Free Entrance: Chicken and more

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BACOLOD CITY – Chicken inasal has been appropriated as THE item of food in Bacolod. It’s ubiquitous, it has a lot of versions, with pretty much every mom-and-pop enterprise serving it.

Customers can have a choice of grilled isaw, the favorite of adventurous souls. Photo by Hannah A. Papasin

And then there’s Free Entrance.

Free Entrance is one of the stalls put up for the MassKara Festival and is located in front of the Panasiatic entrance (left side if facing NGC).

Operated and managed by Barangay 13 village chief Andre Familiaran and wife Tanya, along with Barangay 30 chief Nino Petierre, Free Entrance offers chicken inasal – and all other parts of the chicken fit for consumption (we Pinoys eat everything). That night, my partner and I dropped by place as promised (Trivia: Our first legit MassKara date since we got married).

Betamax anyone? It’s succulent, equal parts sweet, and salty. Photo by Hannah A. Papasin

We ordered the usual: paa (thigh part), betamax, isaw, atay, and those squares of squid (surprisingly tender – squid could be a literal tough sell; cook ‘em wrong and you will be chewing till Rapture).

The flavors are equal parts sweet, salty, and umami.

The chicken inasal is cooked just right; it’s not dry, there’s enough of the juice on the flesh, and none of tell-tale signs of uncooked meat (fresh blood dripping – nada).

Barangay 13 village chief Andre Familiaran, along with DNX CEO Julius Mariveles, and Managing Editor Hannah A. Papasin. Photo by Nino Petierre

But our favorite is the squid. Did we say it was tender? It was also seasoned just right, with the natural saltiness from the squid completing the hot white rice served before us (we didn’t ask for garlic, by the way. The rice came with it).

You know how good the offerings are? I finished one-and-a-half cup of rice (I can barely finish one cup lately), and me pardner finished two-and-half.

Plus, I ditched the sawsawan. The food is that good.

Total bill: P600+ of stomach-bursting goodness.

Rating: Four Forks.

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