Friday, November 30, 2012

Tales of Two Lechons : CnT Lechon in Cebu (Part 2)

So my tale continues with my second lechon encounter. I can't believe that I was able to try 4 different lechon brands in the span of 3 days! *pat on the back* After our filling lunch at Zubuchon on our first day, I had a very light dinner that evening as my body feeling extra guilty for all that meaty indulgence. I think though I made a wrong move by just ordering a teeny-tiny chimichanga at Mooon Cafe as I woke up really hungry the following morning.

It was a good thing the hotel's buffet spread was pretty good so I was able to fill my hunger with a generous amount of danggit, eggs and garlic rice. Truly a hearty breakfast to prep me for the busy schedule ahead. Day 2 was our BIG day, it was when we had our cooking demo and prior to that, ML and I went around Cebu City to do some trade checks as we wanted to make the most of our short 3-day visit. After going around SM Cebu, we asked our Cebu-based colleague R where's a good place to eat. Seeing that we have time to spare, he suggested that we grab lunch at CnT Lechon which is located right across the mall.

cnt lechon cebu 1
Hooray! Another lechon place that I can finally tick off my list! The walk from the mall to CnT Lechon was pretty challenging due to the sweltering heat of the sun. Add to the fact that I really dislike being under the sun for a long time and it really didn't help that the sun was shining so bright that day. As fast as we could, we crossed the big road and walked a few more steps until we finally saw the bright yellow building of CnT Lechon!

cnt lechon cebu 4
The restaurant is located at the 2nd level of the building and note that we got there a little past 11am and this was how the line looked like. There were ample tables available but at this hour about 95% were already occupied. I wonder if Cebuanos really do eat lechon on a daily basis.

cnt lechon cebu 5
The system here is to get a number and to patiently wait for the server to shout (note: without the use of a microphone or at least a megaphone so please listen closely) out your number. It was pure chaos. Totally in contrast to the clean and organized interiors of Zubuchon, R was truly a gracious host as he offered to wait for our number to be called while ML and I reserved a table. We got #20 but when we got there they were serving clients #s 90-95! Woah! It just means there are already more than a hundred customers who bought that morning and it wasn't even lunch time. Lechon business was THAT good.

Be ready to spare at least an hour in CnT as the wait for your number to be called can take a long time. After that though, everything speeds up most especially when a plate of crispy lechon is sitting in front of you.

cnt lechon cebu 2
The lechon choppers here are both female and they are very muscular women as you can see. For hours they would chop more and more lechon, weight each portion and slide the meat and skin to a plate. They do it so quick and in a somewhat synchronized way that I really enjoyed watching them while waiting for our turn at the counter.

cnt lechon cebu 3
Finally, #20 was called and R got us half a kilo of CnT Lechon (Php. 180) and a cup of rice each. It was very affordable as our bill amounted to just Php. 240 and that's with bottled drinks for the three of us.

On to the lechon, I love the crunchy smooth skin which tasted way more like a lechon than sadly Zubuchon did. This is your age-old lechon that almost every Filipino are familiar with. The meat was tender yet with some parts being quite chewy and rubbery. R prepared some soy sauce-vinegar dip for us but the meat was salty enough that I hardly touched my lechon sauce. CnT Lechon wins over Zubuchon as far as flavor is concerned but it failed in the tenderness category. Nonetheless, I was blown away by such as delicious meal and I initially wanted to go back to CnT Lechon the next day to buy some lechon for my family back home.

Aside from lechon, they also have a number of viands available. I saw some dinuguan, paksiw, chopsuey and a lot more. For us though, we were very happy with our simple lechon and rice meal and I will definitely go back for this again and again.

CnT Lechon is located at the North Recalamation Area (across SM Cebu City). They also have a branch at the food court of Ayala Center Cebu and at 1377 Rama Avenue, Guadalupe, Cebu City. I highly recommend that you visit the North Reclamation branch as it's the biggest and according to R, it's the main branch. 

Go early as the lechon quickly runs out after lunch. 
Best to either bring your own bottled water or order a can of soda. I can't really guarantee if water is potable here.


  1. hard to say no to lechon! i wish to try that!!


  2. One time when I was at a party in Cebu, someone asked me "Do you want CNT Lechon or Zubochon?"

    I answered, "OK!"

  3. @richie: hahaha I would probably say the same thing too!! :) or I'd go "both please" haha

  4. while having a short summer vacation in cebu this year, i happen to visit cnt branch at guadalupe it was lunch time and true all of the lechon is gone - sold out.


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