Food lovers will love The Corner Market at the newly-renovated Podium Mall. One of the options for healthy and fresh fare is Gusto. This is where Pia Ojeda offers salads, smoothies and fresh produce from the family farm in Rizal. Gusto is a welcome addition to the metropolis’ healthy eating scene.
Pia says, “We wanted to produce clean, naturally-grown food for the everyday diner. Our goal was to make it approachable and accessible to the market.” The idea fell on her lap while helping her grandmother and sister’s farming venture. They first sold produce at weekend markets, bazaars, and agri-expos, then began supplying some restaurants. Linfred Yap, managing directior of the Relish Group, invited Pia to open a stall in his new food hall.
Pia comes from a highly-regarded family in the food industry. “We are a tight-knit family. Being around them helps me gain confidence in my business,” she says. “They run some of Manila’s favorite restaurants, and living up to their standards, quality and consistency of food, and service is something I strive for everyday. It’s a challenge because in my family, we enjoy the eating and not the cooking part!” she says, laughing.
LEARNING BY EXPERIENCE
Since Gusto is a new venture, Pia is still very hands-on when it comes to the day-to-day operations. It’s not unusual t