Yes Virginia, Malabon has a few delectable pinoy food favorites of their own. Think their version of the pancit, aptly called Pancit Malabon of course. But wait – we might have an apt challenger to the current ruler of the food kingdom at Malabon, the kakanin made by Dolor’s.
I’m calling this the first ever intra-city food smack down – how does the Pancit Malabon of Dolor’s stand up to their take on Kakanin and which seems like the one who will rule the roost so to speak, the well entrenched old timer or the new and upcoming.
Side story – since my mom wanted something different for my sister’s birthday than ordering from the usual pancit place she gets pancit from, she extended some effort tracking down the branch of Dolor’s Kakanin that was nearest at our place. She found one along McArthur Highway near the Monumento Circle. She got their pancit malabon (in two containers – bilao if you may ask) and their signature sapin-sapin.
It’s a shop that was set up for take-aways. It had ample waiting room but parking maybe a concern if 4 customers with cars come along. It was clean although the place could use a bit more lighting and the airconditioning could be made a little cooler. They were pretty efficient and accomodating at the same time. Initially my mom asked them to have the food prepped by 3 PM. She had to call again to have it moved to 4 PM and the girl at the other line was nice enough to accommodate her request.
I am halfway done typing this whole thing and I kind of realize this will be like comparing apples to oranges… Let’s look at their merits. The Pancit Malabon – Dolor’s version had ample meat and veggies on top. I hasten to add though that that wasn’t the secret weapoon that had this version of Pancit Malabon tasting so good --- it’s the sauce. For some reason the sauce they used was really really flavorful. By itself (noodles and sauce) tasted good already. The meat and the veggies was like a bonus to the whole thing.
The sapin sapin however, was really on a different level. I have to say, I have never tasted any other sapin sapin that closes in on this. It is so good. The play of gluttinous rice cakes (kutsinta, ube, biko etc) was just amazing. Yep. I’ve had this delicacy for countless times already but I have never grown tired a bit eating this.
So who won? Both of them. They were both so good on so many levels that eating them side by side was the only logical thing to do. It wasn’t a case of one being better than the other because the sapin sapin just plays perfect music with the Pancit Malabon. And you know what’s the best deal about this whole food smackdown thing I just did? They both come from the same place. Sweet!