Brands We Grew Up With as an Ilonggo #2: Love and Kisses

Sep 1, 2012 by

Sprinkle me with Love and Kisses.

Angel Boy Pizza - My Iloilo

One of their Bestselling Pizzas – Angel Boy

While we’re at the subject of nostalgia, allow me to further awaken your sweet memories of the simple life that Iloilo had to offer back in the days. Any true blue Ilonggo would agree that there were only a handful of places for routine celebrations that we go to – and one of them is Love and Kisses Pizza. Myiloilo.net had this wonderful opportunity to interview the current owner and manager of Love and Kisses Pizza, Happy Abonir who delightfully told us about the glorious past of their business. Before the birth of Love and Kisses, there was Happy Go Lucky Pizza. The business was established in 1971 in Manila but a couple of years later, it was brought to Iloilo City by its Ilongga owner – known to many as The Romantic Chef. Happy tells us that her mom was such a romantic that she named her pizza flavors: Angel Boy, Love, Kisses, Simone, Romance, Loverboy, Seduction, and Desire. It was in 1983 when the owners changed its name to Love and Kisses. They opened at Hoskyn’s Compound in the early 1980’s and that’s where they eventually got so popular among the Ilonggos. The business flourished and became so popular in the city. They were the first pizza store to sell by the slice. Love and Kisses became a favorite not only to Ilonggo families but also to young Ilonggo lovers or couples in the 80’s. It was quite a popular place for dating and I can hear some of my friends say amen.

Love and Kisses - My Iloilo

Love Burger with Puso salad (pickled relish)

 

Love and Kisses - My Iloilo

Homemade Pancit Molo. A Must-try.

Right from the start, Love and Kisses’ packaging had the colors blue and orange. When you come to think of it, the colors were quite “loud” for a food business back in the 70’s. But now, we all know that in the psychology of colors – orange stimulates the appetite, hence, it’s widely used in food businesses these days. However when the Value Added Tax was implemented on businesses in the late 1990’s, Love and Kisses experienced a slump and was forced to close down some if its branches including the one in Hoskyn’s Compound. For a period, the business had to lay low. But that didn’t last for long because Love and Kisses got right back on its feet and started to become more aggressive in the business and became visible again.

Love and Kisses Packaging - My Iloilo

New and better packaging for Love and Kisses

 

Love and Kisses store - My Iloilo

The Orange and Blue counter. Sorry for the blur.

The recipe of their pizzas has not changed a bit. They try to improve their pizza, but not too drastically to the point of losing that distinct taste they were identified with right from the start. There’s that taste of nostalgia right in every slice. When Happy was asked what makes their pizza stand out and compete with popular brands, she said that it’s their secret sauce recipe, their handmade, crusty dough, and lots of love sprinkled all over it. Now that’s serious loving that goes straight into your stomach. Their pizzas do not have fancy toppings and yet, I remember how delicious it always was. It’s quite difficult to put into words but one possible reason could be the fact that Love and Kisses had always been a part of our childhood. It reminds us of those happy times as a child when we celebrated birthdays and other special occasions with our loved ones in Love and Kisses. Nostalgia is a gift that doesn’t cost anything but just beautiful memories.

Happy Abonir - My Iloilo

(L-R) My Iloilo’s food taster and Happy Abonir (owner)

Love and Kisses currently has 4 branches around Iloilo City: Jalandoni St., The Atrium, Nelly Garden in Jaro and Plaza Libertad. Aside from their Pizza, their Pancit Molo is also prepared with homemade Molo balls. They also serve Love Burger with Puso salad (pickled relish) grilled on volcanic stones and not charcoal. *This is not a paid advertisement.

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