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Villa Parmigiano Has Big New Home In The South

Family dining the cucina Italiana way

Alabang’s favorite pizza place, Parmigiano Ristorante Pizzeria, recently opened its biggest and most ambitious branch yet on March 15th. 


Located along the expansive Daang Hari Road in Las Piñas City, the new branch called Villa Parmigiano has earned its name for its homey feel and the overall concept of gathering with the family — no matter how big the gathering may be. 


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Villa Parmigiano | Ching Dee
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This elegant, homey Italian restaurant is perfect for big family meals.. | Ching Dee

There’s something very Versace-esque with Villa Parmigiano — from its terracotta orange exteriors to its lavish interiors accentuated with chandeliers, faux windows, glorious crown moldings, and a high ceiling. The grand staircase on the other end of the dining area, which leads to the mezzanine, sits right beside the huge display case of wines — giving the place an even more regal look. 


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The lavish interiors. | Ching Dee

Building a restaurant from the ground up in just four months is a monumental feat, but according to owner Giulius Iapino, this is his dream project since he and his father Tony opened Parmigiano in 2015. Giulius was born to his Italian father and Filipino mother and he traces his Italian roots to Rome.


“I’ve always wanted to do a restaurant like this. This is my dream project,” he shares with Metro.Style. “When we had no choice but to leave Molito [Lifestyle Center], we took it as a challenge, like a blessing in disguise, to finally go ahead and fulfill this long-overdue dream.”


He adds that when their regular customers heard they were closing the original Alabang branch, customers were willing to protest for them. It was the dedication and support of their loyal customers that kept them going, fueling the fire that built Villa Parmigiano today. 

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Giulius Iapinio | Ching Dee

He adds that when their regular customers heard they were closing the original Alabang branch, customers were willing to protest for them. It was the dedication and support of their loyal customers that kept them going, fueling the fire that built Villa Parmigiano today. 


Opening Villa Parmigiano is just one of Giulius’ numerous dreams and achievements he accomplished these past couple of years: He got married to his wife Zarah, welcomed their daughter Giorgia, earned his MBA from the Ateneo de Manila Graduate School of Business, and even became a councilor in his hometown of Norzagaray, Bulacan. You can say that just like the Villa Parmigiano menu, Giulius has a lot to offer as a family man, businessman, and public servant. 


Much like the original Parmigiano in Newport Mall and yes even the one in Molito Lifestyle Center, their dishes are inspired by the Iapino family’s Italian heritage, especially memories of Giulius’ nonna and her amazing home-cooked meals. To maintain the food’s authenticity, Chef Mario Angelai who’s also from Rome has joined the Villa Parmigiano team, making sure everything from the ingredients to the techniques used and all the way to plating are reminiscent of their Roman roots. Meanwhile, Filipino chef and culinary consultant RJ Ungco is in charge of tweaking some dishes ever-so-slightly to cater to local palates. Together, these two chefs present a unique approach to Italian cuisine in the Philippines and at the same time educating local diners on the gift that is cucina Italiana (Italian cuisine).

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Chef Mario Angelai finishing Cacio e Pepe inside a wheel of Parmigiano Reggiano | Ching Dee

“I am here to bastardize Italian food,” Chef RJ joked right beside Chef Mario, who immediately said Chef RJ’s take on Italian flavors doesn’t really stray too far from traditional Mediterranean cuisine.


“If you think about it, Italian cuisine uses very simple ingredients — tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, herbs — but in an extraordinary way,” Chef Mario explains. “It’s all about starting every dish with the best ingredients in order to have excellent results.”


“Making good Italian food in the Philippines also requires a constant state of learning and educating others,” shares Chef RJ, who points out that while more and more Filipinos are being exposed to international cuisine, there are still a few who complain about the “burnt” crust on the traditionally charred pizza because it was cooked in a brick oven, or those who don’t like al dente pasta or tangy sauce even if that’s the way it should be. 


“We are more than happy to help them understand and appreciate that this is what Italian food should be,” Chef RJ adds. 

Chef Mario also shares its this straightforward yet respectful approach to food that sets Italian food apart from other cuisines. He says even if they eat pasta morning, noon, and night, they do not feel bloated because they know how to cook the pasta just right so as not to affect its constitution, making it easier to digest in just an hour or two. Using natural ingredients also makes Italian food generally healthier, which is why they also insist on making almost everything within the premises — from the pizza dough to the pasta to the sauces and dips.


For those who are trying Villa Parmigiano for the first time, here are some of their best-sellers and exclusive dishes that you should definitely not miss.


Insalata di Tortilla e Burrata

Mixed salad greens topped with a whole 120-gran burrata glazed with truffle cream plated in a crispy corn tortilla that’s meant to be crushed and mixed before eating. 

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Insalata di Tortilla e Burrata | Ching Dee

Ravioli di Zucca e Ricotta

House-made ravioli stuffed with creamy pumpkin and ricotta mixture and slathered with truffle and ricotta cream sauce.


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Ravioli di Zucca e Ricotta | Ching Dee

Pizza della Nonna 

Neapolitan-style pizza with house-made crust topped with grapes, Mortadella, Parma ham, marinated artichoke hearts, mozzarella, and shaved Parmigiano Reggiano


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Pizza della Nonna | Ching Dee

Cernia Al Forno

This show-stopping dish has an entire red snapper stuffed with garlic, spices, and herbs before being roasted and served with a Prosecco Herb-Butter Sauce flavored with lemons and tomatoes. It serves four to five people.


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Cernia al Forno | Ching Dee

Cacio e Pepe

Finished inside a wheel of  Parmigiano Reggiano, their signature Bigoli a la Chitara Cacio e Pepe combines the bold flavors of Pecorino Romano and Parmigiano Reggiano with freshly cracked black pepper for a taste of Rome in the outskirts of Las Piñas City. 


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Cacio e Pepe | Ching Dee

Tsunami

The Instagram-worthy dessert is revealed with a bit of drama as the chocolate sauce cascades over layers of chocolate cake and chocolate mascarpone mousse. It’s topped with crushed pistachios for added texture and flavor. 


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Tsunami | Ching Dee
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The Iapinos, the family behind Villa Parmigiano's family-friendly dining (from left): Doris, Giorgio, Tony, Giulius, and Zarah. | Ching Dee

Villa Parmigiano is open daily from 11:00 AM to 11:00 PM. Contact: 0927 884 7535 or 02 8242 5318 | IG: @parmigianoph | FB: @parmigianoph | Address: Daang Hari Road, Alabang West, Las Piñas City.