News & Updates

Hiraya’s Abong ni Tio Berto is ‘Pista’y Dayat 2024 Culinary Champ’

Six (6) teams showcased their exceptional talents, creativity, culinary skills, and expertise during the Pista’y Dayat Culinary Challenge.

Held at the Pangasinan Training and Development Center II (PTDC II) on April 13, the activity was spearheaded by the Pangasinan Provincial Tourism and Cultural Affairs Office (PTCAO) Head, Maria Luisa Amor-Elduayan.

Aguilar town takes pride in Hiraya (Abong ni Tio Berto), represented by Chef Rizal Viray and SOUS-Chef Jomar De Guzman, for bagging first place with a high 93.9% rating in the culinary challenge.

Viray and De Guzman’s winning recipes that delighted the taste buds of the panel of judges include chicken roulade with Alaminos longganisa (the main dish), tartari aburi or bangus aburi (the appetizer), and bibingka mango cheesecake (the dessert).

“Galingan lang nila lagi, araw-araw silang magdiscover at huwag matakot magkamali para sa ikakabuti naman nila yun pagdating ng araw,” was Viray’s piece of advice to other chefs and aspiring chefs.

Receiving PHP 25,000.00 and a trophy, Viray said that they owe their success to their boss, who encouraged and gave his full support and trust to them.

Meanwhile, JEMS Cuisine (with Chef Ryan Cortez & SOUS-Chef Johara Dytianquin) in San Carlos City emerged in 2nd place, while D Brinks Resto Café (with Chef Jesus Viliran & SOUS-Chef Jetlie Garcia) in Binalonan garnered 3rd place with a cash prize of P20,000.00 and P15,000.00 and a trophy, respectively.

Kapeluna Restaurant (with Daryll Magalong & Allan Datuin) in Bayambang, Quinit Integrated Eco-Farm (with Gerald Quinit & SOUS-Chef Jane Carla Payopay) in Calasiao, and Cajun Republique (with Chef Victor Luis Tandoc & SOUS-Chef David Emmanuel Pascua) in Binmaley all received a P10,000.00 cash prize.

The competitor’s mouth-watering dishes were judged on the following criteria: taste and cohesiveness of the menu (40%); execution (30%); originality, creativity, and visual appeal (20%), and, hygiene and cleanliness of the station (10%), for a total of 100%.

The panel of judges include Chef Raymond Martin M. Reyes, currently the Executive Chef of LU Asian Cuisine; Chef Christian Yakie V. Takanashi, currently the owner of Shiok, A Taste of Singapore in Dagupan City; and, Chef Karina S. Mantes, currently the Pastry Baker and Cake Decorator of the Sweet Sense and the Manager of the Damortis Petron Service Center in La Union.

4th District Board Member Marinor B. De Guzman who represented Governor Ramon V. Guico III, said that the contest serves as a beacon of innovation and creativity, inviting chefs and culinary enthusiasts alike to showcase their talents and passion for the local cuisine.

“It is no secret that food holds a special place in the heart of every Filipino, serving as a testament to our identity and traditions,” BM De Guzman further added.

Gracing the occasion was Gaye Nora Marie A. Gapas, Chief Tourism Operations Officer, who represented Regional Director Jeff Ortega, Department of Tourism (DOT) Region 1, and GMA celebrity chef JR Royol, who shared his exceptional talent and skills in cooking with his ‘ginataang isda’ with a twist in a cooking demo.

Other guests in attendance were culinary participants, NLEX Lakbay Norte Tour Group, Pangasinan Tour Operators, Food Vloggers, Content Creators and Social Media Influencers among others.

(Chona C. Bugayong, Orland C, Llemos, Rafe H. Gabayero / PIMRO)

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