Style/Travel Diaries

Culinary must-see: Erwan Heussaf, Bruce Ricketts do Lexus food travels

Adventure takes them to Pampanga and Laguna

The Lexus RX450h takes Bruce and Erwan on tasteful journey.


Erwan Heussaf learns the making of ‘kesong puti’ in the small town of Magdalena in Laguna.

Chef Bruce Ricketts discovers how Pampanga tamales has similarities with the Mexican.

Unexpected times call for unexpected solutions banking on storied past and crafted experiences. That in mind, home cook Erwan Heussaf and his longtime colleague, chef Bruce Ricketts, set off on a road journey in a Lexus.

The two gourmets are set to go on a culinary adventure in a two-part series, Lexus Tasteful Travels, where they will trace their roots, uncovering flavors, and deriving greater gustatory inspiration. After being cooped up indoors for months, Erwan and Bruce explore the great outdoor in the safety of the Lexus RX 450h, led by palates hankering for adventures.

The first destination takes Bruce up north, in the culinary capital of the Philippines, Pampanga, known for its culinary traditions propagated by food experts who have made a name here and abroad. The focal point is Pampanga’s tamales, a traditional delicacy of ground sticky rice wrapped in banana leaves. Bruce learns the making of the dish from Pampanga’s tamales maker who has perfected the art for years.

Backed by experience in running La Chinesca, his restaurant serving Mexican fare, Bruce realizes how closely similar the local tamales is to the Mexican delicacy which is made primarily of corn. He then whips up his version of tamales.

Erwan goes down south to the little town of Magdalena in Laguna where he meets a maker of traditional kesong puti, learns about the cheese-making process, even how to milk carabaos, and brings home samples to experiment with. Erwan transforms the humble kesong puti into a dish worthy of global praise, proving how a thorough understanding of an ingredient and a deep appreciation for its craftsmanship can elevate something seemingly so simple.

Winding down in the Lexus RX 450h, Erwan and Bruce realize that the food they whip up is no different from the vehicle they use in their journey. Crafting iconic staples such as kesong puti and tamales is akin to the technology and craftsmanship of the Lexus—there is attention to detail, a showcase of artistry, dedication to authenticity, and reverence of utmost craftsmanship. These values, with omotenashi, the Japanese principle of being thoughtful and guest-centric, highlight the convergence of inspired cooking and luxurious driving.

Credit: FEATR/YouTube

Catch Erwan and Bruce setting off into the Philippines’ culinary destinations in a Lexus RX 450h in Lexus Tasteful Travels viewed via the FEATR YouTube ( and Facebook ( pages.

Watch the episodes to get a glimpse of how the Lexus craft story is comparable to how Philippine local delicacies and ingredients are also crafted—with genuine passion and a desire to elevate the norm.

To learn more, visit the Lexus website at or visit our social media pages on Facebook and Instagram @lexusmanila

To arrange a consultation with your personal sales consultant, visit the Lexus Remote page at


About Lexus

Lexus launched in 1989 with a flagship sedan and a guest experience that helped define the premium automotive industry. In 1998, Lexus introduced the luxury crossover category with the launch of the Lexus RX. The luxury hybrid sales leader, Lexus delivered the world’s first luxury hybrid and has since sold over 1.9 million hybrid vehicles.

A global luxury automotive brand with an unwavering commitment to bold, uncompromising design, exceptional craftsmanship, and exhilarating performance, Lexus has developed its line-up to meet the needs of the next generation of global luxury guests and is currently available in over 90 countries worldwide.

Lexus associates/team members across the world are dedicated to crafting amazing experiences that are uniquely Lexus, and that excite and change the world.

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