My US Potato Board (USPB) Potato Safari 3 Experience in Davao City

While everyone was busy with their holiday preparations last December 2015, I, together with other Manila food bloggers, flew to Davao City to join the Potato Safari 3, coordinated by the US Potato Board (USPB), the organization who handles the promotion and marketing for US Potatoes across the globe.

United States Potato Board (USPB) Potato Safari 3


About US Potatoes

The third of the Potato Safari began with the Global Marketing Manager of USPB, Susan Weller, giving us a brief and informative introduction to US Potatoes.

Susan Weller Global Marketing Manager of USPB

The potato is an integral ingredient used in cuisines all over the world. It is so versatile that it can be used in appetizers, soups, main entrées, or even desserts. But do you know what the world’s favorite way to eat potatoes? Of course, as French fries!

The most important thing I learned from Susan was that it’s NOT true that fresh local potatoes are superior over frozen potatoes in terms of quality and nutritional content. Frozen US Potatoes are, in fact, a whole lot better because they meet strict FDA and USDA specifications—a reason why they have become the top choice of renowned chefs all over the world.

US Frozen Pototoes from USPB

Surprising Potato Facts:

  • A medium-sized potato has only 110 calories!
  • Potatoes have NO cholesterol, fat, or sodium.
  • It’s perfectly gluten-free!
  • It’s also a good source of potassium (more than bananas), Vit C, Vit B6, fiber, and protein.
  • The Philippines is the largest export market for frozen US Potatoes in Southeast Asia


US Potato Board’s Potato Safari 3

The first two legs of USPB’s Potato Safari was held in Cebu City last 2014. In 2015, they decided to celebrate the third Potato Safari in one of the safest cities in the Philippines—Davao City. They have partnered with three of the Davaoeños’ well-loved local restaurants and with celebrity chef Sandy Daza, who is considered as one of the pillars of Philippine cuisine. Their challenge was to develop recipes that are sure to delight the palate while thrilling foodies with all the creative possibilities of how US Potatoes can be cooked and prepared, making sure to showcase the quality, versatility, and flavor of this ingredient.


Claude’s Le Café de Ville Restaurant

Our first stop was at Davao’s most famous and quintessential fine-dining restaurant. Claude’s Le Café de Ville is a colonial house turned into a dining spot, popular for its exquisite French and Mediterranean cuisine.

Facade Claude’s Le Cafe de Ville Restaurant Davao City

Chef and owner Claude de Neindre presented us with a sumptuous lunch which utilized frozen US Potatoes prepared with a French twist. My top favorites were the Chili Potato Cheese with Shrimp, Pepper Steak on Hash Brown, and the Potato Durian Pie a la Mode, which was a surprising marrying of two seemingly impossible-to-combine flavors of potatoes and the durian fruit.

Food with US Frozen Potatoes USPB from Claude's Cafe de Ville Restaurant Davao City

Address: Rizal Street, Poblacion District, Davao City, Davao del Sur, Philippines.

RELATED READ: Claude’s Le Cafe de Ville for USPB Potato Safari 3


Café Uno of Waterfront Insular Hotel

On our first day, we had dinner at Café Uno at the Waterfront Insular Hotel, which happens to be the hotel where we stayed for the whole duration of the Potato Safari 3 event.

Waterfront Insular Hotel Davao City for USPB Potato Safari 3

Café Uno is a cozy and classy restaurant, making it the perfect after work or weekend locale to dine and hangout with your family and friends while listening to jazz and R&B music.

Cafe Uno at Waterfront Insular Hotel Davao City

Executive Chef Victor Barangan prepared a satisfying and super filling five-course dinner for the participants and organizers of the Potato Safari 3. His most innovative creations highlighting US Potatoes were his Surf and Turf plate and the Green Tea Doriyaki dessert. The Surf and Turf dish was beef tenderloin cooked medium partnered with a big and flavorful potato-battered prawn. The Green Tea Doriyaki, on the other hand, was a one-of-a-kind dessert, featuring a scoop of durian ice cream sandwiched between two green tea and potato-infused pancakes and then topped with whipped cream and nuts.

Food with US Frozen Potatoes USPB from Cafe Uno Waterfront Insulare Hotel Davao City

Address: J.P. Laurel Avenue, Lanang, Davao City, Davao del Sur, Philippines.

RELATED READ: Cafe Uno of Waterfront Insular Hotel Davao City for Potato Safari 3


Polo Bistro Restaurant of Marco Polo Hotel

For our last night in Davao City, we had dinner the picturesque Polo Bistro Restaurant of Marco Polo Hotel Davao. It was quite an unforgettable experience because the dishes served to us were amazing and we were got the chance to bump into 2016 Philippine presidential candidate, Rodrigo Duterte, at the hotel’s lobby while we were waiting for our van to pick us all up.

Polo Bistro Restaurant at Marco Polo Hotel Davao City

The Polo Bistro Restaurant team, led by Executive Sous Chef Alex Destriza, cooked us a superb four-course dinner. My favorite among the dishes served to us was the US Potato Crisscut and Shrimp Cake. The crispy fried crisscut potato delivered a good contrast to the soft and creamy texture of the shrimp cake. Which dish had the most unique use of US Potatoes? This recognition clearly goes to the US Hash Brown Potato Strawberry Cheese Cake, which had crumbled deep-fried hash browns as the cake crust.

Food with US Frozen Potatoes USPB from Polo Bistro Restaurant Marco Polo Hotel Davao City

Address: Marco Polo Davao Hotel, C.M. Recto Street, Davao City, Davao del Sur, Philippines.

RELATED READ: Polo Bistro Restaurant of Marco Polo Davao for Potato Safari 3


Cooking with US Potatoes by Chef Sandy Daza

I was super ecstatic to meet Chef Sandy Daza because I grew up watching him cook on television, and now I get to witness him do a live cooking demonstration right before my very eyes. Chef Sandy is a popular TV host, chef, food columnist, cookbook author, and restaurateur. He is the man behind the restaurants like Wooden Spoon, Mai Thai, Au Bon Café, Au Iles Philippines, Maharlika, and Chef Sandy’s Cuisine Restaurant. He has also authored two successful cookbooks, featuring easy-to-cook Filipino meals.

Celebrity Chef Sandy Daza Cooking Demonstration for USPB Frozen Potatoes

Chef Sandy demonstrated three recipes for us. The first recipe was his US Potato Baked Seafood—a mouth-watering seafood dish, featuring the US Natural Crisp. It’s the kind of dish you can cook in a big baking dish, making it ideal for potluck parties! The second recipe—the Mixed Sausages and Crispy US Potatoes—was the perfect companion for a pint of ice-cold beer! It had crispy and deep-fried US Hashbrowns served with Bratwurst and Hungarian sausages. His third and last recipe was his modern take on another Filipino dining staple, the Caldereta, which he cooked with US Wedges.

Dishes Cooked by Chef Sandy Daza with US Frozen Potatoes USPB


USPB Potato Safari 3 Cooking Competition

On the last day of our Potato Safari 3 adventure, all of us participants were grouped into 5 teams and were challenged to prepare an innovative and tasty dish with frozen US Potato as the main ingredient. My team whipped up a dish of handmade Potato Gnocchi with Seafood Marinara sauce. Sounds fancy, right? Well, we lost. Haha! The team of Berylle, Nadine, and Eugene came out triumphant with their Filipino poutine. They deserved it! Their dish was simple, yet it ticked off all the important points on the mechanics of the contest.

Cooking Contest using US Frozen Potatoes USPB at Waterfront Insular Hotel Davao

Thank you so much to the US Potato Board for inviting us over to Davao City for the super fun-filled Potato Safari 3! I surely learned new and unique ways on how I can game up my family’s dining experience with US Potatoes.

For more details about US Potatoes, please visit or, or call Ms. Reji Retugal-Onal at +63.2.534.8534 / +63.2.534.8223.

Claude’s Le Cafe de Ville for USPB Potato Safari 3
Cafe Uno of Waterfront Insular Hotel Davao City for Potato Safari 3
Polo Bistro Restaurant of Marco Polo Davao for Potato Safari 3

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *