Always on the lookout for something local to eat out on, Jo’s Chicken Inato was the furthest thing from our mind as we roamed the streets of Tacloban City. I’ve seen this restaurant before in Dumaguete and other parts of Visayas, so I thought there’s really nothing that special about it. I mean, why go all the way to Leyte if you can find it elsewhere? Right? Wrong.
It turns out that this chain of restaurant does serve dishes unique to each of its own branches. This one in Tacloban, specifically called Jo’s Chicken Inato Milagrina, served us specialties I won’t soon forget.
|MILAGRINA’S AIR-CONDITIONED DINING HALL|
We arrived at Jo’s right before they closed for the night. Passing through their open-aired dining hall replete with all sorts of chicken sculptures and artworks, we proceeded to their air-conditioned area (additiional 10% service charge) where more chicken art were displayed.
Mind you, while it is quite easy to overdo this kind of decor, those at Milagrina’s were done just right. It’s not kitschy, it’s not overpowering, it’s not trying too hard. From colorful figurines imported from all over the globe to their plate-painting installation, I can see they practiced restraint and good taste. Uhmm, well, except on the area where they display different species of live chicken, which I kinda didn’t dig that much. It’s kinda hard to see them cutely pecking away at their morsels while we actually peck away at their kind too, lol.
|MIXED FRESH FRUIT SLUSH ~ PHP 95.00|
But moving on to their food, Jo’s Chicken Inato specializes in grilled chicken. Inato means, their own way, so I guess they do chicken differently. To check, we ordered a plate of their chicken inato and for good measure, we also asked for servings of sinuglaw, crispy dinuguan, pinaputok na bangus and fried kangkong. Indeed, we were hungry.
|FRIED KANGKONG ~ PHP 110.00|
For starters, we munched on their fried kangkong, which was a big hit for our group. It was crunchy and surprisingly, not that oily. The mayo dip was only too perfect for it.
|SUPER INATO COMBO ~ PHP 125.00|
Jo’s Super Inato Combo, a combination of chicken leg and thigh plus a couple of sticks of barbecue was to be the test of this restaurant’s chicken goodness. And it passed with flying colors. I love how the outer layer of the chicken was almost crisply done, with its inner meat still tender. The barbecues almost outdid the chicken too.
|SINUGLAW ~ PHP 180.00|
Then there was the sinuglaw, a hybrid of grilled (sinugba) and ceviche (kinilaw) tuna and the pinaputok na bangus. My companions loved those two but there’s no love lost between me and grilled fishes. Picky me wants my fishes fried to a crisp.
|CRISPY DINUGUAN ~ PHP 180.00|
What I really started to focus on was their crispy dinuguan. I’ve tried a version of this at Kanin Club years before and haven’t forgotten it since. Jo’s own take on the dish was nothing short of spectacular. My goodness, the fusino of crispy pork bits and the soft moist blood pudding was simply superb. I would honestly raise my hand to say that I ate more than half of this serving, and Jo’s servings are quite generous.
|BUKO HALO ~ PHP 130.00|
To finish everything off, a slew of desserts soon found our way to our table; turon with ice cream, mango and buko pandan and a huge coconut shell filled with buko halo (an ingenious mix of buko salad and halo-halo). And while everyone was yum-yummying away on the sweet treats, I was still cutting up chilies, rounding up my rice and digging away at the crispy dinuguan.
Jo’s Chicken Inato Milagrina
Address: 241 P. Burgos Street, Tacloban City, Leyte
Contact Number: (053) 832-2042 | (0907) 419-9381
Facebook: Click Here
Open Hours: 11:00 AM to 9:00 PM Daily
Full Menu: Click Here
GPS Coordinates Map: 11.226757, 125.001811