Savory Restaurant – Another Manila’s Heritage Lost

Never judge a Chinese restaurant by its looks. Having a dilapidated building doesn't mean that the food they serve is not good. A friend once told me that a good Chinese restaurant looks dirty because their owners focus more on serving delicious food.

I guess this is true for Savory Restaurant located along Kalye Escolta. The uninitiated will likely deride this restaurant for its shabby appearance. But they will be surprised because the place is filled with customers every evening. In fact, the parking space beside Savory is always full.

Savory Restaurant before the Fire
Savory before the fire.

This restaurant was founded by the Ting brothers at the foot of Jones Bridge in the 1950s.1 Back then, Kalye Escolta was considered the greatest commercial center in Metro Manila. Big businesses all have their main offices in this place. An old office driver told me that in the past kapag nag-Escolta ka, sikat ka (if you go to Escolta then you’re fabulous).

Sadly, this iconic restaurant burned down last Thursday.

Savory Restaurant along Kalye Escolta, Manila after the fire last Thursday
Savory is "Business as Usual" no more.

Reports say that the fire started in the kitchen. The fire went out of control and thus engulfed the whole place. Thankfully, no life was lost during the incident.

My “blogger-sense” prompted me to visit Savory the day after the fire. Fire trucks were in the area and firefighters were still putting out remaining embers.

Firefighters still at work to stop the fire in Savory, Kalye Escolta, Manila

Smoke continued to rise up from the second floor

Burnt building of Savory, Kalye Escolta, Manila

The OTB and lotto outlet beside Savory was not spared. The Polland branch beside the lotto outlet (with a big sigh of relief to its owners) was saved.

Kalye Escolta, Manila

The fire that gutted Savory was the second incident that occurred along Kalye Escolta this year. The first incident was the fire in the upper floors of the City College of Manila.

City of College Manila

I never entered Savory even though I walk along Kalye Escolta and Jones Bridge plenty of times. But that doesn’t mean that I never tasted their yummy dishes. In fact, my officemates occassionally order Savory’s lomi and pancit canton for merienda. Savory’s famous fried chicken, on the other hand, is ordered during special occasions like birthdays, promotions, and Christmas.

The owners of Savory along Kalye Escolta are yet to reveal their plans regarding their restaurant. There’s a possibility that the current restaurant will be torn down and a new (and probably modern) building will replace it. If that happens then the iconic building that stood at the foot of Jones Bridge for decades will be lost forever.



1. This info was obtain from the Original Savory website.

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  1. Nakakalungkot to see the building this way. Their chicken is really savory. Good thing they have branches in almost all malls now.

    1. The ones in the malls are the branches of Classic Savory while the Savory along Kalye Escolta is the main Original Savory. The two are different restaurant. Probably the owners of Classic and Original are the heirs of the Ting Brothers and they decided to go their separate ways.

  2. Such a great heartbreak really ish cause whenever i go to chinatown i always see this place as a landmark. Truly, this holds a lot of history itself. Just so so sad, hopefully they would restore it.

  3. Sayang talaga yung building na to... nafeature pa naman ito sa Jessica Soho recently...


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