Photo by: Hexilon Palattao

By Hexilon Palattao

“The secret recipe is it needs every ingredient to be fresh. The veggies, meat, and noodles, all should be fresh,” Robelyn Olivarez, manager of Thelma’s Panciteria, says when asked how their products differ from other eateries.

The noodle eatery was wide-known in the City of Ilagan, Isabela because of its inviting taste and affordable cost that is budget-friendly to their customers just like the tricycle drivers who are their regular consumers when they decided to open the business. 

The restaurant serves varieties of pancit such as Pancit Guisado, the first recipe they made when they started in 2010.

They also offer Pancit Lomi amounting P25, Pansit Sabaw that is divided in regular and special, P25 and P35, respectively. They also have Pancit Batil, P90 which originated from its city peer, Tuguegarao City.

Aside from these, they also collect orders in bilao that costs P300 for small, P400 for medium, and P600 for large orders.

“We do not only serve pancit but silog and lunch meals. It was actually my idea to enlarge the business since I also have my own canteen,” she says.

Her parents are now senior citizens and taking medications so she sees this as a very good finance generator in the family

“I am happy with the income of this business because my parents can now independently sustain their maintenance plus their personal needs, because we, their kids, also have our own families now.”

On the other hand, Olivarez can’t hold her emotion when she shared her experiences during pandemic and when their business was suddenly shut down.

“We earn zero during pandemic, from before that we cook 50Kilos of noodles, we seemed to get robbed,” she says.

Another burden welcomed their business this month as the oil price hikes and all goods are affected to increase its price, Robelyn is afraid to rise up their price in the business as it might reduce the number of their customers.

“We cannot increase the price in the business right away as it may surprise our consumers especially that almost all commodities have risen in cost due to oil price hike.”

The empathy they consider to share with their customers surely is why the people keep going back then and now. #