Local chefs eyed to cook for PBA players in Quest Hotel

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 11 2020 04:50 PM

PBA players arrive in Clark, Pampanga on September 29, 2020 for the duration of the All-Filipino Cup which will restart on October 11. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

MANILA - Local chefs are being eyed to prepare dishes for PBA teams, who are currently billeted at the Quest Hotel in Clark, Pampanga.

Quest Hotel will serve as the PBA's home for the next couple of months as the league is set to hold its Philippine Cup in a "bubble," with games to be held at the Angeles University Foundation (AUF) Gym.

According to Clark Development Corporation (CDC) President and CEO Noel Manankil, the players are now requesting that sizzling sisig be included in the meals that are delivered to their rooms.

"Quest (Hotel) management has received request from players that sisig be also included in their meals," Manankil revealed during a recent videoconference among CDC, the Bases Conversion and Development Authority, Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP), PLDT and TV5 executives.

Sisig which is a popular dish among Filipinos is one of the culinary treasures of Pampanga. This authentic Kapampangan food is usually made from parts of pig head and chicken liver, usually seasoned with calamansi, onions, and chili peppers. Borj Meneses, CDC

A treasured recipe and part of Kapampangan culture, sisig has been called the greatest pork dish on earth by New York Times columnist Ligaya Mishan in 2014.

Sisig is said to be the creation of Lucita "Lucing"Cunanan of Barangay Claro M. Recto in Angeles City. 

Her trademark started with a burnt pork ear in the mid-70s that she hesitated to throw away. Aling Lucing recooked and spiced the pork ears with some fresh pork face, and served the dish to American servicemen stationed at the former Clark Air Base.

One of the local chefs who could give a new take on this culinary treasure is Kapampangan Chef Vince Garcia. Talks are now being made with Quest Hotel-Clark to tap Garcia to specifically prepare this homegrown dish.

Other local chefs are also being considered so that local culinary delights can be served to the PBA teams. 

These include authentic Kapampangan dishes such arobo, or adobong Kapampangan (meat stewed in vinegar and garlic), bulanglang (Guava sour soup), buro (fermented rice) and betute (stuffed frog). Desserts include the Tibuk-tibok (maja blanca), Turrones De Casoy (cashew fritters) and the putong San Nicolas (cookies). 

All these are subject to approval of PBA in view of dietary and nutritional requirements of players.

Players in the bubble have so far been satisfied with the food prepared by the Quest Hotel staff, as seen in their various social media posts and vlogs. 

With the inclusion of other local chefs, players, coaches, and other personnel can request for other culinary delights while staying in Clark.