Top caterers, artists collaborate for multi-sensory food pairing event

Kathleen A. Llemit –

January 26, 2024 | 9:56am

MANILA, Philippines — Food and art are similar in a way that when a well-plated and well-seasoned dish is served, it not only excites the tongue and nose but also the eyes.

Last January 14, seven pairs of the country’s popular caterers and artists presented their collaboration, featuring artworks and dishes inspired by one another.

Among those featured is the award-winning “Eruption” dish by Juan Carlo the Caterer. 

“Eruption” is a dish that is aptly named as it is presented as dessert that recreates the Taal Volcano in all its glory, including its eruption, on a plate. 

“It’s an homage to Tagaytay and the majestic Taal Volcano. The white part symbolizes the powerful and violent eruptions of Tagaytay,” explained Juan Carlo. “After it disappears, you see the beautiful greens, herbs and flowers. It is elevated into another level with Chico’s artistic expression.” 

The winning dessert features coconut mousse, pandan cheesecake, caramel custard, chocolate lamington and latik. It topped the Best Dessert category at the “Savour: The Ultimate Taste Test of Tagaytay” held in August 2023. 

Their other dishes were Pacific Ocean Char-grilled Blue Marlin Fillet with Sesame Soba Noodle, Fresh Baby Leaf Salad, Cream Pumpkin Soup with Truffle Oil and Baked Hokkaido Scallop in Pastis Prado Wine with Paprika Cream Sauce. 

Chico, an abstract artist, featured Juan Carlo’s dishes in his work that takes inspiration from nature. 

Similarly, another artist, muralist Kara Pangilinan, took inspiration from the spread prepared by the mother and daughter tandem behind Passion Cooks. 

Passion Cooks presented interesting dishes with names culled from different cuisines. For instance, their offerings include a take on Sinigang but with grilled prawns. They also served Laing Tempura, Black Palabok and Beef Belly Tocino. For dessert, they fused the Filipino ube into the meringue dessert called Pavlova, which is thought to have originated in either Australia or New Zealand. 

These two pairings are just one of the seven that catered to the jampacked Blue Leaf Pavillion in McKinley, Taguig last Sunday night.

The other featured pairings were Bizu and tattoo artist Maan Simbajon; Tjioe and knitter Candy Reyes-Alipio; Moment Catering and sculptor Mateo Cacnio; Hizon’s Catering and visual artist Anna Bautista, and K by Cunanan and multidisciplinary artist Anina Rubio. 

These pairs worked together during their Meet and Greet and Kitchen Lab last December. 

This year’s “Who’s Cooking: Artistic Appetites” is held four years after its 2019 edition. These seven unique collaborations will be exclusively available for The Blue Leaf clients in the first quarter of 2024. 

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