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Oct 04th
Home Columns San Diego Happenings Mayor Morrison and City Officials Launch the “Obama Pan de Sal”
Mayor Morrison and City Officials Launch the “Obama Pan de Sal” PDF Print E-mail
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Columns - San Diego Happenings
Wednesday, 14 January 2009 14:15

T he "Obama Pan de Sal," a newly-created Filipino bread made from 100-percent whole wheat flour, will debut publicly on the day its namesake President takes office next week. The California mayor who calls his city the "unofficial overseas capital of the Philippines" will officiate and will be joined by the first Filipino to be promoted assistant chief of San Diego Police. Hardly a month old, the Obama Pan de Sal is already quite a big hit among Filipino and non-Filipino customers of the bakery of its birthplace. The "Obama Pan de Sal" creator, while delighted with the warm reception accorded the product, is taking everything in stride.


'Obama Pan de Sal' Takes Center Stage as Its Namesake President Assumes Office Next Week  


By Romeo P. Marquez



T he mayor who refers to his city as the "unofficial overseas capital of the Philippines" and the highest-ranking Filipino officer in the San Diego police are among the top officials who will officiate at the formal launching of the "Obama Pan de Sal" on the day the 44th President of the United States takes office.

The author is a member, Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE), Asian-American Journalists Association (AAJA) and the National Press Club of the Philippines-USA.

As the popularity of the bread spreads from its birthplace at The Original Richard's Bakery in National City to across the US, the Philippines and to as far as England, its creator, businesswoman and baker Ms. Wilma Fernandez Ventura, decided to time its public debut with the inauguration of President-elect Barack Obama on Tuesday, January 20.


Mayor Ron Morrison of the City of National City will cut the ceremonial ribbon at simple ceremonies at 9:00 a.m. at the bakery storefront at the Nordan Plaza structure on 3400 E. Eighth St., Suite 114, National City, CA. 91950.


He will be joined by Filipino-American Assistant San Diego Police Chief Cesar Solis, Councilmember Rosalie Zarate, Dr. Riz Oades, Ms. Ditas Yamane and other Filipino-American community leaders.


PHILIPPINE VILLAGE VOICE - Redefining Community News
BREAKING NEWS -  Exclusive
Volume 3, Issue No. 1 / News Without Fear or Favor /

A community service of San Diego's Philippine Village Voice ( or at 619.265.0611) for the information and better understanding of the public . . .


Mayor Morrison has bestowed the title "unofficial capital of the Philippines" on National City, San Diego's neighbor to the south, because of its huge number of Filipino residents -- 18 percent of the population. It's also the hub of Filipino commercial and business activities.


The Obama Pan de Sal was created by Ms. Ventura to celebrate and honor the first African American to rise to the US presidency. "It's also my tribute to our own diversity," she said in an earlier interview.


The bakery has received its very first order from out of state, in Chicago, Illinois, specifically. There, writer Lourdes Ceballos emailed an order worth $30 of Obama Pan de Sal and presented them as her holiday gift to some relatives in Chula Vista, California.




A Filipino community leader in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Ernesto Gange, has suggested sending a couple of bags of Obama Pan de Sal to the White House's Filipino Executive Chef, Ms. Cristeta Comerford so she can introduce the bread to the Obama family.



Pan de sal (bread with salt) is practically the national bread of the Philippines. It's a basic staple food, next to rice.


Ms. Ventura has created two versions of the Obama Pan de Sal. One is the Classic Obama, actually bite-size rolls that sells for $2.99 per bag of 15. The other is the Obama Chicken, a bun stuffed with chicken adobo, cream cheese, sweet peas, raisin and carrots, and sells for $1.75 apiece.


This Breaking News was sent by Romeo P. Marquez, editor, Philippine Village Voice, San Diego, California. Mailing address: P.O. Box 2118, La Jolla, CA. 92038. Volume 3, Issue no. 1.

Because the bread is made from 100-percent whole wheat flour, it's healthy and the natural color is brown. That prompted Ms. Ventura to name it after Mr. Obama, who is lean and brown-complexioned – qualities that she said epitomize good health.


Ms. Ventura's "discovery" of the Obama Pan de Sal was by accident. She had left unattended several trays of pan de sal in her oven and overcooked them by 10 minutes. The result was pan de sal "roasted to perfection" as she puts it.


That gave her the idea. She changed from regular flour to 100 percent wheat flour and achieved the desired brown that wheat naturally gives off. In no time, the Obama Pan de Sal was born.


Inquiries may be directed at The Original Richard's Bakery at phone number 619.472.1530 or email at


The public is invited to the ceremonies. # # #


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Last Updated on Friday, 16 January 2009 06:03
Comments (1)
1 Saturday, 14 November 2009 09:34
Hi Romy,

The truth was that I had gobbled Obama Pandesal -- without even noticing the "mole" in it, as Yoly mentioned. My kumpadre from San Diego, on two separate occasions brought home to me bags of the pandesal. Oh, it's the best pandesal, I've ever tasted. That's without exaggeration!

Thanks to your Ms. Wilma Fernandez.Ventura and those other San Diego Filipino entrepreneurs who continue to "enrich" our ethnicity, while at the same time making honest money in their novel endeavors.


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