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Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Sizzling Fillo, Lidcombe

The October issue of Time Out Sydney is now out with my latest Food & Drink column highlighting Sizzling Fillo in Lidcombe.

As vocal fans of Anthony Bourdain's show No Reservations pointed out, Filipino cuisine seems to often be overlooked and under-appreciated on the international dining scene. There are not many Filipino restaurants in Sydney, but they do exist and are worth visiting, especially if the idea of a pork hock deep-fried to a crackling crisp gives you the same goosebumps as it does for me.

Sizzling Fillo, Lidcombe

One of the few Filipino restaurants in Sydney serving traditional dishes for homesick expats.

Silk chair covers, folded napkins and fresh orchids on every table give this suburban restaurant a bit of a wedding reception vibe. A karaoke unit in the corner gets an enthusiastic workout on Saturday nights, but most other times the restaurant is reasonably sedate.

Crispy pata $19.00

Crispy pata ($19) is a must for anyone with a taste for crackling. Pork hocks are boiled, air dried and then deep fried until the surrounding skin blisters into crackling. Traditionally served whole, here the hock is chopped into chunky pieces.

Crispy pata with accompanying vinegar soy dipping sauce

Use your fingers and take your time to savour the crisp, shattering skin before dunking the meat into the bowl of dressing (a mix of vinegar, soy and garlic) that will refresh any dry bits of meat and counter the richness. The bones are the best part, especially if you manage to tease out bits of tendon that are deliciously sticky.

Adobo chicken $13.50

Adobo chicken ($13.50), a national dish of the Philippines, is a simple dish of chicken legs slow cooked in soy sauce and vinegar with garlic, bay leaf and peppercorns.

Sizzling sisig $16.00
Spicy chopped pork dish with raw egg on top

Sizzling sisig is made from the pig's head, a mixture of diced pig's cheeks, ears and snout fried and serving on a sizzling plate with a raw egg on top. The yolk should be mixed in immediately so it coats the meat in a sticky sauce.

Garlic rice $9.00

Kare kare $17.00
Filipino stew of beef, oxtail and mixed vegetables in peanut sauce and coconut milk
served with shrimp paste to taste

Leche flan $9
A sweet and rich Filipino creme caramel

Ube macapuno purple yam ice cream $5.00

The creme caramel was a little disappointing on the day we visited, but ube ice cream will always one of my favourite flavours!

View Larger Map
Sizzling Fillo on Urbanspoon

Sizzling Fillo Restaurant and Karaoke Bar
36 Railway Street, Lidcombe, Sydney
Tel: +61 (02) 9649 7939

Opening hours:
Tuesday 5pm-10pm
Wednesday to Sunday 11am-10pm
Karaoke on Saturday nights 7pm-10pm

Time Out Sydney reviews:
ATL Marantha, Kensington (Indonesian fried chicken with edible bones)
Balkan Oven, Rockdale (Macedonian burek)
Durban Dish, Baulkham Hills (South African bunny chow)
Hijazi's Falafel, Arncliffe (Lebanese breakfast)
Island Dreams Cafe, Lakemba (Christmas Islands cuisine)
La Paula, Fairfield (Chilean empanadas, lomitos and sweets)
Sea Sweet, Parramatta (Lebanese sweet kashta cheese burger)
Tehran, Granville (Persian cuisine)
Tuong Lai, Cabramatta (Vietnamese sugar cane prawns)
22 comments - Add some comment love

posted by Helen (Grab Your Fork) on 10/12/2010 03:47:00 am


  • At 10/12/2010 8:34 am, Blogger Shanks said…

    My heart just skipped a beat at your description of Crispy Pata...mmm!!

  • At 10/12/2010 8:45 am, Blogger Rita (mademoiselle délicieuse) said…

    So much porcine goodness! Especially love the sound of a raw egg yolk being mixed into a sizzling plate of cuts from a pig's head, mmmm.

  • At 10/12/2010 9:50 am, Blogger fluffy said…

    Oh I've actually never tried Filipino food before, will add that to my ever growing list of restaurants to visit :D

  • At 10/12/2010 10:24 am, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Yayyyyy Thx Helen, can always trust you to find tasty places for me to try (so close to uni!)

  • At 10/12/2010 10:46 am, Blogger Brenda said…

    Hello crispy pata!!! Must get to know you better hehehehe!

  • At 10/12/2010 11:19 am, Anonymous Adrian @ Food Rehab said…

    I agree. This has been a longtime issue with my fellow Filipinos here in Australia. There are hardly any decent filipino restaurants, especially here in Melbourne.

    Having just come back from Philippines for the first time, I was in awe at the amount of dishes I've never even tried despite growing up eating and cooking it. And that was just in the mall food courts!

    Thanks for featuring a pinoy eatery. Watch out for my upcoming travel posts!!!

  • At 10/12/2010 12:41 pm, Anonymous Hannah said…

    Well, I think you know what my response to this will be... meat = you can have that part, but dessert = GET IN MY BELLY.

  • At 10/12/2010 12:45 pm, Blogger Unknown said…

    Sizzling sisig + purple yam ice cream - WANT.

    Looks like the place has gone slightly upmarket in decor since I last went. Time for a catch-up trip methinks!

  • At 10/12/2010 1:13 pm, Anonymous Simon @ the heart of food said…

    Lol! From the name, I thought this was about fried pastry :)

    You're right, they're very underrated. However, this is by their own community in Sydney, let alone the rest of us, from the opinion of a Filo friend.

    Pork hock looks awesome & I like adobo & leech flan. Might have to give this place a go at some stage.

  • At 10/12/2010 1:21 pm, Anonymous KFC so good said…

    so amazing to see the influences in Filipino food. Some spanish, malay/indo, chinese, all there.

    There are not many Filipino restaurants and so eager to try this one!

    These are the kind of post that I enjoy the most and the hall mark of what Sydney eats is.

    haven't have Ube ice cream for years! I was one of my definite fav.

    Crispy Pata...Kamayan!!!

  • At 10/12/2010 1:22 pm, Anonymous KFC so good said…

    So did anyone break out in songs in the karaoke section of the Sizzling Fillo?

  • At 10/12/2010 2:41 pm, Anonymous Gianna@TheEmptyFridge said…

    Thank you thank you thank you Helen! From the bottom of my cholesterol filled crispy pata craving heart!

    It is so hard to find good filipino restaurants because there are so few and are never really publiscised anywhere!

    Im enjoying my copy of time out that little bit more today thanks to you and finding this little gem :)

  • At 10/12/2010 10:12 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    we went back there and had: crispy pata it was actually was juicier than before .. sizzling sisig was good too.. (didnt order the adobo as that was a disappointment as well the kare kare and leche flan.. didnt taste right)...everyones right.. theres not much filo resto here.. this is the only one ive tried... so many things that are not on the menu that i would like to eat though hehe.. eg. bagnet w/ bagoong and seaweed salad.. :)

  • At 10/13/2010 1:46 am, Anonymous aaron said…

    The crispy pata looks awesome! Filipino food is definitely an undervalued delight!

  • At 10/13/2010 6:36 am, Anonymous Vix said…

    My God that crispy pata looks AMAZING! Might have to add that to my very long list of restaurants to go to when I am back in Sydney this summer. Bring it on!

  • At 10/13/2010 10:18 am, Anonymous Trisha said…

    You ordered all the right stuff, Helen! And yes by the photo I can already tell the Leche Flan wouldn't be the greatest (lots of bubbles on the side) but I agree - ube cream never fails!!!

  • At 10/13/2010 3:54 pm, Blogger thesweettoothfairy said…

    From what I know, kare-kare does not have coconut milk. What makes the sauce thick is the gelatins from the oxtail.

  • At 10/13/2010 8:58 pm, Anonymous john@heneedsfood said…

    Crispy pork hock! Helen, I'm feeling more than goose bumps

  • At 11/05/2010 5:00 am, Anonymous Trissa said…

    How could I have missed this review?!? Thanks Helen for a lovely overview of some of the Philippines finest food. Of course I'm planning to visit but I'll probably go on karaoke night! :)

  • At 1/02/2011 9:11 pm, Anonymous midnitelily said…

    oooh, next time you visit Sizzling Fillo, you should try the Dinuguan - Pork and blood jelly stew simmered in spices, chilli and vinegar. ^_^

  • At 1/02/2011 9:41 pm, Blogger Helen (Grab Your Fork) said…

    Thanks everyone for your comments!

    Hi KFC So Good - Karaoke wasn't on when we visited, but we heard the place goes off when it does! lol

    Hi thesweettoothfairy - Ahh thanks for the info.

    Hi midnitelily - I really wanted to try that dish. Definitely next time!

  • At 4/14/2012 9:09 am, Anonymous RevilO said…

    Hmmm....probably the best Fillo Restaurant in Sydney, it's high time Fillo foods get recognition in the international arena let alone begin in Sydney!!!!! Awesome!
    Proud to be Pinoy! Oy! Oy! Oy!


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