|Prosciutto Pizza from California Pizza Kitchen. Photo: Handout
MANILA, Philippines – California Pizza Kitchen (CPK) has declared August 15 as the Philippines’ “National Pizza Day” and is set to celebrate the occasion by launching a new menu and by giving away free pizza to its customers.
The date also happens to coincide with the opening of the first CPK restaurant in the country by the chain’s local franchise, Global Restaurant Concepts Inc. (GRCI).
Archie Rodriguez, president and chief executive officer of GRCI, said CPK is now on its 15th year in the Philippines.
He said customers who will order a regular or thin-crust pizza at the restaurant on August 15 will get another pizza for free.
“Fifteen years is a triumph in itself,” he said.
CPK will also launch new dishes on National Pizza Day, among them the Prosciutto Pizza (Italian prosciutto with fresh arugula, mozzarella, shaved Parmesan and sliced tomatoes on a caramelized thin crust), and Vegetarian Pizza (grilled eggplant, fresh button mushrooms, red onion, sundried tomatoes, roasted corn, broccoli, goat cheese and pine nuts on a marinara sauce and mozzarella thin crust).
Other dishes include the Lasagna Milanese, Black Seafood Pomodoro, Mu Shu Chicken Calzone, Cheese Steak Sandwich, Fried Mozzarella Sticks, Quesadilla, Spinach with Gorgonzola and Asian Chicken Wrap.
Asked to describe the menu, Rodriguez said: “They are all amazing global-inspired dishes with a California twist. They are dishes that are familiar to our market, but innovative in their own way.
“We want to surprise people who are trying CPK for the first time, and also surprise our regular long-time guests.”
Filipinos are widely known as lovers of pizza, an oven-baked treat that originated in Italy.
Several eateries have created their own versions of the Italian classic through the years, with toppings ranging from bagnet (twice deep-fried pork belly, a delicacy in Ilocos) and longganisa (Filipino sausage).
Another restaurant, The Old Spaghetti House, is offering “unlimited” servings of pizza in Hawaiian and pepperoni and cheese flavors on top of its bottomless pasta dishes at P199 per person.
Last June, local pizza chain Greenwich unveiled a flag-inspired giant pizza in Tarlac. It had a diameter of 18 feet, and was made of different types of cheese, premium meat and fresh vegetables.
CPK has branches at Glorietta 3, Alabang Town Center, Shangri-La Plaza Mall, Greenhills Promenade, Trinoma, Power Plant Mall and Greenbelt 5.