Ulam: Main Dish
For lovers of food documentaries like Jiro Dreams of Sushi (2011) and the Chef’s Table series, Ulam: Main Dish will come as a welcome and fresh addition. The film centers on the honest struggle for authenticity and respect for a cuisine often marginalized by the food world. Deploying rousing interviews with owners, restaurateurs, top chefs, as well as mouth-watering dishes placed front and center, filmmaker Alexandra Cuerdo follows the heartaches and triumphs of contemporary chefs that seek a place for their culture at the dinner table, one dish at a time.
“The key to everyone’s heart is through their stomach,” says Eggslut and Unit 120 chef Alvin Cailan, but getting people to believe in the concept, the execution, and then the food has been challenging. Featuring Cailan, Nicole Ponseca and Miguel Trinidad (Maharlika, Jeepney), Romy Dorotan and Amy Besa (Purple Yam), Charles Olalia (Ricebar), and many other beloved restaurateurs, Ulam: Main Dish captures firsthand experience of the troubles each faced before making it in the industry. Beyond the determination to bring their innovative versions of beloved dishes, like adobo chicken and lumpia, to the attention of food connoisseurs, there is a supportive and inclusive community that mixes politics and great cooking to exciting ends.
This title is a part of SFFILM’s Launch Initiative, having its World Premiere for the film industry along with the Festival’s discerning audiences.
Alexandra Cuerdo is a director, producer, and editor for films, television, and digital content. MSN calls Ulam: Main Dish, her feature documentary directing debut, one of the “Top 5 Food Documentaries to Watch.”
Director Alexandra Cuerdo
Producer Alexandra Cuerdo, John Floresca, Rey Cuerdo
Editor Tayler Braasch
Cinematographer John Floresca
Music Stephen Spies