“I’m not a professionally trained chef; everything I know I’ve learned on the job. My father was a Chef in the Navy and I grew up in kitchens, helping him out in prep and service for private catering event.

I was working on developing a career in medical research and cooking was always a side hustle for me. But last year I decided to explore my Filipino heritage with a series of pop up dinners. It was a way for me to share my culture, and the meals taught by my father, to others. I quit my day job and bought a little cart to serve accessible and soul-comforting Filipino food. I even started off by parking in front of my old office, all my former colleagues were extremely supportive during those opening days.

Since Covid, I’ve had to pause my cart’s operation, but I’ve been taking on private pop up dinners in the homes of my friends and clients. It’s allowed me to continue exploring and to collaborate with other chefs to provide something special. In this regards, Covid has actually helped. It allowed me the time to be creative and focus on artistic side of the business. When you’re working day in, day out without a break, it can be hard to remember why you decided to do this job in the first place. Covid has helped me ensure I remember (and love) what I do.”