Monday, March 2, 2020

Street Food : A Food Journey

Bringing a Taste of the Streets Closer To You
Written by : Jet Luga
From the same group responsible for the biggest weekend night market in the Cebu metropolitan area comes a new opportunity for locals to dine and immerse themselves in local food culture. 

Photo by : C E B U on Facebook

Street Food by Sugbo Mercado opened its doors to the public on January 10, 2020 and it hit the ground running with its carefully curated fleet of authentic street food vendors, all conveniently located within the heart of the Cebu Business District. Unlike the other institutions of the Sugbo Mercado Food Bazaar Group which mostly operate at night and during the weekends, StreetFood is open every day of the week from 12 noon to 12 midnight. 

Street Food was brought about as a response to the rising demands of citydwellers for convenient and accessible food options that are high-quality and budget-friendly. This unique collection of Cebuano street food vendors is located beside Krispy Kreme at the active zone garden of Ayala Center Cebu and serves as a perfect filling station for commuters and workers within the area. StreetFood has consciously positioned itself as the go-to platform for authentic street food vendors to showcase their delicious eats to bigger and wider audiences.

It has always been the belief of the Sugbo Mercado Food Bazaar Group that food serves as an untouchable institution for any prevailing culture. In order to get to know one’s culture, you have to get to know their food. And it’s through the belief and commitment to this principle that led to the establishment of StreetFood, a hotbed for all of the finest authentic Cebuano street food. Aside from making well-loved delicacies more accessible to the everyday Cebuano, Street Food also seeks to elevate the status of local Cebuano eats as a cultural institution that is well-embedded in the fabric of Cebuano identity. With common Cebuano staples like ngohiong, tuslob-buwa, balut, manok bisaya, dirty ice cream, and more, there’s bound to be something for everyone at this one-of-a-kind food market that operates year-round, every day of the week. 

Street Food is proud to have established this new and improved ecosystem that helps connect street food vendors to hungry diners more efficiently and effectively than ever before. This food park serves as a manifestation of Sugbo Mercado’s efforts to re-embed Cebuano dining culture deep into its overall identity. With Street Food, and potentially, many other future projects just like it, Cebuanos will become more in touch with their heritage through their food. And hopefully, this will lead to a brighter light being shed on Cebuano street food on the world stage. 

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Sunday, October 7, 2018

Our Foodtrepreneur of the Week: Senyorito Scallops

#FOTW: Senyorito Scallops

Every week, Sugbo Mercado introduces fresh brands that are sure to take a place in your appetites. This is a compilation of our foodtrepreneurs, their stories, and their plans for the future.

Senyorito Scallops is about selling flavored scallops. Basically, we try to incorporate scallops with different flavors, not the one where you commonly get from restaurants, where you get to taste the same flavor over and over again. We, however, specialize in scallops all the way. We have three different flavors: the Classico, which is creamy garlic, there’s the Spicy Classico, then there’s Pestofied, which is a unique flavor for the ones who enjoy Italian sauce because of its pesto sauce with basil. We don’t really have a bestseller, since our products always depends on the personal preference of our customers.

Our brand started with me and two of my other friends. We’re all nurses. We came up with selling here in Sugbo Mercado because we wanted extra income. Sugbo Mercado is the perfect channel for those who are young entrepreneurs who want to venture into this kind of business.

We wanted to sell something that is also our personal favorites. We settled with scallops because we all liked eating it, and also because we asked ourselves, who doesn’t like scallops? It’s also very easy to prepare. We didn’t want to sell something that we had to cook ahead, considering our demanding work time of 8-12 hours a day. Since we started the business, we were always very hands-on and we were the ones who cooked the scallops. We found it very time constraining already later on, which is why we hired a few people to take our place, but of course under close supervision as well.

The name and brand of Senyorito is from Senyor Sto. Nino. All Cebuanos are believers of Senyor Sto. Nino, and we being fellow believers, we thought that this could be our way of giving back to Him and His people. In the way that we know, we incorporate the different flavors in a Filipino dish that we all know and love, and serve it as an offering to Him and all Cebuanos out there.

What we like about Sugbo Mercado is the diversity. We think that’s why Sugbo Mercado succeeded so much – because of its diversity. They don’t only offer the usual food we find in malls and other restaurants, but they also offer different kinds of cuisine. They’re not predictable. You can see it from the variation of desserts, drinks, and meals. It’s the perfect place, really.
We started last May 2016. Sugbo Mercado was year old then, so we can still remember few of the old tenants that started with us. It’s also very heartwarming and overwhelming to see how people accepted Senyorito Scallops. During our early days, people would really line up for their own order of scallops and we were just really amused with that. Even until now, we’re very happy and glad with the sales. We have sold out nights, which we’re very surprised with but very grateful for because of the support of the people. We even have sukis from way back that we still see every now and then. It’s good to know that we’ve made an impact to the people through the food that we serve them.

As of now, our only future plan is considering having other flavors and maybe other scallop-related dishes. An expansion is possible, but we’ll cross the bridge when we get there. 

- Lanie Mae Beronilla of Senyorito Scallops; Our Foodtrepreneur of the Week. Visit Senyorito Scallops at Sugbo Mercado of Garden Bloc, IT Park. We are open every Thursdays-Sundays, 5pm-1am. See you there at #YourWeekendFoodmarket!

Monday, August 6, 2018

Our Foodtrepreneur of the Week: Frappes To Go

#FOTW: Frappes To Go

Every week, Sugbo Mercado introduces fresh brands that are sure to take a place in your appetites. This is a compilation of our foodtrepreneurs, their stories, and their plans for the future.

Frappes To Go is basically what I love about coffee and everything in it. It’s a mixed healthy drink at some point, like the Matcha, which is my favorite drink. We conceptualize it with banana, since it’s actually a mixture of fruity drinks with coffee as well. Frappes to Go can be taken out and brought anywhere one would like. One gets to enjoy the ice blended coffee and healthy drink. 

Our bestseller is Java. It’s when you add an extra puff of coffee sauce so it’s a stronger mixture of coffee. If you’re a coffee lover, you’d love it. Our other bestseller is blueberry cheesecake. I know Filipinos love cheesecake, so that would be my top choice for people who love desserts. It’s a perfect combination of cheesecake and coffee, and a little mixture of blueberry. It’s a mixture of our syrups for all our sweet drinks here at Frappes To Go. My personal favorite would be the Matcha, over anything else, mainly because it’s a healthy drink: it’s good for the skin and it’s an anti-cancer ingredient.

Java Chip 

I collaborated with a famous brand to create Frappes to Go, with all my mixtures and ingredients from them alone. Of course, I add my own personal touch to each drink aside from their recipe. I try to make the drinks I make both delicious and affordable at the same time, since Cebuanos are very wary about the pricing and how worthy the drink actually is.

As I said, I love to drink coffee. I’m also the kind of person who’s always on the go, so my time’s really important. I thought, what business can I have that could really relate to me as a person? When I went to a certain coffee shop, I got the idea of Frappes To Go from buying their Mocha frappe. I incorporated it to my brand – having ice blended frappes which you can bring anywhere and anytime.

I actually already have my own brand in some malls before I created Frappes To Go. Sir JP was one of my regular customers there, and he introduced Sugbo Mercado to me and invited me to join. I really love the atmosphere in Sugbo Mercado because everyone from every class is here. They can just buy whatever they like, and entrepreneurs like me who want to start small can also go here and sell what they want to sell. They’re given a chance to grow. Here in Sugbo Mercado, entrepreneurs are introduced to the market – what we sell, how we sell, and how driven we are to sell.

I started January this year, and it’s been amazing. There are times that it doesn’t go well, since my market will depend on the weather conditions we have here in Cebu. Despite that, I didn’t expect my brand to be accepted and to have a market value here because we have a lot of competitors, but I do love the challenge. I love Sugbo Mercado, and I’m here to stay.

I’m a visionary and I’m positive in every aspect of business I am in to. A few years from now, I know I want to help people. The best investment I could think of is that I help people like my staff, to provide them everything they need. If you got the right staff, then your business will grow tremendously.

- Cathy Flores of Frappes To Go; Our Foodtrepreneur of the Week. Visit Frappes To Go at Sugbo Mercado of Garden Bloc, IT Park. They are beside Cheesecake Story. We are open every Thursdays-Sundays, 5pm-1am. See you there at #yourWEEKENDfoodmarket!