(This feature was published in GMA News Online last May 19, 2016)
I envy those who live in foodie neighborhoods like Maginhawa, Kapitolyo, and BF Homes, where residents can simply step out of the house and into nearby neighboring dining establishments in a matter of minutes. I’m glad that my locale, Parañaque, is slowly gaining ground as I see small restaurants popping up left and right.
My newest discovery is Taqueria 101.
Ever since it opened in February, there has been buzz about its Mexican-inspired cuisine and chef-owner Mikel Zaguirre of Locavore fame. I figured if this guy is creative enough to dish up sizzling sinigang in his kitchen, he must be able to execute exciting Mexican flavors as well.
Not your average Mexican joint
“Please don’t expect it’s an authentic Mexican restaurant. It’s always different whenever I put up something. Expect new flavors. Expect freshness. Expect different combinations. Kaya siya ‘101’ it’s something basic but different, different but familiar. Kaya siya Taqueria 101—it’s a new direction for us.”
Chef Zaguirre came up with this restaurant concept along with his parents who are both foodies. “I grew up in a house where my lola cooks puto and dinuguan from scratch for breakfast. She makes her own puto, kutsinta, bopis… Nothing instant.”
His exposure and experience in culinary school has formed his passion for food.
He was trained by a Michelin-starred chef in school and has developed a fondness for French and Japanese cuisines. However, he has ventured into new territory and he’s not afraid to show it in his cooking style.
“I just don’t want to be tagged as another taqueria, another Mexican joint, another Mexican restaurant. I want to be different.” The chef displays his creativity not just in his food, but in plating as well. “For me, it’s not fusion. It’s still tacos. It’s my version of it. It’s my story and how I want people to eat my food.”
Read the rest of the article HERE.