Sunday, July 11, 2010

Welcome to Cagayan de Oro’s Kumbira 2010!

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines - Chef Benji’s face was a study in deep thought as he sat on his chair for two hours now, alternately hunched on the table, both arms supporting his head, or feverishly scribbling on his notebook, the tattered copy of his beloved Larousse Gastronomique in front of him.

“This has got to be good,” he mumbled to no one in particular - his loss last year on a time technicality still fresh on his mind — oblivious to the loud barking of neighbors’ dogs which shattered the stillness of the night.

It was past midnight when Chef Benji finally sidled up to his wife in bed, his mind on the crème de la crème of Cagayan de Oro’s hotels and restaurants who’ll see action during the Chef Wars of the much-awaited Kumbira 2010.

“Kumbira, here I come.”

The 14th Kumbira 2010 opens on August 18 as it has done in August every year since 1996. Like the city fiesta, Kumbira has become an event eagerly awaited not only by city residents but by people from neighboring cities as well, especially HRM students and hotel and restaurant staff, as evidenced by the busloads of students from all over who make their annual pilgrimage to Cagayan de Oro to see, quite literally, what’s cooking.

This year’s guests will form a bee line to Limketkai, where, for three days, professional chefs from the city’s hotels and restaurants, and aspiring chefs from schools all over will showcase the finest of their craft, the event brightened by a constellation of stars of the Philippine culinary scene who will act as judges - Norbert Gandler (International School of Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management/multi-awarded chef); international awardee cake stylist Penk Tan; Myrna Segismundo (restaurateur, cookbook author, TV chef).

And Ed Tuazon (Executive Chef - Marco Polo Davao); Dietmar Dietrich (Belcris Foods); Jill Sandique (Senior Trainor - USDA); Carsten Radke (La Vetta Restaurant); Colin Mackay (People's Palace); Michaela Makabenta (FOOD Magazine); Glenda Baretto (Via Mare Group of Restaurants); Jessie Sincioco (Le Soufflé/Rockwell Club); and Sandy Daza (Chef and Food Writer/Columnist), among others.

The professional live competition will have the following: Watermelon and Squash Carving; Bamboo Floral Buffet Centerpiece; Kagay-an Ham Sandwich and Salad; Kumbira Team Challenge; and the climax Chef Wars. The display competition includes the following: Gourmet Cold Buffet Challenge; Artistic Bread Showpiece; Piña Pie; Plated Appetizer; Bridal Cake Decorating. The service competition will have Flair Bar tending.

The student live competition will feature the following: Watermelon and Squash Carving; Banana Floral Buffet Centerpiece; Cashew Dessert; Kagay-an Ham Sandwich and Salad; and Kumbira Team Challenge. The display competition will include: Fiesta Buffet Table setting; Artistic Bread Showpiece; Set Menu; Baptismal Cake Decorating. The service competition includes Flair Bartending-Tandem; and On-The-Spot-Bed setting. The students will also have their Chef Wars.

Seminars, cooking demonstrations, and food sampling will also be held. As always, a trade exhibit featuring hotel and restaurant equipment, supplies, services, food and beverage items will also be held.

COHARA was organized in 1996 with 8 members. Today it has a strong cohesive membership of 28 hotels, 12 restaurants, 60 associate and 4 allied members.

Its officers for 2010-2011 are President Joanna Cris L. Yu, of Bigby’s Café; VP-Hotels Alexis Chaves of Cha-Li Beach Resort; VP-Restaurant Joe L. Almodobar of Xavier Sports & Country Club; Secretary Alex Podador of Pryce Plaza ; Treasurer Blanquita C. Marco of Casa Crystalla; PRO Jeffrey Ang of Max’s Restaurant.

The Board of Directors are Bong Pelaez of Duka Bay Resort; Edward Ian Ang of Hotel Conchita; Eileen San Juan of VIP Hotel; Josy Aliñabon of La Ilongga Restaurant; Juvy Gontinias of Basamanggas Resort & Restaurant; Russel Awat of Kagay-anon Restaurant; Honorary Member Decius Esmedalla of DOT X; Honorary Member Josephine Roque of DOT X; Honorary Member Jocelyn Gordiel-Balbon and Immediate Past President Nelia B. Lee of Dynasty Court Hotel. (Abraham V. Llera)

1 comment:

Shaine said...

Cool. That seemed to be fun and nice activity. Will still be there CDO's Kumbira this year?I hope I could witness it myself this time or perhaps joins .

Shaine from Cagayan de Oro (