Of bespoke dinners & French cuisine

A chef came to town but his reputation had preceded him. In Manila, he whips up 10-course degustation meals for ten people (at least) at Php 6,000.00 per head (as of September 2011). The only chance I can have a taste of this man's cuisine is if I get lucky enough to be invited to someone's dinner table.

Luckily, Marco Polo Davao invited him as their guest chef at the Polo Bistro for the whole month of September, and I landed an invite. Happiness! 

Of course, Polo Bistro offers his meals ala carte. It's fine cuisine in a casual setting with very affordable priced dishes.

Invading the Chef's territory without permission. Dangerous.

"Chef Chris is one of Manila’s gourmet chefs whose expertise and experience span continents. He learned from the masters at the Ecole Ritz-Escoffier, the culinary school of the Ritz Hotel in Paris, as well as at the French Culinary Institute in New York.

Currently engaged in designing bespoke dinners in Manila, he served as Executive Chef of Gourdo’s Café and as Chef at Mamma, among others. He is also a contributor to Food and F&B World Magazines."

Taking time off his toxic schedule, the new hotel GM, Bruno Simeoni joined us for dinner (finally!).

"With Chef Chris, you can expect spoonfuls of pure velvety delight,”said GM Bruno Simeoni.

Media Dinner 
Featuring Guest Chef Chris Bautista 
September 1, 2011 

A Plate of Amuses Bouches 
Coupe of Salmon Tartare and Red Onion Crème Fraiche 
Grapes Wrapped in Malagos Blue Cheese & Walnut 
Tomato Risotto & Chorizo Balls 

Consomme of Beef with Foie Gras Terrine and Truffles 

This is an amazing soup. 

Grilled Lamb Cutlets En Persillade with Creamy Polenta, Petit Farcis Nicoise and Lamb Jus 

Crème Cuite Burnt Meringue, Pistachio Brittle and Espresso Granita

Em Mauhay, the hotel's new Director of Sales & Marketing, was on a diet so she graciously offered me her share (after I asked if she was going to eat it...haha).

The heavenly Pistachio Brittle. I had a whole plate of this. I shared one piece with Kenneth, I am kind after all.

I give thee thanks for the two servings of decadent desserts.

 And the compulsory photo op.

Chef Ed, GM Simeoni, DSM Em & Guest Chef Chris

That was just the first part. 

Day 2.

The next day, Babayruth C. flew all the way from Manila to Davao just to sample Chef Chris' cuisine. I guess she found it way less costly than hosting this chef's dinner (for ten) in Manila. :-) So she hosted a meal here in Davao instead for this group less than 10.

Rochelle del ROsario, Maite Gempesaw, the dessert monster, Arvin Dizon, hostess Babyruth C & Chef Chris
For lunch, I had these...

Red Crab & Avocado Salad
Cold salad of crab with avocado, green apple & curry 

Fantastic salad. So light.

Lettuce & Arugula Cream with Tomato Confit & Chevre Beignet


Roasted Rib-eye of Beef & Balsamic Glazed Veal Sweetbreads 
with Truffle Shavings on Crisped Mushroom Risotto  

Please BE VERY SPECIFIC on how you want your steak prepared.

Crème Cuite Burnt Meringue, Pistachio Brittle and Espresso Granita


Again, thanks Chef Chris for discreetly serving my double order of this fantastic dessert in a one bowl!
The right bowl is there for comparison.

Did you really think it's over?

With Babyruth C. flying in for the day just to dine, she wanted to make the most out of it. After a quick tour around the city to sample more Davao goodies, we went back to Polo Bistro for another serving of Chef Chris' mean cuisine.

I was about to burst from ingesting too much food, so for dinner I opted to have this dessert only. It's the only course that will always have room in the stomach, no matter how full I am. I didn't regret every calorie intake.

Tarte Tatin, whipped Gorgonzola Dolce & Pecan Brittle


Two days, three meals. In Manila, easily P 18,000.00 total. In Davao, priceless! Since all three meals were hosted. Makes a lot of sense, right? But it's actually very affordable and surely, worth the price with every heavenly bite.

To end the night, I wrote a note to Chef Chris on his menu. He had to reply.

Making sure he's doing it right.

Oops, missing a "be" between, "to" & "invited".

You have until the end of the month to sample this man's cuisine at the Polo Bistro. Or head to Manila and look for a host like what Chef Chris suggested :-).

The end.

For more information contact: 
The Public Relations Executive 
Marco Polo Davao
C.M. Recto Street
8000 Davao City, Philippines
Tel (63 82) 221-0888
Fax (63 82) 225-0111
e-mail: prdavao@marcopolodavao.com