Thursday, July 2, 2015

Belle Pop-Up: Mabuhay!


Remember my Summer Foodie Bucket List? This was a must for June 30th: Team Mabuhay's Asian Street Food Pop-Up at Carmel Belle. And when I write team, I mean a really rockin' culinary team.

Not only was Chef Kyle Odell, of Carmel Belle, in the kitchen, but I saw Chef James Anderson from Affina, Chef Yulanda Santos of Sierra Mar, and several more folks working to put out an array of tasty street food dishes. Chef James posted on instagram that they had "1380 dumplings folded, nearly 20 gallons of chicken adobo in marinade, bugolgi rockin, and tons of buns steamed off."


I am a little embarrassed to admit that I didn't realize it was a no take-out event. The Enthusiastic Kitchen Elf and I figured we'd run in, pick up food for all four of us, and take it home since Jake and R were busy working on their summer project, some solar-powered robot. 

But, while we were in line, Jay Dolata, Belle's owner, came over to say hello and let me know that it was an eat-in only event. Yikes! Thankfully, they took pity on us - we must have looked extremely hungry - and wrapped up our food to-go. Thank you, thank you. I'm so glad I didn't miss out on this deliciousness.

Here's D, patiently waiting for our food. He was also tickled that they called ours a VIP order. I'm just grateful they took to calling it that instead of PITAPWDKIOEI (pain-in-the-ass-people-who-didn't-know-it's-only-eat-in) order. ;)


I didn't get photos of everything we ordered because it was devoured almost as quickly as I could plate it when we got home. But here's what we got...

Off the Small Plates Menu...
Pork Dumplings
Shrimp and Scallion Dumplings (photo above)
Pork Jowl Yakitori

Off the Rice Bowl Menu...
Mapo Fried Tofu with Marinated Shitake Mushrooms, Bok Choy, Sugar Snap Peas
Bulgogi (photo above) Soy Marinated Beef, Sugar Snap Peas, Kimchi, Scallions, Sesame Seeds
Chicken Adobo Braised Chicken, Sugar Snap Peas, Achara, Scallions

Off the Sweets Menu...
Sesame Balls - Fried Rice Flour Filled with Sweet Adzuki Beans

Major Kudos
Major props to Team Mabuhay. My son's response to his Chicken Adobo - "Mommy," he gushed, "this tastes just like Apong used to make!" Apong is the Ilocano word for great-grandmother. He's right. Team Mabuhay's adobo tasted just like my grandmother's. Everything was tasty, but that was amazing. I'll definitely be keeping my eyes open for the next pop-up event at Belle.

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