Philippine Food Festival, Shangri-la Sydney

Spring means new beginnings, stripping the sleeping, dormant self, an awakening.

Cheers to longer days, sunshine, trips to the beach, and quality time with lovely friends!
Cheers to longer days, sunshine, trips to the beach, and quality time with lovely friends!

And so, I come bursting out of my winter slumber and into the spring sunshine. The last few winter months have been cold, hectic, brutal, and yet the hiatus was much needed. I feel revitalised and energised (and yes, thanks to some flu-fighting medications, lots of Vitamin C, and a newfound sense of mindfulness).

What better way to come back to the blogging scene than to feature a fabulous Filipino food festival at Cafe Mix in Shangri-la Sydney? Thanks to the teams both here in Sydney and in Shangri-la Makati, Philippines, we were treated to an epic banquet of food, glorious Filipino food. There’s nothing more nostalgic than going back to your roots – think rice, pork, fish, vegetables, coconut, ube (purple taro), soups, mango, kakanin (sweet dessert rice cakes), and the star of the show: L E C H O N.

Roast beef and Cebu lechon
Chicharon - two whole bilaos!
Chicharon – two whole bilaos!

For one week only, Cafe Mix at Shangri-la Sydney is dedicating its buffet menu to everything Filipino, thanks to the dream team of chefs from Shangri-la Makati: Rico Celdo Venzon, Athena Blanche Tan Oropesa and Erma Balaquiao Palanca. I felt back in the Philippines again and rightly so… tastes, smells, and sights of the Philippines were everywhere. Dish upon dish upon dish were like hugs from the mother country, and it was so welcoming, so nostalgic, and oh so delicious.

The Philippine Food Festival is presented in partnership with Philippine Airlines and The Philippine Department of Tourism. To honour the 70 years of collaboration between Australia and the Philippines, Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney will donate $2 for every person who dines at the festival to Operation Restore Hope.

For bookings, call (02) 9250 6000 or email dine.slsn@shangri-la.com. For more information, visit www.shangrila.com/sydney.

Thanks to Shangri-la Sydney for the generous lunch at Cafe Mix to try the scrumptious Philippine Food Festival. Trish and Mr J dined as guests of Shangri-la Sydney.

Entree and side dishes: lotus seed, pusit, grilled eggplant, macaroni, tuna
Entree and side dishes: lotus seed, pusit, grilled eggplant, macaroni, tuna
Entree and side dishes: seaweed and bamboo shoots, embutido (pork loaf)
Entree and side dishes: seaweed and bamboo shoots, embutido (pork loaf)
Steamed fish
Steamed fish
Pochero of mixed seafood
Pochero of mixed seafood
Grilled mixed seafood
Grilled mixed seafood
Ginataang alimasag (crab with coconut cream)
Ginataang alimasag (crab with coconut cream)
Sisig - freshly made from the sisig station
Sisig – freshly made from the sisig station
Pakbet - mixed vegetables with shrimp paste
Pakbet – mixed vegetables with shrimp paste
Cebu lechon - boneless roast pork with the crackliest crackling, flavoured with herbs and spices and meat that is oh so tender. Don't forget the Mang Tomas sauce!
Cebu lechon – boneless roast pork with the crackliest crackling, flavoured with herbs and spices and meat that is oh so tender. Don’t forget the Mang Tomas sauce!
Calderetang dila ng baka - ox tongue
Calderetang dila ng baka – ox tongue
Chicken adobo
Chicken adobo
Kare kare - ox tail with peanut sauce, and with a side of shrimp paste
Kare kare – ox tail with peanut sauce, and with a side of shrimp paste
Desserts: leche flan - creme caramel
Desserts: leche flan – creme caramel
Brazo de Mercedes
Brazo de Mercedes
The dessert table
The dessert table
Banana turon
Banana turon
The halo halo station
The halo halo station
Ube ice cream for the halo halo
Ube ice cream for the halo halo
Halo-halo: mixed sweets of macapuno, kaong, red beans, sweet plantains, jellies, topped with shaved ice, ube ice cream, ube halaya, leche flan, and drizzled with evaporated milk
Halo-halo: mixed sweets of macapuno, kaong, red beans, sweet plantains, jellies, topped with shaved ice, ube ice cream, ube halaya, leche flan, and drizzled with evaporated milk

The well loved San Miguel Beer
The well loved San Miguel Beer
Tropical Maganda drink - similar to pina colada, but with rum, Malibu, pineapple and coconut cream. The beach in a glass... yum!
Tropical Maganda drink – similar to pina colada, but with rum, Malibu, pineapple and coconut cream. The beach in a glass… yum!

The Philippine Food Festival is on until Sunday 25th September 2016 at Cafe Mix, Shangri-la Sydney. The buffet lunch is available from noon to 2:30 p.m. at $57 per person.  The buffet dinner is available from 6 to 10 p.m. at $82 per person.  For bookings, call (02) 9250 6000 or email dine.slsn@shangri-la.com.

Thank you to chefs Rico, Athena and Erma from Shangri-la Makati and Madeleine of Shangri-la Sydney, with fellow bloggers Anna of Adobo Down Under and Jen of Sweet and Yummie. Oh and our guests Anna's friend and Mr J!
Thank you to chefs Rico, Athena and Erma from Shangri-la Makati and Deane of Shangri-la Sydney, with fellow bloggers Anna of Adobo Down Under and Jen of Sweet and Yummie. Oh and our guests Anna’s friend and Mr J!
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Lunar Markets, Pyrmont Bay Park – NSW Food & Wine Festival

Being half Chinese, I grew up celebrating Chinese New Year the Filipino-Chinese way: eating lots of tikoy, seeing the relatives, and getting lots of red packets.

Chinese New Year in Sydney is one of the most colourful, lively and fun times in my events calendar. This year, I was fortunate to have been invited by the Festival ladies with a few other bloggers to check out the newest event in the Festival calendar: Lunar Markets at no less than Pyrmont Bay Park (my ‘hood!). Armed with an empty stomach and a dumpling craving, Mr J and I marched to the park and immersed ourselves in familiar scents of Chinese fair with a side of Filipino Hoy Pinoy bbqs. Just follow the smoke (and the red everything).

PS. Have you been to Sky Terrace at The Star? No? You should. I live in Pyrmont, but was still awestrucked by the lovely rooftop bar with Bridge and harbour views. We celebrated the launch here with a few drinks and nibblies while soaking up the lovely summer sunset.

Thanks to Liquid Ideas and NSW Food & Wine Festival for the invitation and the fun and filling market afternoon. Trish & Mr J dined as guests.

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The money tree at The Star area of the markets – red packets with chocolate coins!

 

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Gyoza from Zagyoza and Korean Tacos from Poklol

 

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Gyozas from Zagyoza. Ever heard of chicken teriyaki, pumpkin feta, black bean and ocean catch flavoured gyozas – with a splash of soy and sriracha? Yum!

 

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Korean bbq pork and beef tacos from Poklol

 

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Phumplings! Dumplings in an aromatic pho stock from Bar Pho – so delicious and refreshing at the same time!

 

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I’m biased. This was what I was looking forward to. Follow the smoke…

 

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Keep following that nice, charcoal, sweet and spicy smoke…

 

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…to Hoy Pinoy’s Inihaw na Manok (chicken bbq – soy) and Inihaw na Baboy (pork bbq – banana ketchup).

 

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To me, this is home. All those summer nights playing outside the house, sweat dripping down your face, while snacking on these skewer babies and drinking ice cold softdrink. LOVE.

 

Can we adopt Hoy Pinoy from Melbourne to Sydney please? Please? PLEASE?

 

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Fried chicken gua baos from Bao Stop Sydney. The fried chicken to bao proportion is insane… insanely good!

 

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Braised pork belly gua baos from Bao Stop

 

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Peking duck gua bao from Bao Stop

 

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Chilli soft shell crab with golden fried bao from Spanthai

 

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Sweet potato balls from Pasar Malam

 

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Nyonya lollipops from Pasar Malam. My love affair with Malaysia food keeps getting better. This is my kind of lollipops… deep fried chicken. Period.

 

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Lunar Markets

http://www.nswfoodandwine.com.au/lunarmarkets

Pyrmont Bay Park

12 – 22 February 2015

Mon – Wed: 5pm-9pm
Thurs-Fri: 5pm-10pm
Sat:- 4pm-10pm
Sun: 4pm-9pm

Stall map and list: click here

 

 

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Chur Burger Tasting for Taste of Sydney 2014

Mr J and I absolutely love burgers, especially Chur Burger. We regard Chur Burger to serve one of the best (and most affordable) burgers in town! Pulled pork, grilled beef, crumbed fish – pair it with a bowl of sweet potato chips and a bottle of sweet cider. Prop yourself infront of those wide glass windows overlooking Albion Street, and watch the merry world go by in Surry Hills. That’s my ideal post-gym Friday dinner.

Yep, that’s the water bottle.

So my big thanks to Jenna from Stellar Concepts, Taste of Sydney, and Warren from Chur Burger for the warm hospitality and for this wonderful opportunity to sample the 3 Chur Burgers that will be featured at this year’s Taste of Sydney, paired with some amazing Sail & Anchor beers. The result? Eye popping. Mouth watering. Orgasmic.

Warren Turnbull, head chef at Chur Burger

Oh my goodness. I cannot wait to try them again at Taste of Sydney!

‘Taste’ Burger 1 – Kinkawooka Mussel Fritter with Spiced Remoulade & Dill Pickled Cucumber. Matched with Sail & Anchor ‘Monkeys Fist Pale Ale’

‘Taste’ Burger 2 – Crispy Pork Belly with Chilli Caramel, Aioli & Mint Slaw. Matched with Sail & Anchor ‘Lark’s Foot Golden Ale’

Or, according to Teresa and I, “Raff’s Pork Burger!”.

‘Taste’ Burger 3 – ICON DISH: Wagyu Rossini with Shaved Fois Gras Truffle & Madeira Jus. Matched with Sail & Anchor ‘Boa’s Bind Amber Ale

Chur Burger
48 Albion St Surry Hills
9212 3602

Taste of Sydney is from Thursday 13th March to Sunday 16th March 2014

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Come and join me next week for Taste of Sydney at Centennial Parklands. I’m excited by the restaurants who are participating this year too: Bloodwood, AKI’s, Chur Burger, Popolo, 4Fourteen, Four in Hand, Porteno, Efendy & Longrain. You can still get the tickets at www.tasteofsydney.com.au

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