March 19, 2013

Wonderful World of Kuse ! A Traditional Filipino Cuisine

I have been invited to see and experience the KUSE. I enjoyed the wonderful world of traditional Filipino cuisine. I had the chance to dine in Kuse's first branch at Venice Piazza in McKinley Hill, Taguig.

I thought what means Kuse? Is that the name of the chef or the owner? Surprisingly, Kusě, among the Tagalogs, refers to the local chef. The word is perhaps derived from the more common term, kusinero. During special occasions in the community, people always ask, “sino ang magku-kusé?” They are always curious who will head the kitchen, who will manage the feast. Being a Kuse is considered a distinction. The Kuse’s reputation lends prestige to the affair, gives pride to the host, and makes everything more exceptional for the guests. 

The menu of Kuse showcases traditional Filipino cuisine -- dishes that are familiar and are regularly sought by the Pinoy palate. It’s the perfect go-to place for local cravings and for entertaining balikbayan guests.

The Chef’s Quarter Group of Restaurants opened the first branch of Kuse in November 2009 at Venice Piazza, McKinley Hill. The second outlet opened its doors last March 2012 at Lucky Chinatown Mall in Binondo which was shortly followed by another at Eton Centris Walk in Quezon City.
Here in Venice Piazza branch, the ambiance is super cool. I love here, feeling that I am in a fresh air cool place around the bamboo trees even the outside is the super heat summer.

The parade of specialties from various provinces include best-sellers such as Pork Sisig Kapampangan, Pancit Lechon de Lucban, Vigan Bagnet, Mini Ukoy with Visayan Sauce, and Batangas Bulalo Soup.

Dining at Kuse is like being in a typical Filipino salu-salo so serving portions are all big enough to share. Other items topping the favorites list of regular visitors are Paco Salad ng Laguna with Kesong Puti and Itlog na Maalat, Sinigang na Bangus sa Bayabas, BBQ Beef Back Ribs Adobado, Kuse Lechong Baka.
I love all the dishes we had but my favorite among the specialties, is - Adobong Kuhol sa Gata! A new and unique menu from Kuse. After trying what they served us, our group asked for more Adobong Kuhol ! 

And as the desserts, Banana Langka in Filo with Caramel Sauce, and the innovative Sapin-Sapin Creme Brulee.
Behind the recipes is Chefs’ Quarter Group executive chef, Mauro Arjona Jr. whose father was a Kuse. “He was actually a farmer in our province Liliw, Laguna but every time there’s an occasion such as weddings and fiesta, he would always be called to cook. And he would work for the love of it, even without pay,” chef Mau recalls. 

The Chefs’ Quarter Group of Restaurants includes Chefs’ Quarter Restaurant, Beurre Blanc Restaurant and Wine Bar, Old Vine Grille, Uncle Cheffy Brick Oven Global Cuisine, and just recently, Larry & Mau Diner.

Kuse at Venice Piazza, McKinley Hill (836-4969) Operating Hours: 10am – 11pm, Monday to Sunday with seating capacity of 50 persons.

Kuse at Lucky Chinatown Mall, Binondo, Manila (708-9576) , Operating Hours: 10am to 10pm, Monday to Sunday. Seating capacity: 70 persons.

Kuse at Eton Centris Walk, Quezon City (709-9817) Operating Hours: 11am to 11pm, Monday to Sunday. Seating capacity: 90 persons.

And watch out soon to open in Festival Mall, Alabang!

Kuse also offers catering services. Visit and enjoy Kuse. It’s the perfect go-to place for your cravings! 

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