I may come off as basic, but Zubuchon is my favorite Lechon (Litson) right now. I mean everything about an order of Lechon there is perfect (at least for me): juicy, flavorful meat; thin, crispy skin; and a generous serving per order. Bang for your buck. Now, although Zubuchon’s locations have increased here in Metro Manila, they’re still not as easily accessible as say Jollibee or even a Lydia’s (you know, for an apples-to-apples comparison). Enter S.A.L.O. Lechon Belly Kitchen; it’s not even close to how good Zubuchon is but it is Lechon and it’s available in a food court.

SALO Lechon Belly Kitchen Gateway FoodMetroManila
This is the most recent visit where I got crispy skin and juicy meat. Yes, that’s an egg behind the Lechon.

As you all know, I work out of two office locations: one is in Cubao and it’s connected to a mall. That mall has a foodcourt, and that foodcourt has a SALO Lechon Belly Kitchen.

I said you have to manage your expectations because – it’s Lechon Belly from a foodcourt! You can’t be expecting restaurant quality Lechon in a foodcourt! Now, when your expectations are managed, you may actually like SALO’s Lechon, most of the time.

SALO Lechon Belly Ktichen not so perfect skin FoodMetroManila
This visit, the skin was not crispy and the meat was a tad dry.

The meat is not that juicy, it’s actually kind of cold most of the time, the skin is thin but not always crispy, and the Lechon serving is meager. They have several side dishes to supplement the meager Lechon serving, so at a few pesos upwards of Php 100 (most are under Php 200).

It’s a model that’s been around for years, Lydia’s have been doing this with the foodcourt iterations of their brand, but I actually prefer the diversity of the side dishes from SALO Lechon Belly Kitchen. Also, SALO Lechon Belly Kitchen has Cebu style Lechon whereas Lydia’s has to eaten with the livery “Lechon Sauce” (thought to be fair, it’s not just Mang Tomas).

SALO Lechon Belly Kitchen and the Kare-Kare FoodMetroManila
The Kare-Kare side-dish was actually delicious. It’s full of “twalya” that was melt in your mouth.

So if you’re craving for Lechon and decide to get some from a foodcourt, like SALO Lechon Belly Kitchen’s, don’t go blasting it for not being up to par as the big names like Zubuchon or Rico’s (the latter, I have some issues especially the locations in Metro Manila). It’s actually decent Lechon at a reasonable price, though it sometimes is dry and the skin is not as crispy as you would like.

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