New in Baguio: American Southern Cooking at Ozark Diner

Red Door

Southerner Chef Kevin Mize brought the regional American Southern cooking he grew up with to Baguio as he chose to live in the Philippines yet. Ozark is a city in Arkansas. What is notable about Southern food? It is labelled comfort food, also known as soul food. Southern cuisine comes from a mix of old world cooking (such as African American, English, Scottish, Irish, German, French, and Native American, Cajun, Creole, Caribbean). At Ozark, Chef Kevin puts his own twist to the classics.

The Ozark menu consists of pulled chicken or pork, meat loaf, pork chop, grilled rib eye steak, fried chicken with biscuits, and sidings that you can choose from among coleslaw, New Orleans dirty rice with liver, house made fries, mac and cheese, fried green tomatoes, etc.. Desserts are so interesting. I tried at least the durian cheesecake (something with a local twist), dark beer cheesecake and what I liked best, the New Orleans bread pudding – very dense with good bread and the right sweetness.

Ozark Diner, BaguioOzark

Ozark Diner is located in a residential area at the back of the St. Louis University in Pacdal. Ambiance is modern and quite low key for a diner.

Brining is one technique Chef Kevin uses for his chicken. Caught him preparing black eyed peas (the exact utong we have) and I was curious how it would taste like as the Ozark signature siding. He adds ham hock to his black eyed peas, which makes no resemblance at all to the local utong with bagnet because we put an exclamation point to the dish with a dash of fish paste..

I had pork chop. It was a little drier than I expected. I regret not trying the meatloaf coz I read rave reviews about it. I have a definite restaurant list whenever I travel to Baguio. Ozark now makes that list.

Bye for now, I have a trip to catch, I’m leaving for yet another FoodPrints shoot. Enjoy your weekend, dearies!

Ozark's Chef KevinBrined ChickenChef KevinBlack Eyed PeasPreparing Pulled ChickenFoodPrints Ozark Diner BTSFoodPrints Ozark Diner BTS.Party!Pulled ChickenOzark Diner Fried ChickenHamburgerPorkchopDesserts of the DayOzark Sweet TreatsOzark DinerOzark Chocolate Chip cookies

Ozark Diner 2 Bear’s Trail cor. Bareng Drive, Baguio, 2600 Benguet, Philippines

Photographed by Blauearth © Blauearth™ All Rights Reserved 2009-2015

A Malaysian chef finds home in Baguio

Chef's Home

The husband took the weekend off to bring us to Baguio. The cool summer weather was gorgeous, but then it’s not the best time of the year to be in the mountain city. Tourists were everywhere, traffic was terrible and parking was far from easy. We’re fortunate to have local friends who know the husband’s uninhibited taste, letting us save time and enjoy more of our brief stay.

For Saturday’s dinner, we were directed near The Mansion House. It so happened, it’s the same Asian-something restaurant that I’ve been trying to locate for more than a year now. It’s the Chef’s Home which closed temporarily before moving back to its original address four years ago.

Malaysian chef Alvin Amuang, who has worked in Phuket, Thailand, likes it so much in Baguio that he never left his post — that is constructing Asian flavors for the Filipino palate. Complementing Chef Alvin, wife Gina (a native of Bacnotan, La Union) backs him up totally. You see them entertaining guests at their humble home of a restaurant.

Chef's Home

Chef’s Home was adjudged one of the best new restaurants in 2013 by Esquire Philippines.

Thai Fried RiceSmoked Oysters

I had the privilege of ordering dinner — boneless chicken with 3-sauce and Thai fried rice for picky Alexa and steaming hot tom yum soup, prawns in salt and pepper sauce and smoked oysters drowning in salsa for everyone else.

The hungry husband eats in silence.

Malaysian FoodSalt and Pepper PrawnsSago Gula MelakaSago Gula Melaka with coconut milk and caramelized coco pandan.

Chef Alvin and Gina offer more soup.

The husband picks up the bill and then he introduces me to Gina as a food blogger. Gina says, “nakakatakot naman.” She meant scary. I told myself, the husband is the better restaurant critic.

We were the last guests before they pulled the doors close. We almost didn’t make it as the chef’s Sundays are sabbatical.

The husband won’t stop raving about the food and he brings it home.

Alex

Chef’s Home
No. 13 Outlook Drive cor Romulo Drive, Baguio City CP #: 0916 444 5756
Lunch: 11 AM-2:30 PM / Dinner: 6 AM-8:30 PM Mondays to Saturdays
Accepts cash only

Photographed by Blauearth © Blauearth™ All Rights Reserved 2009-2014