New Featured Dishes at Cucina, Marco Polo Ortigas Manila

Marco Polo Ortigas Manila (Philippines) recently announced the appointment of Chef Giuseppe Rivoli as the new Chef de Cuisine of Cucina Restaurant. Chef Giuseppe grew up in Sicily, Italy where he first learned Italian home cooking from his grandmother at a young age of 13. Fueled by his passion for cooking, Chef Giuseppe pursued education specializing in hospitality.

Chef Giuseppe Rivoli | Chef de Cuisine, Cucina Restaurant (Marco Polo Ortigas Manila)

He began his international career as a chef in London where he worked for some of the most prestigious restaurants and hotels such as Harry's Bar, Alloro Restaurant, Nobu London and The Dorchester Hotel. Later on, he would travel to Australia and Bali to continue his career in Asia Pacific. Finally, in August 2016, Chef Giuseppe joined Marco Polo Ortigas Manila as the hotel's new Chef de Cuisine.

In an exclusive interview with Chef Giuseppe, he told us that his first assignment as the new Chef de Cuisine is to revamp the buffet menu of Cucina Restaurant to include different daily carvery. "I want the carving station to feature a different dish every day, and we won't follow a regular schedule. We don't want it to be predictable. We want to keep things exciting all the time."

Pork Roulade | Carving Station, Cucina Restaurant (Marco Polo Ortigas Manila)

During our visit, Pork Roulade (must try) was served at the carvings station. It was a big hit to the diners that lunch time. Chef Giuseppe added that guests should also watch for the Porcetta with Sundried Tomato and Black Olive Pate, an Italian roast pork dish especially created by Chef Giuseppe for Cucina Restaurant's weekday buffet.

Ossobucco alla Milanese | Featured Dish, Cucina Restaurant (Marco Polo Ortigas Manila)

Chef Giuseppe will also be rolling-out new featured dishes for Cucina's weekday buffet. Two of the new featured dishes we tried were the Ossobucco alla Milanese (must try!) an Italian casserole dish originating from Milan which is made of veal shanks braised with a variety of vegetables. The dish is served on a bed of mashed potatoes.

Beef Cheeks with Couscous | Featured Dish, Cucina Restaurant (Marco Polo Ortigas Manila)

Another featured dish we tried was the Beef Cheeks with Couscous (must try!). While couscous is usually associated with Moroccan cuisine, this dish is originally Italian. Chef Giuseppe also noted that cousous is widely used in Mediterranean cooking, and in fact, a Couscous Festival is celebrated in Sicily, Italy every year.

Fish Fillet in Mediterranean Sauce | Cucina Restaurant (Marco Polo Ortigas Manila)

When asked whether Cucina Restaurant would focus on Italian cuisine, Chef Giuseppe said that the new featured dishes will be mainly Italian, but other European dishes such as French, Spanish, British and German will also be included in the line-up of dishes to be rolled-out.

Pork Scallopini in White Wine Sauce | Cucina Restaurant (Marco Polo Ortigas Manila)

Chef Giuseppe will also be revamping the Pasta Station. He has already introduced Gnocchi and Ravioli to replace the usual spaghetti, fettuccini and fusilli. He will also be adding new pasta sauces to the station to make the variety more diverse.

Pasta Station | Cucina Restaurant (Marco Polo Ortigas Manila)

We tried the two pasta dishes available at the station. We got to choose a pasta and a sauce and the station chef will prepare the pasta dish a la minute. The first one we tried was the Gnocchi in Carbonara Sauce. The gnocchi were soft and mushy, the way gnocchi is cooked in an Italian home.

Gnocchi in Carbonara Sauce | Cucina Restaurant (Marco Polo Ortigas Manila)

Another pasta dish we tried was the Crabmeat & Truffle Mushroom Ravioli in Tomato Sauce. The pasta dough was generously filled with crabmeat and truffle mushroom. The sauce is light in taste and beautifully blends with the delicate taste of the truffles.

If you are a fan of Cucina Restaurant like us, then it is our pleasure to inform you that Chef Giuseppe will be retaining some of the best-selling dishes, including the Best Paella in Town.

Best Paella in Town | Cucina Restaurant (Marco Polo Ortigas Manila)

The Ribeye Steak will also stay at the carving station during the weekend buffet, and so will the Sustainable Tuna. The Cucinillo, on the other hand, will be replaced by an Italian version of this suckling pig dish which Chef Giuseppe described as equally crispy but more flavorful.

Ribeye Steak | Cucina Restaurant (Marco Polo Ortigas Manila)

Enjoy these new exciting flavors through a lunch or dinner buffet at Cucina Restaurant. Buffet lunch from Monday to Friday is priced at P1,500 while dinner buffet is at P1,800. Saturday lunch buffet is at P2,300 while dinner buffet is at P2,650. Sunday lunch buffet is at P2,650 while dinner buffet is at P2,300.

Cucina is open daily for lunch from 12:00nn to 2:30pm and dinner from 6:00pm to 10:30pm. For reservations, you can call (02) 720 7720 or book online via or email:

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