As I walk through the streets of Burgos, Makati Avenue, neon lights flash from every corner of the street with night owls dressed in flashy and skimpy clothes calling every passers-by attention.  The traffic jam begin to pile up and the sound of an organized chaos was produced.  

Expectations have been set when one hears the "red light district."  But there is something we don't know.

Alcohol, prostitution and all the other vices make up a red light district.  But Makati City is truly different from the usual. 

There are secret places that needs to be shared and in Makati City's red light district, these are Ziggurat cuisine and El Chupacabra.


Ziggurat cuisine is truly one of the richest best kept food secrets of the Metropolitan Manila.  Its cuisine showcases that of India, the Mediterranean, Africa and the Middle East.  

Upon entering the restaurant, one will be amazed of its interiors fitted to convey a tour for a food temple.  

It was Jaja who made this discovery and for its proximity from my office, I made it a try though I'm not a fan of Mediterranean cuisine.  But the interiors itself was worth the visit for some sort of cultural immersion and appreciation.

An opposing scene from the nearby bars and restaurants, Ziggurat cuisine was a solemn locale.  When one opts to drink and dine with no unwanted voices and guffaw, drunkards and barkers being heard of, this restaurant will give you what you want.  

Surprisingly, I enjoyed the gastronomic experience at Ziggurat.  Rates are reasonably low albeit expats and foreign travelers dine at the restaurant.

Ziggurat changed my mind on my notions of the middle east cuisine.  The restaurant is truly highly recommended not only for lovers of Mediterranean cuisine but also for those corporate slaves like me that almost dwell in their respective offices for unaccounted number of hours.  Without a magic carpet ride, a whole new world of Makati City was unveiled in this gastronomic experience.

Location:  Durban Street corner Makati Avenue, Makati City


"Let's have dinner at El Chupa."  A travel blogger friend, Gay of Pinay Travel Junkie suggested after she along with Darwin of Tracking Treasure and Marky of Nomadic Experiences  attended an event in Makati City.  I have never been to the Burgos district drinking and wandering if my memory serves me right.  The rendezvous' name sans the red light district is quite an intrigue, don't you think?

Walking down the street en route to my destination for the night, pimps and prostitutes greeted me and with a few turns, I made it to the google map-challenging El Chupacabra.  

El Chupacabra literally means sucker (chupa) + goat (cabra).  The queue was quite long which indeed takes a lot of patience to be able to experience the taco street party.  Most of the patrons are travelers and foreign expats, which makes you feel the South American gastronomic experience.  The restaurant is indeed true to its mantra:  "There are no strangers, only friends who have not yet met."

More than the authentic street tacos, beers and gringas, simply hanging out and sharing stories of all sorts with fellow travelers is a priceless treat.

Location:  5782 Felipe Street corner Polaris Street, Makati City.

Photo courtesy of Melo of OutofTownBlog with Gay, Marky, Darwin, Jerik of Pinoyboyjournals and Lilian of Wanderlass
Ziggurat cuisine and El Chupacabra are just two of the many secrets that the red light district of Makati harbors.

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  1. See, if i had gone to Chupacabra that night i would have met you. But i didn't, so i didn't have the privilege of devouring that perfectly charred meat barbeque and cheap tacos. :(

    I used to live near there, back when i still go to an obscure school in Makati, and aside from Ziggurat (thumbs up!) another gem in that area would be Filling Station just follow the sexy strut of those trannies to P. Burgos and you'll have awesome pancakes and level up 5 points for the quirky decor too. :D

    1. sayang! i should have met you that night pala. maybe next time I hope not in another lifetime. lol a lot of friends do recommend filling station as well I'll try that soon... thanks for leaving a comment ;)