Going the whole hog with Filipino cuisine

Sarap, the first Filipino restaurant to make a real impact on the London culinary scene, is to open a West End branch this month in Mayfair’s Heddon Street. Its signature dish will be Lechon suckling pig, slow-roasted whole and stuffed with lemongrass aromatics and truffled adobo pork rice, to be ordered 48 hours in advance and enough to feed four to six.

Founder Ferdinand ‘Budgie’ Montoya cut his teeth serving his country’s sour/salty/sweet cooking at pop-ups and a residency in Soho’s Sun and 13 Cantons before opening Sarap BAon in Brixton in January last year. The uptown Sarap Filipino Bistro will have a soft opening on 17 and 18 November before opening fully on 23 November.

Montoya describes his approach as “authentic flavours delivered proudly inauthentically. I want to showcase Filipino cuisine in a modern and progressive light. This is not about elevation, this is about representation!”

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