Thursday, March 25, 2004

Spam You!

Ah, the wonderful world of spam. I'm sure some of you have seen their store in Glorietta 4 in Makati City. Well, looks like Reuters did to. (Found via Nicholas Liu's blog.)

Pythonesque Manila Diner Serves Spam, Spam, Spam

MANILA (Reuters) - Spamburgers, Spam nuggets, Spam Spaghetti, Caesar salad with Spam, Spam and eggs: the menu at the Spamjam restaurant in Manila could be straight out of the Monty Python sketch.

"I'm a Spam lover," said Philip Abadilla, who opened the world's first Spam restaurant in December. "It's always on my mind."

While the canned luncheon meat will forever be ridiculed by fans of the British comedians, it is a much loved staple in the Philippines.

Filipinos eat 2.75 million pounds of the stuff every year, and woe betide anyone arriving from the United States who doesn't bring a few cans for their relatives.

"It appeals to my taste buds," said Aris Yambao, a 28-year-old advertising executive on his second visit to the red, yellow and blue restaurant in one of Manila's enormous shopping malls.

Yambao was one of just eight people in the half-full diner Thursday at lunchtime, but Abadilla said he gets up to 300 customers a day and is in negotiations to open two further branches.

First produced in 1937 by Hormel Foods Corp of the United States, Spam became an institution during World War II.

It gave its name to junk e-mail because of the singing Vikings in the Monty Python sketch, who kept drowning out a waitress offering dishes such as spam, egg, spam, spam, bacon and spam.

Hormel, whose Philippine venture helped Abadilla set up Spamjam, is hoping to take the restaurant to other countries.

For people who don't like Spam, such as the female customer played by Graham Chapman in the sketch, the menu also offers hot dogs.

To which the Spam-loving waitress played by Terry Jones would have said: "Urgghh!"

Strangely enough, I like mine toasted on bread with lots and lots of ketchup (or is that catsup?).

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