Patrons mourn passing of Colette, inspiration behind famous buko pie

September 14, 2021 - 2:45 PM

The reported death of the namesake of a famous buko pie that started out in Laguna was mourned by patrons of the traditional pastry-style, coconut-filled snack.

Manila Bulletin columnist and blogger Tonyo Cruz on Monday shared that Colette dela Cruz, daughter of the entrepreneur who started the Colette’s Buko Pie at Pasalubong business, has succumbed to COVID-19 on Sunday night.

The buko pie chain is famous for being a “pasalubong” or a gift that can be given to family and friends back home when one travels.

Branches of Colette’s can be seen along the highways of Tagaytay and Laguna to cater to Manila-bound passengers. It has branches in the metro as well.

According to Cruz, Colette became their editor and friend in UPLB Perspective, the official student publication of the University of the Philippines-Los Baños.

He said that Colette graduated with a degree in food technology, went abroad and then returned to the Philippines.

Cruz added that Colette also became a part-time owner of Hiraya Bakery which she helped put up.

“Na-ICU si Colette at na-intubate last week. Lumaban siya hanggang naging ok para ilipat sa regular hospital room. Kagabi, nagulat kami na pumanaw na siya. Wala na ngayong nanay ang anak niya, at naulila sa mahal na anak ang magulang niya, at malungkot ang maraming tao. Kami din,” the columnist tweeted.

Colette’s Bukopie Manila extended their prayers and sympathy for the Dela Cruz family following Colette’s demise.

Patrons of the family’s buko pie business likewise mourned Colette’s passing and expressed their gratitude for how their staples have made an impact on them.

“Ang lungkot. I live abroad and yesterday bumili ako ng ingredients / materials to replicate their buko pie this week. ‘Di ko alam ganito mangyayari sa kanya,” wrote another Reddit user with a sad face emoticon.

“RIP (Rest in Peace). As a fellow food technologist and taga-LB din, nakakahinayang ‘yung nangyari. Madami pa sana siya maitutulong sa food industry,” a different Redditor commented.

“Ayan pa naman ‘yung first buko pie na kinain ko since bata pa ako… Condolence though….” wrote another Reddit user.

“Oh, those childhood memories of my first bite of buko pie from Colette’s… RIP and thank you for the buko pies…” a different Redditor likewise shared.

“I still remember this when I was a kid, as in EVERY outing, dito talaga si mommy nabili ng delicacies. Fave ko espasol dito, sobraaang sarap! No cap. Deepest condolences to the family,” a Filipino from Twitter wrote with a sad emoticon.

“Their buko pie is one of a kind, hinahanap-hanap ko ‘to when we are going to Los Baños or Tagaytay. Eternal rest grant unto her, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon her. May she rest in peace,” another Twitter user said.

The buko pie business by Colette’s family was started by her father, Plaridel, who opened it after being released from detention during the Martial Law era for activism.

He and his wife opened the first Colette’s branch with a P5,000 capital in San Pablo, Laguna.

“Noong panahon kasi na ‘yun, si Colette ay nag-aaral ng high school sa UP Los Baños. Malimit kaming pumupunta roon. Malakas na ang buko pie nu’n sa Los Banos,” Plaridel shared in a 2015 interview.

“Mine-maintain namin ‘yung quality, hindi nababago. Kung ano ‘yung nasimulan namin na timpla, ganoon pa din, hindi nagbabago hanggang ngayon,” he said before.