Category 1

Tuesday, November 1, 2022



The pandemic has certainly hampered people's wanderlust for the past two and a half years. To date, a lot of Metro Manila residents have not left the city yet for other islands down south.  Enter Negros Island, the Sweet Spot of the Philippines.  Negros is known not just for being the sugar capital of the Philippines, it is also known as one of the culinary capitals of the country.

From Negros comes the world famous Chicken Inasal which recently was adjudged as the the fifth best chicken dish in the world by Taste Atlas.  Other favorites for which Negros is known for are the yummy treats like the original Roli's Napoleones, a dessert made of puff pastry layered with pastry cream and glazed on the top.

For those who haven't had a chance to fill up on Negrense food and delicacies through the pandemic, the University of St. La Salle Alumni Association - Manila Chapter and Rockwell Center Bacolod present the first ever Namit-Namit Food Festival on November 4, 5, and 6, 2022 at the Hidalgo Drive of the Rockwell Center in Makati.

This culinary happening will allow visitors to taste authentic chicken inasal as brought by Bacolod Chicken Inasal, JT's Manukan, and Inasalan sa Dalan. Kansi by Pat-Pat's Kansi, and Sate Babi of Bob's Bacolod fame will be there too.  All in all, eleven (11) food merchants from Negros will treat visitors to an array of Negrense cuisine which will surely tickle visitors' palates with the festival of flavors.

The Namit Namit Food Festival, with all its tasty goodies are not just a delight to the palate.  It is also a delight to the soul of every visitor with Negrense roots.  It can be said that food can be a momentary time machine to the past.  This holds true for those who grew up in Bacolod in the 1960s to the 1980s and recall the well loved tastes of Bob's and Roli's.  Bob's serves up the all time favorite Sate Babi and Fruit Punch plus more, while Roli's treats us with the original Napoleones which Negrenses have learned to love through the years.

Complete list of food outlets in the Namit Namit Food Festival:

1. Manolo’s of Chef Manny Torrejon
2. Bacolod Chicken Inasal
3. Sir & Ma’am
4. Inasalan sa Dalan                              
5. Pat-pat's Kansi
6.
JT’s Manukan  
7. The original Roli's Napoleones
8. Quan
9. Bob's
10. Quino's
11. Grem's Deli


The original Roli's Napoleones

Sate Babi and Fruit Punch from Bob's







The Best of Negros Island Delicacies and Cuisine at Rockwell on November 4, 5, and 6, 2022

The pandemic has certainly hampered people's wanderlust for the past two and a half years. To date, a lot of Metro Manila residents hav...

Sunday, June 5, 2022

 


I recently visited Silay in my first ever trip outside of Luzon in in three and a half years.  Blame it on the pandemic, my family and I have been limited to travels 250km away from home at the maximum. This trip was short but I was really thankful for it for it allowed me to have a glimpse of what life would be like for a Talonggo (Tagalog-Ilonggo) in a post-COVID-19 world, with all the adjustments in terms of travel preferences.

Upon arrival at the Bacolod-Silay Airport, Atty. Eli Gatanela and wife Elena, whisked me away to the hills in Patag for a lunch hosted by Raymund and Yves Javellana.  Raymund as we may have known, is the dynamo behind turning the Ruins into one of the top tourist attractions in Negros, once of the 12 most fascinating ruins in the world, and one of the best landmarks in the Philippines, which was recently voted by netizens as the Best Heritage Site for 2016 sponsored by Choose Philippines, the travel website of ABS-CBN.

Raymund and Yves have blissfully relocated themselves in this private enclave of like minded nature and serenity lovers in the cool environment of Patag in Silay.  As they prepared a sumptuous lunch, I zoomed in on the callos, which is often present in Negrense lunches.  I've written about callos in the past and Raymund and Yves' callos is really up there with the best.

Throughout the short visit to Negros, the culinary highlight this time was the Lumpia I brought home to Manila.  My cousin Tina Tronco-Baldevia messaged me the afternoon before I would fly back to Manila if I would want to bring home Lumpia from Silay.  All of us in the family love lumpia made of ubod (coconut pith).

In the seventies, I knew that there would be a lunch to be hosted at home because our kusinera, Elenita, would stack up lumpia in the freezer the on the eve of the lunch.  I'd open up our freezer and you'd see all the lumpia stacked up in rolls with the green sibuyas dahon jutting out.

I picked up the lumpia from Tina's house on the way to the airport and was excited to have this for merienda when I got home to Manila.  For those who aren't familiar with the Lumpia of Silay, this is the unique derivation of the Chinese spring roll created with the ingredients we find in abundance in Negros, the sweet spot of the Philippines.

The Lumpia of Silay is distinct and unlike those in most parts of the Philippines. While most "fresh" or uncooked (sariwa) lumpia elsewhere consists of sautéed vegetables in a white flour-and-water wrapper, and occasionally in some parts garnished with ground peanuts or a sauce, the Lumpia of Silay is different.


The soul of the Lumpia of Silay is the ubod or coconut pith. The ubod is always fresh as can be.  The coconut tree cut down for ubod only hours before, so that the pith is not only white but sweet and juicy yet crunchy.  The crunchiness accentuated by shreds of chicharon (pork cracklings) and a leaf of local lettuce.

As for the freshness of the ubod, as far as I remember, in Negros, there were small trees just for ubod sometimes planted between full-size nut-bearing trees.  That's  farm to table for you, long before farm to table became a buzzword.

I thank Tina for sending me off with a box of Lumpia from Silay. More than a week after we had the last piece of lumpia here in Manila, this Talonggo is still craving for lumpia of Silay - the culinary capital of Negros.







SILAY on my Tastebuds

  I recently visited Silay in my first ever trip outside of Luzon in in three and a half years.  Blame it on the pandemic, my family and I ...

Monday, May 23, 2022

LLOYD TRONCO

LLOYD TRONCO 2022

LLOYD TRONCO

Sunday, May 22, 2022




I was going through my old blog and came upon this gem which I wrote on Friday, September 22, 2006.  I had just left corporate work at McCann-Erickson a year before and was doing things as I had wanted.  The title of this piece from that old blog was : What's so important about being 36


What's so important about being 36?  More specifically, 36 years and eight months old.

Let me tell you.

At the age of 36 years and eight months old, you would have only 40 months left before you turn 40.

If you were to make a list entitled "Forty things I would like to do before I turn Forty", this would mean that you'd have at least one item to do every month as you wind down the days to the big 4-0.  That way, your list would be more realistic as you could rename it to "Forty things I would like to do in the Forty Months before I turn Forty".

Not unless of course you are a crammer and you would prefer to have a list entitled "Forty things I would like to do in the Forty DAYS before I turn Forty"

Retirement Strategy : What's so important about being 36

I was going through my old blog and came upon this gem which I wrote on Friday, September 22, 2006.  I had just left corporate work at McCan...

Monday, December 6, 2021

"Alab ng Sining" at 62 feet high and 40 feet wide, stands as the Philippines' largest abstract painting.


I am no stranger when it comes to painting large works.  In my senior year in high school, just a few weeks shy from graduation, my teacher in Art Appreciation asked me to do a mural which would cover the grandstand of the Philippine Science High School.  The mural served as a background to our commencement exercises weeks later.

The eye (and hand) for creating large works also came naturally because I spent my summers helping out in the backyard of our family's outdoor advertising business in Bacolod.  Way back then, billboards were not printed but painted.  Painters would do lettering and paint figures on Galvanized Iron panels nailed on to wood. 

By watching and helping out the painters as a teenager, I was able to see how paint was properly applied and executed.  Little did I know that all of these would lead up to the day wherein I could create the Philippines' largest abstract painting.

The painting I created is too big to display in an art gallery, thus I hung it on an EDSA billboard.




The artwork has already been carried in Artplus Magazine, Adobo Magazine, Manila Bulletin, Inquirer, and PeopleAsia.

Although execution for this took a week, preparation for it took months and the ideation for it, years.  There was no better time to execute this but on February 2021, right in time for the
celebration of the National Arts Month 2021.


Thus, here I was, a Metro Manila-based artist from Negros painting the Philippines' largest abstract painting measuring 62 feet high by 40 feet wide.

The title "Alab ng Sining" speaks about the flame of art which I have always had, even during the days when I was working in an ad agency on non-art related matters. 

The work is now displayed on an EDSA billboard located in Mandaluyong City at the corner of EDSA and Ortigas Avenues until March 30, 2021.






Negros Island bred but Mandaluyong-based artist, Lloyd Tronco, stands before his work which is the largest abstract artwork in the Philippines.




"Alab ng Sining", 62 feet high by 40 feet wide, lloydtronco 2021
Acrylic on Vinyl


The Philippines' largest abstract artwork is located in Barangay Wack-Wack/Greenhills East, Mandaluyong City.





How I Painted The Philippines' Largest Abstract Painting

"Alab ng Sining" at 62 feet high and 40 feet wide, stands as the Philippines' largest abstract painting. I am no stranger when...

Monday, November 22, 2021

 

The Philippine’s largest abstract painting “Alab ng Sining” will be on display at the Visayas Art Fair in Cebu City on Nov. 25 to 28*



The Philippines’ largest abstract painting will be on display during the week of the first ever Visayas Art Fair at the Montebello Hotel in Cebu City on November 25 to 28.

The fair, the first of its kind, will be participated in by visual artists from Bacolod City and Negros Occidental namely, Charlie Co, Nunelucio Alvarado, Roedil Geraldo, Darel Javier, Aeson Baldevia, among others.

“Alab ng Sining”, which measures 62 feet by 40 feet, is a grand work by advertising man turned artist, Lloyd Tronco, a Bacoleño now based in Manila. The artwork first appeared in February 2021 at the corner of EDSA and Ortigas Avenue in Metro Manila as the artist’s way of celebrating National Arts Month.

This fair, the first of its kind

will take place on November 25 to 28

at the Montebello Hotel, Cebu.

The work, according to Tronco, is a statement on the democratization of art appreciation wherein art and the appreciation thereof should not only be confined within the walls of galleries, museums, or auction houses.

“The world is our gallery, a place to share our God-given talents, a place to share our craft and ideas. The purpose of art is really to connect with as many people as possible,” he said.

Created during the pandemic at the time when visiting galleries or museums were not allowed, “Alab ng Sining” is also a statement on social distancing. Given the size, one has to stand afar to truly appreciate it, Tronco said.

The Visayas Art Fair 2021 is a historic undertaking by Cebu Design Week Inc. to unite three regions in the Visayas – Regions 6, 7 and 8 – to present to the world the identity of the Visayan arts and culture.*


This article first appeared in the Visayan Daily Star on 11/22/2021

Negrense artists in Visayas Art Fair

  The Philippine’s largest abstract painting “Alab ng Sining” will be on display at the Visayas Art Fair in Cebu City on Nov. 25 to 28* The ...

Monday, August 16, 2021




Bacolod Chicken House...the local legend


If ever there was any reason why Bacolod chicken inasal became the legendary Bacolod delicacy it is now known to be, it can all be traced back to Architect Joe Cajili's Chicken House. Currently known as Bacolod Chicken House, the real Chicken House started as a hole-in-the-wall at San Sebastian Street, catering to everyday passers-by.  Later on, it opened as a  small restaurant just across Colegio de San Agustin along North Drive (B.S. Aquino Drive today).

It's humble beginnings as a restaurant included an al fresco (back in the days it was just called "open-air") section which one was able to access through the sidewalk and that small street leading to the back of the Redemptorist Church. Long before there was a Manokan country at Bacolod's reclamation area, Chicken House had already set up shop. Joe Cajili's initial patrons were also his golfing buddies at the nearby Marapara club (Negros Occ. Golf and Country Club)


Chicken House's next branches were located at the downtown area along San Juan street (across the current location of Sylvia Manor) and at Mandalagan where it still serves its mouth watering roasted delights to this day. In the days when Chicken House was at San Juan, which was around the mid 1980s, I would only have to cross the Bacolod Public Plaza with my classmates from La Consolacion College to get to the little haven of chicken barbecue.  There, we would while away some time before catching up with one last class at 6:30 p.m.

Many other chicken houses or "inasalans" have followed the path led by Joe Cajili's local legend of a resto. One thing is sure though. One cannot claim to have been in Bacolod if he or she hasn't eaten at the real and only Bacolod Chicken House.

I wrote this in 2008 on the Multiply.com platform.

Chicken House ... The Bacolod Legend

Bacolod Chicken House...the local legend If ever there was any reason why Bacolod chicken inasal became the legendary Bacolod delicacy...

 

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