Baguio City is indeed a melting pot of culture and this is translated into food. This time around the City of Pines is not only a melting pot of local culture but also of international culture as well. In recent years we have seen the rise of restaurants serving international cuisine in Baguio City. Apart from the common Chinese, Japanese and Korean cuisines, we also have noticed the growing interest of Baguio folks’ craving for Greek or Mediterranean cuisines and cuisines from the American South.
The interest in cuisines from the American South, and yes, not South American, because this is a different thing, was brought about by Ozark diner. Located at Bareng Drive, Bakakeng, Baguio City.
The first time we went to Ozark the diner was a bit difficult to find, this might be because Bareng Drive is a small road marked by a waiting shed beyond the main gate of Saint Louis University. However, the location is not difficult to forget once you have visited it. Since that first time, we’ve been eating at Ozark diner whenever we have the chance, at least about five times last year.
Why We Kept Coming Back to Ozark Diner
The main reason why we keep coming back to Ozark diner is because of their really delicious food. If you are a fan of American cuisine then Ozark is definitely for you. Now let’s go to the details, the first time we tried dining at Ozark, I had the Chicken fried steak with a side of Hoppin John. The chicken fried steak is not chicken but rather a tenderized beef cutlet, breaded, then fried, the meat was easy to chew, really easy it’s like eating chicken but that is not how it got it’s name, though. At first glance, you would say it looks like a schnitzel or a Milanesa. The Hoppin John, on the other hand is a side of black-eyed peas, which I think they do not have on their menu anymore as of the latest. That delicious dining experience made us come back to this diner several times. The latest was early this January when we tried to escape the influx of tourists in Baguio and wanted to have a delicious meal from the American south, the obvious choice, of course, is Ozark.
Pilau, Per-loo, Pilaf = Delicious
The good thing about Ozark Diner is that they add new things to their menu, some things they remove (goodbye, delicious black eyed peas which I miss dearly), some things they add. One that caught our attention was their Pilau (pronounced per-loo, according to their menu) or the St.Augustine Shrimp Pilau, to be exact. It is made of heirloom rice, spices, 250gms of shrimps and topped with Andouille Sausages. I had to stress the 250 grams of shrimp because it was my first time to see that much shrimp on a single dish and not just small shrimps these are big ones. The heirloom rice mixed with herbs and spices gave it that taste which complements well with the shrimp and the sausage. The dish is good for 3, I know this because we wished we hadn’t ordered more since we were stuffed just from the Pilau. But hey, you really haven’t eaten at Ozark if you hadn’t tried their soft buttery biscuits! Yep, that biscuit is one of the reasons why you will have to go to Ozark, go there for the biscuit but stay for well…practically everything on their menu.
They say your passion for work will eventually translate to the product that you make, indeed the people running Ozark diner showed their passion for cooking through the quality of food they serve for their clients to enjoy.
Disclaimer: All meals were properly paid for, all reviews and features are our own.