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Sisig for Life: Over Rice with Philippine Boxing History on the Side


PhilBoxing.com



Largo Family: (L-R) Mr. and Mrs. Ryan and Taralyn Largo and daughters Aleah and Kayla Largo.

Tracy, California

In a small town known for its tight-knit Filipino community, the recent Sisig Experience held at the Mountain House Bar & Grill was nothing short of a triumph.

The event brought together Filipinos and Americans on a sunny Saturday, offering a mouthwatering feast of Filipino cuisine, including adobo, pancit, lumpia, turon, and halo-halo.

Guests were serenaded by a live band specializing in OPM (Original Pilipino Music) and treated to Pinoy Rap, comedy, and traditional folk dances like the intricate tinikling (bamboo dance).

However, the star of the show, as always, was the beloved 'Sisig.'

The late Anthony Bourdain once dubbed this sizzling, crispy pork dish as "perfectly positioned to win the hearts and minds of the world." (CNN Philippines)

Judging by the smiles, sweat from enthusiastic dancers, and the resounding laughter echoing through the crowd, Sisig has indeed captured hearts and taste buds.



(Rap Song Courtesy of EZ Mil)

But in the midst of the festivities, one topic remained a constant at Filipino gatherings - Philippine Boxing History.

Filipinos have a deep-rooted passion for boxing, and this event was no exception.



The surprise highlight came when HDI Chairman Ryan Largo was honored with a championship belt for his significant contributions to Filipino boxers outside the ring. Largo has extended his help, logistically, for fighters like Luisito Espinosa, Vincent Astrolabio, and Mercito Gesta.

In his humble acceptance, Mr. Largo expressed gratitude, saying, "I do not know what to say, but Thank You for recognizing some of what I do. Our family appreciates the belt and will treasure it."



The event featured impromptu discussions, with representatives from the Philippine Boxing Historical Society showcasing artifacts, including original paintings of iconic Filipino boxers like Manny Pacquiao and Luisito "Lindol" Espinosa created by Mactan Artist Brian Bonbon.

Vintage fight photos and magazines including an original copy of 1923 The Ring magazine featuring the legendary Filipino boxer and former American and World Flyweight Champion, Francisco Guilledo (Pancho Villa), were proudly on display, highlighting the rich history of Filipino fighters.



Amidst all this excitement, guests like Charina Rivera, CEO of Alleviare, and Wayne Macasaet of Lego Masters Fame, couldn't contain their enthusiasm.

Charina Rivera shared her experience, "It was an absolute blast being at the Sisig Experience. Delicious food, refreshing Calamansi drinks like NOMSI, nostalgic Pinoy folk dances, and, my gosh, meeting Erica Puno Thomas (the daughter of Rico J. Puno)…and the funny, larger-than-life Wayne Macasaet. Just, Wow!"


(L-R top photo) Michael Angeles, Victor Elizaga, Wayne Macasaet, one aspiring writer, and Ryan Largo.

One aspiring writer in attendance expressed his admiration for the organizers for a job well done, ”Leilani Alfonso Opiana along with event partners Erica Puno Thomas (EPT Productions), Bryan Benzon & Cris Ignacio (Astor World Productions), Misty & Erik Larson (Sisig Experience), The Fil-Am Post, and Stars Casino created something truly special…even more so because the proceeds were for the fire victims of Maui, Hawaii.”

In sum, the Sisig Experience wasn't just about food and festivities; it was a celebration of Filipino culture, a tribute to a shared love for boxing, and a reminder that Sisig is more than just a dish; it's a way of life.






Click here to view a list of other articles written by Emmanuel Rivera, RRT.


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