IÂ always have some suspicions whenever I hear a restaurant offering Bacolod chicken inasal, that veritable Hiligaynon grilled chicken that is tops for flavor and goodness, that many claim to specialize on and are found outside of Bacolod or Negros Occidental for that matter. Perhaps, its because of the commercialization courtesy of Mang Inasal that I really don’t like and a taste that is quite different from the original.
But I was fortunate enough to know the owner of Island Chicken Inasal, NiÃ±a, a true bloodied beauty from Bacolod who has called Boracay her home for the past 10 years. And upon her invitation for lunch, after shooting her apartment for Airbnb, I obliged and just have to write about it.
Many are familiar with Island Chicken Inasal with its small restaurant space in D’Mall that is within the rotunda. They do offer typical Bacolod dishes and on a good day, lunch and dinners are full of people. And when its full, as they say, the food must be good.
It’s not the first time I’ve eaten there but I only had the batchoy before. Hearty, flavorful and good with a hot filling broth, firm noodles and lots of toppings. This second bowl I had in my third visit after the lunch invite when I got hungry from a shoot and wanted something hot and filling.
It is the chicken inasal that I really love about this restaurant. It’s well marinated, flavorful. Tender yet not dry. Not too sweet. I like the portions of the burnt skin and how, mixed with the soy sauce and sinamak, spiced vinegar, makes for a wonderful gastronomic experience. So good that one rice is not enough.
And of course, the kansi, the Ilonggo version of the bulalo and the pochero. The beef meat and ligaments plus the bone marrow are given. But for the kansi, what makes it different is the addition of a souring agent, batuan, a kind of citrus.
The kansi has really tender meat with the tissue fibers readily peeling off. The ligaments good too, supple. But it was the bone marrow, thick and staring at me from its bone cavity that really made this one a winner. Add in the slightly sour broth that gives a sort of a kick and you would want to have more and more and more of this dish.
I had a great lunch. The pork barbecue is equally delicious too and the leche flan, velvety. And if you crave of good Bacolod food and you’re in Boracay, Island Chicken Inasal doesn’t disappoint. Go and have a taste of their dishes.
Island Chicken Inasal
U-112 Ph IV Dâ€™Mall Boracay
Balabag, Malay Aklan
+63 36 2885946