Tuesday, June 21, 2011

A Taste of Yin Yang Symphony

Cuisine, despite its delicious nuances, has a very unappetizing side of being a cutthroat enterprise. The first ever meal or dining experience will be sufficient validation to send a chef or entrepreneur’s ambition towards the high threshold of worship, or spinning downwards into a merciless, grinding collapse. The increasing saturation of trendy and luxurious dining concept saw that an establishment suffering from identity crises will have an even more daunting task of wooing the ever fickle public.

Zong, a trailblazer of elegant and modern interpretation of Chinese cuisine understands the concept of being a solid, authentic brand, founded on well-defined differentiating attributes. It keeps on evolving, as witnessed in the recent relaunch at the flagship restaurant in The Fort Strip, Fort Bonifacio.

ZONG MASTERS: Entrepreneur JOSHUA TIU (left) & Executive Chef, CHEF ONNO (right)
Elegance is the dominant key: from the finely calibrated restaurant logomark to the Interiors that have been repurposed with restrained, sophisticated palette, the place exudes a relaxed confidence and cosy vibe—fitting ambience for the culinary fireworks by recently promoted Executive Chef, Chef Onno.   

Hot Prawn Salad
 Whereas Chef Onno’s masterly-orchestrated lunch menu sealed shut all nagging skepticisms, visionary dining entrepreneur Joshua Tiu, reinforced the hallmarks of the Zong Brand with a flawless, persuasive fifteen minute run through. (Even the press packs and slides in his presentation reflect the modernist design aesthetic with its well-selected typography, stunning photography and well-structured layouts. Surely this signals an inescapable truth: everything down to often-overlooked details did not escape obsessive scrutiny.)

Caramelized Porkloin
Tiu, cajoled corps of competitive bloggers and jaded editors with a reaffirmation of Zong’s Food Philiosophy rooted on the cornerstone of its culinary design:  achieving balance of the yin and yang through nourishment. He declares further:

“There is always a balance in color, flavors, and textures. However, belief in the importance of following the principles of yin and yang in the diet extends further. Certain foods are thought to have yin, or “cooling” properties, while others have warm, “yang” properties. The challenge is to consume a diet that contains a healthy balance between the two.”

Advancing this principle Tiu also touched on three things:

Curry Beef
NO MSG POLICY: “We make sure that whenever we bring a meal to your table, it is prepared with only the freshest of ingredients. At ZONG, we understand that the integrity of a dish stems from skillful preparation married with care and respect for each individual ingredient. We prefer to keep our recipes absolutely MSG free. We strive to conjure up inventive dishes that preserve natural flavors.”

NO SERVICE CHARGE POLICY: “We take customer service very seriously. We make sure that our guests come first. This is why we believe that you should never pay for service. Our chain leaves it up to our guests to decide the appropriate gratuity.”

LAUNCH OF ZONG’S INTERACTIVE WEBSITE: (Aside from partnering with City Delivery available in the FORT, Alabang and Quezon City branches.) “Our customers can now sign up using their Facebook accounts for the latest happenings and promotions. They can also read their daily fortunes in our interactive website.”

Cuttle Fish
There was a hint of a continental crossover—Zong will launch its first international branch but Tiu vigilantly admonished attendees not to get all too excited until the whole venture is fully rooted.
Meanwhile local fans as well as the uninitiated need not whip out their passports and go through troubles of customs scrutiny to enjoy contemporary Chinese cuisine. A redefined dining experience can begin with a single CLICK.

(Monday would like to thank Ms. Gemma Batoon and Mr. Ferdi Salvador for the cordial accommodation during the event.)

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