LONDON, United Kingdom - A Pinoy restaurant named Josephine's has been a favorite hotspot by Londoners and Pinoy celebrities.
I was invited by the Ponientes who are owners of this awesome resto to visit them for dinner.
Josephine's Restaurant is named after one of the owners, Josephine Poniente.
"The resto was started in 1996 by my parents Josie and Eddie...Pinoy food was all my mom knew how to cook and many of the Brits were very curious to try our homegrown recipes...So they decided to open a Pinoy Resto here in London in 1996," she said.
Josephine's has since then become a popular hotspot for great Pinoy and Asian food for 17 years.
I was surprised to see that the place was filled by non-Pinoys. In fact, my family and I were the only Filipino customers in the joint. The place, being cleverly located in the restaurant row area of Charlotte St. (that's a stone's throw away from Tottenham Court Road, Oxford St. and West End), has made this place a very popular destination for theatergoers, British foodies and tourists.
But the main reason why the place is so successful is because their brand of Pinoy Asian food has been tweaked to satisfy the global palate.
"80% of our customers are not Pinoy...I regularly ask my non-Pinoy customers what they want and ask them how they would like the taste. Then binabasa ko iba-ibang libro ng different Asian cuisine and in-aadjust ko," said Poniente.
Chef Josie and her son Edward provided an awesome night of great conversation and delicious Pinoy food for me and my family.
We were presented with a sumptuous array of Pinoy delicacies such as vegetarian kare-kare, crispy pata, Bicol express, lechon kawali, ginataang isda and many more.
I really enjoyed their lechon kawali that tasted like the Hongkong-style crunchy roast pork but served with their own version of Mang Tomas.
Their version of ginataang isda was also awesome. It had the feel of Thai coconut milk curry in it.
Josephine's has also been frequented by local and foreign celebrities.
Inside their resto, you'll see a photo wall of the numerous celebs who have visited the place such as Apl de Ap, Ricky Gervais, the British star of the TV Series "The Office," pop star Charice, Manny Pacquiao, Freddie Roach, Bob Arum, Sharon Cuneta, London's West End Star Pinky Amador, Charo Santos-Concio, Vice President Binay, and many others.
Jospehine's is indeed an establishment that many Pinoys and non-Pinoys would be proud of. So, anytime you're in London, visit Josephine's for a superb Pinoy dining experience!
Josephine’s Restaurant is located at Charlotte Street, Central London; A Media and Tourist District and a stone's throw away from Tottenham Court Road and Oxford Street.
Call them through telephone at 02075806564. You may also e-mail them at [email protected]
John Paul C.Tanchanco is a travel, food, party, film and music aficionado. He is also an economist, businessman, MYX/Awit award-winning media producer and Kala guitarist.
"Tha Good Life" is a special feature for ABS-CBNnews.com about pop culture, travel, music, entertainment, business, food, clubbing, shopping and events.
For questions, features and comments, e-mail him at [email protected] or [email protected].