Our Awesome Planet

Our Awesome Planet

September 22, 2006

Josephine's Restaurant -- a Filipino Resto experience in Central London

September 22, 2006

Josephine's Restaurant -- a Filipino Resto experience in Central London

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I had an argument with my brother before I finally convinced him to go to this only Filipino Restaurant in London. It was a first time for both of us in Central London. We spent two and a half days, going to the different tourist places and usually we eat on the go to save time. We were debating on why do we need to eat in a Filipino restaurant in London. First of all, eating in a restaurant would set us back at least 2 hours and why do we need to eat Filipino cuisine in Central London when I am from the Philippines and going back the next day! Endless discussion but in the end, my argument of loving our own and supporting our fellow kababayans outside our country won. Also, I'll tell you an open secret, the Londoners have no food that they can call their own --- except for Fish and Chips. I hated all the food I ate and I was dying to eat Filipino food. After having the food trip in Singapore, I thought I would also be able to do this here but I was dead wrong! I was already dreaming of eating at least a decent meal in a Filipino restaurant only to find out that there is one and only Filipino restaurant called Josephine's somewhere around the Oxford shopping area.

If you are a tourist and you only have two days, would you spend the time to eat in a Filipino Restaurant in Central London? Or, maybe I'm just weird.

Josephine's Restaurant was a 5 minutes walk from Tottenham Court Tube station corner Oxford street. It was the best meal I had in London, and my brother would agree. The food is home cooked Filipino Fusion that could rival Guava or Filos in the Fort. They have been operational for 10 years now this September.

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The interiors are predominantly red with a large mural of bahay kubo on stilts facing a river.

Josephine's Restaurant is owned by Eddie (pictured above) and Josie Poniente who have been in London for 20 years already. They are proud that all the dishes are home cooked as you order them and they are not stored food heated in microwave.

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This was an interesting description of Filipino cuisine.
"Filipino cuisine is an exotic, tasteful blend of oriental, european and american culinary influences. "

Hmmn... come to think of it, I would agree with it. We have a lot of chinese, spanish and american influence, so can we call this global cuisine then? But I'm still wondering why Filipino have not taken off globally and have its own equity plus following.

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Only Kare-Kareng Baka in Central London! (8.50 pounds) Beef in Peanut Sauce. A traditional Filipino stew of beef with banana bloosom & vegetables in tasty peanut sauce and shrimp paste on the side.

(Ok, don't ask how much is the conversion rate or you'll die with how expensive it is when you convert it. )

My brother is an expert on Kare-Kare and he loved it! There is something with the thick peanut sauce that makes this a yummy treat. The servings are good for two and they use basmati rice which have lower sugar content than ordinary rice. My wife would definitely love this, when she was pregnant, she usually crave for kare kare aside from the chicken barbeque from Aristocrat.

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Oh my favorite, Sinigang na Lapu-Lapu! (4.50 pounds) Tamarind flavour soup with chunk of radish and string beans

The sinigang broth was so deliciously sour and hot perfect for the cold windy afternoon in Central London. The vegetables are crispy fresh and the fish was surprisingly tender and tasty. Sometimes, you tend to neglect these food and I can't imagine how our OFWs survive in other countries if they don't have this kind of cuisine in their country.

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Manok sa Mani -- Filipino Chicken Sate (4.50 pounds). Marinated grill chicken in skewer with peanut sauce.

This was OK and I can't remember having this type of food even here in the Philippines. This is like chicken marsala with peanut sate sauce.

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The menu is very simple and I was pleasantly surprised that I can have Halo Halo in Central London -- Yahoo!

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Halo - Halo with Mango Ice Cream on top. (3.85 pounds) -- Filipino Sundae? a refreshing concoction of original Philippine fruit preserved and beans blended with crushed ice and Mango Ice cream on top.

Simply the best! I can't ask for more while Im here. It was interesting that they use Mango instead of the usual Ube ice cream.

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Here is a photo of myself and the owner Josie in an al fresco dining setting.

Josephine's Restaurant
4 Charlotte Street
London W1T 2LP
Opening Hours: Monday-Friday: 11:45am-11:00pm
Tel# 0207-5806551
email: Jores4@aol.com

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