Ultimate Taste Test 2016: And the Winners are…

Read First: 14th Ultimate Taste Test 2016 Edition @SMAuraPremier Convention Center! (Photo Essay)

Here are the Top 12 Food Purveyors who were rated 3.8 and above by food critics during the Ultimate Taste Test 2016. And the winners are…

1. BADACO (UTT Winner Rating = 4.37)


You’ll really taste the difference of the fresh cow’s milk from the Batangas Milk producers cooperative. I love that it’s non-UHT, 100% natural, pasteurized, and supports the local dairy community. Our kids love their Chocolate Milk.

They are already supplying to different institutions and are starting with retail distribution in Manila soon. Congratulations, BADACO! 


BADACO Milk and Chocolate Milk products are non-UHT, 100% natural, and pasteurized. Non-UHT retains all the natural vitamins and minerals–an excellent source of calcium, phosphorus, and riboflavin.

In 1990, 16 cooperators contributed an initial capital of Php75,000, thus, BATANGAS DAIRY AND MULTI PURPOSE COOPERATIVE was registered. Founding members were JOSE VICENTE T. TARNATE, JOSE ALILLO, REYNALDO GALANG, NARCISO BACULO, & RAYMOND KATIGBAK, and they started in their own backyards & farm. To date, only Jose Vicente Tarnate owns a dairy farm.

On the onset of 1997, BADACO purchased from members, pooled, and fully operated under a communal system. Continued infusion of stocks was done observing good husbandry practices such as selection based on milk production, reproduction, growth, lactation performance, breed choice, and acclimatization. Farm I accommodates over 500 heads of mixed ages maintaining more than 250 imported cattle in milking status.

BADACO established Farm II in Malvar, Batangas in 2009, installed with world-class milking parlor and equipment, developed 74 hectares of pasture enough to accommodate 500 heads of dairy cattle and at least 200 cows in the milk line. BADACO produces 4,000 liters per day. 

Ultimate Taste Test Rating: 4.37 

5- “Awesome! I would recommend it!” – 184 foodies 
4- “I love it!” – 112 foodies
3- “We had a good time.” – 41 foodies
2- “It is OK” – 6 foodies
1 – “Thanks, but it could be better.” – 1 foodies

Total of 344 foodie respondents


BADACO (Batangas Dairy and Multi Purpose Cooperative)
Office: San Lorenzo Subd., Lipa City
Farm: GMC III Barangay Inosloban, Lipa City
Plant: Barangay San Pioquinto, Malvar, Batangas
Chairman: Jose Vicente T. Tarnate  
Email: jvttarnate44@gmail.com melzom18@gmail.com
Telephone: +63 43 981-0191



2. Sigs Smokehouse (UTT Winner Rating = 4.18)


Foodies queued up for their 12-hour slow-cooked Beef Brisket during the UTT event and rewarded them with the Overall Winner title for the Main Dish category! 

Congrats! Be sure to visit them in the Maginhawa area this Christmas season!


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About Sigs Smokehouse

We offer Texas-style barbecue meats like the Beef Brisket, smoked for up to 12 hours using oak wood chips from the US.

No shortcuts, only authentic Texas-style barbecue. We use USDA beef or local wagyu. Our chef developed our Franklin-inspired recipe for 5 years.

Cooked low and slow for up to 12 hours, our tender and juicy meat proudly shows a prominent smoke ring. 

Ultimate Taste Test Rating: 4.18 

5- “Awesome! I would recommend it!” – 188 foodies 
4- “I love it!” – 147 foodies
3- “We had a good time.” – 67 foodies
2- “It is OK” – 17 foodies
1 – “Thanks, but it could be better.” – 3 foodies

Total of 422 foodie respondents


143 Maginhawa st, Sikatuna Village QC
Telephone: +63 908 817-8725
Email: tito_oria_jr@yahoo.com
Website: sigssmokehouse.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SigsSmokehouse/



3. Don Bao (UTT Winner Rating = 4.17)


I love Don Bao’s Crazy Bao with kani, savory eel sauce, Japanese mayonnaise, and crunchy tempura flakes. A complete meal in one bao!

Congratulations to Don Bao for claiming the Top 3 spot in Ultimate Taste Test 2016! Visit them in Brixton Street, Brgy. Kapitolyo.


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About Don Bao

Although baos have been slowly making an appearance in the Philippine food scene, we believe that we are the first restaurant in the Philippines to specialize in baos. Two things set us apart from the rest–the variety of bao choices that we offer and the flavors of our baos as they are primarily centered on Japanese cuisine. We at Don Bao try to achieve the balance between tradition and modernization through our food. As our name suggests, we specialize in two things–donburis and baos.

The dons are more on the traditional side as we want to offer our customers dishes they have been accustomed to in order to maintain Japanese roots.

The baos on the other hand are more innovative. It is in our baos that we dared to break tradition and think of creative ways to serve baos while focusing on using Japanese ingredients.

Ultimate Taste Test Rating: 4.17 

5- “Awesome! I would recommend it!” – 207 foodies 
4- “I love it!” – 127 foodies
3- “We had a good time.” – 66 foodies
2- “It is OK” – 24 foodies
1 – “Thanks, but it could be better.” – 6 foodies

Total of 430 foodie respondents


Unit 1 Brixton Victoria Plaza, #1 Brixton Street, Brgy. Kapitolyo, Pasig City
Mobile: +63 998 863-8671
Email: donbao.ph@gmail.com
Contact: Larrissa Ong, General Manager
Mobile: +63 988 863-8671
Instagram: @donbao.ph
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/donbao.ph/



4. Tapaddiction (UTT Winner Rating = 4.17)

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Mom’s Breaktime Tapa is a bit salty, quite addicting every time you eat it, and best paired with rice. Some foodies prefer this over the sweet tapa ones.

Congratulations Mom’s Breaktime for winning the 4th overall spot in UTT 2016!


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About Mom’s Breaktime Tapa Addiction

Mom’s Breaktime U.S. Premium Beef Tapa is 100% HOMEMADE–no added preservatives. Makes it more exciting because of its versatility. You can cook it in a classic way, paired with steamed rice, egg and atchara. You can also use it with pasta (the Creamy Tapa Carbonara made me won Grand Prize for 2014 Knorr Cookfest), bread, tortilla wrap, tacos, and nachos. Or if you’re health conscious, you can just sauté the tapa with your favorite vegetables. Perfect for adults and kid’s baon for office and school.

It just started as my family’s favorite dish. It is the most requested whenever there are gatherings and outings. My relatives and friends keep on asking if they can buy my homemade tapa, which later on brought me to a point of selling it. And the rest is history…

Mom’s Breaktime U.S. Premium Beef Tapa will not be awarded as Yummy Magazine’s Yummy Eats 2016-Baon Blowout People’s Choice for nothing. 

And now, we join night markets with the name: TAPAddiction (tapa addiction) taken from our customers’ description of our product–ADDICTING.

Ultimate Taste Test Rating: 4.17 

5- “Awesome! I would recommend it!” – 204 foodies 
4- “I love it!” – 125 foodies
3- “We had a good time.” – 68 foodies
2- “It is OK” – 26 foodies
1 – “Thanks, but it could be better.” – 4 foodies

Total of 427 foodie respondents


MOM’S BREAKTIME FOOD CORNER by Honeylyn Bonagua-Agulto
4300- B Emilia St. Palanan, Makati City
Telephone: +632 834-8852 / 781-6739
Mobile: +63 915 336-5717
Email: mbreaktime@yahoo.com.ph/ danlyn_82@yahoo.com  
Facebook: Mom’s Breaktime Food Corner



5. Nonna’s Pasta & Pizzeria (UTT Winner Rating = 4.14)


Nonna’s mushroom chicharon isn’t just healthy…it’s also tasty! It actually feels like eating chicharon bulaklak. Dip it in their homemade vinaigrette. Congrats!


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About Nonna’s

Nonna’s Pasta & Pizzeria is a fresh casual Italian dining restaurant from the same folks that brought you “Mama Lou’s Italian Kitchen”. We serve fresh “doppio zero” pastas and Neapolitan-style pizzas.

The Mushroom Chicharon Appetizer is the fastest moving appetizer at Nonna’s. It is made from fresh Oyster Mushrooms coated with organic flour deep fried into crispy mushroom goodness tossed in celery salt. It is served with our garlic aioli and homemade vinaigrette.

Everyone loves this product because you enjoy the similar experience of eating a chicharon bulaklak without the guilt.

After meeting our local mushroom supplier 3g farms from Batangas, we came up with a recipe that creates something similar to the chicharon bulaklak without the guilt. We experimented with different types of flour to make sure the chicharon won’t get drenched in flour or batter.

Ultimate Taste Test Rating: 4.14 

5- “Awesome! I would recommend it!” – 181 foodies 
4- “I love it!” – 107 foodies
3- “We had a good time.” – 56 foodies
2- “It is OK” – 21 foodies
1 – “Thanks, but it could be better.” – 10 foodies

Total of 375 foodie respondents


Solenad 3, Nuvali
Contact Person: David Sison
Mobile: +63 918 830-6262
Email: david@mamalousph.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nonnasPH/



6. Red Hot Sili Momma (UTT Winner Rating = 4.11)


I love good branding and a good product that delivers on its promise. Red Hot Sili Momma is one of these. Check them out for all your chili product needs. 

Buy their Chili Cheese Pimiento Dip and Chili Garlic Oil as foodie gifts for your chili head friends. Congrats, Red Hot Sili Momma!



About Red Hot Sili Momma

Chili Cheese Pimiento Dip. Oozing with cheddar cheese, cream cheese and roasted bell peppers, this isn’t your ordinary cheese pimiento! Spread on pandesal, crackers and anything else that you’d like made cheesier! 

For many years, it’s been my family’s tradition to give out our home-made Sweet Chili Sauce to friends for Christmas. It was always so well received and loved that everyone kept asking if they could buy some after they finished their gift! So we decided to do that.

When we wanted to spread out our product lines, we asked ourselves what we would love to have sili-fied. Then the Chili Cheese Pimiento was born.

Chili Garlic Oil. Crunchy garlic goodness in sili-infused coconut oil makes this sauce the best ‘pampagana’ around.

It’s simply the yummiest way to make all your dishes spicy-licious!!

Right after we started offering our friends our sweet chili sauce, many requested for us to create a healthier chili garlic oil option that’s similar to the Chinese style sauces but more pleasing to the Filipino palate. What started out as a add-on topping to siomai suddenly became the perfect add-on to all dishes you want made spicier! And that’s the origin story of our Chili Garlic Oil! 

Ultimate Taste Test Rating: 4.14 

5- “Awesome! I would recommend it!” – 144 foodies 
4- “I love it!” – 138 foodies
3- “We had a good time.” – 78 foodies
2- “It is OK” – 3 foodies
1 – “Thanks, but it could be better.” – 6 foodies

Total of 369 foodie respondents


RED HOT SILI MOMMA by Marielle Mikkelsen
120 Valero St. Makati
Mobile: +63 917 830-8894
Email: marielle.mikkelsen@gmail.com n/a  Owner
Instagram: @silimomma
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/redhotsilimomma



7.  Fronen Company (Utt Winner Rating = 3.98)

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Fronen Sausages are made out of pure meat with no extenders and certified yummy by the foodies at the Ultimate Taste Test! 

Check out Fronen sausages for your celebrations this Christmas season! Congrats!


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About Fronen

Fronen Sausages: Cheese Hungarian, Bratwurst, Andouille, Garlic Sausage, Hungarian, Frankfurter, Beef Kariner, and Bacon

Fronen sausages are made out of pure meat, meaning that we do not use any extenders or mechanically deboned meat (MDM). This indicates that it is high in protein. We do not use food coloring because the hue of the sausages are based on the wood that we utilize during the smoking process. In addition, Fronen sausages casings are made from natural hog casing, which make the products a bit crunchy. We make healthy products without sacrificing the taste of the sausages, as these are made from high quality meat infused with secret spices by our Master Butcher. Thus, Fronen sausages suit athletes, health conscious individuals and parents. This is because we process to indulge! 

Ultimate Taste Test Rating: 3.98 

5- “Awesome! I would recommend it!” – 151 foodies 
4- “I love it!” – 134 foodies
3- “We had a good time.” – 103 foodies
2- “It is OK” – 25 foodies
1 – “Thanks, but it could be better.” – 2 foodies

Total of 415 foodie respondents


Corporate Office: 839 Edsa, South Triangle, Quezon City
Processing Plant: 1616 Quezon Avenue, South Triangle, Quezon City, Philippines
Contact Person: Mary Anne Eugenio
Mobile: +63 917 874-1190
Telephone: +632 281-9012 or 929-5088 loc. 188
Email: maryanne_eugenio@yahoo.com
Website: http://www.fronen.com.ph/  
Products are exclusively available at:
• Rustan’s Supermarket around Metro Manila
• Dolcelatte – Café, Gourmet and Bakeshop outlets.



8. PL Aguila Manufacturing Inc. (UTT Winner Rating = 3.89)


One of the best corned beef we’ve tasted because it is 100% beef without extenders. Better-tasting than the canned ones. 

Congratulations to Aguila for winning the Ultimate Taste Test 2016!



About Aguila

The year 1975 marks the beginning of PL Aguila’s proud history in the food industry. From canned items to fresh meat products such as corned beef and ham, PL Aguila Manufacturing Inc. diversified into a successful line of fruit and tea concentrates, GoldenA , as our partners. Its constant innovation in food manufacturing gave rise to Aguila Gourmet Meats, which has perfected and expanded its products to include cooked and dried meats. Our growing clientele now include hotel & restaurant chains, international franchises, prestigious local institutions and nationwide retailers.  

Our Corned Beef taste does not compare to any other corned beef in the market. It’s 100% meat with no extenders.

Ultimate Taste Test Rating: 3.89 

5- “Awesome! I would recommend it!” – 72 foodies 
4- “I love it!” – 145 foodies
3- “We had a good time.” – 150 foodies
2- “It is OK” – 64 foodies
1 – “Thanks, but it could be better.” – 31 foodies

Total of 462 foodie respondents


92 D. Santiago St., San Juan City
Contact Person: Ms. Marie Aguila
Telephone: +632 941-4836
Email: rmsaguila@yahoo.com.ph
Website: http://www.aguilagourmetmeats.com/
Available at
• Unimart
• Selected SM Supermarkets/Hypermarkets
• Selected Robinsons Supermarkets
• Selected Rustans Supermarkets
• Makati Supermarket
• Selected Puregold Supermarkets



9. The Commissary Kitchen (UTT Winner Rating = 3.84)


Rodrigo’s Roast and Nancy’s Mechado are the best and my personal favorite at the recent taste test. Congrats Nancy and Chef Day!

This is a perfect potluck dish for your Christmas Parties or for your special celebration at home! Make sure to reserve now for the Christmas season. 


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About Commissary Kitchen

We are known as The Commissary Kitchen–providing frozen, slow-cooked food, as well as Commissary outsourced services for food establishments.

Rodrigo’s Roast. This is another unique way of presenting ADOBO. Whole slab of Pork Belly “drowned” and slow-cooked in Adobo sauce to utter tenderness. Then it is crusted with a sweetish-salty-umami topping. Served like a festive ham- a break from the traditional processed ham – this can be considered as Adobo Hamonado! Can be served with reduced Adobo-Guava Sauce around 25 gms from sliced portions with a small scoop of rice and some sauce The Rodrigo’s Roast, timely in name that it is, because of our beloved President Rodrigo’s name, it was not named after him.

This “dish” is from The Adobo Book, p 30, published 2004 by Anvil. It is about the Adobo as prepared by cookbook pioneer of the 50’s Enriqueta David Perez. The story of this Adobo was told to me by her son Brother Bobby Perez (San Beda). It is Adobo pork belly rolled , then cooked then sprinkled with sugar and roasted. It was so named because Enriqueta’s husband is named Rodrigo. He happened to be a food fancier and this was always a family meal in his honor. I decided to put life in this dish because I know it will be loved by Pinoys, cooked in this manner, as a feast-worthy offering.

Nancy’s Mechado. This is my rendition of a slow cooked, very rich, heavily textured, tomato-rich Beef Dish following the tradition of my Lola – Aling Asiang (Reyes). She insisted on using over-ripe red-red-red tomatoes – those which you can literally crush with your hands! The reason for this specification is because the more ripe the tomatoes, the more umami is produced, the more sweet it is, the richer in lycopene, ergo, the more tasty-delicious the sauce and the Angus Beef that it got cooked in.

There is no shortcut in this dish – you cannot fast-track the cooking. In addition to over rip tomatoes, shallots are also used to add sweetness to the sauce. 1 Tbsp sauce plus some beef on scoop of rice “As part of the Reyes clan of Aling Asiang, we were exposed to her cooking and luckily were taught how to be a cook – in her style. Cooking by instinct, by detecting right aromaes, by hand and home made, slow-cooked style plus with a good happy mood, sometimes with singing and dancing in the kitchen. Most of her cooking was slow-cooked so we had her culinary culture etched in our ways during our young years. Mechado her style is not the traditional cut with the lardooned fat but she chose a cheaper cut (campto or flank or shank or short ribs–meats that take long to cook) to fit the budget. 

Ultimate Taste Test Rating: 3.84 

5- “Awesome! I would recommend it!” – 107 foodies 
4- “I love it!” – 136 foodies
3- “We had a good time.” – 104 foodies
2- “It is OK” – 27 foodies
1 – “Thanks, but it could be better.” – 3 foodies

Total of 377 foodie respondents


by Nancy Reyes Lumen & Chef Day Salonga 
27 Dona Soledad Ave. Better Living / Brgy Don Bosco P’Que
Mobile: +63 918 913-5834
Telephone: +632 832-1895
Email: adobo_kitchen@yahoo.com.ph



10. Karabella Ice Cream (UTT Winner Rating = 3.83)


This is the best carabao ice cream that comes out of GK Enchanted Farm! Congrats, Erika for winning in the Ultimate Taste Test!

I love their pinoy ice cream flavors specially the salted egg ice cream using the golden duck eggs from GK Enchanted Farm. Order them for this Christmas season!


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About Karabella

Karabella, from the term “Caraballa” (female carabao), is a social enterprise with the GK Enchanted Farm that lives to offer fresh, healthy, nutritious and exciting dairy products for everyone. With our core motto of “walang iwanan”, we aim to significantly uplift our farmers’ lives by creating shared value products and selling them at a fair price.

Turon Ice Cream. We use 100% fresh carabao milk with the best natural and local ingredients sourced from other social entrepreneurs and local farmers. Our turon ice cream is made with 2 kinds bananas, jackfruit and sugar crystals. All local, All natural!

Salted Egg Ice Cream. We use 100% fresh carabao’s milk with the best natural and local ingredients sourced from other social entrepreneurs and local farmers. Our salted egg ice cream is made with natural golden duck eggs from the GK Enchanted Farm. All local, All natural! 

Ultimate Taste Test Rating: 3.83 

5- “Awesome! I would recommend it!” – 125 foodies 
4- “I love it!” – 142 foodies
3- “We had a good time.” – 107 foodies
2- “It is OK” – 31 foodies
1 – “Thanks, but it could be better.” – 9 foodies

Total of 414 foodie respondents


GK Enchanted Farm Angat, Bulacan
Mobile: +63 917 861-3405
Email: karabelladairy@gmail.com
Instagram: @karabelladairy



11. Native Gourmet (UTT Winner Rating = 3.83)


This Taba ng Talangka product is deadly and yummy with pure crab fat goodness. This is the secret behind the umami of our favorite Pinoy dishes.

Congrats to Native Gourmet’s Crab Paste product for winning the Ultimate Taste Test!



About Native Gourmet

All NATIVE GOURMET products have NO Preservatives, NO MSG, NO Artificial Flavorings, and is NON-GMO. Some of our products are Organic.

Our Crab Paste “Taba ng Talangka” has been featured by Yummy Magazine this August 2016 and also other food bloggers on their social media pages. Whats nice about it is that we use Coconut Oil –one of the healthiest oil plus no extenders such as breadcrumbs or flour are added so you can definitely savor the Crab Fat!

It comes in two variants: Original Lemongrass and Hot and Spicy. It’s perfect with hot rice, pasta, pizza, and other dishes! 

Ultimate Taste Test Rating: 3.83 

5- “Awesome! I would recommend it!” – 123 foodies 
4- “I love it!” – 93 foodies
3- “We had a good time.” – 87 foodies
2- “It is OK” – 35 foodies
1 – “Thanks, but it could be better.” – 8 foodies

Total of 346 foodie respondents


Native Gourmet
Lee Gardens Shaw Blvd Mandaluyong City MM
Telephone: +63 939 920-4399
Email: nativegourmet@yahoo.com
Instagram: @nativegourmet
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nativegourmet/



12. Aging’s Food Delight (UTT Winner Rating = 3.81)


This is the Best Suman Innovation we’ve tasted with Pinoy flavors–Ube, Leche Fan, and Mango with an overflowing latik fondue idea.

Congrats Aging’s Food Delight for winning the Ultimate Taste Test 2016!


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About Aging’s Food Delight

It started as a hobby. We’re a family who loves to travel and eating food, incorporating/innovating the foods we loved from traditional to modern takes. We started sampling our dishes with our neighbors then they encouraged us to offer them in the market. Our first customers were from banks for their snacks, then we had a unique and small pick-up station from the overpass. Due to demand of our product, we decided to expand with a larger space so that we could accommodate more customers. We’ve also been noticed thru blogs, media, etc. The consumers would really love our products because they’re affordable and anyone could purchase them. Also, our products are freshly made everyday . 

Suman Espesyal/Latik Fondue. Turning Traditional Kakanin into Filipino Desserts with a Modern Twist. Very affordable. Individually wrapped in banana leaf.

Ultimate Taste Test Rating: 3.81 

5- “Awesome! I would recommend it!” – 106 foodies 
4- “I love it!” – 113 foodies
3- “We had a good time.” – 103 foodies
2- “It is OK” – 29 foodies
1 – “Thanks, but it could be better.” – 4 foodies

Total of 355 foodie respondents


AGINGS FOOD DELIGHT by Agapita Mercado 
17 Pasig Blvd. Bagong Ilog, Pasig City
Telephone: +632 671-0172
Email: mercado.greggie@gmail.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/espesyal.suman


Live an Awesome Life,


Founder, www.OurAwesomePlanet.com  

Disclosure: Our Awesome Planet is the founder of the Ultimate Taste Test series. I wrote this article with my biases, opinions, and insights. 

P.S. Thank you to all the co-presentors of Ultimate Taste Test 2016!

Thank you to San Miguel Lifestyle Brews for providing the awesome beer and food pairing at Ultimate Taste Test 2016!


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Thank you to SMX Aura Premier for hosting the 14th Ultimate Taste Test!

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