Best Lechon in Cebu: Top 12 Restaurants to Taste “ The Best Pig Ever” (According to Anthony Bourdain)

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Cebu is home to the best lechon in the Philippines. Visitors to the Philippines often make a beeline for Cebu to sample the lechon. Even world-renowned chef, Anthony Bourdain, visited Cebu to try the famous dish.

After arriving in the Philippines to explore the local specialties, we took the first flight to Cebu to try this famous dish.

From our visit to Cebu and combined with local recommendations, we share our 12 favorite places for a truly unforgettable Lechon experience.

Let’s dive into the Cebu lechon, which Anthony Bourdain described as “the best pig ever!”

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What is Lechon

Roasted Pig Best Lechon In Cebu by Authentic Food Quest

Lechon, a beloved dish from the Philippines, is renowned for its flavorful meat and crispy skin. 

Lechon means “roasted pig.” The way it is made in the Philippines is with a whole pig cooked on a large stick over a pit filled with charcoal.

Roasting a pig is the traditional way to make lechon, and for Cebu lechon, a roasted pig aged 2-6 weeks works best to provide succulent meat worth savoring as it is less fatty.

The roasted pork belly that hits all the right notes on our taste buds makes this beloved dish even more special. 

These roasted pigs are cooked over charcoal-filled pits for 1.5 to 2 hours,
depending on their size, so every bite of meat is juicy and incredibly flavourful.

Cebu whole lechon is a traditional meal for holidays, get-togethers, and fiesta celebrations. 

Why is Cebu Famous for Lechon?

Chopped Pork Best Lechon In Cebu by Authentic Food Quest

Unlike in other regions in the Philippines, Cebu’s lechon is known for its crispy crust achieved through its unique roasting method.

The lechon in Cebu is unique due to the combination of herbs and spices used to marinate the meat before roasting. 

The pig is roasted slowly over charcoal and seasoned with lemongrass, bay leaves, peppercorns, and other local ingredients.

Whereas, in other regions, lechon is prepared using only salt and pepper.

The combination of seasonings used in Cebu lechon gives it an
aromatic and flavorful taste that can’t be found elsewhere.

It is then served with a delicious and savory sauce. Sometimes this sauce can be spicy. 

And according to some locals in Cebu, “Ganahan ko og init, halang nga lechon!” (I love hot, spicy lechon!)

AUTHENTIC FOOD QUEST TIP: On your visit to Cebu, consider taking a culinary tour and discover the traditional flavors loved by locals. This Cebu Dine Around tour combines the flavors of the land and sea, including a taste of Anthony Bourdain’s favorite lechon. 

Our Top 12 Favorites Places For Tasty Lechon in Cebu

In Cebu City Philippines, you’ll find tasty and delicious lechon available at a number of restaurants, local eateries, and markets.

We highlight here our 12 favorite eateries in Cebu to sink your teeth into melt-in-your-mouth pork. 

Join locals in praising the crisp and crunchy skin, by saying “Lutong!”  

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1. Rico’s “Da Best Gyud” The Best of The Best Cebu Lechon

Rico's spicy lechon Best lechon in Cebu by Authentic Food Quest
Plates of lechon ready to be served

Rico’s Lechon was our favorite lechon in Cebu. 

We visited their Mabolo branch location and were immediately impressed by their kitchen setup, where you can watch your lechon chopped up and prepared.

That evening the “classic” lechon was out of stock. So, instead, we chose their “spicy” lechon at ½ kilo and were not disappointed. 

To complement our meal, we also ordered the restaurant’s specialty a “Trio of Seaweed Salads,” which combines lokot, lato, and guso seaweeds with native-fermented vinegar and spices. 

What we loved about Rico’s lechon were two things.

Spicy lechon at Rico's lechon cebu lechon authentic food quest
We tried the spicy lechon at Rico’s

The crispy skin was perfectly browned and gave off crunchy sounds with each bite taken. 

And the succulent and flavorful lechon, cooked with garlic, leeks, and spices. 

The recommended drink to accompany the lechon is the Cucumansi Quencher. This refreshing and iced drink has Calamansi (a typical Filipino lime) and cucumbers. This was a delicious drink to tame the garlicky flavors.

Summing up Rico’s Lechon slogan, “Da Best Gyud,” this is the place to go if you want to experience authentic Cebuano lechon at its finest.

Rico’s Lechon

Address: Rico’s Lechon, Unit F-1 Jamestown Mantawi Drive North Reclamation Area, Mandaue City (Fronting Parkmall, Beside BIG Hotel) and 3 more locations in Cebu City

Hours: Open daily 10:00 am – 9:00 pm

Price range: For Medium Platter (2-3 people) P320 – P480, (approx. $5.70 – $8.60 USD)

Pro tip: Takeout box is available at all branches nationwide.

READ MORE: Ricos’ Lechon Review: Is It The Best Lechon in Cebu?

2. CNT Lechon 

Juicy lechon with crispy skin

Going to the mall to eat lunch might sound strange, but it’s quite typical in the Philippines. At CNT lechon, a Cebu-based franchise, dining at the mall is a special treat. 

After hearing rave reviews about CNT’s lechon from locals, we headed to Ayala Center Cebu excited to give it a try. 

We had already seen the “chopper” working his magic with the pork at the entrance, so when it came to tasting it, our expectations were quite high. 

Fortunately, the lechon lived up to its promise and we found it quite enjoyable. The skin was wonderfully crispy while the pork itself was very tender and juicy. 

After tasting lechon, we can say it has an earthy, herbaceous flavor, and the texture is remarkably crunchy.

cnt lechon cebu lechon by authentic food quest
Cebu lechon from this CNT Lechon did not disappoint

The slight drawback of this local favorite was that there were more bones than meat. Even so, this popular eatery at the mall had a non-stop line of people ordering their meals.

If you ever find yourself at the mall with a craving for some tasty lechon, head to CNT Lechon.

CNT Lechon

Address: Three locations in Cebu City

  • 1377 V Rama Ave, Cebu City, Cebu
  • Jose L Briones Street, Lungsod ng Cebu, 6000 Lalawigan ng Cebu
  • Food Choice, Ayala Mall Cebu, Archbishop Reyes Avenue, Cebu City

Hours: Open daily, 10:00 am – 9:00 pm

Price: Price range from P200 – P860 depending on the size (approx. $3.6 – 15.40 USD)

Pro tip: Come just before lunch as they serve the best part of lechon on a first come, first served basis.

READ MORE: Filipino Food Guide: 15 Authentic Filipino Dishes You Want to Have

3. Zubuchon 

roasted pig zubuchon cebu lechon authentic food quest
“Best pig ever” sign in Zubuchon

Zubuchon is one of the most hyped and commercial lechon restaurants. While famous for its marketing, it doesn’t earn the “tastiest lechon” title from the locals.

A nonetheless must-do restaurant we made our way to one of the popular Cebu branches. 

Once we got in, we were immediately warmly greeted by the staff. What really caught our eye was the quote from Anthony Bourdain: “Best pig ever” which was boldly hanging on the wall. 

Later we found out that Anthony Bourdain had talked about lechon several years before Zubuchon opened its doors. 

All this evidence simply left us more curious as to what made their version so special.

zubuchon restaurant cebu lechon authentic food quest
Try other Filipino specialties at Zubuchon

While the lechon was certainly good it wasn’t quite up to the local standard. We found it a bit fatty and unfortunately didn’t have the full flavor experience we had enjoyed at other eateries.

Overall, Zubuchon provides a modern and clean experience. It is a nice restaurant to try local specialties beyond lechon.

You can find Zubuchon in various Metro Manila and Cebu branches.


Address: 8 locations in Cebu City and Mactan Island. They also have 4 stores in Metro Manila and 1 in Parañaque City

Hours: Open Monday – Friday 9:00 am – 6:00 pm

Price: Price of the classic roast pig depends on size,  P420 – P1050 (approx, $7.50  – 18.8 USD)

Pro tip: Pair lechon with Kamias shake to balance the richness of the lechon with its sweet and sour flavor.

4. Cary’s Lechon 

Cary's Lechon Best Lechon In Cebu by Authentic Food Quest
One of the best lechon in Cebu in display

There’s something truly special about biting into a classic, street-style lechon of Cary’s Lechon

Cary’s Lechon has the flavors of slow-roasted pork, freshly chopped garlic, chili pepper, lemongrass, and locally sourced herbs. 

It’s not surprising locals prefer their traditional lechon making that has been around for generations.

Cary’s Lechon in Cebu is a must-try for anyone who appreciates the flavors of a homemade, rotisserie-roasted pig. 

As a local shop that opened in 1963, they truly understand how to make it feel warm and homey. 

While the flavor is simple, there’s something nostalgic when you take that first bite. 

Be sure to pair it up with their famous spicy soy sauce for an added kick.

Their lechon has a perfectly crunchy and crispy skin, but the real draw of this dish is the flavorful meat that’s been perfectly seasoned with just the right amount of salt and pepper. 

Not to mention, it’s best eaten with your hands for an even more enjoyable experience. 

Cary’s Lechon accepts online orders, so you can enjoy it whenever you like.

Also, try their roast beef and chicharon bulaklak, a traditional appetizer. They come highly recommended by locals who know what’s good.

Cary’s Lechon

Address: 6-D, 6000 Sanson Rd, Cebu City

Hours: Open 24 hours

Price: Around P600 for one kilo (approx. $10.7 USD)

Pro tip: Try their roast beef and chicken as well

READ MORE: 10 Interesting Facts You Need To Know About Food in The Philippines

5. Kuzina Guadalupe 

Kuzina Guadalupe Best Lechon in Cebu by Authentic Food Quest
Delicious chopped Cebu lechon

Kuzina Guadalupe is a popular and renowned lechon spot in Seaside SM City Cebu

Famous for their boneless lechon belly, they are known to serve meaty, juicy, and crunchy pork skin at affordable prices. 

Despite being highly praised by loyal customers, Kuzina Guadalupe still has some drawbacks. The lechon bones sometimes aren’t chopped well, which can be irritating when eating. 

Aside from its mouth-watering lechon pork belly, Kuzina Guadalupe is also known for their grilled Tuna Panga (tuna jaw), marinated with the perfect balance of spices and flavors. 

Kuzina Guadalupe offers excellent dishes at unbeatable prices. 

Kuzina Guadalupe Lechon Cebu by Authentic Food Quest
Kuzina Guadalupe set up at the night market in Cebu

With generous servings of juicy and crispy pork and freshly prepared grilled Tuna Panga, it’s no surprise this restaurant is a favored spot. 

Go for the beloved lechon and try some seafood dishes as well.

Kuzina Guadalupe

Address: M. Velez St. and SM Seaside City,  Cebu City

Hours: Open daily 10:00 am – 6:30 pm

Price: Ranges from P200 – P800 depending on size (approx. $3.60 – 14.30 USD)

Pro tip: Try their delicious seafood dishes

6. House of Lechon 

House Of Lechon Best Lechon In Cebu by Authentic Food Quest
Beautiful interior design at House Of Lechon – Photo credit: House of Lechon on Facebook

House of Lechon is an upscale restaurant in the Philippines offering an exceptional dining experience. 

Offering an elegant dining experience with Filipino-themed decor, you’ll be impressed the minute you walk in.

What sets the House of Lechon apart is its famous lechon. 

Lechon at the House of Lechon is crispy and tender. It’s served with a special sauce made from the strips of the meat when roasted. 

Beyond classic lechon, you’ll also find lechon prepared in various ways. From lechon sisig dishes to hinumba, and paksiw versions. 

House of Lechon also serves other popular Filipino dishes such as Kinilaw, a fish or seafood dish marinated in vinegar and spices.

You can also try the popular dinuguan, a savory pork stew cooked with pig’s blood, or Pinakbet, a vegetable and pork dish.

With its exceptional food and classy atmosphere, it’s pretty popular. If you want to eat at the House of Lechon, go early or make a reservation first.

House of Lechon

Address: Acacia St and Don Jose Avila St., Cebu City

Hours: Mon – Fri, 11:00 am – 9:00 pm; Sat and Sun, 10:00 am – 9:00 pm

Price: Portion of lechon P275 (approx. $4.90 USD)

Pro tip: Go during the off hours for quicker service (2:00 pm – 5:00 pm)

AUTHENTIC FOOD QUEST TIP: If you are looking for a taste of culture and lunch at the House of Lechon, consider this private Cebu and Lapu Lapu city tour. It’s a full-day tour with free hotel pick up to several historic sites in Cebu and Lapu Lapu city.  You’ll visit Magellan’s Cross, the Heritage of Cebu Monument, Mactan island, and much more. The most delicous part is the lechon Cebu lunch at the House of Lechon.

7. Ayer’s Lechon 

Ayers Lechon Best Lechon In Cebu by Authentic Food Quest
A great place for delicious lechon and other Filipino dishesPhoto credit: Cebu’s Ayer Lechon on Facebook

Ayer’s Lechon is a popular lechon restaurant in the Philippines and has been around since 2009. 

It is known to have delicious lechon that is tasty, flavorful, and not too salty. 

Ayer’s Lechon has an herbaceous flavor due to the herbs and spices used to marinate the pork before roasting it.

Some locals, though, find that the skin of Ayer’s Lechon isn’t as crunchy as it should be. And there are more bones and fat in the meat than expected. 

The key to enjoying the meal is dipping lechon in vinegar, which helps enhance the roasted pork flavor. 

Ayer’s Lechon is budget-friendly, allowing you to savor the roasted pig without spending too much on your meal.

Plus, you also find a wide variety of other authentic Filipino foods. Try ginataang kalabasa or squash in coconut milk, or liver afritada, a delicious liver stew cooked with tomatoes, and much more.

Ayer’s Lechon

Address: Gate 777, Banilad Road across Cebu Country Club, 10 more locations in Cebu City

Hours: Open Sun-Wed, 10:00 am – 9:00 pm; Thur – Fri, 9:00 am – 9:00 pm

Price: Price per kilo is P900 (approx. $16.10 USD)

Pro tip: Their spicy lechon is a must-try

READ MORE: Pampanga Food Guide: 10 Best Delicacies in Pampanga You’ll Want To Try

8. Se Ben’s lechon 

Se Bens Lechon Cebu Lechon by Authentic Food Quest
Se Ben’s offers delicious pork at reasonable prices Photo credit: Se Ben’s Lechon on Facebook

Se Ben’s Lechon has been serving locals in the Philippines since 2002 and is known as one of the most underrated lechon restaurants. 

They specialize in creating a unique flavor that differentiates them from similar companies like CNT and Rico’s Lechon.

Se Ben’s Lechon is highly sought after for its well-balanced fat-to-muscle ratio, making it both juicy on the inside and crisp on the outside. 

Additionally, with the right level of saltiness and flavor, this lechon stands out among its competitors.

It is also praised for its great taste and affordability, as it’s edging out more prominent lechon brands in terms of price.

While the shop is small, it has maintained its taste and quality over the years. This has made it one of the local’s favorite places to get their fix for Filipino-style roasted pig.

Moreover, you can expect each serving of tasty lechon to be unique compared to other eateries. This is because each pork belly cut is carefully prepared before roasting at Se Ben’s Lechon. 

Se Ben’s lechon

Address: G/F Gaisano Country Mall Food Court, Banilad, Cebu City and GND Building, Panagdait (Near Sykes), Mabolo, Cebu City

Hours: Open Mon-Thur, 9:00 am – 8:00 pm; Fri- Sun, 9:00 am – 9:00 pm

Price: Lechon belly for 10 people is P1550 (approx. $27.70 USD)

Pro tip: They also accept orders and deliver nationwide.

AUTHENTIC FOOD QUEST TIP: Pinakbet is a popular and easy-to-make Filipino dish. Try our Pinakbet Ilocano Recipe: How To Make Easy To Cook Filipino Pakbet

9. Eli’s lechon Cebu 

Elis Lechon Cebu Filipino Lechon by Authentic Food Quest
Lechon prepared in the traditional wayPhoto credit: Eli’s Lechon Cebu on Facebook

Eli’s Lechon Cebu is a destination for all things delicious and home to some of the best tasting lechon.

Their main specialty is the traditional and authentic lechon Cebu. 

The lechon is prepared with an original recipe to ensure its flavor and crunchiness. 

The skin is extra crispy, making it a perfect complement to the flavorful meat that lies underneath. 

This combination of flavor and skill makes Eli’s Lechon Cebu genuinely mouth-watering.

The best way to enjoy this dish is by pairing it with dinuguan, poso rice (hanging rice in palm leaves), and atsara (papaya relish). 

This trio of Filipino favorites brings out the flavors of the lechon even more.

Locals who recommended Eli’s Lechon Cebu described it as a place to taste the authenticity of flavors in each bite.

You want to savor the experience at Eli’s Lechon Cebu.

Eli’s Lechon Cebu delivers daily around Cebu and all the way to Manila, keeping you close enough to authentic lechon.

Eli’s Lechon Cebu

Address: 1111 Leyson Street, Talamban, Cebu City, Cebu

Hours: Open daily, 7:00 am – 7:00 pm

Price: Price per kilo is P800 (approx.14.30 USD)

Pro tip: Go on Sunday and order per kilo 

10. Cebu’s Original Lechon Belly 

Cebus Original Lechon Belly Cebu Lechon by Authentic Food Quest
This restaurant has a few locations throughout CebuPhoto credit: Cebu’s Original Lechon on Facebook

The experience of eating boneless lechon at Cebu’s Original Lechon Belly is especially noteworthy. 

The flavorful meat on the belly side is incredibly tender and juicy that it practically melts in your mouth.

The lechon skin is also wonderfully crispy and flavorful, adding extra depth. 

If you prefer some heat with your lechon, you can try their famous spicy lechon, which adds a kick to the classic flavors.

Not only do they offer a variety of lechon dishes, but they also have other signature dishes, such as beef stew, that are simply delicious and abundant with beef chunks.

Eating lechon using your hands (with plastic gloves) allows you to savor every bit of flavor.

 You can dine outside on the open-air terrace, and if it’s too hot, there’s closed-off seating upstairs.

Prices at Cebu’s Original Lechon Belly are surprisingly affordable. And the menu offers a wide range of chicken dishes you can also try.

Cebu’s Original Lechon Belly

Address: Several locations in Cebu City

SM City Cebu Supermarket Food Area, NRA, Cebu City  

Werpa Food Park, Punta Princesa, Cebu City   

Maxwell Hotel (G/F), N. Escario Street, Capitol, Cebu City

SM Consolacion Food Court, Consolacion, Cebu  (Opening Very Soon).

SM Seaside City Supermarket Food Area, SRP, Cebu City 

Mabolo Commissary, Gochan Compound, Mabolo, Cebu City  

Hours: Most locations open daily 10:00 am – 8:00 pm

Price: Price per kilo for original lechon is P940 (approx.16.8 USD), spicy version P999 (approx.17.90 USD), portions for P120-P135 (approx. $2.20-$2.40 USD)

Pro tip: Best paired with puso or rice wrapped in leaves

READ MORE: 11 Unforgettable Ilocos Food to Delight Your Palate in the Philippines

11. Alejo’s Lechon 

Alejos Lechon Lechon Cebu by Authentic Food Quest
This top quality lechon is often overlooked – Photo credit: Alejo’s Lechon on Facebook

Alejo’s Lechon is a Cebuano favorite that flies under the radar.

It’s located at the Labangon Public Market and is only available for takeout.

Amongst Cebu City locals, it’s well-known for top-notch lechon and its unbeatable ratio of meat to skin. 

Every bite is a delight. From the chunky, tender, juicy pieces of meat in the lechon leg and belly to the crispy skin that seals in all the flavor.

With each order, you can expect your lechon to come with a hint of lemongrass, making it even more aromatic and delicious.

If you are lucky enough, you might find bits of lamas mixed in with your lechon. 

The lamas are aromatic spices and herbs that are typically stuffed inside the cavity of the lechon while cooking, adding an extra hint of flavor to each bite. 

Even without a physical store, Alejo’s Lechon doesn’t stay around for long. 

Locals get to the market early to get their hands on one of these delicious lechons before they all run out.

Their savory combination of flavors makes it worth seeking out, even if you have plenty of other nearby options. 

Not only are their prices affordable, but they also offer superior quality roasted pig compared to others.

Alejo’s Lechon 

Address: Barangay Labangon Public Market, 132 Katipunan St, Cebu City,

Hours: Open daily 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Price: Price per kilo approx P800 (approx. $14.30 USD)

Pro tip: Ask if you can get your order with the aromatic lamas spice and herbs for even more flavorful indulgence.

12. Carcar Lechon at The Market

Carcar Public Market Best Lechon InCebu by Authentic Food Quest
You won’t go wrong with any lechon vendor – Photo credit: dbgg1979 on Flickr cc by 2.0

Carcar City’s lechon is located inside the Carcar City Public Market. It’s the go-to place for flavorful and affordable lechon. 

The food stall section in the market has a dedicated area where you can buy some of the best lechon in Cebu City.

What’s great about walking through this section are the vendors and stalls offering free samples of crispy pork skin.

The lechon here is always cooked to perfection. Crispy on the outside and packed with tender, flavorful meat inside. 

Part of what makes this Carcar lechon stand out is the pork drippings that are mixed with the lechon making it even more flavorful.

The great thing about lechon in this public market is that it guarantees freshness without breaking the bank.

In addition, you’ll also find other traditional Filipino dishes you can add to your meal.

There is no specific vendor or stall within the market that is famous for their lechon. The reputation of having some of the best lechon in Cebu goes to all the vendors in the lechon section.

As you wander through this section, stop at the vendor with the best-tasting sample of crispy skin. Or, order small portions and try a few different stalls.

Carcar Lechon at The Market

Address: 4J4W+4P5, Carcar City, Cebu

Hours: Open daily, 5:00 am –10:00 pm

Price: Price of lechon per kilo is around P600 (approx. $10.80 USD)

Pro tip: Carcar Public Market is located about 1-hour away from Cebu City and it’s worth the drive

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In Summary

If your travels take you to the Philippines, you have to taste Cebu lechon. And, the good news is that you don’t have to order the whole roasted pig to try lechon.

You can order it by the kilo and taste the delicious crunchy skin with the unique flavors and seasonings.

Cebu has a reputation as the Lechon Capital in the World. And, even though you’ll find lechon available throughout the country, the best tasting lechon is found in Cebu.

On your Cebu visit, try lechon at different places, and don’t fall for the marketing hype. If you have limited time in Cebu and can only try Cebu lechon once, we recommend Rico’s lechon.

This roasted pig and  Filipino delicacy should not be missed.

Have you had Cebu lechon before? Please let us know what you think of it in the comments below.

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60 Comments on “Best Lechon in Cebu: Top 12 Restaurants to Taste “ The Best Pig Ever” (According to Anthony Bourdain)”

  1. Being a foodie and meat-lover, and currently planning a trip to the Philippines, I came across the famous lechon as a must-try dish. I was however wondering if this is in any way a spin-off of the Spanish cochinillo. Or are they the same?

    • Great question, Ashley and prepare to indulge in delicious lechon in the Philippines. Both dishes have Spanish influence, but each country adds its own unique touch and flair. So, to answer your question, they are not the same but they have the same ingredient (pork) and Spanish influences. See our Philippines food guides and have a delicious time. Cheers

  2. I’ve never personally tried a cebu food trip myself but my friends all recommended it. And after seeing your post, let’s just say I found my next destination. Thanks so much for sharing! Any updates though if they’re still available there?

  3. Does anyone even know that the original lechon purveyor in the Philippines is in La Loma? This is a district in Quezon City, once the country’s capital. I grew up in this place and if you are from somewhere else and are asking for directions, La Loma Lechon ni Mang Tomas is a popular reference and landmark. These places you mentioned here are new and are simply copycats of the original. Laloma Lechon ni Mang Tomas had been famous for decades – since early 60’s in fact There was no Internet to promote them but I feel we have to give credit where credit is due. Now, there are hundreds of lechon places but I will never trade the original for the more hyped up ones. I have to try Ricos just so to confirm your claims that indeed they are better than the La Loma Lechon ni Mang Tomas. But I much doubt that it is. I’d say go for the original….why buy the cover when you can get the original product? Authentic Philippine lechon, this is the place to go!

  4. I second (or third) the Carcar lechon. I had Ricos and it was amazing, and very comparable to the ones we got at the market in Carcar. The fiancé made us get off the bus to try it since she’s never been to southern Cebu before. It was amazing and I’d love to compare them together.
    Thanks for the interesting article!

    • Awesome to hear you loved the article. That’s funny that you got off the bus to explore Southern Cebu. So glad you got a chance to experience Rico’s. We haven’t tried lechon from Carcar. Adding that to our list for our next visit to the Philippines. Cheers.

  5. Hi Rosemary and Claire!

    It’s great to hear you visited Cebu just for the lechon and enjoyed it as well. But before Rico’s lechon became the byword for lechon Cebu to most locals and tourists, there were Carcar and Talisay lechon styles, both of which used to vie for the best lechons in Cebu. Luckily for Rico’s, social media has helped tremendously to its ascent to stardom as its started relatively recently during the age of social media.

    If you find Rico’s lechon the best, wait until you try Carcar City’s version or even Talisay City’s version of their lechon. These two cities were arch-rivals when it comes to the best lechons in Cebu for many years before the age of social media and proliferation of food shows on TV.

    If you ever get another chance to visit Cebu next time, check out Talisay City and Carcar City’s own version of lechon. Talisay is just a short taxi or Uber/Grab ride away from downtown Cebu City. Carcar, on the other hand, is a small city 40 kilometers further to the south. Carcar is also known as having the best pork cracklings (locals call chicharon) in Cebu.

    • Thanks so much Girogio for the tips about Talisay City and Carcar city’s versions of lechon. We can’t wait to go back to Cebu for the lechon and we’ll certainly check these arch- rival cities out. We appreciate the tips, thanks for stopping by!

  6. OMG! Cebu is my birthplace. Reading through your post about my hometown makes me proud about it and miss it at the same time. When did you go there? I went home last August. It would have been nice to meet other bloggers interested with our letchon. (wink) If ever you visit Cebu again. Go to Carcar, it’s in the southern part of Cebu. They make the tastiest and most delicious letchon. I really love your post.

    • That’s awesome Synz. So glad you enjoyed reading about Cebu. We had a great time visiting the city and especially the lechon. So many delicious options 🙂 Thanks for the tip about Carcar. We’ll certainly check it out when we are next in Cebu. Thanks for your comments!!

    • That’s great that you remember the show. It was quite an experience sampling the lechon from the different places. We much preferred Rico’s lechon over Zubuchon, which they claim Anthony Bourdain declared the “best pork ever.” Regardless, you will not go wrong with lechon in Cebu City. Thanks Gabby for your comments.

    • Pork dominates in the Philippines and lechon is the preferred “fiesta” food. Nevertheless, you can find several options beyond pork and lots of unique greens and fruits. Glad you enjoyed the juice and desserts at Rico’s lechon. Thanks for your comments, Neha.

    • That’s great that it is similar to a luau. Would love for you to try lechon and tell us the similarities/differences. The oreo mango float is to die for. If you do make it to Cebu City, do eat at Rico’s lechon 🙂 Thanks Anisa

    • You can probably find pig cooked over the pit in most places, but the lechon in Cebu is the best place in the Philippines. Hope you can get to visit the Philippines soon and try it out for yourself there!! Thanks Brigitte for your comments.

  7. In general, Cebu Lechon is great, but when you put several plates of Cebu lechon next to each other, that’s when you notice the difference. When I went to Cebu, I thought my first taste of lechon was already heavenly, but my friends just laughed and said, “Wait ’til you try Rico’s.” And oh my goodness, they were right. Rico’s really is the best gyud! Especially the suckling pig one. Oh-lala! I’m glad you enjoyed it! 😀

    • You are so right Sarah, the best way to compare the lechon is to have them side by side. Your friends were totally right, everything else was simply preparation for Rico’s Lechon. The best guyd!!! Appreciate your comments!

  8. Wow looks good! Although, I am a vegetarian, I will definitely pass on this tip to all my meat loving travellers out there! Sounds like you had a fantastic meal! I gotta say, the greens and the desert looked so delicious! 🙂

    • Thanks so much. Glad you enjoyed the review India. What do you call the spit roast in your area? Indeed, a trip to the Philippines and Cebu City would be worthwhile. Be sure to eat at Rico’s Lechon and enjoy the crispy skin and tender meat 🙂

    • It is indeed worth a trip to Cebu for the lechon if you are going to be in the Philippines. Anthony Bourdain did say Cebu has the best lechon and you will find it at Rico’s lechon!! Please do let us know what you think after your trip. Thanks John and please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions or tips as you prepare for your trip.

  9. Hello, This is the second time I have heard about lechon and very curious, It looks wonderful. We often have pig roast cooked the same style over and outside rotisserie and it’s wonderful. What I am wondering is how a good old American pig roast differs or compares to Lechon. I would imagine the spices would be different and have you had both to compare. I’m just really curious because I love it and would love to try Lechon!

    • You would certainly enjoy lechon in Cebu. The big differences you will find are in the spices used, how the pigs are raised and of course the age of the pigs when they are cooked. If you make it to the Philippines, do build in time to visit Cebu. Thanks for your comments!!

  10. Hi Guys,

    Looks amazing 🙂 Reminds me of Babi Guling in Bali. We saw these joints throughout the island, marked by the easy to understand sign of a pig on a spit 😉 Tasty as can be I am sure. But I’d have to fly solo as my wife is a vegetarian. But not a militant vegetarian, who’d divorce me for going to a sucking pig joint LOL. Thanks for sharing!


    • Thanks Ryan. Looks amazing and tastes delicious. That’s interesting that there is something similar in Bali, I’m sure it is as delicious. Given that you have a supportive wife, don’t hesitate to add Cebu to your travels plan 🙂 Cheers!

    • Actually Fiona, lechon does have it’ roots in Spain. After all, the Spanish did colonize the Philippines. So, if you are mildly addicted to suckling pig in Spain…lechon in Cebu will have the same effect!! Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  11. This reminds me of Peking ducks in China! I haven’t tried Lechon but I am definitely tempted to try after reading this post. Thanks for the recommendations of where to try it, too. Zubuchon looks like it has some clever marketing techniques! 🙂

    • Thanks Katja. So glad this article has inspired you to try lechon 🙂 Zubuchon has done a great job with their marketing, but the pork could be improved! If you get to try lechon, please do let us know what you think. Cheers.

    • You are so right Carol, we were quite surprised to find out how popular the “mall” is as a dining destination. The quality of food at the malls is quite good and indeed a lesson for the U.S. Thanks for your comments 🙂

  12. We went to Zubuchon with the Philippines TPB and are so disappointed to find out this isn’t the place Anthony Bourdain crowned the best roast pork!! Haha we were tricked! Your face looks familiar as we were in Philippines for TBEX as well! It’s nice to run into your blog and see your experiences as well! Great coverage on the lechon in Cebu! I would love to go back and try all these other restaurants you went as well! Just another great reason to go back!

    • You are right, so many great reasons to go back to the Philippines. And, lechon in Cebu is just one more 🙂 Yes, we were at TBEX, too bad we did not meet in person, but are at least connecting here 🙂 Glad you enjoyed reading the article. Cheers!


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