Food

Anthony Bourdain Is Standing by His Love for Sisig

"It's exactly what you need after a few beers and that's a perfect food."
IMAGE Getty + Steven Mack
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Anthony Bourdain thinks that Filipino cuisine—particularly one dish—is going to be the next big thing in America.

"Americans and American palettes are just now starting to become seriously interested," he said during his talk at the recently concluded World Street Food Congress. 

"I think certain Filipino dishes are more likely to take root and take hold more quickly than others," the host of CNN's food and travel show Parts Unknown said. "I think sisig is perfectly positioned to win the hearts and minds of the world as a whole. I think that's the one that's going to hook 'em."

So what's in sisig exactly? It's a pork dish made with various parts of the pig including the snout, ears and jowl. While that may not sound like a likely dish to win over the American masses, Bourdain makes it sound irresistible.

"It's hot, sizzling, crispy, sticky, delicious bits of pork with many textures," Bourdain continued. "It's exactly what you need after a few beers and that's a perfect food."

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Yummy.ph quoted him saying: "It’s the ultimate drinking food…it’s really perfect and it fits right in the current pork-centric zeitgeist…It’s a low-impact, minimal commitment, affordable dish that’s fun. You know, you’re sitting around drinking beer, and you’re on beer number four, and the arrival of a big plate of sisig is like the best thing ever!"

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Bourdain first tried sisig in 2008—at the famous Aling Lucing'swhen he visited the country to shoot an episode for his previous show, No Reservations. Even then, he was already raving about its perfect match-up with beer. That was also the time he declared Cebu's Zubuchon as the "best pig ever."

He plans on adding sisig to the menu at Bourdain Market, a street food center in New York that is set to open in 2019. While sisig costs $1 to $2 in the Philippines, Bourdain hopes to price it accordingly in his New York market to be "shockingly affordable"—or under $10 in New York terms.

Bourdain's pronouncement about sisig comes less than a year after Bon Appétit ranked Filipino-American chef Tom Cunanan's restaurant, Bad Saint, in Washington D.C., second on its "America's Best New Restaurants" list. Customers line up for hours to try Cunanan's sisig (among other menu items). Over on the West Coast, you'll find a pretty well-developed Filipino food scene in California, which is home to the country's largest Filipino population. Track down one of the Señor Sisig food trucks in San Francisco to try their sisig burrito.

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This story originally appeared on Esquire.com.

* Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.

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Sasha Lim Uy
Managing Editor, EsquireMag.ph
Sasha eats to live and lives to eat. For five years, she handled SPOT.ph's food section and edited the last two installments of its Top 10 Food books. She also recently participated at the Madrid Fusion Manila as curator.
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