it's otherwise uninteresting as this is a common cooking method all over the country. but that's exactly the point. Kuya J's is not your usual common STK joint. (click on read more to continue...)
Kuya J started as a grilling station outside the house of the owner specializing in scallops. the usual story goes that patrons eventually requested that they put up makeshift tables so they can feast on this dish served hot off the grill. eventually they converted part of the house into an aircontioned section and set up a restaurant with a complete set of menu. as the cliche goes, the rest is history.
the walls of the restaurant attest to the number of famous, not so famous and unknown guests that end up in this place. the pictures show smiling faces and stuffed bellies.
make sure to make time and loosen your belt a bit when planning to visit this place. price is very reasonable (though a plate of jumbo scallops has gone up from Php 80 to Php 120 in a course of three years) and the food is excellent.
if you're up for something exotic, try the turtle soup. haven't tried it but the reputation precedes this dish in yumminelicousness.
without any order of preference, i have feasted on crabs in chili, crabs in coconut, fried crispy eel, spicy crispy calamares (fat squid strips cooked tempura style and topped with white cream chili sauce), spicy sizzling tuna sisig, grilled tuna belly and panga (jaw), crabmeat soup, seafood hotpot soup, kinilaw na tuna, scallops, and more scallops. there are a number of excellent vegetable dishes for pretentious people (in short, ipokrito a.k.a .hypocrites) - this is definitely a meat place.
despite the fact that this is literally a house-along-the-road, it has gathered a reputation as some sort of "destination" for foodiphiles. and i don't mean sticking anyTHING aside from fork into your food. it has in fact gotten a place in a HK travel magazine as a food stop in Cebu. no wonder you'd see executives and guests of hotels ending up in this place side-by-side with students on a budget.
don't make the mistake of visiting on a sunday. they're closed that day unless you call ahead and reserve for a minimum of 15 heads. and oh, make sure to say hi to Ate Letlet and Kuya J - they regularly roam around the place for a quick chat with customers.
Kan-anan ni Kuya J
Add: 0394 Orchid St., Capitol Site (near dynasty inn, same area as Cebu Doctors)
Cost: Php 150++/head
Tel: +6332.253.1343 +6332.253.5484
One Dish Must Have: Grilled Scallops