Save the date for the second installment of the much-awaited benefit food fair this summer: Best Food Forward!

All the foodies in the metro can dine to their hearts’ desire in this 2-day, fun & food filled event on March 24-25, 2011 at the NBC Tent. Yes, that’s this weekend already! And even if you’ll feel a bit guilty with all the delicious food you’ll be taking in, it helps to lessen the guilt with the thought that your ticket will benefit the Unang Hakbang Foundation.

Best Food Forward looks promising as an affair for those who want to celebrate food, friendship, togetherness and entrepreneurship for those participating as well as those dining. Bring your family, friends and definitely your appetite as you can taste some of the best offerings this city has to offer. Here’s a smattering of food vendors joining the event this weekend:

The Fruit Garden

French expat Pierre Marmonier couldn’t find decent jam in Manila to fit his french fancy, so he decided to make some himself back in 2009. Using only local but superior seasonal ingredients with no preservatives or excessive sugar, The Fruit Gardens jams are found in select delis and 5-star hotels. His Lychee Berry Rose jam is inspired by the Ispahan Macaron flavor at french patisserie Laduree by Pierre Herme.

Lileya’s Butterbeer

I’m all for instilling entrepreneurial roots at a young age. Dedet dela Fuente, of the 18-course lechon degustation notoriety, is supporting her daughter Lileya as she serves up Butterbeer inspired by the Harry Potter mythical concoction. She’s never been to the Potter World in Florida, but her imagination has mustered all the creativity in mixing up flavors that remind me of the 80’s candy Butter Ball. The addition of liquor makes me even more excited to try this drinkable goodie.

Simply Pie Mini Pies & Quiches

Anything mini and handheld is a winner with me. Savory and sweet mini quiches and puff pies such as Quiche Lorraine, Spinach/Feta/Sun-dried Tomato, Mushroom/Sour Cream combinations make this little bites of goodness. The boxed product is a perfect hostess gift at a get together. I loved the Spinach, Feta and Sun-dried Tomato quiche.

Manang’s Chicken

The Filipino contender to BonChon, Manang’s Chicken promised to be the “Bagong Fried Chicken ng Pinoy”(New fried chicken of the Filipino). Manang’s started its culinary career at Best Food Forward last year, and since then has opened up SIX branches to cater to the Filipino palate. Their spicy or sweet double-fried chicken makes for a crispy, saucy, and juicy chicken dish.

Skew U Skews & Sizzlers

Kebabs Galore! This ones for the meat and rice eaters out there who want a more substantial offering.

Quantum Cafe

Challenged by the health problems that arise with the wrong type of food, Quantum Cafe offers Whole Wheat High Fiber Pizzas that are not only delicious but healthy as well. Flavors such as Full Moon (2 cheese), Tuna Pesto, Northen Mix (Artisanal Ilocos Longganisa and Kesong Puti), Margherita and Vegan are complemented by a whole wheat pie dough that is made fresh daily to ensure quality. The Longganisa + Kesong Puti (breakfast sausage + white cheese) pizza gets my vote.

Carlo’s Kitchen

One word: Deadly. Think yummy, tasty pork belly, that’s thinly sliced and then deep fried to a crisp. The result is a chicharon-type snack that is every Filipino’s wet dream. It’s so good yet so bad (for you) at the same time, I can only close my eyes in denial.

Choco ATBP

What a cute story. Two Capampangan (my Cabalens!) lawyers decide to make a run for it and open a chocolate business. Not just your regular chocolate, but Philippine Cacao, which was once a thriving industry in our economy which has fallen flat for other types of crops. They wanted to create a sustainable  business plan where Yet & Diane Andin are able to provide seed money to the cacao farmers to allow them to plant more cacao seedlings, which in turn revive the cacao industry and bring the Filipino products in the forefront. So not only do they serve old-school tsokolate ala batirol, they also have the Capampangan delicacy of Tiltilan, a rich and savory spread made from fish roe. High in calories, high in flavor, that’s the Capampangan way. Indulge a little at their booth and understand why we Capampangans are proud about our cuisine.

Pint Ice Cream

Pint is the another one of those I-Cant-Find-Good-Ice-Cream-So-I’ll-Just-Make-Some-Myself stories. Artisanal ice cream with interesting flavors using premium ingredients such as Lindt dark chocolate, cookie dough and real pistachios make Pint’s ice cream more rustic than sweet.

Casa San Luis

Why not cap your visit to BFF with Casa San Luis’ Le Grand Chocolat, a  four-layer chocolate cake. Sin Sin Sin. Yum Yum Yum. Sorry, it was really good.

Liquid Lounge

Mojitos, anyone?

So start starving yourselves this week to make way for the Best Food in Manila at Best Food Forward! See you all there on Saturday or Sunday.

Best Food Forward

The NBC Tent
Bonifacio High Street, Taguig

I’m giving out 7 pairs of tickets to Best Food Forward! First FOUR valid comments with complete Name, Email, Companion’s Full Name AND Tweets or FB’s this blog page (See you all at the #BestFoodForward this weekend at NBC Tent! to get a pair of tickets! Add your Twitter/FB post’s permalink to the comment to make it valid!