TV personality, host and celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain of Parts Unknown told CNN that Filipino food will be the next big thing in America.
Photo courtesy CNN
Chef Joaquin “Jake” Belmonte

How it all started, The Filipino Food Movement.

The Filipino Food Movement was founded to create broad awareness, appreciation, and enhanced investment in Filipino Culinary Arts. In just a few short years, it has gathered national attention in the press, millions of worldwide impressions on social media, and hundreds of passionate and talented individuals who believe Filipino Cuisine deserves its rightful place in the global menu.

It is believed that the story of our culture is programmed into the DNA of each ingredient, no matter where it is grown; each dish, no matter how it has evolved; and each cook, no matter where he or she may come from.

Through an inclusive & collaborative spirit, here is the goal:

  • We aim to combat the challenges and negative stigmas facing our cuisine. We aim to shed light on the true value of Filipino Cuisine.
  • We aim to build a better stage upon which to celebrate and elevate the Filipino Food experience.
  • We aim to gather those that are working tirelessly to do the same.

Together, we can influence the rising tide that will lift all vessels, with the hopes of leaving a trail of crumbs in our wake that will inspire, gather, and feed generations to come.

Source: The Filipino Food Movement

It is in food that we find our commonalities, rather than our differences. As a chef instructor at UHMC Culinary Arts Program, I instill in my diverse group of aspiring chef students that we identify as ourselves not only by birth but also by how we embrace other cultures by appreciating various cuisines. It is with an open mind that one can pledge to the recognition of other ethnic and global foods, through the love of eating, and deep respect to the culinary arts.

Filipinos are the second largest Asian subgroup in the US, according to the US Census department, and the second largest ethnic community in Hawaii. Restauranteurs, chefs, manufacturers, fans, friends, and Lola’s come together to celebrate the great flavors of our cuisine.

In big cities, one of the best things about globalization is having food from around the world in walking distance. For Hawaii, being a melting pot and at the forefront of travel and tourism, we’ve got it all, and Filipino cuisine is here to stay.

We have access to pretty much every cuisine we could ask for, but there’s one in particular that is, according to Anthony Bourdain, set to be the next big food trend in America.

Recently in June 2017, TV personality, host and celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain of Parts Unknown told CNN during an interview that American palates are just starting to become seriously interested in Filipino food, but they’ve begun embracing and learning about one of the most underrated but delicious cuisines out there. He emphasized that Filipino food will be the next big thing in America.

Bourdain thinks western palates are ready for it: “I think certain Filipino dishes are more likely to take root and take hold more quickly than others,” he told CNN.

“I think it’s [sisig] the most likely to convince people who have no exposure to Filipino food to maybe look further and investigate further beyond sisig. I think that’s the one that’s gonna hook them,” said Bourdain.
One of the dishes he particularly likes is called sisig, which is made from the snout, jowl, ear and tongue of a pig.

“I think sisig is perfectly positioned to win the hearts and minds of the world as a whole,” he said with no reservation. “The dish is casual, accessible, and exactly what you need after a hard day’s work.” He added, “I think it’s the most likely to convince people who have no exposure to Filipino food to maybe look further and investigate further beyond sisig. I think that’s the one that’s gonna hook them.”

Photo courtesy ABS-CBN

Along with Bourdain, Los Angeles Times food critic Jonathan Gold has also noted that the Filipino Food Movement is now upon us, and its unique yet familiar flavors and affordable prices have finally thrust it into the gaze of American food culture.

Bistro Manila Maui owners Rey & Cecille Piros attracts foodies and international diners at their location at 230 Hāna Highway, directly across Jim Falk Motors in Kahului.

Bistro Manila Maui Rey & Cecil Piros attracts foodies and international diners.

They feature Filipino Kamayan-style dinner (eating with your hands), also known as “Boodle Fight,” where numerous dishes are laid on banana leaves across a long table. Freshly caught and grilled fish, exotic fruits, a whole roasted pig, and rice are some of the dishes served. No forks, spoons, or knives are used. Everything is eaten by hand. It is one of my most memorable dining experiences.

Eating with your hands is a unique way of eating that is common to almost every Filipino. While most of the world use spoons, forks, chopsticks, and knives, Filipinos use their hands. Eating using your hands culture has been passed on for generations. If you haven’t tried this yet, remember it is highly recommended. It is worth the experience.

Bistro Manila Maui has received a lot of inquiries about their “Kamayan Nights.” Please call 871-6934 for prices and reservations—they are only doing “Kamayan Nights” on Friday and Saturday nights—the price varies depending on the choice of items and there must be a minimum of four people.

Pork Sisig

Serves: 6


  • 1 lb. pig ears
  • 1½ lb pork belly
  • 1 large onion, minced
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 knob ginger, minced
  • 3 tbsp chili flakes
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 piece lemon (or 3 to 5 pieces calamansi)
  • ½ cup butter (or margarine)
  • ¼ lb chicken liver
  • 6 cups water
  • 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp salt


  1. 1. Pour the water in a pan and bring to a boil. Add salt and pepper.
  2. Put in the pig’s ears and pork belly then simmer for 40 minutes to 1 hour (or until tender).
  3. Remove the boiled ingredients from the pot then drain excess water.
  4. Grill the boiled pig ears and pork belly until done.
  5. Chop the pig ears and pork belly into fine pieces.
  6. In a wide pan, melt the butter or margarine. Add the onions. Cook until onions are soft.
  7. Put in the ginger and cook for 2 minutes.
  8. Add the chicken liver. Crush the chicken liver while cooking it in the pan.
  9. Add the chopped pig ears and pork belly. Cook for 10 to 12 minutes.
  10. Put in the soy sauce, garlic powder, and chili. Mix well.
  11. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  12. Put in the mayonnaise and mix with the other ingredients.
  13. Transfer to a serving plate. Top with chopped green onions and raw egg.
  14. Serve hot. Share and enjoy. (Squeeze calamansi before eating). Recipe Source: Panlasang Pinoy

Chef Joaquin ‘Jake’ Belmonte, Jr. is a Culinary Lecturer at the UH Maui College, Culinary Arts Program. Belmonte was graduated from Maui High School and worked extensively in the Food & Beverage operation in the hotel industry. He is currently the Chef Representative of the Blue Zones Project – Central Maui Restaurants & Grocery Stores, a Facilitator of Hawai‘i National Great Teachers Seminar; and an active member of the American Culinary Federation. Belmonte was recognized by the Hawai‘i Hospitality Magazine as one of the 2008 Top 10 Rising Chefs of Hawai‘i under 40 and was the 2009 Chef Representative of the Hawai‘i Visitor and Convention Bureau’s West Coast Marketing Campaign. Happily married with two children, Belmonte is also a Small Business Owner and Operator of Maui Lifestyle Healthy Choice, a premier healthy vending company.