There’s a high chance that anyone who has been to the loving city of Iloilo has heard of the famous Tatoy’s Seafood and Manokan restaurant. Founded during the 1970s by fisherman Honorato “Tatoy” Espniosa, the restaurant has been a staple name for locals and visitors alike.
They are famous for their native lechon manok aside from their wide selection of Ilonggo-style seafood. Lechon Manok is a barbequed chicken marinated in special Ilonggo “sinamak” (vinegar) and calamansi sauce stuffed with lemongrass and sampaloc leaves. They also serve a daily fresh catch of talaba (oyster) and scallops.
Our favorite is their “kinilaw,” which is fresh fish (usually tanigue) soaked and cooked in vinegar. We also like their version of lechon, which is a fusion of the best of both Luzon and Visayas.
Tatoy’s first branch is in Villa Arevalo District, where the famous annual Paraw Regatta Festival is held. It has since opened a new branch in Atria in Mandurriao and also one near Iloilo International Airport. It is one of the must-try places for anyone who wants a taste of Ilonggo’s finest native cuisine.
Tatoy’s Seafood and Manokan is open every day from 10:00 AM – 9:00 PM. Their branch in Villa Arevalo offers air-conditioned rooms and open sea view rooms. Their other branch is in Donato Pison Ave. near Seda Atria in Mandurriao, and the other one is near Iloilo International Airport.