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Feb 6, 2014 05:18 PM

Why is it so hard to find a good Filipino Resturant?

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  1. Funny, we just got back from the Philippines this week and, as a pesctarian who doesn't worry about eating meat here-and-there, I was wondering if I'd be having pork all up in my face the whole time. I was so wrong. I ate more grilled, local fish than I ever dreamed of having. Bangus (grilled and deep-fried milkfish) with garlic rice was my breakfast more times than not. Sinigang has become one of my favorite soups (and I've had soups in every Southeast Asia country). I count mohinga amongst this group of under-appreciated soups.

    It's a glorious cuisine, but like Korean food, it will take a while to catch on because I think the ingredients/prep are homey and foreign (unlike Americanized Japanese, Chinese, Thai) that translation to the West is tough. That's just my theory.

    I plan on a lot of experimentation in my home kitchen in an attempt to recreate those magical flavors I tasted over the last 2 weeks. I really love the sour flavors of tamarind and adobo that seem so prevalent in Filipino food.

    1. It depends where you live. It's hard in Boston, but the Bay Area has some great Filipino spots.

      1 Reply
      1. re: gini

        Indeed we do- here in Oakland, I have two to check out that have opened in the past 5-6 months alone:

      2. Cause the Filipino population of Boston is tiny.

        1. This is question pops up at least once a year on CH. But I find it very odd that PRI broached the question by profiling a fried chicken franchise when there are perfectly good Filipino restaurants like Salo-Salo in Vegas. Max's is sort of like the KFC of the Philippines.

          1 Reply
          1. re: JungMann

            It's better than KFC.

            For those unfamiliar with the Max's chain, they reportedly steam the chicken before frying it, the same technique used in David Chang's recipe for Momofuku fried chicken.

          2. I have my theories.

            One is that Filipino food is Asian food that could appeal to people who hate vegetarians and spicy food, but those people are the segment of the American dining population that is least likely to be adventurous and try something new, so it takes work to get a non-Filipino clientele.

            If you asked me to start a Filipino restaurant, I'd probably make it a Filipino barbecue restaurant focusing on grilled meats, ignoring a lot of the more stew-like traditional dishes.