I couldn’t leave The Philippines without having had a short visit to one of the many Jollibees in The Philippines. The picture above is from a Jollibee in the center of Cebu City, but it wasn’t the one that I had visited earlier that day. I went to the Jollibee that is located at The Terraces in the Ayala Center Cebu which was conveniently next to my hotel. I still wanted to add this picture so that you can have an idea of what Jollibee is, and how it looks like.
I ordered a 1 piece Chickenjoy value meal which is a menu consisting out of one piece of chicken served with a drink of your choice, a cup of Jollibee sauce and a side meal which could have been spaghetti bolognese, rice or, what I ordered, palabok fiesta.
The chicken was fried until it was perfectly crisp and it was still tender and juicy on the inside. Having eaten fried chicken from different fast-food chains before, I must say that this one stood out not because of the way it was spiced, but because of how the chicken tasted: it tasted real. Not some fabricated semi-chicken, but it tasted like real, juicy chicken.
My chosen side dish: palabok fiesta was the thing I anticipated the most at forehand, because I ordered it without knowing what it was. It turned out to be (quote from their website): “Premium bihon noodles served with mouth-watering palabok sauce and toppings of pork chicaron bits, tinapa flakes, sauteed pork, shrimps, and slices of egg.”
A very strange, but good tasting combination it was. Especially the topping of pork chicaron bits. That stuff is heavenly! It is fried skin and fat of a pig and I can assure that that is the good stuff. Crunchy and full of taste.
At first my brother didn’t want to eat something since we just had lunch, but after seeing my Chickenjoy meal he couldn’t resist ordering some Chicken Nugget Crunchers. If we have to believe Jollibee, they are not your regular chicken nuggets (quote): “Chicken Nugget Crunchers are made with seasoned tender chicken and carrot bits in crunchy, golden yellow coating. Also fortified with Vitamin A! Comes with sweet barbecue sauce for kids to have fun dipping.” Those nutritious carrot bits freaked me out when I read the side of the box (see above), but you couldn’t really taste them when eating the Crunchers. Which is, I suppose, a good thing. And hey, if you even get some extra Vitamin A whilst eating at a fast-food chain, who can complain right?
Oh yeah, they also came in nice shapes:
I’m sure my brother had some really nice fun dipping the Crunchers in the sweet barbecue sauce.
All in all I was glad to have visited the Jollibee. Admittedly, the chicken was really good and the palabok fiesta was a culinary experience of its own. I can understand why Filipino can be so enthusiastic about Jollibee.