Villa Gloria Subdivision,
Angeles City, Pampanga

Landline: (045) 6250169
Mobile: (0917)5950218;
(0918)5034540; +63 9163900779


Sample of Chef Claude's Special Bale Dutung Food

Kare Kareng Lamng Dagat
Kare-Kareng Lamang Dagat




Inasal Alibaba
Inasal Alibaba


Oriental Lumpia
Oriental Lumpia


Claude's Crab Dish
Crab Dish


Talangka Sushi
Talangka Sushi

What they say about chef Claude's food
Kare-Kareng Lamang Dagat

In this gutsy and often hilarious foodie travelogue, British blogger Majumdar sets out on a yearlong, round-the-world gastronomic forage. His memoir, “Eat My Globe-One Year to Go Everywhere and Eat Everything ”, he takes the world — and his bored taste buds — by storm. Just turning 40 and tired of his 9-to-5 job, the Londoner decided to travel to 30 countries in 12 months to “go everywhere and eat everything.”

“The cuisine of the Philippines turned out to be a huge surprise. A meal prepared for me by artist and gourmand Claude Tayag, in Pampanga, now rates as the best of my entire life. In particular was a seafood Kare-kare stew made with prawns whose heads you ripped off to allow the fat to dribble into the sauce.” Metro.US. Jan. 28, 2010.

                                                                                                                                       - Simon Majumbar -
                                                      British Blogger

  phil star logo

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Anthony Bourdain doesn't need a reservation at Bale Dutung
TURO-TURO By Claude Tayag (The Philippine Star) Updated October 30, 2008 12:00 AM

Photo is loading...“Hey Cloud,” the jean-clad, salt-and-pepper-haired man said as he entered our house. “How are you? I’m Tony.” 

“Hey, my man!” I said, trying to sound cool, but I was actually very nervous about meeting this legendary culinary figure in the flesh — and rather surprised that he knew how to pronounce my name.

There is something about Anthony Bourdain that makes you like him right away! Maybe it’s because you know right away that this celebrity chef will eat anything that’s put in front of him.

As I led him and his crew toward the silong (open ground floor), I started giving them a brief history of our house, called “Bale Dutung” or “Wooden House.”

My wife Mary Ann and I were introduced to each of the five crew members. I had been wanting badly to put a face to the name Jared Andrukanis, segment producer, with whom I had been corresponding via e-mail since September 11, when I received the first of many letters that culminated in this October 23 visit. Jared turned out to be as amiable in person as he sounded in his letters and our phone conversations.

After the introductions and pleasantries, I gave them a tour of the house as I normally do when guests see it for the first time. Alex, the lady director, was going to choose the spots for the interview and cooking. There was the “dirty kitchen, which most Filipino homes have,” I explained, “where all the dirty prep (such as gutting the fish, butchering) is done.” My dirty kitchen was designed after a traditional kusina of an ancestral house, complete with a wood-burning kalan (stove), orno (dome oven), and a wood-slatted banggerahan (open window sill) where all the dishes and utensils are air-dried after washing. I think Alex and her cameraman Todd liked this space instantly.

Next were the deck and the main living quarters upstairs. This is where my kitchen is located. Quite an unusual house, you might say, as it has four kitchens. This is my domain and nobody else is allowed to touch the knives and pans here. (If you care to know about the other two kitchens — one is “institutional,” with stainless equipment for heavy cooking for big parties, the other is a personal kitchen in the family room equipped with just a microwave for reheating food and popping corn.)

“Nice kitchen,” said Tony. But because of its modern look with the stainless ref, stove and gadgets, Alex vetoed it right away. “It could be anywhere in the world,” she pointed out. So they settled on the rustic one downstairs and it was there where they would later capture on film the sizzling sounds of the frying and babbling boil of the dishes I prepared.

From the many tables in the silong dining area, the deck table was chosen as the setting for the dinner interview between Tony and me. With an overhead vine canopy and white ropes used for the railing, the deck has an open feel to it that allows for natural lighting and breeze, and also a view of the garden below.

By the time the segment was actually shot, night had fallen and several incandescent bulbs had to be set up just above the table. Mary Ann and Rich Alindogan joined us to assist. (Rich is a Fil-Am member of the crew, originally from Pasay City, who arrived a week earlier to coordinate the shoot and inspect the locations.)

The first thing Tony asked me over dinner was how strong Mexican influence is in Filipino cuisine. Apparently, he knew of the Manila-Acapulco Galleons and how Spain ruled us for more 300 years (the viceroy of Mexico was directly managing the affairs of the Philippines during that period).

“The most popular foreign food in America is Mexican, not Italian or Chinese,” he said. “I’ve been to Mexico several times, and I see a lot of its local color here. Do you still cook and eat traditional dishes at home?”

“Oh, yes,” I replied. “We would always look for our comfort foods. I’ve never heard anyone crave for fusion cuisine.”

“But you have had fusion food from the beginning!” he remarked, honestly surprising me. He was, of course, referring to the Chinese, Spanish and Mexican influences that have been simmering for centuries in our food.

“It’s an asset that you have a wide variety and different influences from your years of colonization,” he said, adding that we could put that to good use in marketing our cuisine to the world.

Tony liked the fact that our Filipino cuisine is the only one that has both Chinese and Mexican influences. “Those are two great cuisines. Authentic is a word that has lost its meaning. What is authentic now?” he said.

The table was set with all the different sawsawan placed on one end. These, I explained to him, allows the diner to individualize his food by adjusting its flavor according to his taste, and that no offense is meant to the chef’s cooking. I served him an oxtail dish, which I ate with my hands mainly to show him how one’s fingers get to stick together and form a “duck web” from the gelatin of the oxtail skin. “A true measure that the dish is cooked right,” I explained.

Tony said he has been trying to learn how to eat with his hands, but until now he’s still very bad at it. “Not even the Indian way.”

He likes his food hot, so Mary Ann right away gave him Claude’9 XO chili sauce from among the sawsawan on the table.

“It’s a very cultural thing” I said, recounting the brouhaha over this Filipino-Canadian boy punished in school for insisting on eating with a spoon and a fork, the way he was brought up by his Filipino mother (he was ordered to eat the Canadian way — using a fork and a knife by the lunch monitor and he refused to do so).

“I think if a kid goes to a very expensive private school in America, and over lunch in the school canteen he eats with his hands, he will be the coolest kid in the whole school,” Tony said.

How did this celebrity chef eat at Bale Dutung? He savored and relished all the dishes served, including the bangus eyes and belly. (I’m not telling what the other dishes were so as not to preempt the show. Consider this just a teaser).

After the shoot, Mary Ann offered him the daybed to get some rest. After the crew had packed up, we led them down the silong for their dinner, with two members not having had a decent meal for the past 12 hours because of their packed schedule. They were joined by my sangkatutak family members. Tony came down after about 30 minutes and signed books and posed for photos with them.

The following day, I took him to two holes-in-the-wall. You could tell that he truly enjoyed all the food: he ate with so much gusto, with no reservations, and it was quite obvious it wasn’t just for the camera’s sake. Sinisimot niyang lahat, hanggang buto. Honestly, this kind of appreciation and enthusiasm cannot be faked (it takes one matakaw foodie to know one).

“Man, how do you keep fit?” I asked with envy.

“I’m not as fit as you think I am” was his reply. “I’m giving myself another two years of this traveling (10 months of the year) and eating. I’ll probably hie off to some Caribbean island with a beer belly so low it’ll touch the ground.”

“So, what defines Filipino cuisine, Pampangan in particular?” he asked.

“It’s the linamnam,” I said, “which has no direct translation in English. It’s beyond the words ‘delicious, flavorful, savory.’ The Japanese call it umami, who claim to have discovered this fifth taste 100 years ago. But our grandmothers knew it all along and we call it malinamnam.”

“Can you please say the word again?” Tony said.

After repeating it, he said: “Amazing, but that sounds like what my year-and-a-half-old daughter says whenever she likes what she’s eating. She says ‘nam-nam.’ Could that be from her Filipina nanny?” he asked.

“Definitely,” I said, “and one day, all these kids raised by Filipina nannies all over the world will be the future leaders in their respective countries and would have pansit, adobo and sinigang in their food vocabulary.”

 “Oh, absolutely” Tony agreed.

Before bidding our farewells, I presented him a copy of my book Food Tour and the newly launched Kulinarya — A Guidebook to Philippine Cuisine. Leafing through Kulinarya’s pages, he exclaimed: “This is a great cookbook, great food styling! I’ll definitely read these two once I get settled back home. I can’t thank you both enough.”

“You’re most welcome for second helpings” was my parting shot.

Abangan. Make a reservation for its airing soon on the Travel and Living Channel.

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