Madrid Fusion is the most influential culinary congress in the food world, not to mention a haven for the gastronomic Spanish cuisine.
Now on its 16th year with the theme “Fourth Generation: Those Who Own the Future“, the Congress is meant to showcase how you can future-proof your restaurant business and satisfy the ever-evolving demands of the food industry.
I’ve attended Madrid Fusion for the last 4 years, and this year is a turning point–a passing of the baton to the next culinary generation.
Here are the key restaurant trends, food discoveries, and personal insights from Madrid Fusion 2018…
This year’s Madrid Fusion Manila revolved around the theme “Towards a Sustainable Gastronomic Planet”.
During the International Food Congress, twenty-four of the best chefs in the world–most of them with at least one Michelin star under their belts, and all of them with multiple awards–discussed how they practice sustainability in their kitchens and businesses every day.
Given an hour each including a few minutes where they answered questions from the audience, they also demonstrated a few of their dishes that best showcased the theme.
The regional lunches of Madrid Fusion Manila 2017 ended with the theme of “corn.” Various kinds of corn in all colors, textures, and sizes were used in different types of food–from juices and desserts to hot meals.
It’s only fitting that corn was the crop of choice for the last day because of how important corn is to Filipinos. It’s the second most important crop in the Philippines next to rice, with 1 out of 5 Filipinos having it as their staple food. It was exciting to see and taste how a simple crop, that is often fed to animals as well, was turned into gastronomic delights at the hands of talented chefs.
Day Two of Madrid Fusion Manila 2017 continues with the theme “Towards a Sustainable Gastronomic Planet”, focusing on “Nose-To-Tail” for the Regional Lunch.
A buzzword that spread throughout the culinary world, Nose-To-Tail is actually more a tradition than a trend in the Philippines. It’s part of our culinary lifeblood as evidenced by our wide range of food that uses ingredients or parts of an animal that some would consider as trash. Just look at our streets filled with hawkers selling adidas (chicken feet), isaw (skewers of intestines), and even betamax (congealed pork blood).
Because of the deep history of nose-to-tail cooking in the Philippines that transcends social classes, the entire hall was abuzz with excitement to see (and taste) how the chefs would take this style of cooking to the next level.
Here are our Top 10 favorites from Day 2 of Madrid Fusion Manila’s Regional Lunch curated by Nina Daza Puyat, Sasha Lim Uy Mariposa, and Idge Mendiola:
1. Next Generation Adobo by JP Anglo of Sarsa Kitchen + Bar
This dish was a culinary journey through the Philippines as much as it was a culinary feast for the palate. Adobo, being one of the most iconic Filipino dishes, has no agreed universal recipe in the country. Each region (sometimes even each household) has their own version of Adobo that they claim to be authentic.
This dish doesn’t choose sides but instead takes us through the different ways Adobo can be prepared. From the sweet and comforting chicken tail braised in gata all the way to the chicken liver in XO sauce, JP Anglo has shown us that the only authentic adobo is the one we love to eat.
Madrid Fusion Manila is perhaps the most awaited gastronomic event in the Philippines. With the theme of “Towards a Sustainable Gastronomic Planet” that addresses the issue of food wastage, sustainability, and climate change, Heirloom Rice, the theme of Day One’s Regional Lunch was the perfect way to start it off.
Heirloom Rice is a variety of rice that has been passed on from generation to generation. Aside from being a rich source of flavor and nutrition, Heirloom Rice provides a sustainable and stable source of livelihood to farmers because of their strong resistance to climate change and environmental diseases.
Here are our Top 10 favorites on Day 1 of Madrid Fusion Manila’s Regional Lunch curated by Angelo Comsti:
1. Tausug Junay with Utakutak by Myke Tatung Sarthou of Agos
This beautifully layered dish was the clear favorite of everyone in our team. With a base of gelatinous rice with burnt coconut and turmeric, topped with a spiced fish cake and a Tausug garnish called Palapa, we were pleasantly surprised with the beautiful and subtle flavors that paired well with the green mangoes, red onions, and tomatoes on top.