We were invited by the Ambassador to have dinner at her residence, shortly after our arrival in Berlin. Also present during dinner were guests guests from Manila and we enjoyed a fabulous meal with fabulous company. The meal was composed of Filipino dishes that were presented in a way that I’ve never experienced before. The new take on old classics were deconstructed and modern, in a way that can be served and appreciated by international company. It’s something I can aspire for when I entertain in the future. (Though I have to learn to cook simple pinoy dishes first!)
When we arrived, we had pica-pica and a drink at the salon before heading to the dining room. I didn’t realize that it was going to be a formal dinner, but what a lovely surprise. To be able to witness how a diplomat, such as Ambassador Natividad, hosts dinner is an experience to behold. During our posting to Jakarta, most of the receptions or dinners that we were invited to were more casual so this is quite a treat.
The table setting was composed of Filipiniana elements. There were place cards and menus for the evening. I couldn’t help but be in awe of the minute details that Ambassador Natividad went through, even if she was only entertaining for a few people. I had to take notes! This is how it’s done. She was gracious enough to allow me to take pictures of the evening, though cameras and phones should really be a no-no, in a formal dinner.
The Ambassador gave a charming toast.
The Noodle Salad is an open-faced deconstructed lumpia. Fried wonton is the base, topped with fresh shredded lettuce, carrots, cooked shrimp ground pork, and garnished with a slice of lime.
Then there was the seafood entree, Grilled Sea Bass with Pinakbet. Who would have thought that pinakbet could look so pretty?
We had Calamansi sorbet as a palate cleanser before the meat entree. Delicious!
Then Adobo with Milagrosa Rice was served. I thought I was stuffed after the sorbet but this was so good, that I finished it. Crunchy adobo flakes on top of wild rice, garnished with some adobo sauce and hard-boiled quail egg. Oh my.
Everyone in the table was clearly full, but when dessert of Fresh fruits and Philippine Delicacies came, none of us could help it. Deconstructed halo-halo anyone? This was the Pièce de résistance of the evening.