Chef Christopher Carangian explains the Malolos Congress banquet with members of the Republica Filipina Reenactment Group portraying the 1898 Filipino Republican Army.

Diamond Hotel holds history-themed food fests

Chef Christopher Carangian explains the Malolos Congress banquet with members of the Republica Filipina Reenactment Group portraying the 1898 Filipino Republican Army.

Diamond Hotel Philippines, one of the metro’s leading luxe hotels, takes you back in time as it holds two history-themed food fests to showcase the country’s rich culinary heritage.

Discover fascinating centuries-old cuisines at the Corniche restaurant with “Galleon Trade: A Culinary Journey Filipino Food Festival,” which showcases the intriguing dishes from the famed Medieval trade which sailed from Manila to Acapulco, Mexico.

Running until July 7, the food fest features chef Christopher Carangian, founding president of Razorchef Philippines and Punong Heneral of the Culinary Generals of the Philippines, whose passion is to reintroduce heirloom dishes and take pride in the country’s gastronomy identity.

Chef Carangian in a rayadillo Republican Army uniform with a Malolos Congress dish.

The amiable chef from Bacoor, Cavite will take diners to a journey to the past as they sink their teeth on rediscovered specialties from the Galleon Trade era.

A must-taste dish is the Potaje de Adobado de Gallina, a chicken dish dated to 1529 which is akin to the kare-kare.

Then, there’s the 1613 Adobo de los Naturales, which is known as dry adobo and is made from a combination of pork and chicken.

A familiar dish is the Quilauin, a vinegared dish which is said to be the first native food seen by Antonio Pigafetta, chronicler of the Magellan-Elcano Expedition, which he called adobar.

Chef Carangian, Department of Tourism-National Capital Region Asst. Regional Director Catherine Agustin, and Diamond Hotel general manager Gino Mariñas at the opening of the food festival.

Sailing from 1565 to 1815, the trans-Pacific Galleon Trade brought to the American continent cargoes of Chinese and Asian luxury goods such as spices and porcelain in exchange for silver.

The route also fostered cultural exchanges that shaped the identities and cultures of the Philippines and Mexico, which were both colonies of Spain.

The lunch and dinner buffet also includes some of Cavite’s lost cuisine revived by Carangian, such as Pancit Langlang, Warik-Warik, and Ciento Quince, which are showcased in his intimate restaurant called Zicreto in Bacoor City.

Priced at P3,880 net per person, the food fest also covers Asian delights, international favorites, and an extensive spread of desserts.

Diamond Hotel Galleon Trade dishes

The hotel will also recreate on July 9 the Malolos Congress Banquet, a historic luncheon by victorious Filipino revolutionaries led by General Emilio Aguinaldo to ratify the proclamation of Philippine Independence and frame the first post-colonial constitution and republic in Asia.

Held at the Barasoain Church in Malolos, Bulacan on Sept. 18, 1898, it boasts of a French menu which includes rare and imported late 19th-century aperitifs and entrees.

Designed by noted architect Arcadio Arellano and inspired by the Philippine flag, an original copy of the menu is being kept at the Museo de Cagayan de Oro in Xavier University. The late National Artist for Literature Nick Joaquin described the menu as a document as important as the Malolos Constitution in the Philippines’ coming of age as a nation.

According to Diamond Hotel general manager Gino Mariñas, the history-themed food festivals are part of their corporate social responsibility in helping revive and preserve the rich cultural and culinary heritage of the Philippines.

Galleon-themed decor at Corniche restaurant

He said that for a multi-sensorial experience, the hotel brought in reenactors from Republica Filipina Reenactment Group to do period-accurate historical impressions of 16th-century characters, and will also do the same for the Malolos Congress Banquet.

Also curated by chef Carangian who did extensive research on the menu, this is the hotel’s second recreation of the banquet, and goes alongside fine wine pairings for P6,800 net per person at the Diamond Ballroom, 7 p.m.

For details, please call (+632) 8528-3000, visit www.diamondhotel.com, or follow the hotel’s social media accounts on Facebook at Diamond Hotel Philippines, and Instagram at DiamondHotelPh.