My Porky Discovery: Gusti Lechonito De Cubao

Tis the season to be porky my friends! Pigs are undoubtedly hot these days especially since Christmas is almost about to knock on our doors. See them all dressed up inside boxes in groceries and meat section, or lined up on bamboo sticks in areas like Talisay in Cebu or La Loma in Quezon City. I find that most Filipino families usually serve pork in various cooking techniques, with mostly curing (ham) and roasting (lechon de leche) being the best options especially for festivities.

And then I discovered Gusti Lechonito de Cubao, which I knew about some time in 2011 after I happened to see Direk Ogi at a supermarket. Being a renowned independent filmmaker, cinematographer, photographer, and director behind Quickfire on GMA News TV, I worked with him way back in 2008, while doing an ad campaign to produce several viral videos (I need not name it specifically to somehow save me from the humiliation, but as a clue, I "accidentally" got casted in one of those videos hahaha). Funny thing was, I then discovered that he only lives with his family a few meters away from our house. Talk about coincidence, right?

I was able to try Gusti Lechonito de Cubao a few days ago after I met Rose Galvez, Direk Ogi's significant other and Gusti's PR wonderperson. So I went to their house on a Thursday night to pick up the lechonito. It was very nice of her to take me to their kitchen, where I can almost feel the heat from their oven just starting to subside, and where I saw my freshly cooked lechonito awaiting to be wrapped for me to bring home. She was very eager to talk about Gusti and at that point, I instantly got excited to one-eat it right away and two-write about it. So here is what you'd expect if ever you'd order  a Gusti Lechonito de Cubao.

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Can't wait to see what's inside!
She particularly mentioned that in making their Gusti Lechonito de Cubao requires cooking techniques, which takes thorough curing before hits their oven. She also told me to eat it right away while it's still warm (was thinking the same thing, check) and gave me some tips on how to handle leftovers, such as making it into lechon paksiw, or pan fry it as the skin will become crispy again, as it will crackle a bit, which might be slightly similar to pork chicharon or lechon kawali.

After saying goodbye, in less than five minutes I finally got back home and unwrapped the package. Aside from its cool product name, Gusti Lechonito de Cubao is pretty much like a gem of a lechon, considering it's size. A fun-sized version of porky goodness! Gusti Lechonito de Cubao package also comes with a special sauce which is a mixture of soy sauce and a hint of vinegar, which I thought was very tasty, I actually thought it tasted like wine! As my mouth waters while taking pictures of Gusti, I figured out a way to cut it into perfect pieces.

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Mura (Cheap).
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Maliit (Small).
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Malutong (Crispy).
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Masarap (Delicious).
What I did was that I carefully divided the lechonito into two cylinders, and carefully chopped them while turning the cylinders, coming up with even big-bite sized pieces to devour on. I was really impressed about the crispy skin outside and the meat inside which was were both very easy to slice. And then I noticed that the middle part of the lechonito was  a roll of pork tenderloin! Forgive my language, but WTF! This Gusti lechonito should be something really interesting. And for a minute I thought I was in one of the episodes on Man vs. Food, The Carnivore Chronicles.

The first bite was exquisite. After dipping it in the sauce, the skin was perfectly crispy and the meat was, again, very much tender. Blame it for the combination of a pork belly and a pork loin into one neat little package. I was also impressed because even after an hour or two the skin was still crispy, unlike other lechon skins which tend to be chewy as soon as it cools down. Taste, on the other hand, surpassed my lechon standards to heights. I have tried Lechon Cebu before, which I find to be the best in the Philippines, but damn, what just happened? This was not overacting, but for a number of hours I got speechless with the texture and the taste, because I couldn't tell that it was baked, not going around under hot coals just like how lechon is traditionally made. Plus, the sauce was perfect with the cooked meat, rather than the liver sauce that people in Manila have been accustomed to (I tried it with store bought lechon sauce but for me it didn't work). The sauce did not overpower the taste of the pork, which is salty, with a hint of aromatic herbs. Simply a combo of meat and fat lingering through your tastebuds that defines pure porkiness.

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One of their online posters
from their Official Facebook Page

Eating the next few pieces were quite unstopabble, but as always, eating lechon has its limits. For a while I was able to tolerate it, but soon my brain told my stomach to stop eating. As Gusti's tagline says, "eat moderately", I actually didn't think they were serious about it! I thought it was just a quirky line that they used to market the product. But seriously, eat it moderately guys! You don't want to literally have your heart racing after a few pieces. The last thing I don't want to happen is be blamed for the heart attacks that will occur, hahaha.

An order of Gusti Lechonito de Cubao weighs about 1.2kg and can serve up 4 to 5 hungry persons, all for P475.00! That's an affordable price that's hard to beat, more so when other lechons (with bones and all) and quite expensive compared to this one. It's a great deal especially if you are craving for lechon but don't want to spend as much. Not only that, it's size can be perfect also mainly as viand for your usual lunch/dinner, a special pulutan for beer nights, as something new to offer for your Noche Buena, Media Noche celebrations, and even as Christmas gifts for your loved ones. 

With a lot of wildfire which previously circulated on the internet over the origin and the creators of boneless lechon, I think Gusti, on the other hand, is not something we can compare to those that you might think are competitors. I admit, I haven't tried the other boneless lechons in the Philippines except for Gusti Lechonito de Cubao, but so far, for my palate, Gusti Lechonito de Cubao is a top choice, and one of my best recommendations here on Nines vs. Food!

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Sulit (Affordable).

Gusti Lechonito de Cubao is one of the products offered by Gusti Food Services. They offer free delivery (in limited areas only) but please be advised that due to limited stocks and high demand, they would require a lead time (i suggest you call them at least three days to a week ahead) as they make their lechonitos fresh and hot once ordered. They also have other products such as BBQ Ribs, Meat Pies and Sidings. Check out and like to know their latest updates!

1 comment:

  1. Oh my! I gotta try that awesome Lechon! It's really nice that it's
    located in Cubao :)