Quezon Culinary Tour (Part I): A "Sulyap" back in time

Quezon truly is the perfect destination for those who want to experience the beauty and richness of the countryside. This is the Follow a path through various unique experiences such as the delectable Filipino cuisine at Kusina Salud, the amazing treasure trove of antique pieces at Sulyap, and of course, the rest house of the word-renowned Filipino potter, Ugu Bigyan.In the barangay of Del Remedio, just a few minutes outside the city of San Pablo, Laguna, is Sulyap Gallery & Cafe.

Accessible from the national road, Sulyap gives one the impression of entering a world lost in time, with its tall trees and an old three-storey structure that resembled that of a typical public school building. In the farthest side of the property was a house of built with a fusion of old Filipino and Spanish architecture. It reminded me of the house where my grandmother and her siblings were raised in the early 1900s.

A restaurant is housed inside this charming architectural masterpiece, which was transported piece by piece, plank by plank, from Real, Quezon. Roy Empalmado, the proud owner of Sulyap, an enthusiast of everything antique, purchased this home to prevent it from being demolished. He later on had it restored and planted right on the very spot where Sulyap now stands, another addition to his endless collection of antiques.

We were served a delicious breakfast that consisted of garlic rice, beef tapa, longganisang lukban tsokolate and suman. After the satisfying breakfast, Mr. Empalmado gave us a tour inside his antique gallery, which is housed in the entire ground floor of the three-storey structure mentioned earlier. This enormous collection consisted of everything from old transistor radios to jewelry, bed frames made of hard wood to gas lamps, and long wooden tables to antique jars.

Our visit to Sulyap was such a satisfying experience, mainly because of an overwhelming sense of nostalgia that ones feels, just looking at Mr. Empalmado's huge collection of antique finds, similar to that of a museum. Being inside the restored ancestral home that now functions as a restaurant, one can't help but imagine what it must have been like a hundred years back, a time when life was a lot simpler and perhaps even more meaningful.

To book a Quezon Culinary Tour with us, visit our Experience Jeepney Tours page at www.mangotours.com or give us a call at 1-866-2-MANILA, where a travel representative of ours would be happy to help you plan your trip.