I Squid You Not, These are the 10 Best Places for Calamari

You’ve got to be squidding me

Squid can be a divisive ingredient. Many are intimidated by the creature’s tentacles and sometimes rubbery texture but for those who love it, there’s no better way to enjoy it than freshly-fried, golden brown calamari. It’s usually served as an appetizer, garnished with lemon and parsley and served with some sort of dipping sauce.

Fun Fact: Calamari is the Italian word for "squid" (singular: calamaro)

Most people don’t realize that calamari doesn’t always have to be battered and fried. It can be grilled or sautéed with olive oil and garlic the way the Spaniards typically prepare their chipirones. But because we live by the saying, “If at first you don’t succeed, fry, fry again,” we’ve curated a list of only the best deep-fried calamari dishes in Metro Manila.

Read on, we only ask that you follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. Consider it a squid pro quo.

Prima Facie – Tomas Morato

Prima Facie is a speakeasy hidden inside Vitto’s Wine Bar & Restaurant in Tomas Morato. They mainly serve bar chow to go with their hefty drinks list. Try their calamari which is fried to golden perfection and served with three kinds of dipping sauce.

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114 Scout Lozano Street cor Tomas Morato, inside Vitto’s, Laging Handa, Quezon City
(0906) 136-1712

Gringo – various branches

Gringo is a local concept from the Tokyo Bubble Tea group. It specializes in Latin American and Tex-Mex specialties including chicken, ribs, burritos and more. Their garlic calamari is a must-try! Best paired with a bucket of ice cold beer and a fresh squeeze of lemon.

Photo from @gringoph

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The Fort Residences, 2nd Ave Bonifacio Global City, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig
(02) 478-7503

Gumbo – SM Mall of Asia

Inspired by the vibrant melting pot of New Orleans, Gumbo gives us a taste of Cajun-Creole style cuisine. This restaurant has a reputation for large servings, which are great for get-togethers. Try their Calamari Fritti – large rings of squid which are battered and deep fried

gumbo megamall jambalaya
Photo from @chynnachua

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2/F SM Mall of Asia, Entertainment Mall, Seaside Blvd, Pasay
(02) 556-0238

Picada Tapeo – BF Homes

Picada Tapeo Restaurante is a Catalan-inspired restaurant serving up Spanish fares such as tapas and paella. Order the Torre de Calamares Fritos to snack on while you sip on sangria! Read more here.

Photo from @picadaph

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252 Aguirre Ave, BF Homes, Parañaque
(0956) 805-3676

The Belle & Dragon – Legazpi Village

The Belle & Dragon is a gastropub that highlights Western & Asian cuisine, with dishes like curry calamari and masala mac and cheese. They also offer a special selection of imported and local craft beers.

Photo from @thebelleanddragon

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100 OPL Building, C Palanca Street, Legazpi Village, Makati
(02) 625-8828

Fish & Co. – SM Mall of Asia

Fish & Co. is all about fish and seafood, a long seafood staple for many, you can enjoy fresh & scrumptious dishes with their wide menu of seafood classics such as Peri-Peri Prawns, Calamari, and Fish & Chips.

Photo from @carrengonzales

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G/F SM Mall of Asia, Entertainment Mall, Pasay
(02) 576-9170

T.G.I. Friday’s – various branches

The Bistro Group introduced TGI Fridays in 1994, the first American casual dining restaurant in the Philippines. Serving up American classics that appeal to the Filipino palate with an assortment of appetizers, steaks, salads and pasta, chicken, seafood, burgers and sandwiches, desserts, wine, cocktails, and beer.

Photo from @hungrygypsyph

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Cafe Sanso – Little Baguio

Cafe Sanso is a small cafe serving Spanish specialties such as chorizo platters, paella, callos and churros. It serves as an ode to Juvenal Sanso, the internationally acclaimed artist, master painter and printmaker. Check out the Sanso Museum next door!

Photo from @cafesanso

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32 V Cruz St. Little Baguio, San Juan
(0922) 894-6144

Tittos Latin BBQ & Brew – Kapitolyo

Tittos is a modern diner serving the best of Latin American and Filipino fusion dishes. From their grill, must-tries are the Pollo Asado, Pork Chuletas, and 18-hour Gaucho Steak. Try their Dos Tipos Calamares – a combination of crispy black calamares and grilled calamares with garlic mojo. Read our full feature here

Photo by @cgc010

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16 East Capitol Drive, Kapitolyo, Pasig
(02) 535-9212

Tony Roma’s – Alabang Town Center

Tony Roma’s is a full-service, casual dining family restaurant from Miami. You can enjoy premier Ribs and Steaks in their many locations across the world. Thanks to Booky, you can claim a Buy One Get One deal for their Half Caesar Salad with Calamari for just Php 395!

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2/F Alabang Town Center, Luna St, Alabang, Muntinlupa
(02) 771-1388

Guess what! Booky has more Buy One Get One promos waiting to be claimed!

If you’re not already enjoying the offline convenience of Booky, you can download the app for FREE on the App Store or Play Store. Discover over 900 of the top restaurants in Metro Manila and check out all the exciting food you can claim throughout the Metro.