Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Pink Panda: Perfect Pica-Pica Pleasures

Wazzup Pilipinas!

I rarely write about buffet or pica-pica food served during  media events but after recently attending one at this restaurant called Pink Panda South East Asian Diner, I really have to make an exception.

We were served with delightful pica-pica food that were totally sumptuous, that I found myself askin for more from the waitress to the point of calling their attention even from afar.

It was an afternoon event so snacks were expected but I was surprised that they made it a pica-pica style of serving where servers carry around trays of pica-pica food that you can grab from them while you're seated.

I was not really hungry that time since I just had lunch earlier, but after tasting the food especially their Chicken Sate, all I could say was "Wow! I have to eat more of these!"

Later, a few minutes after the event ended, a good looking guy walked into the restaurant and proceeded directly to the counter area to talk with some of the crew. From there I realized he must be one of the owners for he looks too charming to be one of the crew.

My hunch was right, for he was celebrity Erwan Heussaff, most widely known as the brother of actress Solenn Heussaff.

The Pink Panda is located at the ground floor of Y2 Residences Hotel just beside the A. Venue Mall in Makati Avenue. It's also across the MNL Hostel that's designed for backpackers and travelers on a budget.


It is uncanny though that they have two empty aquariums upon entering the establishment. They should put something swimming there to make it look more attractive and useful.

The bar was getting ready for the event as I could see a few glasses being filled with Iced Tea already. You'll notice how presentable the bartender is, or is he what you call now as a "mixologist" that prepares your exceptional drinks designed to please you.

Chopsticks placed in cylindrical containers like glasses indicates this must be an Asian-inspired restaurant. It was only later when I got the full name of Pink Panda South East Asian Diner that I've managed to read somewhere in the restaurant.

Not all tables were identical in design but similar in shape so they could easily rearrange depending on the size of the group or the event.

I think those are real live plants hanging on their walls. It must be a bit hard watering them.

The ceiling was a cool display of artistic ingenuity. A few bluish LED lights adds style to the overall look and feel.

They even have a vintage bicycle hanging in one part of the ceiling as part of the decorative appeal of the place. They also have native Asian hats on the walls including the ones at the entrance.

A few of these iconic toys were on display as conversational pieces. I don't really have an idea what they are but they seem to make the place look more interesting.


The restaurant has a seemingly small function room that's separated from the main dining area. This was the area used by the organizers of the event, which was the launch of Red Turnip Theater's Time Stand Still, their season ender production.

Fried Spring Rolls

Pica-pica simply means finger food or if you want to be fancy, hors d’oeuvre. These are food that you can practically eat using your fingers, or if you're really too fancy and delicate, maybe using a toothpick.

They served the pica-pica one kind at a time so it took a while before I was able to have a few of them on my plate. Later I asked them to kindly serve me a plate containing all the kinds of pica-pica they served so I can take a good photo for my blog.

I don't really remember each name since I was planning to ask them the list of names and prices after the event but when I saw Erwan Heussaff, I've forgotten all about that damn list I wanted to have. Maybe I was just a bit starstruck seeing the guy. Thoughts of having my picture taken with him came into mind but I was simply too shy to give in to that desire.

Chicken Sate
The presentation of the Chicken Sate was sensational! You can see from the photo above that is made the dish more appetizing to try as you'd be tempted to find out what's in store for you after having your first bite of the Chicken Sate.

Fortunately, it was not spicy at all. I'm not sure if the chili was an option to add some spice to the Chicken Sate but I definitely got so interested with the food. Creativity at its best!
Iced Tea
 The Iced Tea is noticeably a higher level than the ordinary. You'll want to make this a bottomless option since it was really good.

Spring Roll
The Fried Spring Roll is as yummy as it looks. With all those itsy-bitsy pieces of ingredients satisfying the palate especially after dipping it in its special sauce, this will soon become a favorite of everyone who'll visit the restaurant for the first time..

Pink panda Siopao
So they have a food mascot in the form of a Pink Panda Siopao that was probably "bola-bola" after I bit on it. I had to grab another one, and another one to tame the wild beast that was yearning for more in my stomach.

Spice up your life
A bit spicy but tolerable. It's like a perfect shot to heat you up for a few minutes. An amazing mild concoction pf spiciness that you can feel flowing down your throat.

Beef Rendang
This was said to be Beef Rendang but I'm not really sure. I forgot the actual name of this delectable piece of culinary treat. I probably had around 5 of these little delicious beauties.

Chicken Sate
The Chicken Sate, as stated earlier, was heavenly! I could eat this all day without getting bored of its flavorful taste. I've tasted several dishes from other restaurants and this is undeniably the best one so far.

Panda Balls

The Panda Balls were for dessert. It may contain chocolate or peanut butter, and maybe other stuff possible. I only got to taste the ones with chocolate though it was a bit stingy since it did not totally occupied the hollow Butchi-like treat.

The afternoon was a bit intriguing after the publicist/PR who invited us had to deal with a couple of gatecrashers who tried to sneak in at the event. The two ladies came in one after the other and later we found out that the first lady gatecrasher was the one who invited the second gatecrasher to join her at the event.

I have to compliment the publicist/PR for not allowing them to join the event as many have been doing these atrocities to the disgust and disappointment of many.

The publicist PR writes "It is really very, very important that the publicist knows his/her job from A to Z. During a production's press launch or a preview, it is imperative that a list of media pool is prepared. Invitations are sent accordingly and RSVP's are properly followed. Therefore, the "gatecrasher" will not be allowed entry to the venue for obvious reasons even if a "fake ID" is flashed. And the worse part is when the gatecrasher even invited another co-gatecrasher to attend the same event. There are pseudo writers/con artists who will attempt to gatecrash. Vigilance is the word !!! Always make sure you really know the press personally. It really makes a lot of difference. Integrity is to be upheld at all times to keep your self-respect, honor and dignity."

But the issue was quickly forgotten after I had these delightful pica-pica. Honestly, I've forgotten all about the issue until the PR posted the status pertaining about the issue on his Facebook wall.

I'm really not sure if the gatecrasher was there because they wanted to catch a glimpse of the Time Stands Still launch or they wanted to try the food at Pink Panda - two absolutely great reasons why one wants to be there. But hey! Gatecrashing is bad and only for the desperate!

Thank you Pink Panda South East Asian Diner for the unforgettable and truly blog-worthy food! I'll be surely coming back for more! Maybe I will get the chance to update this blog with the detailed names and prices after I visit the restaurant again.

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