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Shake Shack burgers first branch ever in the Philippines opens May 10

The Manila menu of Shake Shack

No need to go abroad for some Shake Shack burgers – first branch ever in the Philippines opens May 10

Manila, Philippines — I never had the fortune of trying out Shake Shack burgers abroad, but all agree, it’s one of the best burgers out there.

I was skeptical at first. Are the burgers really that good?

My own sister’s face contorted in disbelief when learning that I wasn’t even aware of the existence of Shake Shack before.

Guests at the exclusive pre-opening food tasting at Shake Shack in Central Square, BGC.
Guests at the exclusive pre-opening food tasting at Shake Shack in Central Square, BGC.

“People would line up for their burgers in New York,” she told me when I shared to her that I will be attending the exclusive media tasting of the first Shake Shack branch in the Philippines.

“Bring back some burgers if you can,” she told me, with a hint of jealousy in her tone. I was intrigued and excited to try these fabled burgers out.

Exclusive Tasting

#TeamOutofTown was recently invited to the exclusive menu reveal of Shake Shack, which opens in Central Square Mall, BGC, on May 10. Mark your calendar down folks. The burger joint is directly accessed thru the front doors of the posh mall and has an open, modern interior aesthetic.

Interiors of Shake Shack Burgers Philippines
Interiors of Shake Shack Burgers Philippines

Inside, the restaurant’s interiors are arranged in a no-frills manner – wide dining tables, comfy chairs, and a long counter. From the counter, customers can also espy the busy kitchen crew, preparing the famed burgers of Shake Shack.

The counters in Shake Shack
The counters in Shake Shack

In the media event, the whole Shake Shack international crew was on hand to welcome guests to the first branch in the Philippines. Notably, the culinary director of Shake Shack himself, Mark Rosati, was on hand to answer questions from the media, and to also introduce each of the dishes to the hungry guests.

Rosati is in the islands to guide and oversee the grand opening on May 10. To ensure everything is up to the standards of the international brand.

Mark Rosati explaining to guests the history and dishes of Shake Shack.
Mark Rosati explaining to guests the history and dishes of Shake Shack.

When serving the dishes to the media, Rosati recounted how Shake Shack began, “Few people know, but Shake Shack began with our Chicago-style hotdogs.”

This is the Shack-cago Dog, known by foodies for its unique taste derived from its simple ingredients – tomato, pepper, celery, pickle, onions, relish, cucumber, mustard, and salt.

The author, holding the fame ShackBurger.
The author, holding the fame ShackBurger.

The hotdogs were the first to be served, and the first bite was scrumptious. Sweet, sour, with a hint of spiciness – a whole cacophony of flavors filled our tongues. But also, there was a bit of a familiar taste to it as well; a quality which I can’t really put my finger on.

Suffice it to say, when you all taste the Shack-cago Dog, you’ll be brought back to the taste of your favorite childhood hotdog bun.

ShackBurgers with wine. Because wine not?
ShackBurgers with wine. Because wine not?

Next served was our absolute favorite – the ShackBurger. I’ll just go out and say it. It’s one of the best burgers I ever tasted. And for the price point of Php 250, the flagship burger of Shake Shack is an absolute GO.

The ShackBurger’s ingredients are simple – burger patty, cheese, tomato, and some secret ShackSauce. The burgers are juicy, savory, and thick, and the ShackSauce has a tangy-sweet flavor which compliments well the salty notes of the beef. When going to Shake Shack on May 10, be sure to try out this item, or you can’t say you had the complete ‘Shack experience.

The Shroom Burger
The Shroom Burger

We also tried the ‘Shroom Burger – Crisp-fried portobello mushroom filled with melted muenster and cheddar cheese, topped with lettuce, tomato, and ShackSauce. Be careful when trying this one out – the patty is filled with gooey hot filling. It’s good, and meat-free!

Shake Shack also has some exclusive Philippine items:

The Ube Shake, featuring vanilla frozen custard ice cream blended with ube and hand-spun to order, is a Shack take on the classic flavor found all over the Philippines.

For a local twist on a Shack classic lemonade, the Calamansi Limeade offers the perfect combination of sweet and tart with the beloved calamansi as the star of the show.

The exclusive menu will feature three unique concretes (frozen custard ice cream made in-Shack every day, then blended with mix-ins featuring iconic Filipino flavors or local bakers and artisans). Concretes include:

Uuuube-by baby – Vanilla custard mixed with ube, coconut marshmallow, ube cookie, toasted coconut, and crispy pinipig. Topped with leche flan. Oooooh baby baby!

Shack Attack – Chocolate custard mixed with Bucky’s original brownie, Auro chocolate chunks, Shack fudge sauce, and chocolate sprinkles. A Manila spin on a Shack classic, this concrete proudly features chocolate brownies from Bucky’s, and 55% cacao chocolate from local bean-to-bar Auro chocolate.

Calamansi Pie Oh My – Vanilla custard mixed with calamansi pie from the local favorite Wildflour Bakery.

“As we spent time exploring the unique and eclectic landscape that is Filipino cuisine, we were inspired by the flavors and artisans we met along the way and by the food that they’re passionate about,” said Mark Rosati.

“From halo halo, lechon, adobo and garlic rice to calamansi and ube in every imaginable form, Manila is serious about its love for great food and ingredients!  We’re thrilled to introduce our Manila-exclusive menu that features just a few of the flavors and ingredients we fell in love with, and are humbled to become part of this vibrant community.”

The Manila menu of Shake Shack
The Manila menu of Shake Shack

Are you ready to shake up Manila? The very first Shake Shack in the Philippines opens on May 10, 11:00am at Central Square in Bonifacio High Street at Bonifacio Global City along Fifth Avenue. The first 100 guests in line will snag some cool Shack swag, and fun activities are planned starting at 9am before the restaurant opens at 11am.

Specialty Food Retailers, Inc. (SFRI) is the exclusive franchise holder of Shake Shack in the Philippines. SFRI is a member of the SSI Group.  Follow @shakeshackph and @ssilifeph on Instagram and Facebook for more information.

Also see: Shake Shack Comes to the Philippines this 2019, Invites Pinoys to Guess the store location to Win Shake Shack Swag and Tickets for Launch Party

Written by Lian Rodriguez

The author has been writing stories since high school, where he was the layout artist, and then eventually the features editor for the school paper. He studied Interdisciplinary Studies at the Ateneo de Manila University, concentrating on Literature and Communication. He currently writes for numerous publications, notably for the Lifestyle section of the Philippine Daily Inquirer, and for the magazines Metro Home and Entertaining and Metro Society. He enjoys reading, traveling, and good food.

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