Just three hours away from Metro Manila, Puerto Galera is a popular destination for people who want to go diving, snorkeling, or simply chill out by the beach. But for those who truly want to escape to a remote location, Fridays is the place to be. Located on Boquete Island, the resort brings you close to nature without having to sacrifice modern amenities, such as spacious rooms, high-speed Internet connection, and a restaurant that serves fresh, delicious meals.

After a full day of swimming, snorkeling, and island hopping, you’ll definitely be famished. The Cru Restaurant by Fridays offers a variety of meals to satisfy your hunger. If you’re craving for seafood, you’ve come to the right place because they make sure it’s served fresh daily. Here’s how your meal goes from the sea to your dining table.

Step 1: Sourcing fresh ingredients

The search for fresh fish starts early in the morning as Jason Feeney-Cruz, corporate executive chef of Fridays, goes out to meet the local fishermen to buy their goods. He personally inspects the day’s catch and chooses the best of the best. “I check the fish thoroughly to make sure the flesh is firm, the eyes are clear, and the gills are red,” says Chef Jason.

Fridays believes in the importance of sustainable tourism, which is why they make it a point to do business with the locals. “We’ve really tried to work with all the stakeholders—from neighboring families to the local community—in terms of what we buy, who we deal with, and how we do things,” adds Mike Panlilio, senior vice president for operations of Boulevard Holdings, the company that owns Fridays. Since Chef Jason buys fish directly from the local fishermen, it saves them the trouble of having to sell their daily catch at the market.

Step 2: Preparation

As soon as the fish is bought, it’s carefully cleaned and prepared. “When we get the fish, we bring it straight to the kitchen and we cut it in portions,” shares Chef Jason.

Step 3: Cooking per order

Once a customer places an order, it’s time to cook the meal. Chef Jason says they first make sure that the pan is hot before adding the cooking oil. The fish is then added, making sure both sides are cooked well. The executive chef also recommends adding white wine to remove the unsavory fishy taste or “lansa.

Depending on the specific dish that was ordered, Chef Jason prepares the vegetables to go with the fish. “We cut all the vegetables in a proper way, and then we blanch or sauté them in butter or garlic,” he adds.

Step 4: Plating the meal

Just as Chef Jason takes great care in preparing and cooking the ingredients, he also makes sure the plating is top-notch. He describes Fridays’ plating style as “rustic,” meaning it’s simple but served well. “The food is of high quality, and the quantity is enough. Most importantly, we don’t compromise the taste of the food,” he proudly states.

Once the meal is served to your table, all that’s left to do is dig in—preferably while sipping on a fresh fruit shake, feeling the wind in your hair, and enjoying the stellar view of the beach and ocean.

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