Duterte tops ‘pan de sal’ presidential survey
A BAKERY on Judge Jimenez Street in Quezon City has come up with a novel way of measuring the popularity of each presidential candidate by encouraging its patrons to buy the pan de sal named after them.
There is the Pan de Duterte—a spicy burger served in a pugon-baked bun—which comes with hot chocolate from Davao, where Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte hails from.
Pan de Poe, on the other hand, is a corned beef pan de sal sandwich, corned beef being a staple of American culture, said writer and entrepreneur Wilson Lee Flores, owner of Kamuning Bakery Cafe, referring to Sen. Grace Poe’s former status as an American citizen. Each Pan de Poe comes with a cup of Kape Mocha.
On the other hand, the Pan de Binay, for Vice President Jejomar Binay, is all-Filipino: a longganisa pan de sal sandwich served with brewed coffee.
Healthy eaters’ choice
For healthier options, there is the Pan de Miriam of Sen. Miriam Santiago. It is a tuna pan de sal sandwich paired with Kape Latte, while the Pan de Roxas, for former Interior Secretary Mar Roxas, is a chicken pan de sal sandwich served with Kape Americano.
Flores, who hosts the regular “Pandesal Forum” at the bakery, said the gimmick was not just aimed at boosting sales.
“It’s our way of conducting an informal survey on who is the most popular candidate. We also want to encourage people to discuss the elections and for them to vote,” he said in a recent interview.
The sandwiches cost around P150 to P165 each.
Flores, citing the stories of his staff, noted that customers tend to choose their bread, not by its filling but by the name of the candidate it represents.
“They would be surprised to find out that the Pan de Duterte would be a burger pan de sal, or the Pan de Roxas is a chicken pan de sal. Some choose based on the name of the candidate,” he said.
Flores noted that politics was a popular topic across all social classes and he wanted more people to engage in discussions on the candidates and their platform.
Customers can buy their favorite pan de sal as many times as they want. Each sandwich means a vote for their preferred candidate.
Although the “voting” began last week, Flores noted that sales have gone up by around 30 percent in the past days.
The question, of course, is who is leading in the so-called “Presidential Pan de sal Survey?”
Flores himself was surprised that the “topnotcher” so far was the Pan de Duterte, which had 18 votes, followed by the Pan de Binay with 11 votes.
The Pan de Poe came in third at 10 votes, while the Pan de Roxas had six votes. The Pan de Miriam was last at four votes.
The bakery also offers an alternative for customers who cannot decide on which candidate they want to “vote” for—
there is the Pan de Nada, a ham and egg pan de sal sandwich paired with brewed coffee.
So far, four customers have opted to stay neutral, ordering the Pan de Nada.
Flores added that while Philippine elections tend to be noisy, heated and at times dirty and violent, this does not always have to be the case.
“I think we want to remind Filipinos, especially our politicians, to have a good sense of humor while focusing on issues in this democratic exercise,” he said with a laugh.