Le Chon's Original Le Chon Porchetta is easily one of the most recognizable dishes at The Grid. The tray of lechon porchetta, paired with butter rice and kamote fries is impressively hefty and definitely drool-worthy so it's no wonder many The Grid regulars love posting about the dish online.
The woman behind this genius dish, and the other French-Filipino dishes at Stall 5 is Chef Happy Ongpauco-Tiu. Chef Happy not only from the family that runs popular chain Barrio Fiesta but she also runs Filipino restaurant Pamana, so you know that when it comes to Filipino food, she knows what she's doing.
We talked to the chef about her inspiration behind Le Chon, why she decided to open it at The Grid, and what she loves to cook in her free time.
The Grid Food Market (TGFM): What's the inspiration behind Le Chon?
Chef Happy Ongpauco-Tiu (HO): Two of my favorite cuisines would be Filipino and French so I thought of marrying both In this concept by using all Filipino ingredients with French cooking techniques.
TGFM: What made you decide to open it at The Grid?
HO: I like the concept of The Grid where they concept showcase specialties of different chefs [in one place].
TGFM: When did your love for cooking start?
HO: My love for cooking has been there since childhood. My family has been in the food business for 80 years now so that honed me into who I am today. Growing up in my family’s restaurants and seeing them as my playground is the biggest influence for my love for cooking.
TGFM: During your days off, what do you love to cook?
HO: Comfort food!
TGFM: Did you try any new hobbies this quarantine?
HO: Baking! I enjoy cooking but I was not really into baking pastries. But, during this quarantine , I enjoyed baking with my kids.
What are your future plans for Le Chon?
HO: Hopefully we'll be able to add more items on the menu and branch out!