The Best Cup of Hot Chocolate at Tsokolate de Batirol
Baguio is one of the best places to visit come summertime because of the cool weather. It is also a neat place to get that long awaited rest and relaxation. One other thing that makes Baguio such a cool destination is the food.
Filipinos, in general, love food. This is why there are tons of neat restaurants in the country offering all types of cuisines from Italian to Japanese to French to European to American to our Native Filipino cuisine. In Baguio, there are plenty of places to eat may it be for breakfast, lunch, merienda (snack), or dinner and one of the places that they are famous for is Tsokolate de Batirol.
Tsokolate de Batirol offers a lot of Filipino merienda fare from pancit palabok to bibingka to puto bumbong, and other types of kakanin (Filipino rice cakes). They also have breakfast selections and meals suited for the lunch and dinner crowds. Even if they are a full blown restaurant inside Camp John Hay, people, locals and tourists alike, visit their establishment because of their famous hot chocolate.
Chocolate, or cacao beans for that matter, is produced from the Theobroma cacao tree. Beans are dried, cleaned, and then roasted. After the roasting period is finished, the beans are ground into a fine powder.
You might be wondering to yourself about what makes their hot chocolate so special. For one thing, this is not your ordinary cup of hot chocolate as it makes use of chocolate in its purest form through something that is referred to as the tablea. The tablea is a chocolate tablet made from raw native chocolate mixed in with a very small amount of sugar.
The kind of hot chocolate that they serve here is not made out of a package as the chocolate has to be cooked for some time before serving. With every cup made to order, you will have to wait patiently, about twenty to thirty minutes, for a cup of genuine hot cocoa. Now you know about the Tsokolate or chocolate part of the establishment’s name.
The restaurant also has the term Batirol tied up with its name. The batirol is what native Filipinos use to make this kind of hot chocolate. It is a long wooden stick with a head closely resembling a wooden honey dipper.
The head does not have smooth sides as there are grooves all over it which serves the purpose of slowly crushing the tablea as the hot water softens it while being cooked. The slow incorporation of the chocolate into the cooking liquid is what gives the hot chocolate its intense flavor in the end. To mix everything up, the person cooking the chocolate spins the batirol from left to right using the palms of his or her hands.
Batirol chocolate is something that Filipinos still make up to this day. Several households consider the batirol as one of the main pieces of equipment in the kitchen. Aside from the adults, children also know how to make this kind of beverage.
A cup of hot chocolate at Tsokolate de Batirol costs about Php 120 and this will already give you an almost overflowing mug of chocolate. It is best paired with the bibingka which costs Php 85 or the puto bumbong (Php 92). There is another thing that you can pair with this beverage and that is crusty bread so do consider ordering the hard rolls (Php 30) that they have.
Tsokolate de Batirol
Camp John Hay, Baguio City, Philippines