Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Rustic and Authentic Italian Flavors at Marco Polo Ortigas Manila's Fiesta Italiana

A rich culture, impeccable art, and a heritage of good food, experience a true Italian feast of rustic flavors at Marco Polo Ortigas Manila...

Marco Polo Ortigas Manila celebrates authentic Italian flavors with Guest Chef Andrea Delzanno at Cucina with Fiesta Italiana, an Italian food festival from June 7 to 18, 2017. The week-long festival highlights authentic Italian flavors infused with Guest Chef Andrea Delzanno's modern and innovative twist while preserving the true and vibrant notes of the sunny Mediterranean. It's la dolce Marco Polo Ortigas Manila's Cucina.

Guest Chef Andrea Delzanno of Marco Polo Hongkong takes guests and diners on a culinary journey to the rustic Mediterranean countryside with his authentic take on centuries-old traditional Italian cuisine at Marco Polo Ortigas Manila's Cucina with Fiesta Italiana, an eleven-day food festival of pure Italian la dolce vita. To kick-off the festive Fiesta Italiana, Guest Chef Andrea Delzanno presented his signature dishes in a Master Cooking Demo at Marco Polo Ortigas Manila's Vu's Sky Bar and Lounge last June 10.

With years of culinary experience from Michelin-starred restaurants in Italy, New York, and Asia, Guest Chef Andrea Delzanno prepared his signature dishes including his traditional Papa Al Pomodoro, a comforting tomato soup; the Linguine Alle Vongole, a hearty pasta dish with fresh clams, and the decadent Tiramisu.

A native Italian, Guest Chef Andrea Delzanno's tasty Papa Al Pomodoro recreates the bold flavors of the Mediterranean with his comforting and traditional tomato soup made with the freshest ingredients (check out the recipes below). The flavors are rich and clean, with the tartness of the tomatoes punching through with each sip.

Next, Guest Chef Andrea Delzanno prepared his classic Linguine Alla Vongole, a traditional Italian seafood pasta dish with clams, garlic, olive oil, chili and parsley. The deceptively simple dish packs so much rich flavors, with the briny sweetness of the succulent clams weaving in with the nutty hints of the garlic and olive oil capped by the soothing heat from the fresh chili for balanced notes. Even the simplest dishes come alive with vibrant flavors when the freshest ingredients are used. It's what makes Italian cuisine so rich and flavorful, preserving the sunny notes of the Mediterranean in every dish.

For his final dish, Guest Chef Andrea Delzanno prepared the sinful and decadent Tiramisu to end his Master Cooking Demo on a high note. Soft and luscious, the velvety-smooth and satin-like texture of the mascarpone cream coats your palate with an indulgent richness, followed by the nutty notes of the espresso and cocoa for that perfect Italian finish. After sampling Guest Chef Andrea Delzanno's signature dishes at the Master Cooking Class, it was time to head down to Cucina to experience the full spread of the Fiesta Italiana at Marco Polo Ortigas Manila...

Guest Chef Andrea Delzanno makes the final rounds at Cucina's different stations, as guests and diners arrive for the lunch service (for more on Marco Polo's Cucina, see my previous post, Tasty Indulgence at Marco Polo Ortigas Manila's Cucina). It's an all-out Italian feast...

At the central station of Cucina, Guest Chef Andrea Delzanno's signature Papa Al Pomodoro (L), his hearty tomato soup is prominently displayed, an excellent starter before the mains. Also featured at the central station is his flavorful Risotto with Mushrooms (R), moist arborio rice simmered with butter and mushrooms.

Guest Chef Andrea Dalzanno's Deep-Fried Seafood with Aioli Dip featured a medley of seafood including soft-shelled crab, prawns, squid, and fish for another tasty start at Cucina's Fiesta Italiana.You'll also find other Italian favorites and antipasti such as Parma Ham and Melon and Tomato and Mozzarella Caprese for a real all-Italian feast.

For the savory mains, diners can indulge in Guest Chef Andrea Delzanno's comforting Braised Chicken Cacciatora Style, a satisfying country-style stew with tender chicken, peppers, and carrots...

...and the Garoupa with Tomato Sauce, Olives, and Potatoes, a personal favorite. The delicate notes of the fresh and succulent white fish are kicked up by the natural tartness of the tomatoes and subtle smoky and sweet hints of peppers. Diners can also enjoy Guest Chef Andrea Dalzanno's slow-cooked Wagyu Beef Cheeks in Barolo Sauce with Pumpkin Puree and Penne with Black Truffle Cream Sauce at Cucina's week-long Fiesta Italiana.

At the Live Pasta Station (L), diners can create their own customized pasta dish prepared ala minute by Cucina's station chefs with a selection of different pastas and sauces including the Linguine Alla Vongole. Pair it with a crisp slice of Fuet Pizza (R) fresh from the oven for a hearty Italian meal.

At the Carving Station, you'll find the impressive slab of premium beef, the Angus Prime Rib, ready for carving...

...and the Roast Leg of Lamb with marble potatoes. Cucuina's sumptuous buffet spreads offers some of the best selections and value this side of the metro.

The buffet spread at Cucina also includes their signature Live Paella Stations, and that day, the Paella Negra and Paella alla Valenciana slowly simmered and served fresh from the large paelleras. Diners can also enjoy Filipino, Asian, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, and an equally impressive fresh Seafood Station with the day's freshest catch at Cucina.

Cap your Italian feast at Cucina with their indulgent dessert offerings, including these ornate and delicate Berry Panna Cotta...

...Fresh Fruit Cake (L), Rhum Baba, Tiramisu (R) and so much more, including a variety of cakes, pastries, and even homemade ice cream. Antipasti, pizza, pasta, savory mains and desserts, experience the flavors of Fiesta Italiana with Guest Chef Andrea Delzanno at Marco Polo Ortigas Manila's Cucina.

Rustic Italian flavors, masterfully recreated...

...for an authentic Italian feast like no other, the Fiesta Italiana at Cucina runs from June 7 to 18, 2017 with a special rate of only P 1,500 nett per person for Lunch and P 1,800 nett per person for Dinner, inclusive of coffee or tea. Now that's a pretty cool deal.

And if you wish to bring the Fiesta Italiana experience home, here are some of Guest Chef Andrea Delzanno's signature recipes. Buon Appetito!

Papa Al Pomodoro
Traditional Tomato Soup


1000 g Quality Canned Plum Tomatoes
500 g Fresh Tomatoes (ripe)
100 g Garlic Chopped
50 g Unsalted Butter
100 mL Cream
200 g Baguette
20 g Parmigiano Cheese
200 g Onion
20 mL Olive Oil
20 mL Water
Salt & Pepper

  1. Slice the onion and cook with olive oil.
  2. Add the fresh tomato, canned tomato, bread, cream, and water.
  3. Add seasoning and cook for about one hour.
  4. Process the soup in a blender.
  5. Make the garlic bread by slicing the baguette and adding garlic, butter, and parmigiana cheese, then baking for about three minutes in a hot oven (about 200 degrees).
Linguine Alla Vongole
Linguine with Clams, Garlic, Olive Oil, Chili, and Parsley

100 g Linguine Pasta
150 g Fresh Clams (small)
10 g Garlic Chopped
10 mL Olive Oil
100 mL Dry White Wine
10 g Parsley (flat leaf) Chopped
1 g Diced Chili
Salt & Pepper

  1. Cook the pasta in boiling water for about 8 minutes then drain.
  2. Heat the oil and add the garlic, chili and clams.
  3. Add the dry white wine and cover the pan and steam until the clams fully open.
  4. Add the pasta and toss together, letting the sauce reduce.
  5. Season with salt & pepper.
  6. Place in a dish and sprinkle with chopped parsley.
Mascarpone Cream with Ladies Fingers, Espresso and Cocoa Powder
10 each Raw Egg Yolk
10 tbsp Sugar
10 Each Raw Egg Whites
1000 g Mascarpone Cheese
20 g Cocoa Powder
200 g Ladies Fingers
50 mL Kahlua
1000 mL Espresso Coffee
  1. Whisk the egg whites and reserve.
  2. Whisk the egg yolks with the sugar and the mascarpone cheese.
  3. Slowly fold in the egg whites to the mascarpone mixture.
  4. Soak the Ladies Fingers with the espresso and layer them in a glass together with the tiramisu cream.
  5. Place in the fridge for a few hours.
  6. Sprinkle with cocoa powder just before serving.
Cucina is located at Level 24, Marco Polo Ortigas Manila, Meralco Avenue & Sapphire Road, Ortigas Center, Pasig City or call (+632) 720-7777 or email for reservations and more information.

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