PHL culinary talents give taste of best dishes ahead of Madrid Fusion Manila

MANILA -- Some of the best Filipino chefs, restaurateurs, and local farm owners gave media a taste of Filipino cuisines and ingredients over the weekend, ahead of the third edition of Madrid Fusion Manila (MFM).

Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Wanda Corazon Teo said the agency is just "warming up" as it whets the appetite of the global audience to what is in store on the third helping of MFM on April 4 to 6, 2017 at the SMX Convention Center.

"This is just an appetizer for the 'next gastronomic sensation' awaiting at MFM's third run," Teo said, hopeful to sell the Philippines as a top culinary destination.

DOT Director Verna Buensuceso for her part said that bringing Madrid Fusion to the Philippines "started the ball rolling for the country to be known for its cuisines and ingredients."

Chef Tony Boy Escalante on Sunday hosted a sumptuous lunch for a small group of guests that include foreign journalists at his eponymous restaurant Antonio's in Tagaytay City, with two of MFM starring chefs Robby Goco of Green Pastures (2017), and Miko Aspiras of Le Petit Souffle (2016), along with chefs Josh Boutwood of The Test Kitchen, and Nicco Santos of Hey Handsome, featuring the freshest produce and farm-to-table ingredients from Earth beat Farms, Teraoka, and Earthflora, Inc., among others.

Goco said that he is excited to be part of this year's edition of MFM and is currently working with his culinary team on his presentation for the gastronomy congress.

He said that the challenge is to present something new and novel-the "next gastronomic sensation, so to speak."

He will be joined by equally renowned Filipino chefs Gene Gonzales of Cafe Ysabel, and Jordy Navarro of Toyo Eatery to give a talk and culinary presentation at the gastronomy congress in this year's edition of MFM.

Meanwhile, 28-year-old farm owner Enzo Pinga of Earthbeat Farms showcased his harvest and talked about the fast growing farm-to-table business in the Philippines, along with fellow agri-entrepreneurs Raphael Teraoka of Teraoka Farms and Nicolo Aberasturi of Earthflora, Inc. Pinga.

International lifestyle columnist Daven Wu of DestinAsian had only good words to say about his first Filipino cuisine experience.

"The restaurants we've been to and the chefs and farmers we've met are such an eye opener. Their commitment and enthusiasm are simply amazing," the Singaporean author said, describing Filipino cuisine "surprising."

He however admitted that "while there is so much to discover in flavors and with culture influences so well developed," people in the West and greater Asia know little about Filipino cuisines.

Madrid Fusion Manila is a joint partnership between the DOT and the Tourism Promotions Board of the Philippines and Madrid Fusion organizers Foro de Debate and ARUM.

For the full calendar of events and more information on MFM, log on to its official website at (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency

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