The Opening of Hulk Hogan’s Pastamania Restaurant at the Mall of America (1995)
On Labor Day of 1995, Hulk Hogan opened his Pastamania Restaurant at the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota. Just a few months before this opening I made my first visit to this gigantic mall. Sadly it was nowhere near the Labor Day launch of Pastamania or I would have extended my trip to witness this historical moment.
Luckily for us, the WCW was there to capture the moment for prosperity.
In this clip, Eric Bischoff interviews Hogan and gets the Hulk’s fans all worked up for this new restaurant.
We then move to Mall’s rotunda where Macho Man Randy Savage, Hulk and Jimmy Hart gets even more people worked up for pasta. All of this leading up to an unfilmed, but I imagine truly epic pasta eating contest.
I am not sure why, but I always figured Hogan would not take up the mantle of pasta. I always pictured the Hulkster being obsessed with something like baked chicken. I guess I am just projecting my own wrestling food fantasies.
Now I am going to off on a tangent here. Why did Chef Boyardee never make a wrestling themed pasta? It seems such a natural fit that I was sure that it had been made, but I can’t find a hint of it online. So again, me with my wrestling food fantasies.
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Curious what the “restaurant” served up? Well, someone has posted a menu from the opening along with some Hulk shaped pasta. The menu is short and appears to have been hand drawn.
Prices seem reasonable for mall food pasta. I especially like that you can get your food delivered anywhere in the mall. So if you are riding the sweet roller coaster in the mall, some delicious Pasta Mexicana could be waiting for you when you finish.
Watch the opening of “Hulk Hogan’s Pastamania” at the Mall of America
Only a few months after opening, Pastamania shut off its microwaves for good. It’s hard to get into the restaurant game and even wrestling legends can’t sustain a business for long on pure force of charisma and hype.