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Philippine Independence Day Celebrations 2023


Heralding Unity: Philippine Independence Day 2023 Celebrations in Singapore Unveil Stronger Ties and Shared Visions

Philippine Independence Day Celebrations 2023

The Embassy of the Republic of the Philippines in Singapore celebrated the Philippine Independence Day 2023 in grand style at the Orchard Hotel in Singapore. The event was hosted by His Excellency Medardo G. Macaraig, Ambassador of the Republic of the Philippines to Singapore, with the presence of several prominent personalities, including and guest speaker His Excellency Dr. Tan See Leng, Minister for Manpower and Second Minister for Trade and Industry.

The occasion commemorated the 125th anniversary of the declaration of Philippine independence Day and served as a platform for strengthening diplomatic and cultural ties between the Philippines and Singapore. The attendees had the opportunity to gain further insights into the history, traditions, and values of the Philippine nation.

His Excellency Medardo G. Macaraig Embassy of the Republic of the Philippines in Singapore

Ambassador Macaraig, works with his team at the Embassy’s offices at the Devonshire Wing, TripleOne Somerset Building in Singapore, expressed his appreciation for the cordial relations between the two countries and underlined the crucial role of the Filipino community in Singapore.

Guest speaker Dr. Tan See Leng, Minister for Manpower and Second Minister for Trade and Industry, highlighted the significance of the Filipino workforce in Singapore’s economic development. He lauded the contributions of Filipino workers across various sectors in Singapore and underscored the shared commitment towards enhancing collaboration in areas of trade, manpower, and industry.

See what Dr. Tan See Leng had to say about the event on his Facebook Page

His Excellency Dr. Tan See Leng Minister for Manpower and SEcond Minister for Trade and Industry

Furthermore, the event showcased elements of Filipino culture, including traditional cuisine, music, and dance. It was an opportunity for the attendees to learn more about the Philippine government, its structure, and the people behind it. The rich history of the Philippines and the contributions of Filipinos to the global community were proudly celebrated.

The Philippine Independence Day celebration is an annual event hosted by the Embassy of the Philippines in Singapore. It aims to foster camaraderie among the Filipino community in Singapore, celebrate the country’s independence, and promote the culture and values of the Philippines. It also provides an opportunity to strengthen diplomatic relations and mutual understanding between the Philippines and Singapore.

The event was a true testament to the enduring ties and shared history between the Republic of the Philippines and Singapore. It was a remarkable evening of cultural exchange and mutual respect, reflecting the strong bonds that have been cultivated over the years.

Even the headlines ahead of this event rang true throughout the speeches, here is Piyush Gupta Group CEO of DBS saying ‘Rest of decade is PH time’.

Is Life a Recipe Invited to join the Celebrations!

Both Brian and I were both honoured to be invited by the team at Embassy of the Republic of the Philippines in Singapore as we have ourselves been Ambassadors of the Philippine Food culture on our blog which they kindly featured recently on the Food Trek Blog. There are more plans underway but more on that soon! Sadly my partner in crime (food and booze mainly) was actually in Bohol with the family so left me holding the Is Life a Recipe flag! Someone had to take one for the team I guess!

Filipinos know how to enjoy themselves!

Pork, Beer and Karaoke, you had me at Halo Halo!! (Insider joke for those in the know) see below for more details under Max’s Restaurant.

That’s Entertainment!

The Philippine Embassy team went all out to entertain their guests and that was not a top down instruction because His Excellency Medardo G. Macaraig offered to serenade Guest speaker Dr. Tan See Leng with an opening song.

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How about another Song by the Philippine Ambassador?

Now this I did not expect as you can see from me ending up in the middle of a Flash Dance showcase where the Embassy team get down to make some dance moves like John Travolta and Olivia Newton John in Grease! Even our good friend Joy can be spotted in the red outfit getting down!

Did I mention Filipinos like Karaoke?

The Ambassador had another belter up his sleeve and this was before the buffet even opened up!

but don’t worry I saved this one for Instagram, you can watch His Excellency here on Instagram!

Now look at all the team who showed up and rocked this event!

Food Trek Singapore – A Taste of the Philippines

Take a look at who supported this event for the Philippine Independence Day Celebrations 2023 Partner Establishments named here Kubo, Lechon Republic, Second Serving, My Little Spanish Place, Chez Suzette, KŌNYŌ, Alegria, Iskina Cebu, Max’s Singapore, The Chocolate Chamber, Jollibee Singapore and S&W Premium with, a special event Cocktail made with Emperador Brandy and beers by San Miguel.

A few of the names listed here stepped up with a stand and presented the Philippines and some of the names turned up to show the force that is the Philippines restaurants that are making waves in Asia!

Max’s Singapore

Max’s Halo-Halo is a popular dessert served at Max’s Restaurant, a Filipino restaurant chain known for its fried chicken. Halo-Halo is a traditional Filipino dessert that translates to “mix-mix” in English. It is a refreshing and colorful dessert made with a combination of ingredients such as sweetened fruits, beans, jellies, and other toppings mixed with crushed ice and evaporated milk.

At Max’s Restaurant, their version of Halo-Halo features a blend of tropical fruit preserves, beans, and milk in shaved ice. It is then topped with a scoop of Ube (purple yam) ice cream, sweet banana, and cheese. The dessert offers a delightful combination of flavours and textures, with the sweet and creamy elements complementing the cool and refreshing ice.

Maxs Halo Halo

Max’s Halo-Halo has gained popularity among customers as a must-try dessert after enjoying their savoury dishes. It is often enjoyed during the hot summer months in the Philippines, providing a refreshing treat to beat the heat. The dessert is also available throughout the year, allowing customers to indulge in its unique flavours and vibrant presentation. Drop by the Far East Plaza outlet and look for Rachell the Restaurant Manager and say hi from Is Life a Recipe or follow them like we do on Instagram.

Lechon Republic

I had the pleasure of meeting AJ & Catherine Paa Director at Lechon Republic, it was AJ’s family the Eserjoses that started this business back in the Philippines and AJ & Catherine thought Singapore needed a good Lechon restaurant and they were not wrong!

Lechon Republic Catherine Paa Director

Lechon Republic is a Filipino restaurant located in Singapore, specifically at 275 Thomson Road, Novena Regency. It specializes in serving lechon, which is a traditional Filipino dish of roasted pork. Lechon is known for its reddish-brown crispy skin and tender juicy meat. Lechon Republic aims to bring the authentic taste of Pinoy lechon to Singapore by preparing it traditionally over charcoal.

The restaurant offers a variety of menu options, including rice meals with chopped lechon, priced at $12.80 SGD. Customers can place their orders through the restaurant’s website. Lechon Republic is grateful for the opportunity to introduce the flavours of lechon to Singapore and provide a taste of Filipino cuisine. You can follow them on Instagram like we do!

Second Serving

Second Serving is a restaurant located in Singapore that specializes in serving authentic Filipino food like Sisig. They offer delivery services straight to your doorstep anywhere in Singapore. The restaurant has a Facebook page, where you can find more information and place orders. They also have a website called QashierEats, where you can order directly from your favourite restaurants, including Second Serving.

second serving pork belly sisig

If you’re looking to order from Second Serving, you can find their menu and place orders on various platforms such as and GrabFood. On Instagram, you can find their official account (@secondservingsg), where they share posts about their delicious food offerings.

Second Serving is known for its Filipino dishes such as adobo rice, chicken cutlet rice, beef lasagna, and more. They also serve traditional Filipino dessert called taho, which is made of silken tofu with black sweet syrup.

Second Serving Taho

If you’re interested in trying Filipino cuisine or craving some authentic Filipino food in Singapore, Second Serving is a popular option. You can visit their restaurant located at 11 Irving Pl, #01-13 Tai Seng Point, Singapore 369551, or order through their delivery services.

The Chocolate Chamber

The Chocolate Chamber is a chocolate-themed establishment located in Cebu City, Philippines. It was founded by Raquel Toquero-Choa, aka The Chocolate Queen and a prominent figure in the Philippine chocolate industry. The Chocolate Chamber offers a wide range of chocolate products and experiences, aiming to provide a unique and distinguished chocolate experience for its customers.

𝘙𝘢𝘲𝘶𝘦𝘭 𝘛𝘰𝘲𝘶𝘦𝘳𝘰-𝘊𝘩𝘰𝘢, 𝘢 𝘮𝘰𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘳 𝘰𝘧 8, 𝘵𝘢𝘣𝘭𝘦𝘢 𝘢𝘥𝘷𝘰𝘤𝘢𝘵𝘦

The establishment is renowned for its high-quality chocolates and its focus on showcasing the flavours and qualities of Philippine cacao. They specialize in using tablea, which is a traditional Filipino form of chocolate made from roasted and ground cacao beans. The Chocolate Chamber offers various chocolate-based products such as artisan chocolates, truffles, hot chocolate drinks, and other confections.

In addition to their chocolate offerings, The Chocolate Chamber also operates as a cafe and restaurant, serving a menu that incorporates chocolate in creative and delicious ways. Visitors can indulge in chocolate-infused dishes and desserts, as well as explore a tasting menu that highlights the unique flavours of Philippine cacao.

Chef Edward from My Little Spanish and Raquel from The Chocolate Chamber

Watch this video of Chef Edward from My Little Spanish Place trying out this innovating shaved chocolate that acts like a truffle flavouring!

The Chocolate Chamber has gained popularity among locals and tourists alike for its dedication to promoting Philippine chocolate and its distinct chocolate creations. It has received positive reviews for its quality products and the immersive chocolate experience it provides to visitors. In fact Brian is visiting their shop in Bohol to try it for himself!

You can follow Raquel and the team at The Chocolate Chamber yourself on Instagram.


Brand Manager Ryan (on the right) from Whyte & Mackay who are the exclusive distributors for Emperador took me under his wing and introduced me to a few selective people hanging around their booth for good reason! Whyte & Mackay also carry Dalmore, Tamnavulin, JURA, Fettercairn, Fundador Tres Cepas light as well as their own brand of Whisky.

Emperador Singapore

The Emperador Brandy Cocktail

IMG 20230619 195348 Philippine Independence Day Celebrations 2023

The Mixologist who normally runs the bar at Cafe Iguana had conjured up an incredible cocktail using Emperador Lite Brandy, adding in a pandan leaf and a block of banana and Gula Melaka and it sweetened the drink no end! It was apparently a wining cocktail recently in a mixologist contest and I can see why.

Filipino Restaurant Owners out in Force!

First up Ysrael from Alegria

Ysrael from Alegria

Brian did an epic review of Alegria and Ysrael was so thankful. As we have previously mentioned they are revamping ‘the venue and the menu’ (I am a poet and I don’t know it). Is Life a Recipe are certainly looking forward to the relaunch!

Next up was this lot! Filipino Food Royalty in Singapore

Chef Kurt Sombero and his wife founders of Kubo, Chef Edward Lim Esmero from My Little Spanish Place donning their barong tagalog traditional outfits, Suzette Simon & Jonathan Tingaud from Chez Suzette & LUNEL Wine Bar.

Kubo, Chez Suzette and My Little Spanish

Brian has been hanging out at their restaurants for sometime and considers then friends and that certainly was the case when I introduced myself last night, they welcomed me as if I was Brian!

Brian did 7 Blog posts for Chef Edward and he still jokingly complained we cover Asador more than him these days, PS there are only 3 for Asador and one was mine! Check them all out here! Haha!

Chef Kurt Sombero was super cool and very laidback, his wife was lovely and their little one in tow was high on Transformers, good fun! The 1 year anniversary of Kubo coming up, Brian’s man crush Chef Pynt might be in the house, so watch this space! Check out Brian’s Kubo blog and seriously get your ass down to Kubo if you have not yet done so, it’s high on my list of priorities!

No blog post for Chez Suzette as yet but something coming real soon!

Lets talk about some of their incredible restaurants more here!

Alegria Singapore

Alegria Singapore is a restaurant located in the Keong Saik district of Singapore. It is the first overseas venture of Grupo Alegria, offering a vibrant and non-traditional Latin American cuisine. The restaurant is known for its fusion of flavours, combining traditional and modern elements in their dishes. With meticulous attention to detail, Alegria aims to create culinary perfection in every plate.

The menu at Alegria Singapore draws inspiration from Latin cuisine, offering a diverse range of dishes. Some popular menu items include ceviche, pao de queijo, elote, bistecca, pulpo, and sisig. The restaurant prides itself on the art of plating and the heavenly taste of each bite, providing a unique dining experience.

Alegria Singapore opened its doors on April 22, 2021, at 18 Teck Lim Road. The restaurant has garnered positive reviews, with a rating of 4.8 out of 5 based on votes on Facebook. Customers appreciate the fusion of flavours and the meticulous craftsmanship of the dishes.


Kubo Woodfired Kitchen

Kubo Woodfired Kitchen is a restaurant located in Singapore that offers Filipino-inspired cuisine cooked using traditional woodfire techniques. The restaurant aims to redefine the flavours of the Philippines while celebrating the diversity of cultures and ingredients from around the world. It is helmed by Chef Kurt Sombero, who draws inspiration from his heritage and childhood memories to create the menu.

The restaurant offers a variety of dishes, including highlights such as Crab Fat Risotto with Tobiko, Inasal Mid-Wing with Annato glaze and pickled green papaya, and Quail Adobo with Adobo glaze and potato. The woodfire oven gives the dishes a unique smoky flavour and enhances the overall dining experience.

Kubo Woodfired Kitchen is located at 80 Mohamed Sultan Road, Singapore 239013. It serves lunch on Saturdays and Sundays from 12 pm to 3 pm and dinner from Tuesday to Sunday from 5:30 pm to 10 pm.


Chef Kurt Sombero

My Little Spanish Place

My Little Spanish Place is a Spanish restaurant located in Singapore. They have two locations, one in Bukit Timah and the other in Boat Quay. The restaurant offers a menu of popular Spanish dishes, including tapas, paella, and other traditional Spanish delights. The atmosphere is described as rustic, authentic, and home-style, providing customers with a cozy dining experience.

At My Little Spanish Place, you can enjoy dine-in, takeaway, and delivery services. The restaurant offers free delivery for orders above $80, and for orders below that amount, there is a nominal fee. If you prefer to order over the phone, you can call the restaurant directly.

The Bukit Timah location of My Little Spanish Place is situated along Bukit Timah Road, while the Boat Quay location is found at 54 Boat Quay. Both locations operate until 10:30 pm and offer the same dine-in, takeaway, and delivery options. The restaurant has received positive reviews for its taste of home-cooked Spanish food, quaint ambience, and friendly staff.

My Little Spanish Place

Chef Edward (selfie central be warned)

Chez Suzette

Situated at 5 Teck Lim Road in Singapore, Chez Suzette is a cafe and restaurant that draws inspiration from French cuisine and culture. This charming location stands out for its warm atmosphere and a vast menu of food and drinks, featuring French brunch, crepes, escargot, and an extensive wine list. The cafe’s mission is to foster a sense of belonging among its patrons, providing them with exceptional service that makes them feel as comfortable as they would be in their own homes.

Chez Suzette’s location, adjacent to the bustling Keong Saik Street, enhances its appeal as a dining spot. The two-story establishment provides a cozy and intimate setting, making it an ideal venue for social gatherings or a romantic meal. The signature Crêpes Suzette is a highlight of their menu, which guests are encouraged to try.

Not just a cafe, Chez Suzette transitions into a romantic restaurant by night. Named after its co-owner Suzette, who previously worked at a three-Michelin starred restaurant, Chez Suzette presents an array of enticing dishes from the brunch menu available from 9am to 5pm, such as the savoury Croque Monsieur, to the renowned Escargots Bourguignon.

Chez Suzette

Philippine Independence Day Celebrations 2023 – The Conclusion

Filipinos are such good fun even in a formal setting. Their food is amazing, it’s so underrated right now and more people need to try it. They certainly can sing and enjoy every moment of it. Well I truly hope we get invited back again and am looking forward to what comes next on the next Food Trek Singapore – A Taste of the Philippines series of events!

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