Maginhawa Street Eats: The Budget-Friendly Edition

I remember the first time I stepped foot in Maginhawa. It was during my first month as a student in UP-Diliman, and my roommates wanted to eat out for dinner. We had a lot of choices: Area 2, UP Town Center, Regis at Katipunan, the cheap karinderias at Krus na Ligas and the one street that I’ve heard a lot of upperclassmen rave about – Maginhawa. It didn’t take long before my roommates and I decided to head to the famous street and find out if the area was worth the hype.

My first glimpse at the numerous restaurants that lined the place was overwhelming. When they say that Maginhawa is a haven for foodies, they’re not lying. Every street, bloc,  and corner is filled with homegrown restaurants, each with their unique menus and gastronomic delights.And because there’s such a huge selection of choices, you’ll just keep going back to the street to try out a new resto with every visit.

If you’re a first-timer to the Maginhawa food scene, here’s a list of the area’s must-try restaurants that won’t cost a dent in your bank account.

Friuli Trattoria

Chicken wings, penne con sausage, and their best-selling Viva Venezia Image from Friuli’s FB

Fruili Trattoria is one of the pioneer restaurants in the area and it’s a classic favorite among Maginhawa foodies. This is the best place to eat delicious yet inexpensive pizza and pasta. What I like best about Friuli is that their single servings are big enough to feed two people, especially if you plan on ordering other dishes on the menu. For instance, the last time I went there, my best friend and I only ordered a plate of carbonara and a platter of Viva Venezia pizza, and we still had leftovers.

Price Range: P400 for two people

Address: 79A Maginhawa, Diliman, Lungsod Quezon, 1101 Kalakhang Maynila

Operating hours: 9am to 1am

Contact no: (02) 434 1416

Theo’s Baked + Brewed

Their beloved cookie shots at P65 per piece Image from Theo’s FB

Theo’s is a great go-to place for a quick brunch or if you’re craving sweets. This place tends to get crowded because they serve some of the best cakes, coffee, and donuts in the area. They also have these cute cookies formed like shot glasses with milk inside. Definitely a must-try!

Price Range: P500 for two people

Address: 106-C Maginhawa, Diliman, Lungsod Quezon, Kalakhang Maynila

Operating hours: 7am to 12am

Contact no:(02) 358 8948

Laruan Atbp. Café

pulled pork rice, surf pesto, The Biz Sandwich and beef pares bowl Image from Laruan’s FB

For all the tabletop gamers, you can flex your mental powers and strategy prowess at Laruan. Of course, while munching on yummy eats at the same time. Aside from an extensive collection of board games, they have an impressive menu that features sandwiches, pasta, snacks, rice meals, and hot and cold drinks.

This board game café serves delicious meals and beer. And they have an entire section dedicated to comic books made by local artists.

Price Range: P600 for two people (with free unlimited hours of gameplay)

Address: Ground Floor, Luisa Building, 107 Maginhawa, Diliman, Lungsod Quezon, 1101 Kalakhang Maynila

Operating hours: Mon to Thurs 3pm to 12am; Fri to Sun 3pm to 2am

Contact no: (02) 512 6621

The Nook Café

The Nook Café’s own concoction of the world-famous Butterbeer Image from The Nook’s FB

Whether you’re a Potterhead or not, you’re going to love The Nook Café for its homey interiors and quirky concoctions. Aside from its Butterbeer, the café serves hot and cold beverages, each with their unique twist.Their Triple S Pasta (spicy Spanish sardines pasta) and bacon-wrapped sausages are also well-loved among the witches and Muggles in the area.

Price Range: P400 for two people

Address: 164 Maginhawa, Diliman, Quezon City, 1101 Metro Manila

Operating hours: Tues to Sun 1pm to 10pm

Contact no: 0915 974 3660

Caution Hot!警告辣 Spicy Noodle House

bowl of Caution Hot’s noodles is perfect for a rainy day Image from Caution Hot’s FB

This place always has a long line of people waiting outside, and for good reason. Their bowls of hot and steamy noodles are huge and they pack a delicious punch. The noodle house allows you to customize your bowl with your personal choice of toppings (pork, beef, seafood, or all-veggie), noodle (egg or wheat), broth (classic, Szechuan, or asam laksa) and degree of heat or ”burn” (first, second, third, and ultimate).

Price Range: P400 for two people

Address: 87 Magiting, corner Maginhawa, Diliman, Lungsod Quezon, Kalakhang Maynila

Operating hours: 11am to 11pm

Contact no: (02) 3309526

Papa Diddi’s Handcrafted Ice Cream

Forget ho-hum vanilla and the usual chocolate flavors at this ice cream shop. A scoop goes for P75, P110 for two, and P145 for 3
Image from the writer

Of course, there’s always room for dessert! Your trip to Maginhawa wouldn’t be complete unless you dropped by Papa Diddi’s aka home of the best ice cream in Manila. This farm-to-table ice cream shop crafts some of the most delectable and innovative ice cream flavors, from Backyard Farm Tarragon to mango ginger, basil, and even peanut butter and jelly.

What makes Papa Diddi’s even better is that all of the ingredients are locally produced by farmers from Laguna, the Mountain Province, and Nueva Ecija.

Price Range: P300 for two people

Address: 168 Maginhawa, Diliman, Lungsod Quezon, 1101 Kalakhang Maynila

Operating hours: 11am to 11:30pm

Contact no: (02) 4343784

What used to be a quiet residential area is now home to one of the metro’s well-known food hubs. So head on over to Maginhawa.  And check out these restaurants (and others).

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