For work, I was sent to Cagayan Province in Region 2. I’ve never really been too far up in the North Eastern part of the country before, but I have however been up in the Ilocos area. So this was a first I was excited to take on.
Of course, one of the musts when you go to a new place or province is trying out the food that is particular to that place or that that place is famous for. It would be pretty much stupid to eat food that you could easily get in the city or in your home town and thanks to the family who adopted me in Cagayan, I experienced pancit the Ibanag way.
If you’ve never heard of pancit Batil Patong, then we were the same. Of course everybody has had at least one kind of pancit in their lifetime and one of the most common complaints about it would probably be that there’s almost always that desire for more sahog (ingredients or elements in the dish such as pork slices, shrip, carrots, cabbage; basically everything else aside from the pancit noodles itself). Trust me when I say that you won’t hear that from someone eating Batil Patong.
Although I will admit that I wasn’t able to maximize my experience of Batil Patong, it was definitely a unique experience.
Just like there are so many Buko Pie outlets in Laguna or so many stores in Baguio that sell peanut brittle and strawberry jam, there are just as many places to eat Pancit Batil Patong in Tuguegarao. After a day of attempting around Tuguegarao, we were off to look for a place for to eat dinner. According to credible sources, the best Batil Patong was to be found at this place called Billy Jack’s Panciteria where they serve it just right (apparently not too oily or bland like others can be) with the appropriate atmosphere and price. And by the way, the servings may not seem like much, but trust me. There is a lot on that plate.
As a first time eater and visitor of Billy Jack’s, I was even asked to write on the walls as part of their small tradition for new customers.
If with every other kinds of pancit, you will complain about the sahog, with Batil Patong the pancit is the sahog. I didn’t really know how to order it because there were so many toppings you could choose from such as chicharon bulaklak and longganisa. You can even add sisig to your pancit! Sisig. That’s a whole other viand right there. Fair warning though: this meal greatly qualifies as one of many putok batok delicacies. I wasn’t able to finish mine and my friend got dizzy after finishing hers. If you happen to find yourself around Tuguegarao, you definitely have to try this dish. Since there are hiking and walking activities around, I suggest you have this after in order to maximize your Pancit Batil Patong experience.
I’d love to hear what you think about my first Pancit Batil Patong experience in the comments below!