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Budget Series: Street Feast for Only Php200

by Elle Santiago


Cebu is known for its street foods. They are mostly located and situated in the downtown areas of the city. The Cebuanos since then enjoys eating in the streets specially during the afternoon when the sunrays is at its lowest. Your 200php is enough to make your attempts possible. Whether alone or with your friends, you have to try for yourself street foods to appreciate Cebu. Go stride in the streets of Cebu and experience streetfeast.

Puto & Sikwate

Puto and hot Sikwate is very delicious during the morning. It is because it is already the culture of Cebuanos to make Puto and Sikwate their kind of breakfast. Sometimes a person wants something different to miss the usual and something usual is appreciated to know the difference. Poto and Sikwate is called sticky rice and cacao chocolate in English. Sticky rice, sweet rice or waxy rice is a type of rice grown mainly in Southeast and East Asia and the eastern parts of South Asia, which has opaque grains, very low amylose content, and is especially sticky when cooked. There is this plain white sticky rice and there is this dotted violet sticky rice. The cacao chocolate is sometimes combined with creamer or milk and sugar for people who prefer their sikwate a bit sweeter.

Dirty Ice cream

Why is it called a dirty ice cream? There are two reasons: it’s called dirty ice cream because it was a mom’s warning to a kid wanting to eat an ice cream that is being sold on the street; and the vendors usually do not wear gloves.

Despite its name, people is still a fan of the cold treat, and it’s actually not dirty like people have been led to believe. It is either placed in a cone or sometimes in a cup. The cart carries flavors like ube, mango and vanilla. You can buy dirty ice cream a scoop or place it in a cup if you want to eat a some more.

Fried Chicken in a cart

One will crave fried chicken for lunch time to time or some other time. One will want to try that fried chicken in a cart. As observed, those properly dipped in and from the oil, has golden features and is luscious to look at and is appetite awakening. One may choose from chicken wings, breast, neck, thigh or drumstick. One will want to pair it with puso, which is rice wrapped and boiled in a triangular casing made of woven coconut leaves. Fried Chicken in a cart is very satisfyingly delicious when it is newly cooked. You will want to pair it with manong vendor’s homemade mix of soysauce, calamansi and a little amount of catsup. Lunch is solved.

Tempura is a Japanese dish of fish, shellfish, or vegetables, fried in batter. Cebu has it in the streets! You can have 3 pieces on a stick. It can serve as your snacks during the afternoon. Tempura is paired with a homemade condiment of mix sweet and spicy and sour sauce. Tempura carts are most and usually found and situated in the nearby churches here in Cebu. You can also find it outside the universities. Students are very fond of tempura specially after class hours. Some, instead of having their regular dinner with that of a meal and rice, they opt to choose to eat 2 or 3 sticks of tempura as a replacement.


Sometimes one will crave pongko2x for dinner. It is called such because typically and originally, you will sit in a small wooden bench before a small wooden table beside the street to eat your desired pongko2x combination. One of the pongko2x combinations is puso, longganisa, ginabot and a cold drink. Pongko2x is more appetizing with vinegar, onions and chilli. You will be fond of them once you see them since a group of pongko2x vendors reign the pavements. Some of them are gathered in a place prepared and set up by them for their growing number of customers. Aside from the mentioned combination above, there are more food to choose from – hotdog, lumpia, ngohiong, squid and porkchop. You can save an amount for dinner when you choose pongko2x. Try it for yourself.



In the streets, you can always find fruits to buy. You can choose from watermelon, banana, orange, apple, pineapple, mango, mangosteen and many others. Fruits give you the needed vitamins and minerals that is needed in the body. Time to time you have to eat fruits to nourish your body and to prevent certain kinds of diseases like anemia or hypertension. We must adhere to the saying, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” Fruits will always be a natural cure so make it a part of your lifestyle to eat fruits. What is your favorite fruit? When was your last time you ate fruit?

Now you know what are the treats in carts and in booths you can buy in the streets of Cebu. If you are through with solitude, invite friends so that you will not be alone in the experience. Once you have tried the streetfoods, you will at some point in your moment, will look and crave for it. Do not hinder yourself. Go ahead. With the amount of 200 pesos, you can already enjoy your streetfeast!


A Moving Feast: Cebu Food and Wine Festival 2024 Opens in NUSTAR Resort

by Kara Mae M. Noveda

Taste Cebu! That is how the invitation goes for the two-day opening salvo of this year’s Cebu Food and Wine Festival (CFWF) held at the NUSTAR Resort Cebu. When the doors opened in the plush ballrooms last June 1, more than a thousand guests were treated to a moving feast for all the senses. Setting this year’s festival apart, the CFWF board of organizers put on a multi-sensory approach. Bringing their vision board to life, the opening gala brought large-scale visuals to complement an array of innovative culinary creations. After all, we also taste with our eyes.

Meticulously prepared local-inspired dishes with overflowing wine and alcoholic drinks filled the three tasting zones: Wave, Peak, and Warmth–with each themed zone serving a taste of a distinct aspect of Cebuano food culture.

Beginning with the Wave Tasting Zone that capitalizes on the coastal freshness of the island of Cebu. The emblematic dishes in this zone are bakasi (saltwater eel) stuffed cornmeal topped with bakasi bones and local sea urchin & tarurot (this is sea urchin blended with deep-fried baby squid floss plated in a sea urchin shell). Chef David Thien and his team also served refreshing cold noodles.

Next, the Peak Tasting Zone highlights the mountainous area west and east of Cebu. From these farm-rich areas, you get good produce transformed into incredible base ingredients for memorable local dishes: manok Bisaya (local chicken) and everyone’s favorite, Cebu Lechon. Crowds flocked into the lechon station manned by Chef Sau del Rosario, known in the culinary world as “The Godfather of Philippine Cuisine.”

Finally, the Warmth Tasting Zone celebrates the exciting city life that Cebu also has to offer. Big cities are a melting pot of different cultures, so you’re right to expect fusion dishes in this zone. Samples of exciting hybrid dishes include the coconut wine-marinated conch shell sisig served in corn tortillas and Chef Lisa Revilla-Thien’s Hamachi salad.

The festival’s honored guest, Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Christina Garcia-Frasco, who walked with the media members for a preview, emphasizes the importance of gastronomy tourism. The DOT is keen on supporting programs that elevate the country’s culinary portfolio.

The Cebu Food and Wine Festival is a month-long June festival featuring over 60 pocket events spread in over 40 participating restaurants and 20 hotels.

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A Quick Chat with Radisson Blu Cebu’s Kitchen Team at Feria


Cebu is now abuzz with so many activities and events from last month’s Cebu Business Month (CBM) and the Cebu Food and Wine Festival (CFWF) where the food and culinary industry and the hospitality sector are in focus as two of the key developments and growths in the tourism economy.

Radisson Blu Cebu, located at Serging Osmeña Blvd., corner Pope John Paul II Ave. in Cebu City is an imposing hotel building across SM City Mabolo where comfort, unparalleled service and close attention to detail are described as the Radisson Blu Cebu experience.

What catches this writer’s attention is the hotel’s Feria Restaurant, the Lobby Bar and the Pool Bar. Many of my friends here and abroad have shared with me their food and wine dining experience while at Radisson Blu Cebu. I decided to visit and try the buffet spread at Feria and ended up chatting with the chefs, the kitchen team behind Feria’s sumptuous menus and dishes every day.

This writer had a chance to chat with Radisson Blu Cebu’s kitchen team headed by Chef Nicholas van Riemsdijk, Radisson Blu Cebu’s Executive Chef. While last month’s CFWF festival highlighted the various culinary experiences of more than 20 national chefs, Chef Nick wanted to emphasize Radisson Blu Cebu’s kitchen team that consists of 8-10 Indian, Japanese, Filipino and Mediterranean chefs that collaborated and assembled Feria Restaurant’s spread and menus at the Lobby and Pool Bars.

“Radisson Blu Cebu’s Feria is a popular buffet place in Cebu City and I am very proud of my team whipping up authentic food with all our hearts. I want my Team to be in the spotlight for what they’re doing in the kitchen. You see a beautiful buffet arrangement everyday at Feria and that is because of the hard work of my chefs,” Chef Nick told this writer.

During the Cebu Food and Wine Festival, Feria concentrated on local Filipino buffet cuisine because last year, the restaurant had 280 covers in full buffet. “This year, we intended to put out brand new local Cebuano and Pinoy dishes in our buffet to support the CFWF and we wanted to surpass last year’s covers,” Chef Nick added.

Everyday is a different buffet here at Feria, Chef Nick said that the team creates menus based on the best available products and as much as local products; sourced out from local suppliers and farms to support local as much as possible, as responsible business ethics.

“We, my team puts out authentic food each time. The by-word at the kitchen and among the chefs is consistency in tastes of the various menus we put out, because consistency means quality and respect of food and cuisine in the world.  As chefs, we love food and that is true to our profession,” Chef Nick smiled.

According to Chef Nick, the chefs sit as a team to come up with the daily themed menus; changing recipe’s new things for Cebu, what’s here, what’s not and what’s to improve.  Whatever he brings to his team, they learn and they are continuously working, discussing all the time and it’s always a working process, Chef Nick said.

Radisson Blu Cebu’s Feria buffet

Every day is a different buffet at Feria. Feria’s daily themed highlights to accompany its signature international staples of Filipino, Chinese, Indian, Japanese, and Mediterranean fare:

  • Mondays are American Grill and BBQ buffet: A homage to the beloved Texas BBQ, plus American classics
  • Tuesdays are Asian menus focusing on well-loved recipes from the East and Southeast Asian neighbors including Malaysian, Indonesian, Singaporean, and Korean dishes highlighting refreshingly spicy flavors
  • Wednesdays are European dishes with more on pastas, creamy soups, heavy meat dishes
  • Thursdays are Latin American, highlighting recipes from Mexico to Brazil with spicy flavors
  • Fridays are Seafood galore, finding ways to incorporate the fruits of the sea in pizzas, pasta, fried and grilled dishes
  • Saturdays are for Global street food, elevated versions of easy to eat comfort foods, but not just Filipino street food but also from around the world like noodles from hawker stalls of Singapore and Malaysia; fresh and filling Vietnamese and Thai recipes as well
  • Sundays are Filipino food. There’s nothing like the familiar taste of home

Feria lunch is Php1,488 and dinner is Php1,688 while wine buffet also available at Php1,288 sold separately–just unlimited wine, red or white, the selection available in the buffet area and the servers will assist and can pour when requested.

Let’s meet Radisson Blu’s Chefs

“My team is flexible to the clients, they speak to the guests and talk to them for some with special requests in their dishes, like guests who are vegans or pescatarians. My team of chefs mostly always accommodates special requests,” Chef Nick said

Chef Nicholas van Riemsdijk started working as a chef since he was 16 years and he has lived and worked in many parts of the world, making his international knowledge on food and cuisine incredibly wide and expansive in nature. He brings these experiences in the Feria kitchen as the executive chef of Radisson Blu Cebu.

Chef Leo Montemayor is the Chef de Cuisine, from Canlaon City in Negros Oriental. Chef Leo has been with Radisson Blu Cebu for 10 years now and he is very proud and happy to work at the kitchen with Chef Nick and the other chefs. He said the team can do any kinds of dishes in collaboration with other dishes especially that Feria has a variety of menus.

Chef Arnel Quilestino is the Sous Chef, from Badian, Cebu. Chef Amel has more than 30 years of experience in the kitchen as part of the staff with all the other chefs at Radisson that can do all kinds of signature dishes.

Chef Jyoti Singh is the Indian Chef at Radisson who’s instrumental in winning the SunStar’s Best of Cebu 2022 Best Indian Food for Radisson Blu Cebu. Chef Jyoti is a quite guy with a cool demeanor. He is responsible for all the Indian menus and dishes at the Feria Restaurant in collaboration with the other chefs for unique tastes.

According to these chefs, they help each other and always work as team. Feria has a variety of menus every day and the team always adhere to the consistency of tastes of whatever they put on the buffet table, with the approval from the executive chef.

“There is a recipe card and description of every dish that we do because we work for excellence, quality and consistency of food tastes at Radisson Blu Cebu, and we are all very proud of our profession and our work.  We feed people from the best of our hearts and soul.  We respect food and mindful of food wastage,” they said.


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‘Find Your Shangri-La’ Whimsical Menu at the Shangri-La, Mactan Cebu

A dreamy, indulgent gastronomic heaven awaits in Mactan, Cebu. For the discerning gourmand, our Master Chefs have curated a series of new Whimsical Menus, featuring exquisite culinary creations that shines the spotlight on the freshest locally sourced and sustainable staple ingredients.

Guests are invited to feast their senses on a delightful medley of enticing, exotic flavours, with delectable delights such as Bohol-farmed Prawns & Cebuano Mangoes with Kataifi Noodles, Double-boiled Abalone, Dried Scallop in Coconut Shell, Red Lapu-Lapu Grouper Fillet with daubs of Gold Broth and Smoky A5 Wagyu Cube Roll in Merlot Black Pepper Sauce.

Soup–Double-boiled Abalone and Dried Scallop served in a Coconut Shell

Main Course 3–Smoky A5 Wagyu Cube Roll in Merlot Black Pepper Sauce

Dessert – Mango Passion Fruit, Strawberry Pearls, Peach Gum and Matcha Crumbs

Exclusively available only at Tea of Spring, Shangri-La Mactan, Cebu’s contemporary Chinese restaurant until 13 August 2023.

Making of Daydreamer Cocktail

For bookings and reservations, contact (032)2310288 or email

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