I was quite surprised that Pink's, the Hollywood Hotdog Legend, decided to set up shop here in Manila. Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining. I love me a good hotdog, but I always thought of it as more of a "Mom and Pop Hotdog Stand" than an international restaurant chain. Being a lover of comfort food, I was fully aware of the legend of Pink's in Los Angeles. During my 2014 trip to L.A., I made it a point to visit to stop by for a hotdog at Pink's, as soon as I realized there was a stand at Universal Studios, which we were visiting that day.
I was impressed with the juicy, meatiness of the hotdog, especially that gorgeous snap that came with every bite. Finally, Pink's opened at Shangri-la Hotel at The Fort, and I finally got around to visiting, together with Rina and Rain!
I was actually supposed visit Pink's days earlier, but my wife is an absolute Hotdog Fanatic, and she could very well have considered my going to Pink's without her as a grounds for annulment. I can imagine it now..
Rina: What's that I smell on you?
Me: Fine I admit it, I'm cheating on you with another woman!
Rina: You liar!! YOU WENT TO PINK'S WITHOUT ME, DIDN'T YOU?? ADMIT IT! HOW COULD YOU DO THIS TO ME? HOW CAN I EVER TRUST YOU AGAIN???
What got her interested in Pink's in particular, was this scene from one of Rain's favorite movies, The Muppets.
After seeing that, she was sold hehe
Despite its posh surroundings, Pink's Manila tries to capture the low brow, unpretentious feel of its U.S. counterpart, by coming up with a casual yet clean, Sports Bar-meets-picnic style dining area. The open kitchen allows you to watch your dog being assembled during your short wait.
The menu selection is no way near as extensive as that of the United States, however the selection is interesting enough for you to want to come back a couple of more times to try the other items. I'm hoping as they go along, Pink's will continue to add more items to their line up of Hotdogs! I may have a few suggestions.. hehe..
I was a little taken aback when the server began pour liquid from a San Miguel Grande bottle into my glass in which I was saving for my water. As it turns out, this is what Pink's Manila uses instead of "Pitchers". Being a non-drinker, it helped me look a little more bad ass. (I need all the help I can get)
Rina felt a little adventurous and decided to try one of their Home Made Sodas, namely the Crimson Berry Soda (P140), which was refreshing and delicious. It had the right amount of sweetness, and the fruity flavor kept you wanting more.
Shakes from The Farmacy are also available!
Pink's Homemade French Fries (P140) are outstanding. They were cooked perfectly, with the edges giving off a light crunch, while retaining a delicate softness of potato, and it was seasoned beautifully. The perfect companion to your hotdog.
Pink's Onion Rings (P190) are also a thing of beauty. Lightly coated in a golden batter, the star of the show is the onion itself, which has a gentle innate sweetness that made eating only one a true test of will power...
Which I failed hehe. Not to mention it was even better with the mayo sauce that it came with!
For my baby Rain, I got her the simple, no frills Naked Dog (P280), so she can dress up the all beef hotdog, tucked between a freshly baked bun, with her choice of Ketchup and/or Mustard.
Rina had locked on to the Chili Dogs for months now, so without hesitation, she ordered The Hollywood Legend (P280).
The All Beef Hotdog is topped in Pink's Famous Chili Sauce, and sprinkled with shredded Cheddar Cheese, then drizzled with a bit of mustard for some tanginess, and peppered with chopped onions. I never tried the one from Pink's L.A., so I can't compare, but this was a pretty damn good Chili Dog.
I made a huge mistake when I ordered the Breakfast Dog (P280), by inexplicably switching my All beef dog to a Bratwurst (for an added P30 to boot!). The Breakfast dog tops your dog with Bacon, bits of crispy fried potatoes, scrambled eggs, Cheddar cheese and a drizzling of Hollandaise sauce and Ketchup.
This was actually really good as well, however I highly recommend you stick to the all beef dog!!
Since Pink's Manila is the newest member of the WildFlour group, I knew I would regret passing on dessert, which is why I decided to end our meal with the Banana Cream Pie, and it was magnificent. Apart from that, you may also order and Apple Pie or Coconut Pie, or even order Ice Cream from The Farmacy!
On the whole, my family enjoyed our first ever Pink's Manila experience together. The service was excellent, as the attendants were incredibly attentive and courteous, while the food was delivered to us in a timely manner.
My main issue with Pink's Manila, is the price. I'm not one to tell someone else what is or what is not worth it, as taste is subjective, and what may be expensive to someone, may be well within the budget of another. However, considering that my total bill for 3 hotdogs, 1 fries, 1 onion rings, a banana cream pie and a soda was over P1,700, I couldn't help but think that that was a pretty steep "Family Merienda", especially when you have places like Lazy Bastard that sells exceptional Hotdogs for P200 and less.
Don't get me wrong.. I don't think P280 is too huge an amount to pay for a Hotdog, however what would have made this more reasonable, was if it came with a small side of fries.
So basically, my suggestion to Pink's Manila, is to come up with a "Combo Meal" Price, so the prices don't look too outrageous. (But that's just me)
I'll be back to try the other dogs soon!
Shangri-la, The Fort
Bonifacio Global City
PINK'S MANILA MENU