Cebu’s ‘Chocolate Queen’ sweetens NY afternoon with ASEAN envoys
TCC Chief Operating Officer Edu Pantino introduced a variety of chocolate products for tasting, whisking each cup with batirol, the brewing aroma of Philippine cacao filling the Philippine Center’s Kalayaan Hall. Pure cacao de bola was grated over suman (sticky rice) and traditional Spanish churros were dipped in thick chocolate drink.
Consul General Elmer Cato welcomed the ASEAN consular officers and spoke about the chocolate industry starting from the Spanish colonial period.
Pantino showed a video “Philippine Chocolate Sommelier” which was followed by a tasting of choco-mango nuggets, a fusion of sweetened cacao with hint of sea salt and dried mango bits; tartufini, roasted whole cacao nibs coated with caramel; whole cacao nib praline and hand-rolled truffle with sikwate.
Raquel Choa gave a serving demonstration along with her son, Chef Jonathan Choa, who curated the chocolate selection and whipped up tablea-ganache using condensed milk. He used the thick chocolate topping on both suman and churros.
Vice Consul Tanya Ramiro thanked the dignitaries from the Republic of Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Myanmar, Republic of Korea, Japan and Turkey, who joined the afternoon gathering. TCC gave away boxes of cacao delights to sample.