Batangas lomi is the star of St. Albert, Alberta’s first Filipino restaurant
While adobo and lumpia reign as Filipino food staples, wait until you get a taste of Batangas’ famous lomi. If you’re in St. Albert in Alberta, you’re in luck: Foodies Kitchen will give you the Batangueño experience—enough to make you say ‘ala-eh.’
The brainchild of couple Florence and Rhoneil Palas who are both Canadian immigrants, Foodies Kitchen, which opened in May, brings Filipino cuisine to hungry Pinoys in St. Albert.
It’s not your average Filipino restaurant as Rhoneil, hailing from Batangas shares the specialties from the province in the Southern Tagalog region of the Philippines as a tribute to his grandmother who taught him how to cook.
The star of this restaurant? Lomi, the signature dish of Batangas.
Imagine a hearty stew with a thick sauce, noodles, and chunks of meat with crispy pork rind, juicy pork adobo, eggs, and spring rolls as toppings.
Each serving is a heaping bowl good for two to three persons perfectly matched with its sauce—soy sauce with vinegar, onions, and chili peppers.
Don’t get overwhelmed by the amount of toppings in each bowl; it’s all put to cater to the varied cravings of Pinoys. As Florence puts it, “Filipinos say they’re looking for vegetables, but they really love meat.”
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The feast doesn’t stop at lomi. Foodies Kitchen also offers silog—a famous Filipino all-day breakfast dish. You can choose from thinly sliced sweet pork (tocilog), sweet and sour beef (tapsilog), vinegar-marinated milkfish (bangsilog), Pinoy-style hotdog (hotsilog), and more.
Other Pinoy favorites like pancit (fried noodles with meat and veggies), pakbet (sautéed vegetables with shrimp paste), fried chicken, and lumpia also make appearances on the menu. To sum up your meal, the desserts—ginataang mais with langka (corn with coconut milk and jackfruit), macaroni salad, and buko pandan—are must-tries.
A story of resilience and dreams, the couple’s culinary journey started in 2012 when Florence left for Canada, leaving Rhoneil and their three kids in the Philippines.
Due to work permit expiration, both of them were forced to go home. Back then, Rhoneil was able to follow in 2014 under a spousal permit. But they came back in 2017, complete as a family. This was when their vision for Foodies Kitchen was formed.
Florence’s determination and a solid business plan earned the bank’s nod for a loan. “We didn’t have enough money to open a restaurant,” Florence said.
“I told them it’s not easy to build a restaurant. It takes patience and lots of courage. But my goal is, never give up.”
While most of their clients come from Edmonton, it wouldn’t hurt to get a taste of home if ever you’ll pass by Alberta. Visit them at 2008 Tudor Glen Place, Saint Albert, AB, Canada. You can check out their opening hours on their official Facebook page.