BACOLOD CITY – This city’s famous chicken dish was laid out on a 320-meter-long grilling station along the main road of a commercial area, cooked by some 70 concessionaires, to culminate the three-day Bacolod Chicken Inasal Festival on Sunday night.
The grilling event, which showcased 3,000 sticks of various chicken parts, can be considered the longest in the Philippines, according to Councilor Celia Flor, also the festival co-chairperson.
The weekend festivity held at Megaworld’s The Upper marked the return of the festival four years after it was last held in the downtown area. “All the others grill their own product such as bangus (milkfish) and pork. Here in Bacolod, we have chicken inasal,” Flor told media. ‘Inasal’ means roasted or charcoal-grilled.
Councilor Jason Villarosa, chair of the tourism committee, said the Bacolod City government will consider applying for a world record of longest chicken inasal grilling st-up. However, since about P1-million is needed to invite the Guinness World Records team to come to Bacolod, the event was just showcased locally with a grilling station longer than the 300 meters during the last festival in 2019.
On May 25, a day before the festival started, the city government distributed 1,600 chicken inasal meals to charitable institutions and non-government organizations. The recipients included the Bacolod Boys Home Foundation, St. Vincent’s Home for the Aged, Bacolod Bacolod Girls Home Foundation, Social Development Center, St. Ezekiel Moreno Monastery, and Alaga BCD animal welfare advocates.
A Barangay Inasal Cook-off was also held for the first time at the so-called Manokan Country on Saturday afternoon, an area with rows of restaurants offering the famous chicken meal marinated in calamansi or lemon, vinegar, herbs and spices.
Barangay Mandalagan “whipped up the juiciest and tastiest” charcoal grilled chicken to win the title as “best barangay inasal” among the nine competing villages. Barangay Singcang-Airport and Barangay 29 placed second and third, respectively.
Also on Saturday night, the city’s choice inasal in various categories were recognized and the chicken inasal “pioneers and legends” were honored during the Chicken Inasal Awards.
Among the awardees were Bacolodnon actor Joel Torre’s JT’s Manukan Grille and Ciocon family’s Chicken Deli for the Coast to Coast Award; Manokan Country-based Aida’s Chicken, Tourist’s Choice Award; and Cajili family’s Bacolod Chicken House, Family’s Choice Award.
The Pioneer Award went to Bernadette Posadas of Bernadette’s, Neda Velez of Velez’s, and Franciso Bolonia of Nena’s 1, which also have stalls at the Manokan Country.
Galpad’s Inasal was named “Inasal sang Masa” based on the online votes collated by the Bacolod City Public Information Office. (PNA)