Sir Jess Deli and Cafe
healthy and delicious food
need not be expensive. #Bacolodeats
One cool evening, we went out to have dinner at Sir Jess Deli and Cafe, located at Gonzaga Extension, Doña Juliana Subd., Taculing, Bacolod City. It was our first time there and I had not researched the place so I have no idea how it looks like. The slightly winding road from Gonzaga Street led us to a quaint restaurant that looked more like a country home.
And when we went in, indeed it was the old house of the owner that they transformed into a cafe, complete with country chic decor. The place was wide and the main dining area is fully air conditioned. But they also had a garden area for al fresco dining and those who want to smoke.
Our Complete Healthy Meal Experience
Our family was first served with nibbles of turmeric piaya, which I think was supposed to be our appetizer. We had second thoughts about munching on them before our meal but we were good when the main courses started coming in.
First off was the patotim–a whole young duck cooked in sweet sauce with some vegetables on the side. The meat was sooo tender, almost falling off the bones.
It was followed by a medium skillet filled with colorful carbonara made of their homemade pasta and topped with their special creation called Orega Flakes. The pasta was a mixture of two colors with different flavors–light green for oregano and dark green for pesto. It has I think quail or chicken slices, bits of carrots, sprinkled with Orega Flakes and garnished with parsley and fried bananas.
Third on the lineup was the well-seasoned crispy fried quail that you can easily munch on, including the bones. You may opt to dip them in soy sauce with vinegar or eat it as it is. Great as pulutan, too! I was told that quail meat is healthier because it is cholesterol-free. Awesome! But this does not include quail eggs, mind you.
Then we had sizzling mixed seafood. It had some kind of creamy sauce that was perfect for the seafood mix but what I appreciate was the smokiness of the seafood. I asked the chef about it because I thought that it was grilled but she said that they “smoked” the seafood before cooking. This extra procedure added a whole new flavor to this common seafood dish.
Sir Jess Deli and Cafe
Gonzaga Extension, Dona Juliana Subdivision
Taculing, Bacolod City
Tel. No. (034) 432 1271
We were then served with white rice that looked really interesting with the green and brown specks all over. These were Orega Flakes once again, mixed with and sprinkled on the rice in order to add more flavor and aroma to the rice as well as give it some therapeutic value. This is something unique that you can only find at Sir Jess Cafe.
Last on the menu was fried eggplant–sliced eggplants that were coated and fried. My husband and I love this, as we also cook it at home. My husband loves the eggplant so much but among all the dishes, it is this that he likes so much.
Next on the table was a whole oregano fried young free-ranged chicken. I say young because the meat is tender. And it is soooo flavorful. We lurve it! It came with a special dipping sauce with the strong flavor of oregano and it complemented the fried chicken perfectly. While oregano might be an acquired taste for some, but since I like cooking with herbs myself at home, I kinda dig generously herbed dishes.
For our drinks, we had bottled calamansi and orega-mansi juice. Before you cringe at the thought of drinking orega-mansi, my daughter downed almost a bottle because we told her that it’s good for her cough. 😀 These are made fresh every week.
And who says that healthy meals don’t have dessert? We actually had ice cream! Their ice cream came in two flavors–turmeric and oregano, but mind you, you will not notice them. They are soooo good and creamy! They use only the cow’s milk that are grown naturally by the provincial government in La Granja, La Carlota, Negros Occidental and naturally sweetened. No preservatives at all.
I thought our meal had ended with ice cream but it didn’t. We were then served with sara-sara, a native beverage likened to coffee because of its color but it doesn’t have caffeine at all because it is made from roasted rice. I only tried sara-sara once before and honestly, I didn’t like it that I didn’t drink more than a sip. But this time, I almost finished my entire cup, flavoring it only with a teaspoon of muscovado. We were told that sara-sara aids in digestion, so it is good to drink after a heavy meal. It also promotes a restful sleep. And it did give me a good night’s rest. When I hit the sack at midnight last night, I woke up in the morning already. Didn’t get to wake up to go to the bathroom.
After our coffee, we got a tour of their compound, their production facility, as well as their garden. And finally, I was given a red detox drink that’s also on their menu, which is a combination of natural grown fruits and carrots plus herbs. Great for digestion, too.
Sir Jess strongly uses turmeric, oregano, and calamansi in their dishes and products. These ingredients are powerful antioxidants with strong therapeutic qualities in them. But they are using them in such a way that dishes are enhanced. Sir Jess Cafe has definitely leveled up healthy eating so that you won’t feel like you’re turning into a goat chewing on grass while on the path to a healthier lifestyle.
“Sir Jess Cafe has definitely leveled up healthy eating so that you won’t feel like you’re
turning into a goat chewing on grass while on the path to a healthier lifestyle.”
Meet the Chef at Sir Jess Deli and Cafe
The lady behind all these creations is Chef Jesselle Hyacinth Suarez, the daughter of Sir Jess actually. Sir Jess is Provincial COMELEC Supervisor Jessie Suarez. Chef Jesselle studied HRM from the University of St. La Salle and then proceed to complete culinary arts from the Institute for Culinary Arts De La Salle- Bacolod. Although she wanted to pursue her profession abroad, she found herself going back to her roots–building a cafe that serves healthy foods made from natural ingredients that are mostly produced at their farm in Murcia, Negros Occidental. Her main goal is to create dishes that are healthy but also accessible and affordable to combat the notion that only the rich can afford quality food. So it is really a good thing that she stayed because her work and advocacy just amped the wellness market in Bacolod.
Much of Chef Jesselle’s practices were handed down to her from her elders. When she was young, they used herbs in the house when the kids are sick. They also used them for cooking.
One of the tips that Chef Jesselle shared to me was taking some pure calamansi juice in the morning before taking anything and another dose before going to bed. Well, so far, I have done it for two days now. She tells me that it is good for cleansing the body of toxins.
Sir Jess Deli and Cafe
Sir Jess Deli and Cafe is open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 11am to 3pm and from 5pm to 10pm. They have a spacious air conditioned dining area, a garden dining area, and a function room for small gatherings. They have a turo-turo counter as well as an ala carte menu. They also have a pasalubong center where you can buy their specialty BFAD-approved products like herbed piaya, bottled quail adobo (pinitaw), Orega Flakes, sandwich spreads, juices, and many more. For reservations to the restaurant or bulk orders of their deli products, please call Tel. No. (034) 432 1271.