SAN FRANCISCO, August 24--In a piece for Nosh, Lisa Liu of 510foodie.com gives us the latest on the Filipino food movement sweeping the East Bay, interviewing Kevin Pelgone, marketing director and board member of the Filipino Food Movement, a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco with the mission to preserve, promote and move Filipino cuisine forward. There are 1.5 million people of Filipino descent living in California with about 458,000 in the Bay Area.
Filipino restaurants have always been in Filipino neighborhoods like Daly City, South San Francisco and Vallejo but for some years now, many are venturing into East Bay and San Francisco. Here are some of the new Filipino restaurants that Lisa Liu mentions in her piece -- some new, others launching soon. (For photos of the food, check out her piece for Nosh.)
Lucky Three Seven. Counter-style Filipino food. 2868 Fruitvale Ave. (at Brookdale), Oakland. Counter-style serving by the window. Food are prepared in advance and you choose from a row of steam trays. Customers go for oxtail estofado and chicken adobo as well as XL Lumpia (spring rolls) and G-Fire Wings, crispy fried chicken.
Likha, a modern pop-up. Hometown Heroes, 4000 Adeline St. (at 40th), Emeryville. A pop-up that shares temporary space with Hometown Heroes, a sports bar, it has two chefs Bobby Punla, who grew up in Richmond, California, and Jan Dela Paz, an immigrant from the Philippines. Both worked at Ramen Shop in Oakland before deciding last June to bring modern Filipino food to the East Bay. Together, they launched a pop-up called Likha (“create”). They have pork lumpia (spring rolls) and ukoy (small shrimps) fritters, sisig (sizzling pig jowl), Filipino breakfast favorites in addition to vegetarian and vegan options. What’s new? Try Halo-halo made with almond milk.
Jeepney Guy, catering then, opening on Aug 25 (7th West, 1255 7th St., Oakland). Founded seven years ago in San Francisco by Dennis Villafranca, it offers lechon, or slow-roasted pork with crispy skin. Known for catering, he is opening in West Oakland on August 25. Bar snacks are in the offing.
FOB Kitchen. From a weekly pop-up, opening a spot in September. 5179 Telegraph Ave. (at 51st), Oakland. It will make use of organic and sustainable ingredients -- “the best ingredients” -- to cook homespun traditional recipes like charred eggplants with veggies, not typical of Filipino recipes. Having received a liquor license, Filipino-inspired cocktails will try to capture the fun spirit of the Philippine islands.