While Asian cuisine continues to dominate the culinary landscape through the popularity of the many wonderful Chinese, Japanese, Thai, and Vietnamese eateries spreading throughout the city, we can't help but feel that the food of the Philippines isn't given the love it deserves by London's residents. It's time that changed.

You, as a Foodism reader, are likely also eager to get board with all the latest culinary trends before they hit high-street saturation point. Supping on a bowl of Pho for lunch would have been unheard of only a few years backs. Now, it's impossible not to find a location peddling the broth within a three-mile radius. But what cuisine is set to be the next, quite literally, on everyone's lips?

With a hearty (and often hefty) array of traditional dishes, Filipino cuisine may be a dark horse in the restaurant races. It's a medley between American, Malay, Chinese, and Spanish cuisine that can, at times, seem a little intimidating to a rookie. But 2018 is all about self-love, and we can't think of a much better way to show yourself love than by filling yourself full of food made with oodles of it. So we're calling it now: 2018 will be the year that Filipino food fully takes off. To help you begin your culinary journey into the Philippines, we've provided a selection of the best Filipino restaurants, street food stalls, and supper clubs available in London. You'll be able to separate your sisig from your sinigang in next-to-no-time.


Romulo Café

343 Kensington High Street, W8 6NW

Rowena Romulo and her team of talented chefs are serving up traditional Filipino dishes with a modern twist. If you've never eaten Filipino food before that will evidently mean a whole lot of nothing, but Romulo Café makes fantastic food in a friendly atmosphere. And there's nothing hard to understand about that. One of Romulo's signature dishes is the Flying Fish – a deep fried tilapia with spicy vinegar, a fermented fish paste (known as bagoóng), and soy sauce with lime. It's sight to see and a taste to savour. The portions, like the flavours, are large but save some room for the homemade ice-cream.


Lutong Pinoy

10 Kenway Road, SW5 0RR

Lutong Pinoy has been feeding London's Filipino community for over 22 years. We wouldn't be surprised if it's still around in 22 years time. The menu at Lutong is expansive and affordable whether you're in the mood for a warming bowl of Lomi or a plate of tender Chicken Adobo. However, what really makes Lutong Pinoy worthy of a visit is the traditional Kamayan experience they offer. A Kamayan, which translates roughly to mean “to eat with your hands”, is a feast designed for sharing with your family and friends. It involves no cutlery, no plates and a whole lot of eating. Four dishes of your choosing are arranged on a bed of banana leaves alongside mounds of rice, sinigang soup, seasonal vegetables, plantain, spring rolls, sweet corn, and salad for you to enjoy. It's up to you and your fellow diners to work your way through the delicious heap in front of you.


Bintang Restaurant

93 Kentish Town Road, NW1 8NY

While it doesn't specialise in solely Filipino cooking, the majority of the food at Bintang falls under that difficult-to-define banner of pan-Asian fusion. Which is, in itself, something that Filipino cuisine is well-versed in – combining multiple tastes from different nations to come up with something wholly unique. There's just about every flavour of Asia present on Bintang's menu, including a very London twist on a recognisable Filipino favourite in the form of Beef Brisket Sisig. A street food staple of the Philippines, the dish has diced salt-cured brisket sautéed with chicken liver, garlic, fresh chilis, and served with an egg on a sizzling hot plate. It really is the best of east meets west.


Mamason's Dirty Ice Cream

91 Kentish Town Road, NW1 8NY

Located next door to its older sibling, Bintang, Mamason's Dirty Ice Cream parlour delivers a taste of the Philippines in an Instagram friendly wrapping. The joint has some pretty unique and some pretty...well...pretty ice cream flavours. Ube, a yam native to the Philippines, is used in a range of desserts because of its bright purple colour, and the jet-black Black Buko, made from activated charcoal and coconut, is the ice-cream of a goth's dreams. Classic Filipino desserts like Bilog (a soft and sweet milk bun filled with ice-cream) and Halo-Halo (shaved iced loaded with a range of toppings) are also rather heavenly. The former is the kind of ice-cream sandwich that every ice-cream sandwich aspires to be – a hot and crispy bun encased around a deliciously cold interior. No filters necessary.


Cirilo Noodle Bar & Grill

4 Cable St, E1 8JG

Cosy interior? Check. Tasty food? Check. Affordable price? Cheque. There's really not much fault to find with the Cirilo Noodle Bar & Grill. Authenticity is Cirilo's specialty as the dishes served all bear an important place in Filipino culture and on the dinner tables of Filipino people. The Pinakbet is a Northern Filipino classic made from wok fried aubergines, fine beans, okra, pumpkin, pak choi, ginger, and tomato sauce. The Pancit Bihon is a filling and dangerously moreish noodle stir-fry. And though the sizzling pork sisig replaces the more traditional pig's head with loin, we'd say it's all the better for it.


Kamayan Sa Earl's Court

12 Kenway Road London SW5 0RR

Kamayan Sa has kept its Filipino and foreign clientele well-fed since its opening back in 2009. The fast food dishes are all freshly prepared and come at a fair price. Kamayan Sa is even open late to accommodate for your cravings at any time of the day. Breakfast items such as Boneless Bangus (fried milkfish marinated in vinegar and garlic) provide a lip-puckeringly tasty pinoy way to start the day. Just don't come here if you're on any sort of health kick.


Josephine's Filipino Restaurant

4 Charlotte Street, WLT 2LP

If you're a Filipino looking for a taste of home: this is the place to go. If you're a foreigner looking for the taste of an authentic Filipino kitchen: this is the place to go. A stone's throw from Tottenham Court Road, Josephine's has nailed the familial atmosphere of a Filipino restaurant. Firm family favourites Kare-Kareng Baka, Ginataang Isda, and Bistek round off a menu that will leave you feeling warm and satisfied from the inside out. The restaurant's website even claims that both Jason Atherton and Manny Pacquiao have paid a visit to the premises. And you're not going to tell either of them they're wrong, are you?


Manila Kitchen

399 Edgware Road, NW9 0FH

Occupying a space in the busy Bang Bang Oriental Foodhall, Manila Kitchen is a modern and accessible approach to Filipino cuisine. Think of this as your gateway dinner: your entry point into the culture responsible for balut. For those not adventurous (or crazy) enough to eat a fertilized duck egg (complete with baby duck foetus), Manila Kitchen's menu is the perfect place for even the fussiest of eaters. Traditional affair like Coconut Gulay and Bansilog are joined by a range of more Western friendly options like Filipino burgers. After all, who could possibly turn down a succulent hunk of marinated pork barbecue sandwiched in a soft brioche bun? Not us, dear reader. Not us.


Street Food


Peckham Hill Street, SE15 5J

British-Filipino brothers Justice and Jonathan Cacho may be Peckham born-and-bred but the street food they're cooking at Filishack is unashamedly pinoy. You can find these fellas at Peckham Square, just outside Peckham Library, between Tuesday to Saturday from 12 to 6:00pm. And we highly recommend that you do. The Chicken Inasal burrito, heaving with chicken that's been marinated for 24 hours and grilled to even char, is the perfect lunch-time pick-me-up and the ideal introduction to what Filipino food is capable of.


Oh My Gulay

London Fields Primary School, E8 3RU

Making vegan food is not easy. Making vegan Filipino street food is even harder due to the fact that the majority of Filipino cuisine revolves almost entirely around meat. Breakfast, lunch, dinner – most mealtimes in a Filipino household are typically accompanied by some sort of animal or fish. It's often not considered a meal without it. In spite of these difficulties, this pop-up stall is cooking some cracking meals every Saturday between 10 to 4pm at Broadway Vegan market. Just because it's vegan doesn't mean that it skimps out on flavour, either. Oh My Gulay's meat-less rendition of Kaldereta stew replaces beef with home-made seitan to provide a similar brisket-esque texture and the mixed vegetable and tofu Pancit is an equally triumphant feat that even the most ardent carnivore will enjoy.


BBQ Dreamz


We've talked about the ongoing obsession that the Philippines has with meat and this is certainly the stall to prove it. BBQ Dreamz is a Filipino-inspired street food initiative from Sinead Campbell and Lee Johnson. It serves trendy takes on Filipino faves through mouth-watering options like Adobo Glazed Pork Belly and Adobo Glazed Chicken Wings. Here's what you need to know about Adobo Glaze: it's ruddy great on everything. You can find BBQ Dreamz at the following days and locations:

Thursday: Kerb West India Quay
Friday: Kerb King's Cross
Saturday: Brockley Market and Maltby St Market
Sunday: Victoria Park Market

If you're feeling especially ravenous, we'd advise you to have a go at their megabox: a mix box filled with crispy pork, chicken satay curry, rice, and all the trimmings.


Supper Clubs


103B Dalston Lane, E8 1NH

Luto roughly translates from Tagalog to mean 'cook' or 'fry'. And this supper club, run by chef Mary San Pablo, is a place where lots of good luto-ing can be found. Luto consists of 5 courses of remixed national classics that will send you and your palate on a one-way trip to the Philippines. If you've never been there before, just trust us when we tell you that it's a fantastic place to be transported to. The weather's great. The next supper club dates are going to be 24 and 25 May and 28 and 29 June. Though we can't confirm the exact the menu that's set to be served, it's definitely worth keeping on top of Luto's social media channels here to ensure you get a place at the table. One thing we can confirm is that Mary has already been pickling her very own atchara in anticipation.


The Adobros

New Cross Road, SE14

Brothers Mark and Mike Corbyn are the men responsible for putting the “bro” into The Adobros. The two of them were inspired by the food of their Mestizo upbringing – namely the meals made by their mother – to bring a taste of the Philippines to London through their series of hugely successful supper clubs. Previous dishes the two have cooked include tender approaches to tuna and swordfish kinilaw and bistek tagalog. So, although it may be inspired by a matriarch: this really ain't your mama's cooking. The dinners are hosted at their flat in New Cross – a venue which normally seat arounds 10 people, though 14 can be squeezed in at max capacity. As you'd expect from such limited space, the next supper club announced has already sold out, though keep an eye on their site and social media for information about more upcoming dates and potential pop-ups. It's worth the hassle alone for their deep-fried lechon porchetta.




Maynila has a mission to put Philippine cuisine on the British culinary map through a range of different dining events, experience, and supper clubs. Founders, Charl Asuit and Roni Bandong are offering an easy access into the world of Filipino cooking. That access point? Your mouth. Their peace offering: tasty morsels of Kare Kare. All you have to do is book yourself a spot on their latest supper club and Maynila will have your next Filipino food fix sorted. Maynila will also be popping up for a day at the London Cooking Project in Battersea on 23 June


Pepe's Kitchen

54 Warren Street, W1T 5NN

Join self-taught cook Mae Williams every last Friday of the month for a feast of Filipino home style cooking packed full of flavours and authentic dishes. It's the perfect opportunity to introduce yourself to real Filipino cooking surrounded by people truly passionate about their food.