Rising Star Restaurateur Chera Amlag of Hood Famous Bakeshop - Biography

Seattle, WA

January 2020
Power couple Chera Amlag and Geo Quibuyen did not expect to go into the hospitality industry. But with an incredible mission and a high demand for ube cheesecakes, Hood Famous came to be. 
 
Born in the Philippines with a big ol’ sweet tooth, Amlag became her family’s private baker. They immigrated to the states in 1986 to Bremerton, a military town where Amlag put her infatuation for baking aside to pursue a career in education and non-profit work. While she made an impact in her local community through counseling and tutoring first generation college students and educating on drug and alcohol prevention, her husband, Quibuyen, made his impact through music.
 
In 2013, Amlag and Quibuyen first dipped their toes in the food-service industry to raise money for a family trip to the Philippines. The Filipino-American pop-up dinner, where Quibuyen cooked and Amlag baked, was so positively received that they made it into a series, titled Food & Sh*t. Once people began regularly requesting Amlag’s vibrant purple ube cheesecake, nicknamed as the “Hood Famous Cheesecake,” she established Hood Famous Bakeshop in 2014, catering special events and wholesaling the cheesecake at Asian grocery chain Uwajimaya. In 2016, Amlag and Quibuyen opened their first brick-and mortar location in the Ballard neighborhood, offering a wider range of Filipino-flavored baked goods and pastries. In 2019, the couple opened Hood Famous Cafe + Bar in the International District, expanding their offerings to Filipino snack items, coffee, and cocktails. At Hood Famous, Amlag and Quibuyen continue to educate the Seattle community on Filipino cuisine and culture.