Monday, May 14, 2018

Eating OFF the Hill: Boodle fight at Tinuno

I've already blogged about my visit to Jolibee, but that wasn't the only Filipino feast I enjoyed during a recent visit to Toronto. I also went with some friends to experience a very differently but also very authentic Filipino dining experience: the boodle fight at Tinuno, in St. Jamestown.

According to the Internet, so it must be true, boodle fight "is a Philippine Military Academy tradition where cadets would gather around a long table full of food and rice is spread over banana leaves and eaten with bare hands.

And that's pretty much what it was. A space on the table is covered in banana leaves, a bed of sticky rice is put down, and then the rice is covered with a feast of grilled deliciousness.

It's a seafood-heavy feast with octopus, claims, shrimp, tilapia and mackerel, as well as pork, chicken and other goodies, including some okra for colour. You get plastic gloves to keep it all sanitary, and everyone digs in. Recommended technique is to start with some rice, tear off a piece of meat, smush it together and enjoy.

It's a way to try a lot of different delicious dishes at once, and is a fun, social way to eat. We certainly had more food than we could easily polish off -- this was a feast for three.

Tinuno is a small, informal restaurant that fills up quickly so reservations for diner are a must. The feasts are priced at $15/person and you can add on extras, and drinks are separate too. Very good value and a fun experience with friends. No fighting while we were there though.

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