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Monday, June 6, 2016

The first time I met Chef Sau in person was when he curated the buffet at Solaire. He was simple, funny and unassuming. The dishes he dished out were pretty good. So I was pretty excited when I learned that CAFE FLEUR would be part of our Pampanga Food Trip.
 Wanting to level up the Kapangpangan cuisine, Chef Sau del Rosario sought out to make a dent in the food industry by creating CAFE FLEUR. A renovated ancestral home, the building where CAFE FLEUR is located is something that goes well with its surrounding. It seems like any old house but with all the modern luxuries in it. The first floor has a couple of rooms that gives different personalities. One is very cafe like while the other seems to be an Asian marketplace.

The second floor houses a couple of rooms that would be great for small gatherings. Very artsy and works well with the overall theme of the restaurant.

Once settled down, a curated menu with selection of delicious dishes were served.
Tamales Pampanguena was the start. This has got to be one of the best Tamales I have tasted. The texture wasn't slimey nor was it hard. It was somewhere in the middle. Not really gelatinous but each bite reminded me of my childhood. The TINAPA TRUFFLE MOUSSE though was just astounding. The tinapa or smoked fish worked well with the truffle. Getting their homemade bread and dipping it in the mousse was just delightful. Smokey and truffle, it works.

The PAKO SAVAGE is your basic salad. This fern is actually abundant in Pampanga. Mixed with a slight sweet vinaigrette, it's pretty healthy and good.

Pampanga has been known for the SISIG. Sisig is your basic sum of all pork cuts placed in one delicious dish. Mixed and usually served on a sizzling plate, it has been said that Sisig is originally from PAMPANGA so my expectations were pretty high. Glad that they delivered. The addition of the poached egg made the dish whole.

The SISIG ala Chef Eric is something that was served and demonstrated during the world street food congress held recently here in Manila. I'm glad that I was able to experience it.

The CRISPY OKOY and SHRIMPS was done masterfully. The addition of the papaya as an agent to bring them all ingredients together made it a joy to eat. There was a slight sweet streak in this crunchy dish.

For the pasta course, the CITRUS ALIGUE PASTA was served. To appreciate this fully, you need to eat it as soon as possible. The sauce is tasty and deadly because of the aligue or crab fat. It could also dry up pretty quick too so it's best to mix it all up once you get it.

Fish lovers would also enjoy the RELLENONG BANGUS. It is creamy and the bangus or milkfish is a little smokey and goes well with the decadent sauce.

The ULANG GUAVA SINIGANG is a stroke of genius. The guava was used as a souring agent to this sinigang. The soup, served separately, is delicious and is perfect with the meal. Partnered with rice, you would definitely ask for seconds.

The LAMB SHANK CALDERETA has a very distinct taste. The lamb meat was tender. The tomato sauce alongside the other vegetables, works well.
The highlight of the meal though would be the PORK BELLY with truffled macadamia kare-kare. The pork belly was crispy while the kare-kare sauce was made with macadamia nuts. Usually, roasted peanuts are used to make the sauce. In this instance, the sauce had a sweet kick to it because of the macadamia.
It was an excellent meal. All the necessary elements of a great experience were there.
From the start to the finish, the experience was amazing. CAFE FLEUR is a welcome addition to the PAMPANGA Food Scene. The service was impeccable and the knowledge of the staff about each dish was spot on. None of that usual generic answer. Rather, they would and could explain each dish pretty well.

 House of Chops: The perfect stopover in Pampanga
10 Dishes to try at the World Street Food Congress

Solaire's Fresh: Chef Sau's Filipino Food Festival

L-463B Miranda St. Brgy Sto. Rosario
Angeles City, Pampanga
0995 313 8413
Across Imerex Plaza Hotel

Disclaimer: was invited to this restaurant. wrote this based on my experience.
Different Themes
Written by Lovely

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