Sikat Pinoy National Food Fair 2014

I visited the Philippine Department of Trade and Industry (DTI)’s food exhibit yesterday afternoon with my grandmother to try out new food items. It was my first time to attend a food exhibit so I was very excited.

Entitled Sikat Pinoy National Food Fair 2014: Piling-Piling Pagkaing Pilipino (Famous Pinoy National Food Fair 2014: Well-Chosen Filipino Food), the exhibit is among one of the six exhibits that DTI is planning to hold this 2014 to help promote micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to the domestic market to eventually ease their entrance the global market. The exhibit opened last March 26.

2014 Sikat Pinoy Food Fair 1

There were over 200 booths and we practically spent the whole afternoon checking out almost every stall.

2014 Sikat Pinoy Food Fair 2

I was glad to see a lot of people supporting our local food industry by visiting, trying and buying products. There came a point when we had switch booth lanes to dodge crowds because they were getting so thick, making it hard for us to pass by. That means the DTI achieved its goal of getting domestic support.

2014 Sikat Pinoy Food Fair 3


Here are almost all of our purchases:

2014 Sikat Pinoy Food Fair 20

From Left to Right: First Row: Crispy Dilis, Dried Alamang, Chocolate Rice, Malagos 65% Dark Chocolate, Vigan Longganisa, Squash Noodles Second Row: Muscovado Powder, Linupak, Seaweed for cooking, seaweed chips, pineapple jam, carrot chips, veggie chips Third Row: Eng Bee Tin tikoy rolls and custard cake, Aging’s flavored suman, calamansi concentrate and soya milk. Not pictured: Durian ice cream


It really pays to support our local food industry because by doing so, we really help each other out and make our gradually brightening economy brighten even more. It’s also a way to know more about food culture and heritage locally and generally. Finally the items produced are a lot more healthier than the commercial variety because of the ingredients used.

Our hands were literally full as we bought two eco-bags full of items, so we couldn’t add more. I really enjoyed my time there so I would like to go back there today so I can purchase more. I’m curious about the deli products from Cagayan de Oro and the dried chiles from Davao. I honestly also want to try the dalandan concentrate, soursop concentrate and carrot concentrate. They could have made the exhibit’s set design better and consistent with the branding though. Also, I hope DTI would be more strategic in its marketing training so I get to see better collaterals on the booths and food items in the coming food fairs. But like I said, my overall experience was great. Congratulations to DTI for doing a good job!

The Sikat Pinoy Food Fair is currently being held at the Megatrade Hall, Megamall B, Ortigas, Pasig City, Metro Manila, Philippines. Hope you can all support it especially as today, 30 March is its last day.


Helpful, Healthy and Yummy: Green Pastures

Last night, I had dinner with friends in this place called Green Pastures at the East Wing of Shangri-la Plaza Mall. It’s a relatively new place that has garnered rave reviews because of how good its food is, and that it is an organic farm-to-table restaurant, meaning the food that they serve come from organically-grown plants and free-range raised poultry, cattle, lambs and pigs. It’s the perfect restaurant for people who love healthy food, but do not want to give up meat, like me. And I’m big on supporting businesses that are inherently advocacy-based. Yay for farmers! Yay for Philippine agriculture!

I initially planned to order their octopus-and-bone-marrow fusilli, but since my aunt recommended that I order the 80/20 Wagyu burger, I ordered that instead. I told myself that I will just go back and order the octopus-and-bone-marrow fusilli next time.

Green Pastures' 80/20 Burger

Green Pastures’ 80/20 Burger

The 80/20 Wagyu Burger is composed of 80% Wagyu beef, 20% double smoked organic pancetta (Italian bacon), stratiacella (Italian soft cheese) and buttered brioche (bread). It came with a hefty serving of fries with dip.

I wasn’t too happy with the burger at first since it seemed bland, but it began to taste fuller and better after every bite. I finished the burger fully satisfied, then downed the fries almost completely. The last time I was that satisfied with a new restaurant was last March, after I visited Poco Deli for the first time. Other dishes we ordered were the Carbonara, Duck You!, Ricotta and Headcheese. The dishes ARE a bit pricey, but that I think is okay considering you are helping the country and its farmers through Green Pastures.

2013 was a year of awesome culinary discoveries – from Ying Ying in Binondo, Aria in Bonifacio Global City, Plantation in Makati, to Haru, Poco Deli and Charlie’s Burgers in Barrio Kapitolyo and Spatzle in the East Wing of Shangri-la. So I’m glad that I kicked off 2014 with another awesome culinary discovery. I will definitely come back and find out more about their other dishes. 

My 2013 Ylocandia Adventure (Mangan Series)

So this is the last post on my Ylocandia adventure, and it’s all about food! Click on the restaurant’s addresses to see where they are located exactly.

We had lunch AND merienda at Abuelita’s on the first day. As it was one of my friends’ first time in Vigan, I just had to introduce her to the best bagnet and empanada in town! We also had duyduy, kaldereta and fresh ginger and onions which were all equally good.

2013 Ilocandia - Abuelita's 1

2013 Ilocandia - Abuelita's 2

Abuelita’s39 A. Reyes St, Vigan City, Ilocos Sur, Philippines 2700

+63 77 722 2368

Dinner was spent eating more bagnet and more pork in Bolusan Restaurant. It was my first time to taste Pork Insarabasab and I truly, truly enjoyed it as it was only salted lightly but still had that rich taste! Actually I enjoyed it more than Bolusan’s bagnet, which was also actually not bad.

2013 Ilocandia - Bulosan Restaurant 1

Bolusan Restaurant and Catering Services, Ablan Ave., Laoag, Ilocos Norte 2900

I didn’t get to take photos of our lunch at Hannah’s. But compared to all the other places that we’ve eaten in, it was the most expensive yet unfortunately, least satisfying.

But thankfully, we enjoyed our dinner from Chicken Ati-atihan which tasted really, really good cost us half the price of meals from Hannah’s! Chicken Ati-atihan is a Filipino restaurant so it serves dishes also known outside the Ilocos region. We had chicharong bulaklak, chicken skin, kinilaw na tuna and chop suey. This was the only place where we took a break from having bagnet.

2013 Ilocandia - Chicken Ati-Atihan 1

Chicken Ati-Atihan, General Segundo Avenue, Laoag, Ilocos Norte, Philippines 2900

If you’re wondering where we had our breakfasts, then let me tell you where – we had all our breakfasts at Saramsam Ylocano Bar and Restaurant which is located right beside our hotel, Balay da Blas. The food was really delicious and energizing. I particularly loved their longganisa.

2013 Ilocandia - Saramsam Ylocano Cuisine 8

2013 Ilocandia - Saramsam Ylocano Cuisine 9

Saramsam Ylocano Bar and Restaurant, #10 Giron St. Brgy. 7-B Laoag City Ilocos Norte, Philippines 2900

Our last food stop for the whole trip was La Preciosa, where we had lunch on the third day. We ordered bagnet and lumo-lumo. The bagnet here was also good. What surprised me was Norte’s lumo-lumo that looked and tasted a lot different from the lumo-lumo of Sur that I was accustomed to, but in a good way. Its broth was a beautiful rich yellow, and had scallions and native tomatoes in it. Glad I ordered it as I discovered something new and really savory.


La Preciosa, J.P. Rizal Street, Laoag, Ilocos Norte, Philippines 2900
+63 77 773 1162

I’m finishing this entry by writing about Balay da Blas Pensionne House, where we stayed.

The hotel is composed of 2 buildings, with each one representing the best of the old and the modern. We stayed in the modern building which looked really small and simple but actually has rooms that are spacious, clean and relaxing. What I liked most about Balay da Blas was that its staff was very patient, accommodating and friendly which added to the really happy and positive vibe we had throughout the trip.

2013 Ilocandia - Balay da Blas 2013 Ilocandia - Saramsam Ylocano Cuisine 3

Balay da Blas is located at #10 Giron St. Brgy. 7-B Laoag City Ilocos Norte. Its contact details are the following:

Office: +63 (77) 770 4389
Sun: +63 (922) 882 6907
Smart: +63 (920) 968 6695
Globe: +63 (917) 550 7522

So that would be it for my Ilocano adventure! Until my next travel!

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