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Welcome to Dumaguete, where stunning landscapes and warm hospitality converge with an exceptional culinary scene that promises to tantalise your taste buds. In this article, we list out the top 10 restaurants you simply can’t miss during your gastronomic journey through this wonderful city in the Philippines.

La Mensa – A Fusion of Elegance and Local Flair

Explore where to eat in Dumaguete at La Mensa, an Italian chophouse in the heart of the city. With a rustic and airy ambiance, La Mensa seamlessly blends international flavours and local ingredients, offering prime USDA Black Angus grade steaks pan-roasted to perfection and served in traditional style with sea salt and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Hand-stretched, fresh pizzas further delight the palate. Embracing sustainability, La Mensa is palm oil-free, provides biodegradable takeaway options, and uses filtered water for produce. Experience a symphony of tastes that captures the essence of Dumaguete.

Location: MAP

Contact: +63 917 500 3953 | Website

Opening Hours: Tuesday – Sunday, 06:00 PM – 10:00 PM

Food from La Mensa in Dumaguete, Philippines
Photo courtesy of La Mensa

Buglas Isla Cafe – An All-Day Brunch Affair

Situated in the same building as La Mensa, Buglas Isla Cafe is a culinary haven that delights in spoiling your taste buds throughout the day. The all-day brunch menu is a true masterpiece, featuring an array of tantalising dishes that reflect the essence of local cuisine. Indulge in the irresistible allure of breakfast chicken salpica or savour the succulent angus beef tapa. Whether you’re craving fluffy waffles, fluffy pancakes, or vibrant tropical smoothie bowls, Buglas Isla Cafe promises a feast for your senses that will leave you craving more.

Location: MAP 

Contact: +63 917 500 3953 | Website

Opening Hours: Everyday, 07:00 AM – 06:00 PM

Food from Buglas Islas Cafe in Dumaguete, Philippines
Photo courtesy of Buglas Isla Cafe

Arbour By Jan From Your Cooking Class – Where Tradition Meets Culinary Creativity

Embark on a culinary journey of authenticity and innovation at Arbour, a restaurant that pays homage to Dumaguete’s rich culinary heritage. Led by the skilled hands of Chef Jan, Arbour transforms traditional Filipino dishes into contemporary masterpieces that awaken the senses. Each plate tells a story, reflecting the history and culture of Dumaguete through its flavourful offerings. Whether you’re indulging in classic adobo reimagined or exploring new twists on local favourites, Arbour promises a dining experience that is as enlightening as it is delicious. You can’t miss this when deciding where to eat in Dumaguete.

Location: MAP

Contact: +63 35 402 1508 | Facebook

Opening Hours: Tuesdays to Sundays, 07:00 AM – 02:00 PM and 05:00 PM – 09:00 PM

Food from Arbour by Jan in Dumaguete, Philippines
Photo courtesy of Arbour by Jan

Adamo – Modern Comfort Food in a Coastal Retreat

Adamo stands as a culinary testament to simplicity, freshness, and the profound delight of provincial flavours. Amidst a city bustling with gastronomic wonders, Adamo thrives by harmonising sustainability, seasonal ingredients, and cherished Dumagueteño tastes. Transcending the pandemic’s challenges, Adamo captures hearts with its commitment to honest cuisine, making each visit an affair of falling in love with authentic flavours. As a recommendation from local food enthusiasts, Adamo offers a distinct experience that bridges the gap between carinderias and upscale dining, ensuring a fulfilling culinary journey for all.

Location: MAP

Contact: +63 916 552 1626 | Facebook

Opening Hours: Everyday 11:00 AM – 09:00 PM

Food from Adomo in Dumaguete, Philippines
Photo courtesy of Adamo

Hayahay Treehouse Bar and View Deck – Escape Among the Treetops

Elevate your dining experience at Hayahay Treehouse Bar and View Deck, where breathtaking panoramic views and exquisite flavours unite. Perched among the treetops, this unique eatery offers a feast for both the senses and the soul. With a menu that serves the best of seafood, Hayahay promises an unforgettable culinary journey that captures the magic of Dumaguete’s coastline. Whether you’re sipping cocktails during sunset or indulging in delectable dishes beneath the stars, Hayahay invites you to savour every moment.

Location: MAP

Contact: +63 35 225 3536 | Facebook

Opening Times: Everyday 10:00 AM – 10:00 PM

Food from Hayahay Treehouse Bar and View Deck in Dumaguete, Philippines
Photo courtesy of Hayahay Treehouse Bar

Jo’s Chicken Inato – A Local Tradition of Flavour

For over eighteen years, Jo’s Chicken Inato has been a culinary beacon in Dumaguete, thanks to its homestyle cooking and the heartwarming concept of “inato” – simplicity. From its humble beginnings, this family-owned gem has expanded across regions, proudly offering its famous mouthwatering grilled chicken and an array of delightful Filipino dishes. With branches spanning from Bohol to Palawan, Jo’s Chicken Inato embodies the essence of a well-loved family tradition, continuously innovating while maintaining the core values that have endeared it to locals and visitors alike. Now you know exactly where to eat in Dumaguete!

Location: MAP

Contact: +63 35 225 4412 | Facebook

Opening Hours: Everyday 09:30 AM – 09:30 PM

Food from Jo's Chicken Inato in Dumaguete, Philippines
Photo courtesy of Jo’s Chicken Inato

Roti Boss Curry House – A Spice-Infused Odyssey

Discover the authentic flavours of India at Roti Boss Curry House, a culinary haven in Dumaguete City. Offering a diverse array of Indian cuisine, from flavourful thalis and biryanis to tantalizing curries and tikka masalas, the restaurant captures the essence of Indian gastronomy. With options like fresh mango lassi and aromatic chai, your taste buds are in for a treat. Whether you dine in, pick up, or opt for delivery, Roti Boss welcomes you to savour its Halal-certified offerings daily!

Location: MAP

Contact: +63 926 661 9019 | Facebook

Opening Hours: Everyday 10:30 AM – 08:30 PM

Food from Roti Boss Curry House in Dumaguete, Philippines
Photo courtesy of Roti Boss Curry House

Piapi Deli – Where Sweet and Savoury Dreams Come True

Located in Hotel Dumaguete, Piapi Deli is a charming culinary haven that celebrates the art of baking and culinary craftsmanship. With an array of sweet and savoury offerings, Piapi Deli invites you to explore a menu that boasts everything from flaky croissants to hearty sandwiches. Whether you’re starting your day with a freshly brewed coffee or treating yourself to a decadent dessert, Piapi Deli promises a symphony of flavours that captures the essence of Dumaguete’s culinary scene.

Location: MAP

Contact: +63 917 114 4470 | Website

Opening Hours: Everyday 07:00 AM – 10:00 PM

Food from Piapi Deli in Dumaguete, Philippines
Photo courtesy of Piapi Deli

Neva’s Brick Oven Pizzas – Savouring Italian Comfort in Dumaguete

Embark on a delightful journey through the flavours of Italy at Neva’s Brick Oven Pizzas, where expertly crafted pizzas and Italian comfort fare await. This cozy eatery invites you to indulge in classic Margaritas or explore innovative pizza creations that cater to all tastes. With a commitment to quality and flavour, Neva’s ensures that each bite is a celebration of authenticity and culinary artistry. Discover a slice of Italy in Dumaguete that will leave you craving more.

Location: MAP

Contact: +63 917 722 5560 | Facebook

Opening Hours: Everyday 10:00 AM – 09:00 PM

Food from Neva's Brick Oven Pizzas in Dumaguete, Philippines
Photo courtesy of Neva’s Brick Oven Pizzas

The Pawnshop – Unearthing Culinary Treasures of Dumaguete

When unsure of where to eat in Dumaguete, head to The Pawnshop, a local haunt that celebrates Filipino flavours and seafood delights. Set against the stunning backdrop of Rizal Boulevard, this laid-back eatery offers a menu that invites you to savour the freshest catches and regional specialties. From succulent seafood sinigang to classic Filipino dishes, The Pawnshop promises an authentic and satisfying dining experience that captures the essence of Dumaguete’s coastal charm.

Location: MAP

Contact: +63 917 114 4470 | Website

Opening Hours: Everyday 04:00 PM – 11:00 PM

The Pawnshop in Dumaguete, Philippines
Photo courtesy of TripAdvisor

Where to Eat in Dumaguete: A Culinary adventure

As you foodies explore Dumaguete, let your taste buds guide you through a diverse array of flavours that reflect the heart and soul of this enchanting city. Each restaurant on this list offers a unique dining experience that captures the essence of Dumaguete’s culture, traditions, and natural beauty. So, whether you’re savouring the catch of the day by the beach or indulging in innovative fusion cuisine, your journey through Dumaguete’s culinary landscape promises to be a truly unforgettable one.

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About the Author

Nicole Basri is the Junior Marketing Assistant at Mad Monkey Hostels. When she's not working, you'll find her buried in a good book, or on a hunt for the perfect Matcha Latte.