If there is one food icon of Iloilo, it is Biscocho Haus.

These days, its presence can be seen in strategic places all over Iloilo city and its districts. BH has penetrated the malls–SM, Robinson’s and Gaisano. Their SM City branch, being easily accessible, is always buzzing with customers especially during conventions and festivals in Iloilo. There are other branches: in Molo near Iloilo Supermart,along Gen. Luna, near Assumption, near YMCA, at the PLDT office in La Paz and a couple of others I forgot (hehe).

The mother of all stores is of course at Lopez Jaena, Jaro. Biscoho Haus now has a distinct character with its signature colored glass windows, antique wood cabinets and as accents, their Dutch pulley lamps, floral wooden traceries or calados and iron barandillas.

But do you know that Biscocho Haus started as a the Guadarrama family’s homey snack house under the shade of a tree? (Check it out; it’s still there). I have fond memories from the 80s when my Lola would bring me along as she and her friends had merienda there. In that open breezy space set with a couple of tables and chairs, I would usually have spaghetti with their trademark biscocho while Lola and her church friends would order their delicious dinuguan and puto. (These continue to be served up to now). Ah, yes their banana cake and cheese roll were (still are) also very delicious. Then, they developed their thin garlic bread slices and the melt-in-your-mouth mocha-colored meringue. Eventually, more and more Ilonggo delicacies have been added to their list. Of course, its their butterscotch that has really put Biscocho Haus in the national food limelight. (Now, that’s ironic for butterscotch is not exactly Ilonggo…)

From that simple snack house under the tree has evolved the most famous Ilonggo delicacy shop of all–Biscocho Haus.