When Salvatore Cuomo Cafe at The Podium opens its doors to the public on July 31, expect a more casual and approachable restaurant with pocket friendly prices, that differs from its upscale sibling in BGC.
The Neapolitan style pizzas are a must order. Baked in a scorching 450C pizza oven, the crusts are charred around the edges with the perfect puffy, slightly chewy texture. Try a classic Margherita simply made with a tomato sauce base, fresh buffalo mozzarella, a handful of fresh basil, and a drizzle of olive oil. Or go for the all meat version which is loaded with salami, Italian sausage, porchetta, pork cracklings, and slab bacon.
The Cafe also serves traditional pan pizzas. Don’t expect an overly thick and greasy fast food version though, because this has a crust that still has a puffy, chewy rim and is just slightly thicker than the Neapolitan pizza. The toppings are piled on more thickly than usual, but still create that balance with the crust.
The very unassuming Tomato Salad listed in the salad section is a sleeper hit. Chef Salvatore Cuomo worked with farmers high up in the mountains beyond Baguio for his supply of fresh vegetables and the three different types of local cherry tomatoes that star in his salad. The tomatoes burst with sugar-sweet flavor and need just the simplest olive oil and balsamic vinegar dressing to highlight their freshness. Onions shaved paper-thin and lightly pickled, slivers of fennel, and some candied walnuts round out the salad.