Taste Asia Festival 2008

Philippine Generations is a not for profit organisation, it is a group with specific aims and objectives that have gotten together to create a team, Team PG. Although we were not part of an official team at the Olympics, we are a team that will happily fly the flag in support for the Philippines.

So at the Taste Asia Festival supported by the Overseas Malaysian Executive Council- OMEC and mainly showcasing Malaysian and Indian Cuisine. Philippine Generations, restaurants Tropical Taste and Josephine’s proudly represented Philippines by setting up stalls, to give festival goers from Redbridge and Ilford Essex, a chance to know more about the Philippines, Philippine Generations and try Filipino Cuisine.

Billed to be a festival of Asian Cuisine which would attract up to 30,000 people over the weekend, the numbers were much smaller than the estimated people to attend the Barrio Fiesta. It was the third year of the festival and the first time Philippines was represented. The event was held in Ilford Town Centre last year, which although made the event very accessible to the public, it provided a limit on space with regards to stalls and the stage.

Philippine Generations attended this two day event to promote and make people aware of Filipino Cuisine and Culture. Team PG believed that this was the chance and ideal opportunity to expose Philippines to a non Filipino community. Taste Asia was not only about food, there were arts and crafts stalls from Nepal, Tibet and India as well as traditional and cultural dancers and martial artists from Malaysia, China and India. Unfortunately, there were no Filipino groups available to take part.

After months of preparation, every organiser of an open air event’s worst enemy turned up, you can control the amount of stalls, the participants and the venue, but you can never control the weather! That weekend was indeed one of the heaviest downpours of the month of August. However, when the skies cleared up, the performances were a great way of entertaining festival goers and really helped give the festival the taste of Asia that the British weather tried to dampen. There was also a radio station there and they were broadcasting live.

The smell of all different kinds of Asian Cuisine attracted a mixture of people from the local area to try and taste the different varieties of food on offer. The event helped expose Filipino cuisine to many people who were only familiar to Malaysian and Indian cuisine; it gave the Philippine restaurants a chance to tempt the non-Filipinos into trying and tasting Filipino food. Many visitors inquired about the whereabouts of Filipino restaurants and what arrangements can be made for parties and catering.

Overall Philippine Generations managed to fundraise just over three hundred pounds on this event to go towards our educational and cultural projects. We also met a lot of people, educating some and even reminding a few that Philippines is part of Asia and over here too!

So a Big Thank You to the Taste Asia Festival Team and everyone that bought a raffle ticket for supporting Philippine Generations. The raffle draw winner is Mrs Virginia Bernabe who purchased the second highest amount of tickets, remember you have to be in it to win it!

If you would like to support, be part of Philippine Generations or would like to participate in activities that promote Philippine Culture, become a member by following the link to our membership form.

More pictures here!

By M Vizcarra


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