A Taste of Ilocos Specialties

A Taste of Ilocos Specialties

Two weeks ago, I was in Ilocos to celebrate the birthday of our my office mates and had a taste of some Ilocos food.

August 21-22

It was my first time in Ilocos and it started with us barely being able to have a bus trip available as we missed our scheduled bus. Good thing the bus operator allowed that another bus to be used so we are saved (it was jam packed so good profit for the bus operator).

So let us get on with the food!

Ice Scramble

The first food that I bought in Ilocos was the ice scramble. This is not really an Ilocos Specialty but I just found it funny that we all craved for it at that moment the vendor passed by. We were going out of Baluarte Zoo, Vigan when we saw it.

Empanada – PHP 30.00

Empanada is made by folding a dough or bread patty around the stuffing [1].

They do say that the empanada of Ilocos is very nice. Too bad I don’t remember the taste of empanada so I could not compare. The empanada looks like a half-moon lumpia and the crust was “crunchy”. The filling was made of hard boiled egg yolk, meat or pork, tauge (bean sprout) and it taste’s great if you add some vinegar to it. For me, it is a bit expensive for PHP30 though.

Okoy – PHP 30.00

I first heard of Okoy from the bad romance parody song called “Bathroom dance” and I was really wondering what it was. While asking around on what are the names of the food in front of us, I heard the vendor say it was “Okoy” so I ordered one just to satisfy my curiosity.

Okoy or Shrimp Patty is just like your hamburger patty but instead they used little shrimps in it. The shrimps are small enough that they did not skin it or remove the head. You just eat it as a whole. Eating it on it’s own would make you grow sick of it but I think this is a good viand with rice and ketchup!


My idea of Bibingka is it should have coconut strips on it but here in Ilocos, it doesn’t have that. It was also very oily but it was tasty. See the extra pic where I took a bite just to know what was inside.

Cheese Cup Cake

Not really an Ilocos specialty but I tried it non the less. It tasted just like any regular cup cake that you can buy in grocery stores so it was a bad choice on my end. I think I should have picked the brownies as they are not as common enough as the cup cakes.

We also ate at a restaurant in Vigan, Ilocos called Cafe Leonu but it will be in another post so…

Till next time,


Sources –

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Empanada


3 thoughts on “A Taste of Ilocos Specialties

  1. hungrybee says:

    Bakit green yung ice scramble nila? haha! naubusan ng pink food color?
    Have you tried the chicken empanada of red ribbon? Very small but one of my favorites. :)

  2. […] I were to reminisce my Ilocos Trip (in the foodie aspect),  the Okoy and Empanada experience would come into mind. Okoy would be your […]

So what can you say? :)