Flight chronicles of the backpacker Tutubi, with travelogues, pictures/photos/videos, travel guides, independent and honest reviews, affordable, recommended resorts and hotels (including inns, guesthouses, pension houses, lodges, hostels, condotels, bed and breakfast and other cheap accommodations), commuting guides, routes (sometimes street maps and GPS coordinates/waypoints) and driving directions to answer "how to get there" questions, information and tips on tourism, budget travel and living in Philippines, Exotic Asia and beyond!
Backpacking, independent travel, and flashpacking are cheaper than the "cheapest package tours" and promotional offers around but you can also use travel information for family vacations, even romantic honeymoon destinations.
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Babalu's Bulalo (Mis)Adventures in San Fernando, La Union
Along the way in every trip, you'll always encounter something unusual, something that captures your fancy by just looking at road signs and establishment names.
One sign caught Tutubi's attention with the sign that proudly say "babalu's bulalo" somewhere in Tarlac and another in Bauang, La Union with a restaurant serving steaming hot bulalo (beef marrow soup) along the highway and where you can see lots of parked cars, meaning it must be good, cheap or both.
But since seeing Babalu's Bulalo and not yet time for lunch, Tutubi and his driver drove on and just looked for a place to eat out at 12 noon along the bypass road of San Fernando, Union, a place called Sisters Restaurant with a signage advertising bulalo on their menu.
the simple menu of the simple roadside eatery in San Fernando, La Union says: bagisen, papaitan, sinanglao, cowballs (soup #5?)
Without thinking, Tutubi ordered bulalo plus "bistek" for his companion to satiate his craving for his favorite comfort food. But to his dismay, he got this: bulalong pata ng baboy, more like nilagang baboy.
bulalo...err...nilagang pata ng baboy
Was Tutubi misled by the bulalo sign outside or he's totally clueless that in La Union, bulalo means pork knuckle soup?
On his return trip to Sta. Cruz, Ilocos Sur, he again passed by the same road, saw the same restaurant with the unforgettable "bulalo" but no longer duped and instead was able to mark the real Babalu's Bulalo in his GPS so as not to miss it. The result:
Babalu's Bulalo branch in Bauang, La Union (an order costs PhP50.00 single serving)
Besides finally sampling Babalu's Bulalo, he was also able to find out if the "long-chin" actor was behind the road side bulalo eatery but he got the answer that Babalu was really not behind the restaurant, it's just a marketing ploy, some sort of name recall that even Tutubi was fooled.
Babalu's Bulalo falls into the Frugal Food Find category, bulalo was not really good but also not bad at a price of PhP50.00. It seems the marrowy goodness of beef tendons got drowned out by the generous serving of soup but still it's something to satiate once craving for hot bulalo, particularly for the ultra-hungry on rainy days.