Kuster’s smoked Ham and Food Hub: Ham sandwiches, bagels and more!

First of all, a big thanks to Gary author of the blog All around Bacolod for his original informative post about this stall.  

We read Gary’s post about Kuster’s and I was like “OMG.. BAGELS!!“.

I had first eaten bagels on a trip to New York and immediately fell in love with it.  Every day, breakfast was a bagel with Kraft squeezable cream cheese and some Lox (smoked salmon).

Needless to say my friends weren’t thrilled when I came home loaded with bags bulging at the seams with every kind of bagel imaginable.

(Seriously guys, Chocolate as pasalubong is so mainstream!  Nothing defines love as a nice warm poppy seed bagel spread lovingly with cream cheese toted halfway around the world.)

ANYWAY…. Kuster’s is a tiny stall in the supermarket area of Lopue’s Mandalagan.  It is tiny and manned by two well-meaning and enthusiastic girls.


Well, they sell bagels at 55 pesos and smoked Ham!  They also serve good Ham sandwiches at 89php. The service is excellent since the two salesladies manning the stall are very enthusiastic about their product!

Kuster’s Ham sandwich. You have an option of white bread (Angelina) or whole wheat.

Of course I had to have their bagel too.  I asked them to serve it without jam so what you see here is a cream cheese bagel.

Bagel with Cream cheese.

They also have English muffins.  I managed to sell a pack to an old lady by describing it as “the bread that sausage mcmuffin uses.”

The salesgirls couldn’t stop giggling.

English Muffins

Kuster’s sign with their contact info.. Click to enlarge. 🙂  <— I’m being a lazy fuck.  Seriously.. you folks should give their smoked ham, muffins and bagels a try.

Contact info.

39 Comments Add yours

  1. Hey Martin, thank you much for the shout out about me and All Around Bacolod. I am glad you like Kuster’s. I still have English muffins in the freezer from when I loaded up at Kuster’s. I had English muffins for breakfast in various ways for about 10 straight days. Yep, I bought a lot at one time. I will also load up on bagels on my upcoming shopping trip to Kuster’s.

    Have a great week!

    ~ Gary ~

  2. Martin Banana says:

    Hahaha. I loaded up on Bagels too. Keep up your cool posts too. BTW why is the epic mustache gone???? NOOOOO grow it back.. Walruses are cool

  3. Jim Custer says:

    Hello Martin,

    Many thanks for the kind review. We’ve only been in business for about two weeks but so far everything has exceeded our wildest expectations. The food has been exceptionally well received by the people of Bacolod. A blessing for which we are most grateful. We’re looking to add more items, such as smoked bacon, baked beans, Carolina coleslaw, etc, in the near future. Also, Many thanks to Gary Mc. for all the help he’s given us on exposure.

    Best regards
    Jim Custer

  4. Martin Banana says:

    OMG JIM.. you own this? It’s awesome! I love your Bagels and Ham. Why didn’t you tell me that you opened a food stall. This is so embarassing but it’s no biggie. anything that serves good food is bound to get on this website sooner or later, 🙂

    ANYWAY… Yesterday was actually my second visit to your stall. Last week I went there and got Ham, english muffins and a pack of bagels..

    You have good salesladies very helpful, very nice.. A bit scatterbrained but nice nevertheless. I helped them sell a pack of english muffins to a pair of old ladies.

    Your creamcheese ran out… hence the scanty looking bagel.

    You really should talk to Guid Njissen at the museum cafe about HAM MAKING. He makes all sorts of hams (duck ham etc..)

    1. Jim Custer says:

      Hello Martin,

      Many thanks for the kind comments about the kiosk. I thought about telling you about it but decided not to. The way the “Hunter’s” reviews food outlets is the best way to get an unbiased opinion about a food provider. You walk in uninvited and unannounced, order your food, pay for the food and leave — then you write your review. I was afraid that by mentioning the kiosk to you it would interfere with the unbiased way you evaluate restaurants.

      By the way, thanks for mentioning the cream cheese shortage. I think the problem has been solved. The cheese we were using had a tendency to melt into a hot bagel. We’ve discontinued using that cheese. Thanks a million for the heads-up!

      We also know Guid Njissen. Have you been to his house/Kitchen/school in Talisay. If not you really owe it to yourself to arrange a visit. The guy really knows his stuff. And his kitchen will knock your socks off.

      Keep up the good work!!

      Best regards
      Jim Custer

      1. Martin Banana says:

        yes..we’ve been to his house. have you been reading the posts lately? He cooked us dinner!! 🙂

  5. Sugar Pie says:

    Marts!! It’s me again….finally, bagels in bacolod!!! excited much. will go there unannounced too =D

    …and finally, the cream cheese sitting lazily inside our ref will finally have its show. first tasted bagels in cebu (i think it was in rustan’s supermarket).


    1. Martin Banana says:

      super like! hahhaa

  6. pepe says:

    Great ham, good muffins, bad sandwiches. Too much bread to filling ratio and it came with local yuk mustard without asking. Why is ham in Bacolod double the price of any deli in manila? James ham (FAMOUS LOCAL HAM) is now 800/kilo. It is only pork di ba. Victorias ham used to be the best but has gone down in quality.

  7. pepe says:

    Best of luck, many a recommendation on this site has been the kiss of death to many restos in town. Aloha joes, Tacorrito, Imbiss, Red basil and the place next door to name a few.

    1. Martin Banana says:

      Yeah.. it’s too bad those great places close down. 😦 too little customers. Red basil is still open they moved to Robinsons. Tacorrito moved too IDK where..

  8. Gary says:

    So true, Martin. Too little customers and too many competitors in the Restaurant World. Some get lucky. Is Red Basil Thai now the Thai Restaurant known as “Tamarind” at Robinsons? The Pad Thai Noodles at Tamarind kicks azz!
    ~ Gary ~

    1. Martin Banana says:


  9. pepe says:

    Unfortunately tamarind is always empty too and may be the next closure.
    Thai restos fail in Bacolod for some reason, probably not enough foreigners, and Ilongos are not generally open minded to spicy food.

    There is a new Indian resto / carinderia in villamonte. Great authentic samosas

    1. Martin Banana says:

      oooh!!! wow thanks for the tip!! can you please tell us how to get to that indian restaurant?

  10. I second that emotion, lol. Where is the Indian Restaurant? I know where Villamonte is but I need to be led to the tandoori chicken and roti prata.

    ~ Gary ~

  11. pepe says:

    Main Villamonte road going from Triangle to Lopues east, the opposite side to dalum balay burger but 100 metres closer to barangay hall.

    Dont wanna over hype it and ruin expectations of an international style Tandoori house, its a carinderia with usualy 3 or 4 dishes/curries, samosas, and indian rice (basmati,)

    The name is INDIAN RESTAURANT. Run by a guy from Punjab, lots of the local 5-6 lenders eating there, and they use real Indian spices.

    Lots of nice deserts too , just point at the one u like.

    Prices like a carinderia, 35 for veg curry, 50 veg biriyani, 20 for samosas (always available)

    Reminds me of a place in Dehli i once ate daily, they even play Indian music.



    1. Martin Banana says:

      WOW thanks for the tip!! I tried Tostillas and it’s not to par.. strictly food for the students…the food is cheap and kinda “ok”. HOWEVER the owner IS very nice..

      I’m dreaming of curry right now… IM SO EXCITED.. will go ASAP to that place hahaha

  12. Martin Banana says:

    Side comment: Got another pack of Bagels yesterday from Kusters… YUM YUM

  13. pepe says:

    Tostillas looked yummy on the tv ad.

    There is a new place behind Lopues east veranda opened Aug 1. Owl Avenue , selling quesadillas, burritos and more, will be trying soon. where dok manok used to be.

    Lopues east /NGC area has many new food places opening (and some closing)

    Kusters how about selling ham bagels?

  14. Hello! Try Dalum Balay Burger!

  15. pepe says:

    dalum balay serve very bad burgers, more like round fat meatballs, often raw in the middle served with 2 peso supermarket cheese slices and a sad attempt at salad under their sweet sticky mayo sauce.

    1. Martin Banana says:

      Well, although I can’t be as vocal as pepe, we follow thumper’s motto (Bambi) which says:

      If you can’t say anything nice don’t say anything at all.

      Hehehe 🙂 that’s why some places don’t get reviews

  16. pepe says:

    a diplomatic way to agree?

  17. pepe says:

    another one bites the dust!!
    like i said a few months ago 650 a kilo for ham is way too expensive when aribu sell at almost half the price

    1. It is my understanding that the owners had to take an extended trip out of the Philippines, so since they were no longer here to supply the food hub or manage it, the food hub has shut down until further notice. Some of us will miss those English muffins and bagels!

      ~ Gary ~

      1. Jim Custer says:

        Hello all. Gary is correct. We closed Kuster’s Ham Hub primarily due to a death in the family. We also closed it because the people at Lopue’s are very difficult to deal with but that’s another story. We’re planning on reopening in the new mall going up at Ayala later this year. Actually, the business was doing pretty well. We were going through about 16 kilos of ham a week and more bagels and English muffins than I could keep track of. Jim

      2. Martin Banana says:

        Yeah, loupes is pretty hard on stalls there. A friend of mine owns the cake stall there and the management have been troublesome.. Might be pulling out too.

        On a side note: Jim I finally saw your tv spot for grill guru. (I don’t watch a lot of TV).
        Great job. Hahaha!

      3. Jim Custer says:

        Hello Martin, These people are way past troublesome. Words like liars, crooks, and thieves keep wanting to slip into my vocabulry. The Lopue’s Art District has had two stabbings recently and a lot of gang activity in the evening. Neither of which is very good for business. I think the new Ayala mall is really going to put the hurt on Lopue’s. Jim

    2. Martin Banana says:

      I will miss Kusters 😦

  18. tff says:

    I am a fan of the sandwich!

    1. Jim Custer says:

      Thank-you!! We need all the fans we can get. FYI those hams brine for 30-days then spend 6 or 7 hours on the smoker before they’re declared ready to be turned into sandwiches. Jim

      1. Martin Banana says:

        You really should get in touch with Chef Guido Nijssen of Museum Cafe.. He makes hams too!

  19. Thank you Jim, for the current update about Kuster’s Ham Hub. We look forward to the new Grand Opening in a new location. I am sorry hearing about the passing of a loved one and our warmest condolences are expressed to you and to your family.

    ~ Gary ~

    1. Jim Custer says:

      Gary, Many thanks for the kind words. Next time you’re in the Talisay area give us a shout and we’ll get together for some food and a few cold ones. Jim

  20. Johan says:

    Well this explains why I could not find this place a while back after reading a great review on it. Sorry to hear it did not work out there, but will keep an eye out for the new one!

  21. Ida Vecino says:

    The last time I went to Lopues Mandalagan to check out Kuster’s kiosk, they were gone already but reading your conversations here about reopening and I can’t wait for it!

  22. Sue jolens says:

    Is kuster opening soon?

    1. Martin Banana says:

      yes hopefully it’ll reopen again

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