ICYMI: The Best Things We Ate So Far at Food & Drinks Asia 2019

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We’re almost halfway through the four-day foodie extravaganza that is Food & Drinks Asia 2019!

Now in its 23rd year, one of the longest running food and service exhibits in the Philippines – Food & Drinks Asia – welcomed more than 200 exhibitors at the World Trade Center on September 5, 2019. And of those 200+ participants, it is with absolute certainty that we declare this weekend the most delicious weekend you’ll ever have this year.

And so we thought we’d give you an idea what kind of irresistible goodies await everyone who steps into these food-filled halls. It’s a hard job, but someone’s gotta do it. It takes a lot of courage, determination, and an iron stomach. Pro-Tip: Never say no to free samples! You’ll never know if your next best “foodiscovery” is just one nibble away!

So here are the best things we ate so far at the 23rd Food & Drinks Asia Exhibit.

Dapitan’s Cassava Chips from CAGAPA

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Unlike the regular cassava chips that you’ve encountered, these baked variation doesn’t feel like you’re about to be stabbed by a shard of glass any time soon (we know, we’ve been there). These cassava chips are made by the Cassava Growers & Producers Association of the Philippines (CAGAPA) based in Dapitan City and it’s all crisp and tasty without the risk of injury. And since it’s baked, it’s also less greasy! It’s available in original, cheese, barbecue, and hot & spicy variants (we highly recommend the mild but yummy hot & spicy kind) with a giant bag only setting you back P135.

Sunakku Shiitake Mushroom Cracklings from Vegetari Vegetarian Products

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This isn’t your regular mushroom chicharon in a sense that it’s not going to chip your tooth. It’s the much, much lighter cousin of the guilt-free snack made by a vegetarian restaurant just outside the University of the Philippines in Los Baños, Laguna. The Shiitake Chichashroom variant is the best, but they also have Button, Oyster, and Seaweed Chicharon. A medium bag will cost you P225.

Lemonade from The Lemon Company

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All the way from Cebu, The Lemon Company is bringing its tangy concoction to Manila just for Food & Drinks Asia 2019! A tall cup of freshly squeezed lemonade is only P69 and you get to choose between white or brown sugar syrup. For an additional P40, you can opt for raw honey, or P6 for a packet of Stevia. You can even add some chia seeds for just P10! It’s the perfect drink to wash down all (and we mean all) the food you’ll be munching on during your visit.

Bacsilog/BacTapsilog from Ate Rica’s Bacsilog

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With its viral online presence, you have to be living under a rock to have never heard of the wonder that is Ate Rica’s Bacsilog. What used to be a humble ‘kariton’ selling rice meals along Taft Avenue, this cheesy sensation now has roughly 80 branches around the country (yes, they’ve gone beyond Metro Manila — thanks to its strong franchising appeal). It’s easy to understand why: you’ll never go wrong with bacon, egg and rice. And with Ate Rica’s signature cheese sauce, it was a rice bowl definitely destined for success. Pro-Tip: Don’t bother asking her for the cheese sauce recipe — it’s a well-kept trade secret!

Mozzarella Bites & Sticks from ChizMozza

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It’s made from 100% authentic creamy and gooey Mozzarella for maximum cheese pull action. Chizmozza is the first food stand of its kind to focus on deep fried mozzarella variants — arguably the best kind of mozzarella, if you ask us. Unlike the usual mozzarella sticks found at restaurants, Chizmozza specializes in snack-sized offers. Their best-sellers are their Mozzarella Bites and Mozzarella Sticks, which comes with their mayo-ketchup-basil sauce. You can also choose among their premium signature dips for an additional P20: spicy garlic, garlic ranch, pesto mayo, and garlic parmesan.

Bacon Cone from Commi+/Mister Delicious

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What’s better than bacon? A cone full of bacon! For P150, you’ll get a bouquet of crispy Mister Delicious’ Applewood Smoked Bacon — all made in the Philippines by chefs Jen and Jeremy Slagle. Imagine yourself holding a cone of bacon in one hand as you walk up and down the halls of World Trade Center and you’ll see what true happiness looks like. Pro-Tip: They also sell frozen Applewood Smoked Bacon at their booth, so you can take it home and have awesome streaky bacon any day. Check out www.mrdelicious.ph for more information on their offers.

Catch the 23rd Food & Drinks Asia Exhibit at the World Trade Center in Pasay City from Sept 5 to Sept 8 (Thursday to Sunday). Halls open at 10:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m. (except Sunday, 6:00 p.m.). Tickets are available on site at PHP200, good for the entire event (four days).