Landers superstore just recently opened its first two branches in the Philippines, one in Quezon City and the other in Manila. Nestled inside the old Coca-Cola bottlers plant in Manila (beside Malacanang Park), this mega store exudes the aura of large American supermarkets: large open parking, a huge signage announcing its presence, and towers of merchandise reaching up the ceiling. But I did not go to Landers for groceries, I came to this superstore for its food.
Since I’ve been to SnR’s food court countless of times, plus their pizza being the go-to party meal for my students, I’ve always enjoyed their offerings. Their pizza, though oily, always hits the sweet spot of comfort junk food. While their fries are always thickly cut, not too oily, and paired with SnR’s mayonnaise, were my main staples in every visit. Would Landers be any different?
Notwithstanding the colds I had last Friday night, I still ordered two slices of pizza: Pepperoni and Manhattan and I was prepared to dig in. First things first, the pizzas are huge and it was glistening with tomato sauce, cheese, and a huge amount of pepperoni scattered everywhere. The Manhattan pizza, an all-meat pizza, was filled with the usual trappings of green pepper, beef chunks, and cheese. All in all, these were the pizzas I had been ordering in SnR since time immemorial, would the experience be the same?
With or without my colds, I would say that Landers pizza is good but it doesn’t tickle my tastebuds as much. Sure the pizzas aren’t as oily as the ones in SnR (which is good), but it lacked flavor and was actually bland in some parts. I could taste the cheese and all the meats, but it needed a little mayo or ketchup or even hot sauce (which by the way was really hot!) just to spice things up (pun unintended). The saving grace in this pizza was, after two slices I didn’t feel like I ate three or four slices, it must be the crust or something else, but I still had space for some more. On the other hand, Landers’ fries were ok, the serving size was good, but after awhile it got soggy and since they were shoestring-sized I ended up eating more than my fill. You are better off ordering large McDonald’s fries, you’ll get more value and flavor at the same time.
So who was the winner in my whole Landers Central trip? It would have to be the dessert. With my stomach not so full yet and my throat not yet aching, I took the plunge and ordered a cup of Doopio’s white pistachio ice cream. And I would say that this would have to be the best supermarket-bought ice cream I’ve ever tasted. Most pistachio ice creams would skimp on the nuts, either finely chopped or barely bite-sized pieces, the one in Doopio was overflowing with pistachios. Largely, soft, milky, and that heavenly taste would have made me come back for more, and I would have gladly spent another Php. 90 if it weren’t for my full stomach and my now sandpaper-like throat.
The verdict? Go to Landers Central for a new experience, go to Landers to shop, but go back to SnR since their pizzas are still delicious and affordable, each item on the menu costs around Php. 10 more here than in SnR.
Landers Superstore may be found in Balintawak, Quezon City and Paco, Manila
Open daily from 9am-9pm.