Hungry as a Hippo: A Burger Joint Review

Are you a burger person? I am not. When I go to a fastfood restaurant, I usually choose the pasta or the rice meal, rarely the burger meal. But I do appreciate a good burger. It’s my carbo of choice when I watch movies.

Here in San Pedro, Laguna we have this burger joint along the national hi-way that I’ve always been curious about. It’s the Hungry Hippo. I wanted to try it for months and only got to do so December. It’s more expensive than Minute Burger or Burger Machine, but definitely worth a try.

The Place

It’s very unassuming to the point of unnoticeable. It has a run-down down look and feel, which might be the reason why there aren’t many customers milling around. A new coat of paint and several comfortable chairs would do wonders for this burger joint.

Hungry hippo san pedro laguna

Took me a while to finish this burger. Worth the wait!

The Food

As expected, there weren’t too many options. But there’s chicken and fish options for those who do not want their 100% pure beef burgers. I ordered their best-selling burger — the one with bacon, lettuce, tomato, and cheese for P120. It’s a big burger, bigger than a McDonald’s quarter pounder. Clearly, it was designed for people with big appetites.

As far as the taste goes, it does fare better than the burgers from Jollibee or McDonald’s. I did have a beef with the bun, though. It’s too “light” for the patty. I would have wanted a bun that’s got more meat into it, metaphorically speaking.

I must mention that I ordered my food to go. I liked the fact that it was wrapped in aluminum foil and not put in a styro box with address labels on it like in some fastfood chains. The packaging kept the heat in and I was able to enjoy a warm burger 20 minutes after I left the store.

The Service

I only two saw four people in the store. One on the kitchen, one on the cash register, and two customers. When I asked the guy on the cash register if the burger I ordered is already a meal, he said YES. So I thought it already has fries and drinks. When I got my meal, it was just the burger. I had to shell out P35 for the a large Coke. The guy should be given a lesson on what a “meal” is.

The Verdict

Hungry Hippo is definitely worth a second visit. I might even go there sometime to do some work since the place looks deserted in the afternoon and I can get some quite time in there.

(Disclaimer: This article originally appeared in my blog, Nica’s Day Out, on February 5, 2011)

CLOSED: Pancit Malabon Express

In December of last year, I eagerly awaited the opening of Pansit Malabon Express near the municipal town hall. The building taking shape loooked awesome — glass windows and bright lights complimented the green, orange and yellow colors of the store. It looked a promising alternative to Jollibee and Chowking, the two other fastfood chains in the town center.


pancit malabon express in san pedro, laguna

Fast forward to yesterday, April 25, 2011, I was shocked to see the joint closed.  There’s a makeshift ukay-ukay blocking the doors and I saw the CLOSED sign behind the clothes’ rack. I walked away shaking my head and wondering what happened.  I was too preoccupied thinking about the why that I forgot to take a picture of the place. But I will definitely take one this week and share it with you guys.


Why, oh, why?!?

Obviously, Pansit Malabon Express didn’t  make enough money to continue its operation. It served good food and San Pedronians are very much into food. It served pansit, BBQ, lumpiang shanghai and other traditional Filipino dishes. So what caused it’s downfall? Then I realized it’s the price. It’s more expensive than local eateries and with many housewives offering pansit on short order for as low as P30, who would want to commute and dine at Pansit Malabon Express?

I just hope that the next business to open on that site would be more successful. But given the fact that the municipal government plans to relocate its main office in a new building in Cataquiz Subdivision, that would be wishful thinking.


Shakey’s Pacita: Serving Hot Pizza 24×7

One of the things that I love about San Pedro is that it never sleeps.  The numerous 24-hour fastfood restaurants in this first class municipality is a testament to that.  We have two  24-hour Jollibee branches, a 24-hour McDonald’s in Elvinda, and, now, we have a 24-hour Shakey’s in Pacita! How cool is that?

pacita complex laguna


I learned about this about three weeks ago when Gabby started taking oil painting lessons with San Pedro’s local artist, Larry Ballesteros, in the first week of April. But according to one of their wait staff, they’ve been serving hot pizza 24×7 to locals since October of 2010. Hmmm.. how come no one told me about this? It doesn’t matter, I am here now and my order of  a regular  Belly Buster just arrived.


Who dines at Pizza Hut at near midnight?

Families! When we walked in, there were four families enjoying their freshly-cooked meals. There’s also a couple on a date seated near the washing area. Two women ( I think they are sisters) in their house clothes just walked in and it seems they’re ready for some  midnight snack.

san pedro laguna


Oh, a group of 10 barkadas just walked in!  (12:08 AM). Obviously I am writing this post while dining at Shakey’s.


Shakey’s Pizzanatic SuperCard

As always, the waiter would ask me if I have a SuperCard. I have thought about getting one before but I don’t eat a lot at Shakey’s since I absolutely love Pizza Hut. But  since I plan on dining here at nights, I think it’s just wise that I get one. Why? Here are the benefits of the Pizzanatic SuperCard:

  • 10% discount on dine-in and take out transcations
  • Free pizza, either Hawaiian Delight or Pepperoni, when you order large or party size pizza, except Classic Cheese and Garlic & Cheese
  • 2 1.5 liters of Coke when you call in for a Grand Slam pizza for delivery
  • Free large Thin Crust Pepperoni pizza when you dine in on your birthday


To get a hold of your own Shakey’s Pizzanatic Supercard, you have to fill out a form and pay a one-time fee of P299. You will be issued a temporary card that you can use on your next visit. The permanent card will be issued to you after three months. This SuperCard is valid for a year and you can use it on any Shakey’s branch around the country.

shakeys loyalty card


Earn Points With Your Shakey’s Pizzanatic Card

Everytime you use your Pizzanatic SuperCard, you will earn points. Guests will earn a point for every P100 purchase. You can use these points on your next dine-in visit.


Watch Out for Carlos

By the way, our server for the night was Carlos.  He’s about 5’8, of average built, and definitely an eye-catcher. My mom called him “pogi.” (LOL). With his good set of teeth, he’s your regular boy next door.  I would have loved to take a picture of him but that would seem too creepy so you just have to dine it late at night if you want to see him. :)