s o u v
The younger sibling of Cyma has the same Grecian DNA, but with a cutting-edge culinary outlook and a focus on an even more festive menu.
Ilove seeing a restaurant in full swing. Given the sheer density of the establishments in the BGC, the seemingly endless choices available, and the daily information overload all about food from all our indispensable online influences, it’s very difficult to make a decision on where to eat. That’s exactly the reason why I’m amazed at how much people have taken to Robby Goco’s new iteration of his Cyma chain of restaurants, Souv. The three-month old restaurant in the BGC is always full, even during off-peak hours. It’s not a new concept, per se. The chef ’s made sure that at least a dozen of Cyma’s bestselling dishes are available in Souv, but the ambiance of the place, while still very Greek, feels so much more vibrant; there’s a tingle when you enter, an anticipation of suddenly discovering something new about something familiar. It’s like falling in love again with an old flame. And what could be more thrilling than that, really?
The late great Anastacio de Alba is recognized by local culinary historians as the chef who really introduced and democratized authentic Spanish cuisine in the Philippines. I’m certain that decades from now, Robby Goco will be similarly recognized for popularizing Greek food in the country. There’s history happening, that’s for sure. Who would have imagined, fifteen years ago, that the cuisine of a country, seemingly so distant and different from our own, would be so warmly embraced? I’m certain not even Robby himself anticipated this phenomenon. For sure, he had inkling: there are parallels between Greeks and Filipinos, after all. Both are very family-oriented, with celebrations built around reunions and home cooking. Both nations love cooking over red-hot coals, and the intrinsic theatrics that grilling brings. Food is Life.
That so many of us love the food at both Cyma and Souv is a given. But let me clue you in on a couple of secrets that may just make you love those restaurants even more. First, none of these restaurants, now numbering eight and counting,
has a commissary. Every ingredient of every single dish is prepped in-house at the start of every single day of service. Freshness is absolute and non-negotiable. It should be basic, but in an unimaginably fast-paced restaurant setting, it fairly boggles the mind, this dedication to slow cooking. Second, look around, and look at the faces of the managers of the Cyma restaurants closely. Chances are, they will look familiar. You see, there’s no glass ceiling in this chain. A former dishwasher eventually becomes a restaurant manager in a new branch. It’s not uncommon at all. So it begs the question, and their chef patron proudly smiles as he gives me the answer: “I’m happiest when I produce jobs. It’s even more fulfilling than producing great food. That’s the reason why I work so hard to open more restaurants. At the end of the day, It’s all about the people.” Opa, Chef! Opa!
“WHO WOULD HAVE IMAGINED THAT THE CUISINE OF GREECE, A COUNTRY SO DISTANT AND DIFFERENT FROM OUR OWN, WOULD BE SO WARMLY EMBRACED BY FILIPINOS?”
1 Zuchinni Kroketes
2 Avocado Greek Summer Salad
3 Chef Robby Goco
4 Souv Interiors
5 Roasted Lamb, Chicken,
and Pork Platter
6 Greek Frozen Yogurt Selectoin 02
04 Souv is located at G/F, Net Park Building, 5th Avenue, BGC, Taguig. Two seatings available during dinner service: 09494819621