Buffets have sprouted all over. Eat-all-you-can deals are such a hit, they’re all over the country. Dads of Vicvic Villavicencio started it all. There used to be waves of people waiting to get in. And like anything that clicks in the country, everyone else copies it.
I no longer eat as much as I used to at these buffets. I just choose what to focus on. When I know I’m going to a buffet, I plan days in advance. I exercise a lot, diet and skip the meal before. I walk in very excited to see the display, survey the spread and finally get small portions of what looks good to me. After tasting, I go back to the ones I like. Often.
But most of the time, after leaving the place, I realize, “Hey, that wasn’t that great.” I was just very hungry. Why are spreads lacking in authentic tastes? Here’s my analysis.
Most spreads are a mix of various cuisines like Japanese, Chinese, Middle Eastern, American, Pinoy, Italian, French, etc. Many places don’t have a chef specializing in each cuisine which results in dishes that can be good but not authentic-tasting. That’s where the problem lies.
Looking for authentic tastes
Some hotels with Chinese or Japanese restaurant outlets have foreign chefs manning the kitchens, therefore some of their buffet dishes are authentic-tasting. Most buffets outside hotels do not have the luxury of these chefs.
Among all the buffets I’ve tried lately, which do I fancy the most? Spiral at the Sofitel. I have heard so much about it but never really got to try it. Chef Ariel Manuel of Lolo Dad’s fame and I were invited to share some recipes for the Father’s Day buffet this coming June.
At Spiral, I saw a Middle Eastern chef, an Italian chef, a Korean chef, a Japanese chef. I also checked the quality of their beef. Plus they have a whole cheese room that has the funkiest cheese which I love. It reminds me of the Fromageries in Paris I used to frequent.
I went for seconds of the Thai pomelo salad, the foie gras terrines in the cheese room, the delicious olive bread, crispy roast duck, some unusual Japanese sushi, roast prime ribs, roast lamb with mint jelly and so much more.
I was so happy with the selection and am looking forward to coming back. After a few days, I was still thinking about the dishes. That’s when you know you enjoyed the dining experience.
Call Spiral at Sofitel Philippine Plaza tel. 5515555.
The author is on Instagram sandydaza77.