Nam Food Shop: Cebu’s Newest Hole in the Wall Food Joint
I always get excited whenever I stumble upon a new food find. It’s like discovering a gem amongst the rubble. You never truly know what to expect from the establishment– how the interior’s going to look like, how the food’s going to taste, or even how accommodating the owners are. In my experience, going to such places inspire me to continue what I’m doing– blogging and writing about these good food trips that deserve their share of the limelight. They also end up inspiring me to be an adventurer– to get out of my comfort zone and taste the world through different cuisines. And most of the time, these establishments end up becoming my favorite spots.
Nam Food Shop is one of the newest hole in the wall establishments in Cebu. We chanced upon a poster for the restaurant on one of our walks around our neighborhood. After seeing their menu and how affordable their items were, I invited my hubby to join me in this new food trip.
Initially, I thought that Nam Food Shop was in Strawberry Residences. When we got to the building, however, I realized that it wasn’t the same building. We had to ask the guard where the restaurant was. He pointed us to the next building, where an unfinished condominium loomed over us at the end of the road. I felt a bit scared as I was unsure of what to expect from our destination. If my husband hadn’t been by my side, I wouldn’t have continued on with my journey. But sure enough, we found a lone unit with light illuminating from an open window on the second floor of the building. The guard, who was sitting just outside the elevator, instructed us to where Nam Food Shop can be found.
When we arrived at our destination, we were greeted by a woman from the other side of the unit. She seated us in the unit across, where we found two older men waiting for their food. The unit itself was small, just enough to accommodate around 14 people at one time. They did not have any decorations on the walls or air conditioning in the space. Instead, there was an open window by our table; which welcomed fresh air into the room. Even though the unit was unassuming, the tables were made of high quality hardwood. From across the door, I could see a Korean man busily preparing the dishes inside another unit. I could only tell that he was Nam, the owner of the small establishment.
Nam Food Shop Menu
On one side of the wall was where the menu was hanged from the ceiling. Nam Food Shop Cebu had a combination of Japanese, Korean, and Filipino food fare for diners to choose from. I happily picked out a small order of the Omu Rice and an order of Pork Sisig to pair with it. Meanwhile, hubby picked their Chicken & Pork Adobo, which already came with rice.
The first dish to arrive was the Omu Rice. I was surprised to see that it was bigger than what I had initially expected. As it turns out, Nam had upgraded my Omu Rice to the larger order for free.
The sisig arrived next. I liked that Nam used a block of wooden chopping board to hold the hot plate where the sisig was served. The dish itself was interesting– it was different from the usual serving of sisig I usually tasted here in Cebu. But as I got to savor the dish more, I started to taste the pork liver already so I stopped eating it. Fyi, I don’t like liver.
The last dish to arrive was the adobo. It took several minutes to wait but we really didn’t mind waiting that long. I think we waited around 15-20 minutes since the sisig was served. But considering Nam was really very new, we couldn’t expect too much from them. I will say though that the adobo was worth the wait. The sauce had a pale color compared to the colors of a typical adobo dish but it proved to have an interesting taste to it. I liked that it didn’t taste too much like soy sauce or too acidic. It was just perfect.
While eating the adobo, I decided to end our meal with Taiyaki, a Japanese fried cake that came in the shape of a fish. The filling inside the dessert was made out of red bean paste, as they typically did in Japan. It was interesting to see the Taiyaki machine up close since I had a similar one back home for my Keiko Pancake business.
When we finished or meal, the two older men chatted with us and asked how we got to know the establishment. They apologized, in lieu of Nam, for the long wait as they explained that the restaurant was very new. I later learned they were next door neighbors of Nam, who lived just down the hall from Nam Food Shop.
In all, Nam Food Shop was a pretty interesting hole in the wall find. I’m excited to see more people discover this place and read what they think about the food served. There really isn’t much to expect from the food shop other than its humble homecooked dishes. But definitely, that was one hell of an adobo I’d go back for.
Nam Food Shop Location
(beside Strawberry Residences)
Brezlin St. corner F. Cabahug St.
Operating Hours: 8:00 AM – 10:00 PM Daily