Anthony: Running a resto is like running a TV show | Entertainment, News,

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I had Tsamporado with Tuyo Flakes for breakfast this morning while others at home picked other items from the wide array of tummy-pleasers from Ka Tunying’s Cafe such as Cabanatuan Longsilog, Arroz Ala Ka Tunying, Chicken Tocino, Corned Beef Silog, Daingsilog, Creamy Baked Bangus and many more.

We ordered the items by delivery from Ka Tunying Café on Timog Avenue, Quezon City (those living in the vicinity may call 02-366-1342) which has been attracting regular clientele since it opened barely two years ago, right across the street from the GMA Studio/offices. The café has two other outlets, one on Visayas Avenue (the original) and the other at NAIA 3.

“Running a restaurant is like running a TV show,” Anthony Taberna told Funfare. “You have to keep reinventing and evolving. Even if you hire competent people to mind your business, you have to be hands-on.”

That’s why after Umagang Kay Ganda (UKG), the early morning Kapamilya show that he co-hosts, and Dos Por Dos, his DZMM radio program with Gerry Baja, Anthony sees to it that he makes the rounds of his restaurants, along with his wife Rossel who quit showbiz (as a StarStruck discovery) when she married Anthony.

“Actually,” said Anthony, “she was already my girlfriend when she joined StarStruck. But I didn’t discourage her; I just told her that showbiz lifestyle is not the usual,” adding in jest, “ikakasal na lamang kami parang gusto pang magbago ng isip.”

The couple shares a love for food.

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Anthony grew up in Nueva Ecija where the Taberna family owned a local panaderia named Ka Tunying’s Tinapay, Kape, at Iba Pa (after Anthony’s dad, Anthony Taberna Sr.) which later evolved into Tunying’s Bread. Rossel hails from Laguna whose mom, Marilou, loves preparing home-cooked meals just like Anthony’s Nanay Benny.

“Rossel and I love those home-cooked meals and the bread baked by our moms,” shared Anthony.

An array of tummy-pleasers to choose from

It was the bread that inspired the Ka Tunying restaurants that Anthony and Rossel would put up in Metro Manila. Ka Tunying in Nueva Ecija is where residents buy the signature crinkles and Spanish Bread as pasalubong for friends in Manila. Soon, the bread found its way to supermarket fairs around Metro Manila. It didn’t take long for Anthony and Rossel to put up the first Ka Tunying restaurant in the Metro (in 2005), offering what they described as “Filipino food we can’t live without.”

Among the best-sellers: The Umagang Kay Sarap dishes available all day, the Binabalik-Balikan dishes (Tinapa Carbonara, Ka-Love-Asa Lasagna, etc.); Pancit ni Nanay Benny; and, of course, the signature bread like Kamote Cheesebread, Kalabasa Ensaymada and others.

“Ka Tunying Café is also good for social and corporate functions,” added Rossel. “In our Timog branch, there are two function rooms that could each accommodate up to 20 persons for those who want a more private setting.”

Part of what Anthony called “reinvention and evolution” is Ka Tunying’s partnership with The Bistro Group of Companies that operates popular restaurants such as TGIFridays, Italiannis, Denny’s, Texas Roadhouse and Buffalo Wild Wings, among others.

“Essentially,” assured Jean Paul Manuud, president/COO of The Bistro Group, “it’s still Ka Tunying’s Café’s comfort food with a twist stamped with the signature Bistro brand of service.”

To celebrate the partnership, Ka Tunying has come up with new dishes: Bruce Tawilis, Tinapang Lumangoy sa Monggo, Labo-Labo na Chopsuey, Linamnam Meals (solo meals with two viands and rice) and Bakbakan Platter (good for sharing).

“We taste every item before we put it on the menu,” said Rossel.

Somebody suggested that the couple include a Toasted Tunying as midnight snack.

Anthony smiled, his eyes disappearing into slits.

“Why not?”

(E-mail reactions at entphilstar@yahoo.com. For more updates, photos and videos, visit www.philstar.com/funfare or follow me on Instagram @therealrickylo.)



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