Being away from home has its benefits. You become more independent, responsible, and self-sufficient. However, it can also be lonely, being away from your family and the place you’ve known your whole life. Whenever I visit Naga, I always get this feeling of excitement and loneliness. Most of the time I am excited to see and hug my family and friends, but the the day won’t end without me feeling sad for missing out on so many things in my hometown. Whenever I go out, I would often search for familiar faces. Then suddenly, the whole city would feel so foreign to me. I’m a pretty sentimental person and losing touch with my childhood and all the memories and emotions that come with it can be disconcerting. So, in an effort to stay in touch with my roots, I visit old and new places.
Last month, my sister and I visited Naga to check on our babies–our doggies Lily and Pochi. So while in the city, we decided to visit Que Pasa. When I was younger, Naga only had very few restaurants, but now everywhere you turn there’s a newly opened cafe or boutique. I’ve been seeing nice photos of Que Pasa on social media so I was really curious. However, I’m not the type who easily takes secondhand info so I always check things out for myself before recommending them to people.
True to what I saw online, Que Pasa is indeed an Instagram-worthy place–a heaven for the creative freak I dare say. Outside you’ll see a weirdly beautiful time-worn facade, giving the diner a more rustic feel. Inside, however, you’ll see a combination of contemporary and traditional designs. Walls are filled with works of art by Naga’s best. Even the water dispenser couldn’t escape from their creative hands!
But for me, the one that took the cake is the restrooms. Que Pasa is the first in the country (as far as I know) that provides three restrooms, namely Que Gayon (girls), Que Guapo (boys), Querebels (gay lingo for ‘whatever’ + rebel wordplay). This is pretty progressive thinking from a region that’s fiercely Catholic.
I must admit though, I was completely uninformed about the kind of food being served that Que Pasa, but I was so sure they offer laing or gulay na natong in Bicolano. And I was right, however they serve it as side dish. In order to eat, you have to select your main course, your preferred rice, sauce, and sides. I didn’t know this from the get-go because no one guided us, although there was a sign board with instructions on how to order. I only knew about it after I was done ordering LOL. It would have been nicer if one of the staff who greeted us have told us about the process, or at least directed us to the sign board. I’m not sure about you, but when it’s my first-time at a certain restaurant I’m usually nervous, preventing me from seeing important details, like how to order haha! 😛
So after the confused staff handed me my orders, I proceeded to pay at the nearby counter. You can order your beverages there as well. That day I was with my family so I paid about Php 1,300 for 8 people. Not bad at all. We ordered baby back ribs and tuna for our main course with Cerveza Negra and I-forgot-the-name yellow sauce; laing and grilled veggies for the sides; and laing rice and pimenton garlic rice.
My relatives and I loved the ribs and the tuna as well as the grilled veggies. The sauces were terrific! I have a pretty high standard when it comes to laing though, because my mother makes the best gulay na natong I kid you not. Que Pasa’s was okay. Our only complaint was the rice was too oily for our taste. The oil kinda overpowered the flavor. Nonetheless, the whole experience gave us value for our money so I was satisfied.
Would I recommend Que Pasa? Absolutely. It’s family-friendly and has gorgeous interiors so it is perfect for families. But I would advise you to ask for guidance from the staff in case you get confused like I did haha! More than half of them are very young so I guess they were just shy. There are customers who do not wish to be bothered so maybe that’s why the staff were hesitant to help out. At night time, the restaurant opens the bar, making it a great place to hang out with friends after a day’s work. For now, I’m giving Que Pasa a 4/5 stars.
The restaurant is located along Barlin Street, just right beside Naga Metropolitan Cathedral. Have you been to Que Pasa? Share your experience below!