Best Chicken Inasal in Bacolod City: A Traveler's Guide

May 16, 2024 | by: Go Hotels Team
Location: Bacolod

Bacolod City is known for its culinary treasure, a dish that tantalizes taste buds and draws enthusiasts from far and wide: the chicken inasal. This beloved delicacy is more than just a barbecued meal. It’s a flavorful masterpiece crafted with a unique blend of marinade and grilling technique, setting it apart from other dishes.

Unlike its counterparts elsewhere, the best Bacolod chicken inasal boasts a distinctive taste that captures the essence of Filipino cuisine. Eager to know more about Bacolod’s specialty dish and culinary scene? Check out this guide on the best chicken inasal in Bacolod City to see what it’s all about.

History and Culture of Chicken Inasal

Chicken inasal is a famous dish in the Visayan region. The term “inasal” originates from the Hiligaynon language, which means “to roast” or “to grill.” Chicken pieces are marinated in a flavorful mixture of vinegar, calamansi juice, garlic, lemon grass, and annatto oil before being grilled over hot coals. 

According to sources, the earliest mention of chicken inasal was in Felix Laureano’s photobook “Recuerdos de Filipinas,” published in 1895. In his photobook, one of the pictures of a Calenderia showed inihao nga manuc (translated as grilled or roasted chicken) on its menu. 

In the 1970s, inasal became a popular “fast food” in Bacolod City. Commuters and public transport drivers who passed through the city’s plaza would eat this dish on the go. It’s a meal that’s easily accessible since many restaurants and food stalls serve it.

Due to its cultural significance, Bacolod City announced chicken inasal as its cultural property last November 2022. Deeply ingrained in the local culture, chicken inasal is often served during festivals, celebrations, and everyday meals. In fact, the city’s MassKara Festival—a vibrant celebration of music and dance—is incomplete without the sizzling skewers of chicken inasal gracing the streets.

Best Places to Eat Chicken Inasal in Bacolod City

Bacolod City is home to the best chicken inasal. Complete your tourist visit to this city by dropping by Manokan Country for authentic chicken inasal dishes. This bustling complex of stalls is just along Father M. Ferror St., across SM City Bacolod. 

Getting hungry? Grab some chicken inasal from these restaurants in the city—Manokan Country and beyond.

1. Aida’s Chicken

Address: Fr. M. Ferrero St., Manokan Country, Bacolod City

Aida’s Chicken restaurant is a favorite among locals and tourists alike, renowned for its succulent chicken inasal. Their signature inasal dish boasts a secret marinade that infuses the meat with a delectable flavor, giving it its prestige as one of the best inasal in Bacolod. Their prices are also budget-friendly, which means you can have a satisfying meal without breaking the bank. 

Besides having one of the best chicken inasal in Bacolod City, Aida’s Chicken also offers other grilled dishes, such as isaw (chicken intestines) and batikulon (gizzard). These, including their tasty chicken inasal, are best paired with garlic rice, chicken oil, and their dipping vinegar.

2. Nena’s Beth Inasal

Address: Fr. M. Ferrero St., Manokan Country, Bacolod City

nena's beth chicken inasal


For an authentic taste of Bacolod City’s culinary heritage, Nena’s Beth Inasal is your best bet. This cozy eatery prides itself on using traditional recipes passed down through generations, which gives diners an unforgettable dining experience. The place's ambiance also exudes warmth and hospitality, making diners feel right at home. 

On top of their chicken inasal, they also have seafood options for those who want to have a taste of the sea!

3. Masskara Chicken

Address: B.S. Aquino Dr., Bacolod City

Named after the MassKara Festival, this chicken inasal restaurant captures the festive spirit of the city in every bite. Their chicken inasal, marinated and grilled to juicy perfection, is a crowd favorite. 

Masskara Chicken has multiple branches around Bacolod. It has one near a budget hotel in the city, Go Hotels. So if you’re staying here, you can get to taste their flavorsome chicken inasal with no hassle. Besides chicken inasal, they also serve other mouthwatering dishes like sisig, seafood, pancit, and some sweet desserts. 

4. Nena’s Rose Inasal

Address: Hernaez St., Bacolod City

In the list of Bacolod City’s best chicken inasal, this restaurant is family-owned and passed down for three generations. Nena’s Rose Inasal is a charming eatery known for its homestyle cooking and generous portions. They serve a tasty selection of chicken inasal in different pieces, including pechopak (chicken breast), isol (chicken butt), and pak-pak (chicken wings).

In addition to their chicken inasal, visitors can also try their Cansi soup and fresh oysters dipped in vinegar sauce.

Tips on How to Enjoy Chicken Inasal Like a Local

Typically, chicken inasal is served on a banana leaf with a side of steamed or garlic rice and dipping sauces like vinegar, giving it a presentation as delightful as the dish itself. You can enjoy it as is or eat the meal like a local and be one with the city’s culture.

Here’s a traveler’s guide on how to enjoy chicken inasal Bacoleño-style.

1. Enjoy chicken inasal kamayan style 

The best chicken inasal dishes in Bacolod City deserve to be eaten in a delicious style. And what better way to do so than eating with your hands like a traditional Filipino? Hold the chicken firmly and dip it generously in your sauce of choice. Then, relish the harmony of flavors as you mix the rice with the chicken oil for a truly authentic experience.

2. Savor the meal using utensils

If you prefer a more conventional approach, you can use utensils to grab every piece of meat from your chicken inasal. Cut the chicken into manageable pieces and dig in, but be mindful of its piping-hot temperature to avoid burning your mouth. Take your time to savor each bite and allow the flavors to unfold.

3. Pair your chicken inasal with other dishes and drinks

Elevate your dining experience by pairing chicken inasal with complementary dishes and beverages. You can also enhance the flavors with sinamak vinegar and a squeeze of calamansi or order some fresh oysters. Wash it down with a cold beer or tropical juice for a refreshing contrast. 

4. Delight in various chicken inasal cuts

Chicken inasal isn’t just about the leg quarters. This delicious Filipino food has a variety of cuts and pieces that can give you a diverse culinary experience. Consider indulging in the wings, liver, gizzard, and breast parts, as well as a crispy skin for a symphony of textures and flavors.

5. Explore other dishes in Manokan Country

Besides the chicken inasal, try out other delectable dishes that the Manokan Country offers. From hearty soups like Cansi and Batchoy to sweet treats like Piaya and Napoleones, the culinary delights are endless. To help you explore these gastronomic hotspots more easily, consider staying in an accessible accommodation such as those offered by Go Hotels.

Savor the Taste of Bacolod’s Famous Chicken Dish

Indeed, the chicken inasal is an iconic dish that embodies the essence of Filipino culinary tradition. From its humble origins as a street food staple to its status as a culinary icon, the chicken inasal tells a story of flavor, culture, and community. Each bite of this flavorful dish is a testament to Bacolold’s rich culinary heritage. 

If you’re looking for a place to stay in Bacolod City as you explore their other delicious dishes, consider checking in at Go Hotels Bacolod. This Bacolod hotel not only provides value for money but also gives you the budget on your trip to do this Inisal food crawl. Situated in the city center, it makes it easy for you to visit the different parts of the city and get a fill of your chicken inasal. 

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