Paul and I headed to the NBC Tent to join our friends and favorite food buddies Richard, Irene and Lauren to check out the Best Food Forward which was on its 2nd year already. Like a very organized expo visitor, we made our way in by going through each aisle starting from the right side of the tent as we moved towards the left. There were also a lot of concessionaires located outside wherein most of them where selling grilled or deep-fried items.
I find this year's BFF to be more organized and attractive as they did away with the white sintra boards and stainless steel dividers which were present last year. The set-up actually reminded me of how we did Yummy Eats last year. Since most booths that needed major cooking were situated outside, this also eliminated the smoke from filling up the main tent and eventually sticking to our clothes and hair. My only comment was it was too hot! With more than 100 concessionaires in one venue and more than a thousand visitors present that day, they surely needed a stronger air-conditioning!
Nonetheless, the warm temperature didn't stop this foodie from visiting every single stall and sampling the various food items from Mochiko's mochi ice creams to my favorite Simply Pie mini quiches, from Gold Leaf Teas' delicious iced tea to Dragonfly Dessert's cake pops. Yep, all my favorite brands were there and I was definitely in food heaven.
Let me share with you some of my food discoveries from Best Food Forward:
1) Crunchy Pork Belly by Carlo's Kitchen
This was the first thing that we tried as Richard excitedly pointed this stall out to us. How can you go wrong with crunchy and perfectly crispy bagnet (pork belly)? Selling for Php. 100 per order you can walk around the NBC tent while munching on this mouthwatering treat...which was what we did, actually.
2) Shrimp and Garlic Quiche by Simply Pie
My friend Gail knows that I am one of her biggest fan. Back when Paul and I were selling at Mercato Centrale, I look forward to having Gail's yummy mini quiches for breakfast. After trying and falling in love with her famous Spinach, Feta and Sundried Tomato Quiche, she now made me try her newest flavor --Shrimp and Garlic. One bite and I gave Gail a two thumbs up! She has once again hit a jackpot by creating this delicious savory quiche! Definitely a must try.
3) Panzarotti by Mama Lou's Italian Kitchen
Not far from where Simply Pie was located, I spotted another interesting and yummy-looking item -- Panzarotti. It looks like a calzone (fold up pizza) that's deep-fried and served with any dip of your choice. I was able to try the Specialita (Php. 120) and I love it with Bleu Cheese! Note that one piece is HUGE! I initially was asking them if they have mini versions available but sadly the Panzarotti just comes in one size that's good for sharing. They have 4 flavors available and three types of dips too! I was able to try the panzarotti with pesto and tomato salsa but I still love it with bleu cheese.
4) Margie's Paella
Need I say more? I've been blogging about Margie's delicious Paella Negra (Php. 300) for YEARS! Really, she still has the best paella in town! ♥
To order, Call Marge Sy at 0918-9458845.
5) Honey Roasted Almond Ice Cream by Pint Ice Cream
Given the intense heat outside and the raising temperature inside, I suddenly found myself craving for a cup of ice cream. There were a lot of options available but what caught my eye was a corner booth with a simple ice cream freezer and an ice cream spoon signage with four-words printed on it. PINT. Interesting. I moved a little closer and saw two familiar faces. Friends from high school!
I waved and peeked into the chiller. I chose the Honey Roasted Almond Ice Cream which had real almonds in almost every scoop. So goood! I enjoyed munching on the almond bits mixed into the creamy almond-flavored ice cream. I love how it wasn't very sweet and was indeed a perfect way to beat the heat. I'm definitely ordering more flavors to try soon.
6) Dips and Dressings by Whisk
We were able to circle the tent
True enough they were selling salad dressings and dips. Two of my favorite things! I was told that they are famous for their Spinach and Artichoke Dip (Php. 280) which I happily brought home to try that day. I was also given a bottle of Asian Dressing (Php. 280) to try. Thank you Czarina and Che!
Since I ran out of fresh greens last weekend, I opted to try the Spinach and Artichoke Dip first as this was also greatly recommended by my friend Che. After toasting a few pieces of bread till they turned golden brown and crunchy, I added a thin layer of dip on top of my bread and took a bite. Mmm.. I love the strong creamy garlic flavor of the dip!
Take a peek inside the bottle and you'll see a generous amount of spinach AND artichoke too! We had this for dinner and were surprised that we consumed more than half of the bottle already! How I wish though that they made the consistency more cream cheese-like to make it hold better as a dip. I'd also like my dip with mushroom in it too.
I have yet to try the Asian dressing which I was told was really yummy. Let me tell you about that some other time.
7) Peach Tea Float by Gold Leaf Teas
Expect my friend Gina to create delicious tea-based drinks that never fails to quench our thirst. Paul loves Gold Leaf Teas' Fiesta Iced Tea and that's coming from the non-tea drinker himself. I was able to try most of Gold Leaf's drinks and as we visited Gina's booth, she made me try a sample of her newest concoction called Peach Tea Float. I love the slightly sweet peach flavored iced tea with a touch of froth on top. Yum!
Sadly, I wasn't able to take a photo of the drink as I quickly drank two cups down. Instead, let me share with you this photo of me and Gina of Gold Leaf Teas. Thanks Gins! You're the best!
We really had fun checking out the various hundred-something stalls at the Best Food Forward last Saturday. There are still a lot more to be included in this list such as Mochiko's Strawberry Fruit Yogurt, Dragonfly Dessert's Cake Pops, Chicken Delish's Chicken Wings just to name a few. I guess I would need another blog entry for that. Needless to say, I went home happy with a satisfied tummy too! Till next year!