3 – Rico’s Lechon – The Pioneer of Spicy Lechon
When it comes to spicy lechon in Cebu, there is only one word that comes to mind: Rico’s Lechon.
The owner Enrico “Rico” Dionson started his business in 1997 as he was looking for a way to provide a better future for his family. He started out by giving samples to friends and clients who found the lechon too salty. That’s when he improved his recipe and began using the best quality products, giving birth to Rico’s Lechon – “Da Best Gyud.”
Rico’s Lechon got its big break when the former President of the Philippines, Joseph Estrada discovered his lechon, through a common friend. He declared it as his favorite lechon and had Rico prepare dozens of the Filipino favorite at the Malacañang Palace. The business took off.
Always an entrepreneur, Rico’s was the first to introduce the “Spicy Lechon” variety in the Philippines. The spiciness is infused in the meat but not the skin, so for those who aren’t fans of spicy food can still enjoy the crispy lechon skin.
Rico’s uses local and organic pigs stuffed with leeks, lemongrass, tomato, vinegar, ginger, and other herbs and spices. The pigs are then spit-roasted over charcoal slowly for two to four hours.
Today, you’ll find Rico’s Lechon at several locations throughout Cebu.
On the whole, for the best lechon in the Philippines, you want to go to Cebu. Locals are passionate about their favorites. Some will say CnT is the best, while others will swear by Rico’s; you just have to try them all!