I ultimately love seafood that I always try to include it in my food trips during my travels. Whether at the beach, a city tour or a formal restaurant, seafood will always be included on my list. When I heard about a restaurant in Zamboanga whose specialty is seafood, I hurriedly marked this as part of our itinerary. After all, the food experience in a particular place is a mandatory item in my travel adventures. Alavar Seafood Restaurant officially started our food trip in Zamboanga.

The Ambiance

Alavar is located along one of the busy streets of Zamboanga del Sur strewn with pedestrians, jeepneys and tricycles. Stepping inside the restaurant, you’d easily have a hint of its native feels from the Filipino-inspired furniture, Capiz windows, and wooden tables, chairs and floors. It was very homey and relaxing inside. This reminds me of the Filipino restaurants in Tagaytay such as RSM and Leslie’s.

There is a separate dining area for private functions and this space looks dedicated to the family or owner of the restaurant, as the images and portraits of the family are being displayed on the wall.

The Food

Alavar is best-known for its Curacha or Deep Sea Crabs with special Alavar sauce. Alavar sauce is made of coconut milk, curry, and other spices.

We ordered the seafood platter good for 2 people, consisting of Curacha in Alavar sauce, grilled squid, shrimps, clams, grilled tuna, and green mango with bagoong. This platter costs Php 500. Just order extra rice because this plate has only one serving. I noticed that the rice is stickier compared to our regular rice in Manila.

Seafood Platter for two

It was my first time to try Curacha but the second time to taste Alavar sauce. I loved the Curacha — it was more meaty and the crab flesh was soft compared to the crabs that we usually eat, but I am not really a fan of Alavar sauce. For me it was too sweet for my liking. Cath, however, liked it very much. I also liked the clams that was buttery and salty.

Curacha in Alavar Sauce

We ordered Ensaladang Talong (Eggplant salad) topped with salted egg and tomatoes. The eggplant comes with a special vinegar sauce.

Enasaladang Talong, around Php 90

We also had Shrimp Sinigang (180), which was just ordinary but at least we had a soup dish to pair our main course. The shrimps are too small in this serving.

Shrimp Sinigang, Php 180

A Place for all Occasions

I was surprised that the restaurant is very spacious that there is an extension at the back for big events such as wedding, birthdays, debuts, anniversaries, etc.

There is also a small garden with a mini bird sanctuary. We saw different kinds of exotic birds, which seemed to be the owner’s pets. I’m just a bit concerned of the welfare of these birds as I know they should be released in the wild, not caged.

Why Alavar should not be missed in Zamboanga

Alavar is definitely a must-visit tourist attraction in Zamboanga. Not only does it profoundly feature Curacha in Alavar sauce, it provides diners a worthy experience of immersing in the culinary culture of Zamboanga with its sumptuous dishes and beautiful ambiance.

We may have tasted only a few of its best offerings, but I am sure that this is just an introduction to more exquisite seafood dishes of Alavar.

Alavar Seafood Restaurant
Don Alfaro Street Tetuan Zamboanga City
Zamboanga City
Phone: (062) 992 4533
Facebook: Alavar Seafood Restaurant