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October 10, 2014

LIFESTYLE ASIA GALA: 5-Course Dinner of the Best of Philippine Cuisine! (A Photo Essay)



October 10, 2014

LIFESTYLE ASIA GALA: 5-Course Dinner of the Best of Philippine Cuisine! (A Photo Essay)

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I was impressed by the 5-Course Dinner at the Lifestyle Asia Gala, held at the Ballroom of Raffles & Fairmont Makati. The dinner featured the Best of Philippine Cuisine. I agree with the chosen roster of chefs, who were picked based on their passion in elevating Filipino Food to a whole new level.

Congrats to Anna Sobrepeña and Cheryl Tiu for the successful 27th Anniversary Gala of Lifestyle Asia!

Here's a photo essay of the awesome Gala Dinner with the theme, "Spreading the Table"...




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The dinner formally started at around 8.00pm, with an opening performance from the Manila Symphony Orchestra.

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Our food blogger friend Jin Perez of Jin Loves to Eat, with Stenie Coyiuto and Emil Yap.

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My beautiful wife Rache with the Pepitas--Lileya and Liyora, daughters of Dedet De la Fuente of Pepita's Kitchen.

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The choir started the dinner with a solemn opening prayer. 

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Congrats to Mandaluyong Children's choir for serenading us with your beautiful voices. :)

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Anna and Cheryl gave a preview of the 5-course dinner with an interview with the chefs, in a short feature video that whetted our appetite.

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Check out the Lifestyle Asia Gala Best of the Philippines 5-Course Dinner Menu.

Anton & Rache
My lovely date for the night.

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✮ Bahay Kubo Garden Vegetables by Jordy Navarra of Black Sheep.

The appetizer was surprisingly creative--using all the lowland vegetables featured in the Bahay Kubo song--and turning them into a yummy salad masterpiece.

BAHAY KUBO
Kahit Munti
Ang Halaman Doon
Ay Sari Sari
Singkamas (jicama) at Talong (eggplants)
Sigarilyas (wing'd beans) at Mani (peanuts)
Sitaw (string beans), Bataw (hyacinth), Patani (lima beans)
Kundol (winter melon), Patola (loofah), Upo't (bottl' gourd) Kalabasa (squash)
At Saka Meron Pa, Labanos (radish), Mustasa (mustard beans)
Sibuyas (onions), Kamatis (tomatoes), Bawang (garlic) at Luya (ginger)
Sa Paligid-ligid ay puro Linga (sesame seeds).

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I was excited to dig into the different vegetables and to identify each one of them like a kid. There's a dominant peanut taste, with grinded beans, nuts, and sesame seeds (that sometimes get stuck in your teeth), hidden vegetables, mashed squash, slices of radish, and candied upo.

So, this is how the food around the Bahay Kubo tastes like.

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The Bahay Kubo salad was nicely paired with a refreshing Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc. It has an uplifting citrus fruity aroma with just the right dry finish.

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Crispy Isol with Batwan Gravy, Kurobuta Liempo-q with Sinamak by JP Anglo of Sarsa.

Brave of the chef to serve chicken butt. It's like Chicken Joy Butt with a distinct sour batwan gravy, beside a flavorful Kurobuta pork skewer with Bacolod's signature vinegar--Sinamak.

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Unfortunately, it was already a bit cold when it was served.

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It was paired with Chandon Shiraz 2009--medium-bodied with balanced cherry spice notes and a lively finish. 

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✮ Waterspinach Panuelos, Gifts from the Philippine Sea, Negros Blue Crab, Philippine Grouper, Capiz Scallops, Pangasinan Baby Crab Coral, Carabao Butter, Kalamansi Crema by Margarita Fores of Lusso, Grace Park, Cibo

This was an interactive seafood main dish featuring the best of the Philippine sea, with hot and cold drama, served with kalamansi ice cream. 

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We got a chance to decorate our own dish by putting a dash of aligue (crab fat) sauce around the seafood plate.

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I like the intense aroma and refreshing dry finish of the Terras Reserva Chardonnay, which was paired with the seafood.

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I'm glad to have been surrounded by our good friends and partners during this dinner.

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We sat at Table 2--the foodie table--with Cyrene de la Rosa, Erica Aquino, Margaux Salcedo, Pepper Teehankee, Nina Daza-Puyat, and RJ & Vanessa Ledesma.

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Lechon Truffle by Dedet Dela Fuente of Pepita's Kitchen.

The most awaited main dish of the night--Lechon truffle with crispy skin and truffled lechon rice! The skin was meaty and still crunchy. The meat itself was a bit dry and could have used some lechon sauce.

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I can still remember the playful, lingering finish of the Lapostolle Cuvee Alexander Merlot that was paired with the lechon. The lechon should also go well with single malt whiskey.

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The dessert course was interrupted to introduce the awesome chefs featured in the dinner.

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From left to right: Anna Sobrepeña, Chef Robert Bolaños, Dedet Dela FuenteChef Jordy NavarraJP AngloMargarita Fores, and Cheryl Tiu.

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✮ Lifestyle Asia Halo-Halo by Xavier Castello Head Pastry Chef of Raffles and Fairmont Makati.

The dessert was awesome--deconstructed dry halo-halo with langka ice! All the good flavors of halo halo with less ice and water.

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Perfectly paired with a sweet and lively Hennessy V-S-O-P! :)

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After all courses were served, Lifestyle Asia featured its advocacy and gave a symbolic check to Caritas Manila for the Survivors of Typhoon Haiyan.

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Thanks for being a great example of always including our less fortunate brothers in all our projects and endeavors.

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The gala culminated with a graceful Rigodon de Honor of the Lifestyle influencers in Manila. 

Rigodon de Honor is a traditional square dance adopted in the Philippines from the quadrille of France during the Spanish era.

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With my business partner Rj Ledesma and King Eagle, Chris Tiu.

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The night ended with the guests dancing the night away...

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Urban Pantry founders Clarisse Ong-Tiu and twin sister Carina Ong, with Jin Loves To Eat. :)

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Chocolates and Macarons to cap the night...

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Thank you Cheryl for inviting us to the Lifestyle Asia Gala 27th Anniversary Celebration! :) Congrats for the brilliant concept!

 

Live an Awesome Life,

anton  signature
Founder, www.OurAwesomePlanet.com 

Disclosure: I wrote this article with my own biases, opinions, and insights. Read Our Awesome Planet Complete Disclosure Policy here.  

P.S. Aidan wanted badly to go with us...so he tried to put his name on the invitation. 

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