Madrid Fusión Manila: Embracing Cultural, Culinary Heritage

It was thanks to Team Asia that I was able to attend the congress. Thanks Ms. Monette and team!

It was thanks to Team Asia that I was able to attend the congress. Thanks Ms. Monette and team!

Exactly one week ago, the much talked-about Madrid Fusión Manila finally concluded and many believe it successfully accomplished what it was supposed to do, and that was to bring Philippine culinary heritage and innovation to the global stage. Madrid Fusión Manila was a gathering of passionate individuals who are committed to promote cuisines which are rooted in tradition and fuelled by an innovative spirit.

With some of the most influential chefs in Spain and in the whole culinary world: Francis Paniego, Elena Arzak and Andoni Aduriz

Indeed, we still have a very LONG way to go in making our cuisine world-renowned. Several government agencies and departments have to work hand-in-hand, and we saw the fruits of such collaboration during the said event. From the Department of Agriculture to the Department of Tourism, to the Tourism Promotions Board – groups and individuals have to make a rigorous campaign or process of being able to cultivate, sell, export and display our local ingredients and flavor profiles (borrowing Myrna Segismundo’s term) in order to make these highly sought after. Madrid Fusión Manila was an event that proved that with everyone focused and committed, we CAN sell “The Flavors of the Philippines” to an international market.

The other part of Madrid Fusión Manila was a trade exhibit on Philippine and Spanish products. This was the Spanish pork meat tasting class.

The other part of Madrid Fusión Manila was a trade exhibit on Philippine and Spanish products. This was the Spanish pork meat tasting class.

There was a wide variety of wines and cava for trade hall visitors to sample and/or purchase.

There was a wide variety of wines and cava for trade hall visitors to sample and/or purchase.

Kalamancello by Ginnie Lim and her team. She says it's 100% homegrown pure Filipino product.

Kalamancello by Ginnie Lim and her team. She says it’s 100% homegrown pure Filipino product.

The regional lunches were meals everyone looked forward to (except the relative disorder/discomfort when getting food)

From the Mindanao Regional Lunch on the last day

From the Mindanao Regional Lunch on the last day

Fresh tuna sashimi

Fresh tuna sashimi

We have so much to offer, and one is the unique Hispanic heritage of the Philippines, which is its most unique asset in the region.

Destileria LimtuNicely packaged Philippine liquors elevate our local liquor industry, which is one of the oldest in South East Asia. These are products of Destileria Limtuaco.

CMBV Chocolates were also displayed at the Trade Expo, and these locally hand-crafted chocolates are premium Philippine products.

CMBV Chocolates were also displayed at the Trade Expo, and these locally hand-crafted chocolates are premium Philippine products.

As the farthest outpost of the former Spanish Empire (to which the “sun would never set”), the Philippines’ dishes, cooking procedures, means of entertaining diners/guests, and ingredients speak of its history as a cultural melting pot during the 250-year old Manila-Acapulco Galleon Trade. As the major trading post in the Far East, goods from China, Indochina and even India ended up in Manila, then were shipped to Mexico, and eventually to Europe. Similarly, occasional goods from Europe, and many raw ingredients from Latin America, ended up in the Philippines.

When the Suez Canal was opened and when the Galleon Trade ceased, European traders chiefly the French, Swiss, German, Dutch and British merchants also brought goods to Manila and other major Philippine ports.

Cuisine was a conduit for all these exchanges. Even during the American occupation, the Philippines’ cosmopolitan populace (those residing in Manila, Cebu and Iloilo) adopted and adapted culinary facets that showcased Filipinos’ ease in integrating foreign ingredients and practices into local cuisines.

Madrid Fusión Manila supports the proposition of the Philippines re-enforcing its importance in the region. Through Mother Spain’s intervention and support, her only child in Asia, the Philippines has once more proven its rich cultural heritage’s potential for attracting growth.

A happy witness to an historic gastronomy event =)

For more on my experiences and thoughts on Madrid Fusión Manila, check out my entries at Cuchara Tenedor:

Madrid Fusión Manila Quotable Quotes

Madrid Fusión Manila: Embracing Cultural Identities, Renewing Historic Links

About hechoayer

Things made yesterday still influence us until today. Things made today will influence us tomorrow. Things of the essence such as faith, culture, food, music and values should never disappear nor eroded by the times. Instead, these must be recorded, lived and shared. Something made yesterday - hecho ayer - can be tomorrow's saving grace. Never ignore the past.
This entry was posted in COMIDA FILIPINA, LA VIDA FILIPINA and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Madrid Fusión Manila: Embracing Cultural, Culinary Heritage

  1. Pingback: Madrid Fusión Manila Quotable Quotes | Cuchara Tenedor

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