If you want to see the sights of Manila, Intramuros should be on your itinerary! With the historic Fort Santiago, the beautiful Manila Cathedral and the interesting San Agustin church and museum, there is a lot to see. All three sights are in easy walking distance from each other and if all that walking leaves you hungry, my favorite place to take visitors is Barbara’s restaurant, right across from San Agustin!
Barbara’s restaurant is in a historic building, through an arch and up a staircase. They have been there for a long time and offer great Filipino food in a traditional setting. For lunch time, they offer a buffet which allows you to try out a number of different dishes at a very reasonable price – or you can order of the menu, if that is more to your liking.
There are two large dining rooms, both nicely set up with dark wood furniture, white table cloths and classic light fixtures. It takes you back in time and fits well to an Intramuros restaurant! While Barbara’s does get busy, we never had trouble getting a table as a walk-in. The staff is friendly and gets you seated quickly. They are attentive throughout, making each meal a pleasant experience!
The buffet usually includes salad and soup for your appetizer, several meat and vegetable dishes, rice and noodles as the main course and a few choices of dessert to go with it. I have taken many visitors here and they all enjoyed the food selection and quality.
One of the special highlights is the live music on offer. A live band of three will walk around the restaurant and play and sing at each of the tables. They have a wide repertoire and were able to accommodate even some unusual requests for foreign music. While I personally don’t generally like that kind of attention during my meals, it makes for a special experience and fits so well with the historic environment.
If you want to enjoy a nice meal with some life music and friendly service, you should add Barbara’s restaurant to your Intramuros itinerary for lunch! if a full buffet sounds like too much, they also have a cute bistro downstairs in the courtyard with outdoor seating for a drink or a snack! You can find their opening hours, location and menu here!