings didn’t let us down πŸ™‚

Tried this myself, good buy for P35!

From Yuchengco Street, we trooped back to Ongpin Street where we passed this grocery store with frozen delights upfront for the elves not to miss. Korean ice cream, woo hoo! It wasn’t so hot this morning, but those ice cream sandwiches must have “cooled” them enough for the “wok”. The elves are happy.

Fried Siopao

Tea Eggs & Siopao

Turning left from Ongpin Street towards Benavidez, we found this corner restaurant selling fried siopao and more! No tea eggs for the little ones, but we went inside to check out what’s on offer for the P150-P200 lunch sets. 3-for-one means choosing 3 viands from the “turo-turo” spread, and your cuppa of rice. Not bad.

Happy to Find Happy, Delicious Kitchen!

3 viands for P150. 4 viands for P180. Simple enough.

Errr, which ones?

Walking some more, we found this bakery shop. You wouldn’t think this bakeshop is not somewhere in Makati.

Baked Goodies from Chinatown

Then the must-stop pasalubong shop: Eng Bee Tin. Found a 2-bite siopao here, which Martin proudly claims he can turn into a one-bite siopao. Cute-sy.

One bite or Two-Bite Siopao?

We also passed some structures which have historical significance. Sadly, a major repair job is in order.

Residence of Higino Francisco

And this was a place where Noli Me Tangere was safekept?

Isn’t it awful? The authorities should do something about this. Higino Francisco is a revolutionary patriot who even plotted to rescue Dr. Rizal in the Bagumbayan execution. He was dissuaded of course, but for his friendship and patriotism, Jose Rizal gifted him with the original manuscript of Noli Me Tangere. Our national hero then thought that the manuscript would fetch a price later, but Higino chose to return the manuscript to Teodora Alonzo, the mother of our hero. Admirable. He died in 1921. But between you and me, who has heard of Higino Francisco?


Now, that really gets me all mad!!!!

(Also check out an earlier blog on Chinatown. Just click on this link)