Filipino flavors cooking up in New York

NEW YORK CITY — Filipino food and drinks take center stage in New York’s third Filipino Restaurant Week.

From traditional Filipino fare to the modern Filipino food fusion, diners can enjoy a 3-course pre-fixe lunch or dinner from 18 mostly Filipino restaurants in the five boroughs of New York City and a few cities in New Jersey.

“[It’s] bigger and better, more restaurants participating, not only in New York but also in the state of New Jersey,” said Consul General Tess Dizon-De Vega. “Also some a bit of innovation, some 1 or two non-Filipino restaurants have incorporated Filipino dishes in their menu and they’re very excited.”

Megu, a Japanese fine dining restaurant, joins this year’s Filipino restaurant week, thanks to its Filipino-American executive chef and “Top Chef” alum, Frances Tariga.

The season 13 top chef competitor says, Megu will be offering a Filipino pre-fixe menu until May 22 that includes grilled prawn, boneless Tinapa and her latest kaldareta dumpling creation.

Another non-Filipino restaurant joining this year Pinoy restaurant week is a modern french brasserie called Maison Hugo, owned by a descendant of French author Victor Hugo — Chef Florian Hugo, and his Filipina wife michelle.

“Maison Hugo will be offering Filipino favorites such as Camaron Rebusado, ensaladang talong, chicken adobo, sinanglay na tilapia, plus turon or leche flan for dessert.”

Hugo says his Filipino ingredients are becoming more and more part of his modern French meals.

“I’m trying to use more and more of Filipino ingredients, you know coconut, vinegar, calamansi, because I really love this flavor,” Hugo added. “Being in America, being in New York, we start to borrow from other cultures.”

“To have a traditionally french restaurant or Japanese restaurant experiment and try their handin incorporating Filipino cuisine, really shows the versatility of the Philippine cuisine, and hopefully this will help broaden the audience the Philippine cuisines,” said Dizon-De Vega.

Pre-fixe lunch and dinner menus range from $10 to $35.

A list of participating restaurants and their locations can be found on the Philippine Consulate of New York website.





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