THE Spanish fever, brought about by the three-day Madrid Fusión Manila 2016 that just closed today, April 9, 2016, continues until the end of this week. Lots of events are still happening in the next few days in conjunction with the major culinary event, including the Spanish food festival taking place at Diamond Hotel Philippines.
Dubbed Fiesta de Sabores Española, the Spanish food festival showcases a vast range of Spanish dishes at the buffet of Diamond Hotel’s premier dining destination Corniche, as prepared by the kitchen team led by Spanish guest chef Edgard Sanuy Barahona.
Chef Edgard hails from a family of chefs originating from Lleida, Spain, and he owns the distinction of being the first Spanish chef to receive a Michelin star in Asia. He had, after all, worked in several Michelin-starred restaurants in the past, and so has been hailed as Chef of the Year by Foodie Magazine in Hong Kong in 2013. He is now corporate chef of the Maximal Concepts Group.
For Diamond Hotel’s Fiesta de Sabores Española, he spread out a sumptuous line-up of much-loved Spanish dishes, from appetizers to soups, salads, fish and seafood dishes, meat dishes, carvings and desserts.
Appetizers include selections of Spanish cold cuts and Spanish cheeses paired with fruits and nuts, delightful Croquetas de Setas (mushroom croquettes), Tortilla de Patata (Spanish potato omelette), Mejillones en Escabeche (pickle mussels escabeche), Bikini de Jamón Ibérico, Chistorra al Vino Tinto (Chistorra sausage with red wine sauce), and Pimientos del Piquillo con Queso Manchego (Piquillo peppers and Manchego cheese).
Depending on the menu cycle, the soup can be either a Porrusalda (leek and codfish soup), Gazpacho, Patatas con Costillas (pork ribs stew with potatoes and paprika), or Alubias con Chorizo (white beans stew with chorizo).
Salads range from a very light Ensalada de Tomate y Atun Ahumado (tomato salad with tuna) to more intensely flavored ones such as Salpicon de Marisco (seafood salad), Esqueixada de Bacalao (salty cod esqueixada), Ensaladilla Rusa con Huevas de Salmón (Russian potato salad and salmon roe), and Ensalada de Lentejas y Queso Azul (lentil salad and blue cheese).
For the main dishes, not to be missed are Paella de Marisco (seafood paella), Paella de Pollo y Verduras (chicken and vegetables paella), Almejas en Salsa Verde (clams in green sauce), Gambas al Ajillo (garlic prawns), Chipirones en su Tinta (baby squid with black ink sauce), Callos (beef tripe stew with chorizo), and Albondigas con Sepia (pork meatballs and cuttlefish).
For the carvings, diners’ hands-down favorite has always been the Cochinillo (roasted suckling pig), which is so young that the meat is so tender.
Spanish desserts in the dessert buffet also command great patronage from diners at Corniche, with Arroz con Leche (rice pudding), Chocolate con Churros, Crema Catalana (Catalan cream), Torrijas (pan-fried bread pudding), and Natillas (Spanish custard) as top choices.
You can still catch Diamond Hotel’s Fiesta de Sabores Española, ongoing at Corniche until April 10, 2016, at Php2,580 nett per person. It is held in partnership with Titania Wine Cellar Inc.
(Diamond Hotel Philippines is located at Roxas Blvd. corner Dr. J. Quintos St., Manila; with telephone number 528-3000.)