I have to admit, I'm the type of person who holds on to my past. From my old baseball cards, favorite hats, and even my vintage Nikes. So I guess that same goes for my food loves. If I had my choice of hot dogs, TOP DOG in Berkeley was a staple in my youth. So most hot dogs spots can't even compare to the ambiance and local feel that TD offered. My favorite burger still has to be any of the old Giant Burger spots in Oakland. Their fat ass burgers had to be the juiciest and messiest burger around.
As far as Filipino food, there wasn't really a restaurant that I grew up on. As a family, we usually ate Filipino food at home or at the usual family gathering with 100 plus guests. We did get the occasional trip to Max's Restuarant in South San Francisco or even Alido's Island Flavor (review coming soon). But as far as a favorite pinoy spot...I really didn't have one.
In my college years, I began to grasp my inner pinoy and started to frequent every single silog (filipino breakfast) joint I could find. From Ling Nam to Sinugba, I had my weekly fix of longanisa, tapa, chicken, bangus and everything in between. For the traditional dishes, I still went home to mom or grandmas house to get my share of adobo, kare-kare, and pancit. Nothing could even compare to home cooking.
Fast forward 12 years to the present and I have to say that things have really changed. We now can find adobo and lumpia on the streets of San Francisco, from Adobo Hobo to Lumpia Cart. Filipino food on the streets? It's a reality that 12 years ago, was out of the question. The food truck boom that we are experiencing in the Bay to Los Angeles has brought us the likes of Senor Sisig, Hapa SF, White Rabbit(LA), The Manila Machine(LA), and Tapa Boy(LA). You can now find Filipino cuisine anywhere and everywhere.
From simple dishes to complex versions of tried and true recipes, the new age of Filipino food is here and alive...at least in West Coast. So my journey continues now and I have to say that I am enjoying this new age of Filipino cooking and experimentation with different restaurants and even my own cooking. Our culture is very rich with traditions and variety. You have to realize that we have over 170 dialects and 7107 islands that make up the Philippines. So I have a ton of discovery left, and lot of trips to the gym to keep up with.
Next is a trip to ATTIC in San Mateo CA, and I'm not searching through my mom's old stuff.