Hapa SF's Pulutan Pop-Up: Filipino with a California Twist

Something extraordinary happened Saturday night on 24th Street. At La Victoria, Hapa SF's William Pilz took a dozen Filipino dishes and translated them into Northern California's culinary vernacular.

It was billed as a pulutan pop-up, pulutan being the Philippines' class of beer-sopping snacks and nibbles, the small plates called izakaya dishes in Japan, though in the Philippines the approach is more humble, more barrio than bar. Pilz, a talented chef who took modern Filipino mobile earlier this spring when he rolled out Hapa SF, crossed genres and achieved a notable breakthrough.

Take his kinilaw ($10), a sort of crudo of Alaskan halibut, given a brief layover in citrus marinade. Pilz threaded fuschia bits of Frog Hollow pluots throughout. Bright, slightly tannic, and jammy: The outlines were unmistakably Filipino, the taste a distilled shot of Bay Area culinary ethos.

Tags: , , , ,

Related Stories