Friday, November 27, 2015

Dinner at Tiffany's Degustation at Pepita's Kitchen

She never ceases to amaze, and her latest concept at Pepita's Kitchen takes private dining to a whole new level...

Inspired by the rich culinary diversity of New York, Dedet de la Fuente of Pepita's Kitchen adds her own unique Filipino spin for a holiday feast with Dinner at Tiffany's, featuring the Lechon Diva's new creations.

A recent trip to New York sparked some inventive ideas for a novel take on the traditional holiday feast, and Pepita's Kitchen has truly evolved with some of the most creative dishes yet, elegantly presented in her own playful yet elegant style (for more on private dining at Pepita's Kitchen, check out my previous posts here and here).

For the first course, Dedet de la Fuente served her Tendoncini on Pickled Vegetables, with fork-tender and melt-in-your mouth tendon crusted in chicharon on a bed of pickled green mangoes and vegetables. The contrasting textures and flavors open up the palate with rich flavors from the tendon and chicharon crust balanced by the sharp notes of the sweet and sour green mangoes and vegetables.

For the second course, Pepita's Kitchen served their own take on the traditional scone with her wittingly named Lechon Scone with Mr. Thomas Butter. Add some of her "Mr. Thomas Butter," creamy butter blended with the familiar lechon liver sauce of Mang Tomas, hence the name, to the freshly baked buttery scone, for a spin on the traditional scone with a cool local twist.

The elegantly plated South Sea & Pearls features plump shrimp and scallop on tapioca pearls with a rich and creamy sauce. At Pepita's Kitchen, her plates always match the dish, and this dish is one of the best yet. Take the plump shrimp along with a scoop of the creamy tapioca pearls and experience a burst of rich and creamy notes, and repeat with the scallop. If you play your cards right, you might even get seconds...

In between, indulge in some of Pepita's Kitchen's non-alcoholic mocktails like the Ube Pandan Cosmopolitan. It's a refreshing mocktail, with a subtle hint of pandan and just a whisper of the nutty notes of purple yam.

Fresh flavors come through with Pepita's Kitchen's Farmer's Salad, draped in a rich and creamy salted egg dressing. The salted egg doesn't overpower the delicate and fresh notes of the salad, adding just a layer of richness for unique flavors.

Pepita's Kitchen's homage to the local roasted chicken, the Lechon Manok, is given a flavorful upgrade. Slow-roasted with tender and juicy chicken capped by a lightly crisp layer of skin, Pepita's Kitchen's Lechon Manok served on creamy mashed potatoes is both comforting and satisfying.

The medley of comforting flavors continued with Pepita's Kitchen's refreshing palate cleanser, the aptly named "KKK", or "Kinayod na Katas na Kundol," bringing back fond memories of childhood. Made with wintermelon, the delicate sweet notes take you back to simpler times, and there's really nothing like rediscovering childhood flavors making the holiday feast even more special.

Then, the much awaited moment arrived. Pepita's Kitchen revealed hew newest lechon creation, The New York Lechon. Drawing inspiration from New York's Little Italy, Pepita's Kitchen's signature lechon is stuffed with iconic Italian flavors, including soft Risoni pasta, portobello mushrooms, and garlic.

The slow roasting process allows the stuffing to absorb the richness of the pork, adding layers of savory notes to the risoni, the soft short-cut pasta resembling grains of rice, while the portobello mushrooms add a distinct nutty hint along with the garlic. Take a spoonful of the moist and flavorful risoni with portobello mushrooms, add a piece of the tender and juicy pork and some crispy crackling, and you'll definitely go for seconds and thirds...guaranteed.

After a few more rounds with The New York Lechon at Pepita's Kitchen, it was time for dessert. Once again, Pepita's Kitchen infuses traditional local ingredients for an indulgent dessert, the Binatog Panna Cotta, with boiled white corn kernels on creamy panna cotta for another winning combination. A feast highlighted by creative dishes and rich flavors, with familiar flavors reinterpreted and reinvented for another memorable dining experience. It just gets better. All the time. At Pepita's Kitchen.

Later that day, Pepita's Kitchen unveiled other new dishes, The Filipino Seafood Sandwich. Inspired by the stacked and layered Norwegian Sandwich, the decadent sandwich includes layers of shrimps, crabmeat, vegetables, quail eggs, tinapa or smoked fish, bangus or milkfish, malunggay leaves and colorful fish roe draped in mayo. 

More friends dropped in later in the evening, including Steve Villacin with his signature Hainanese Chicken (L), paired with his Hainanese Rice and rich sauces (R). It was now time for dinner... 

Pepita's Kitchen then served two more lechon creations...

...with one stuffed with soft and fluffy Inasal rice flavored with annatto oil, the same oil used for the popular Chicken Inasal...

...and another stuffed with fragrant lemongrass, marble potatoes, and local sili sinigang, long green chili with a mildly sweet and smoky hint. And Pepita's Kitchen continues to amaze.

The epic day-long feast was capped by Pepita's Kitchen's signature dessert, the Buko Pandan Triffle,  with layers of indulgent local ingredients ending another memorable dining experience with the Lechon Diva, Dedet de la Fuente of Pepita's Kitchen, on a sweet note. If you're looking for a unique private dining experience with family and friends this holiday season, give Pepita's Kitchen a call, and prepare to be amazed...

For more information on private dining at Pepita's Kitchen, call 0917-866-0662 and 425-4605 or email at

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