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Two Americans Love Jollibee
Thursday, August 14, 2008


Captain's Log Stardate -315617.69

Remember Pamie and her group of Ugly Americans? Last July 2008, my old post about Pamie and her adventures at Jollibee registered 150-200 unique page views. All of the links came from one of the threads at PhilMusic. Apparently, two new brave Americans have dared to eat at Jollibee and posted their "unique and odd" experience online.

They ordered the usual Chickenjoy, Yumburger (which Pamie described as "Wendy's goo"), Jolly Spaghetti and the Pancit Palabok.

But unlike Pamie and her friends, these two brave souls kinda liked most of Jollibee's menu and kept the dissing and insult at a minimum.

Jon (the blog owner) called the Spicy Chickenjoy "TORTURE WHITEY spicey". I agree on the spicy part. Jollibee's spicy chicken is too spicy even for Lalaine, who happens to be a bicolana. What I don't get is "whitey". Maybe the color of the chicken is pale? His tongue might burn when he eats Bicol Express. Anyway, he enjoyed eating Chickenjoy.

He was turned off by the appearance of the Pancit Palabok but ate the whole thing. He also liked the taste of Jollibee's Filipino style Spaghetti and Peach Mango Pie.

They also ordered a Jollibee Pearl cooler. FYI, I haven't even tasted Jollibee's cooler but I do love pearl shakes especially Zagu. Americans apparently don't like the idea of chewing something you drink from a straw. But if they're living in a tropical country like ours, things might be different :P

Though Jollibee's menu is similar of those in America, let's always remember that Jollibee was created with the Filipino taste buds in mind. Jollibee placed branches outside the Philippines where there are lots of Filipinos missing the taste of home. That's their primary objective. Appealing to western tongue is just secondary.

Jon's original post has already been removed from his blog. Maybe because of the angry comments from Filipinos? I dunno. Anyway, I made a copy of the original post with some of the early comments intact:

Welcome to JOLLIBEE, may I take your order?
Wednesday, April 30, 2008

So Trix and I were driving to the Studio Where She Works, down Beverly, in what the locals refer to as "Thai-town" due to the large population of asian folks in that particular 'hood, when suddenly she started pointing wildly.

"CHECK THIS PLACE OUT!" she shouted. "It's called Jollibee! Oh my god, I pass this place every day. Check out the sign!"

"Yumburger? CHICKENJOY?" she said, excitedly. "That place just HAS to be from Japan, or something. That sounds like the craziest English mistranslation ever."

So after some research -- yeah, we're the sort of people who get overexcited about stuff like this -- we figured out that the Jollibee chain originates in the Phillipenes (which accounts for the crazy-ass product names). And furthermore, even though their American menu doesn't include such fucking completely insane items as the TUNA PIE:

...which, by the way, is a DESSERT ITEM -- please vomit now -- it DOES in fact, include some pretty weird stuff including the aforementioned Yumburger and the inexplicable Chickenjoy, as well as such delightful stuff as Jolly Spaghetti and the PALABOK FIESTA, which looks like the thing that attached itself to Mr. Spock's back in that one Star Trek episode.

So of course, we had to eat there. That is to say, I had to eat there, because I'm the kind of freak that risks horrible intestinal problems in the name of Creative Blogging. Don't say I never work for you, folks.

So I ordered the Spicy Chickenjoy (still unsure what it was, exactly) and the Palabok Fiesta, and Trix ordered the Non-Spicy Chickenjoy with the Jolly Spaghetti and a Jollibee cooler. My Spicy Chickenjoy -- turns out "chickenjoy" = "fried chicken," by the way -- wasn't just spicy, it was "TORTURE WHITEY" spicey, and it burned my lips and hurt to eat, but was actually quite joyful anyway. The Palabok Fiesta tasted like nothing in the Western Selection of Flavors and Spices, and I actually found it kinda gross, but I ate the whole thing anyway. Trix' Spaghetti had little sliced hotdogs in it as well as three gallons of sugar, and was really quite damn delicious.

Weirdest of all, the Jollibee cooler contained those little round tapioca nuggets you find in bubble tea -- you've had bubble tea, right? I HADN'T until my very worldly oldest friend in the world Adam introduced me to it!! -- and was really quite fucking odd, drinking something that you then had to CHEW. Bizarre but tasty.

Best of all: the peach/mango pie, which I guess they figured was more palatable to Western tongues than the Tuna Pie. Oh, it was good. It was write-home good. I shoulda just ordered that.

My stomach hated me later on that evening, and both of us felt like we were oozing grease from our pores all night. "YOU SMELL LIKE BAD CHICKEN," Trix kept saying, and I kept saying "Well, YOU smell like some other weird item we had for dinner tonight!" And this morning my stomach hates the shit out of me, but that's probably partly due to the fact that we abruptly switched off the Atkins diet of late, and my stomach hates me when I add in carbs.

Trix hiding from the Jollibee Jolly Bee. As well should you.

So in summary: Jollibee is FUCKING ODD.


- April 30, 2008 11:28 AM Coco said...

I love bubble tea. It's amazing and gross all at the same time-and somehow that excites me. But, that bee is damn sinister. Reminds me of the stay-puft marshmallow man . . .
do NOT cross the streams.

- April 30, 2008 11:30 AM LAP said...

I would have to eat there too. And I sometimes find bubble tea wonderful (when it's like a smoothie/slushie consistency and not like strawberry quik with tapioca) but it's always interesting for sure. Experience worth having without a doubt. Do they make Jollibee t-shirts?

- April 30, 2008 11:42 AM Jessie Smith said...

Unfortunately, bubble tea creeps me out. The straws are so large, one can drown in that sudden rush of liquid. Especially, when the bubble bits start to slosh to and fro.

The taste?

There is no taste. It's like cold sugar goo with chewies. I need either really sour or sweet but not watered-down versions of either.

Thanks guys for taking one for the team. Please don't ever take me to Jollibee. That logo is enough to make me think twice, no matter how much I love spicy odd food.

- April 30, 2008 12:28 PM Patrick said...

i drove by that place every day when i had a job on the westside. that whole side of town is dirty and overcrowded and strange... everything to discourage an appetite. the jollibee "chickenjoy" never enticed me. the only place to eat near there is Langer's Deli on Alvarado and 6th st.

- April 30, 2008 12:34 PM Ashley! said...

What about the YUMBURGER! That's what I would've ordered...well, if I ate meat.

I dont really like Pinoy food, but damn Toi on sunset has some pretty incredible Thai plates.


- April 30, 2008 1:17 PM Max Sparber said...

You're like the Andrew Zimmern of crazy LA Thai Restaurants.

- April 30, 2008 4:23 PM MissTrixi said...

The 'ghetti was like Chefboyardi took a drunken tip to exotic. There were actually 3 kinds of meat, and the sauce was soooo sweet. LOVED my shake though. I expected the tapioca bits to be small, but they were big globs the size of dimes. And yummy in an odd way. I was fearful that the globules journey through the straw was a direct reflection of what my arteries were doing.

I'm always willing to try something new, and that Jollibee stare has been taunting me for weeks now.


- April 30, 2008 8:47 PM vfleblanc said...

I don't even want to tell you what the Palabok Fiesta reminds me of, suffice it to say it has a deep resemblance to something my dog did once. Yikes!

- May 1, 2008 12:27 AM Prince Gomolvilas said...

Ha ha ha ha ha! Whitey found Jollibee! Whitey found Jollibee!

- May 1, 2008 8:59 AM Febrifuge said...



- May 2, 2008 11:29 AM Peter Varvel said...

"Tuna Pie" sounds redundant, LOL.

- May 2, 2008 12:07 PM belsum said...

Spock's back!!

I do not like bubble tea. At all.

- May 3, 2008 3:22 AM Anonymous said...

Written by record room wind chime:

Yes Jon. I have been to the Philippines twice and I avoid Jollibee now...they are very popular in the Philippines as "their" McDonalds and they serve more traditional Pinay foods like the pabalok etc...they are proud to have it in America so let it be...Filipinos love sweet spagheti sauce for some reason..probably because they have to preserve the tomato sauce in the jar with sugars.

- May 3, 2008 9:46 PM thelastnoel said...

LOL. I LOVE Jollibee. Then again, I'm biased. Chickenjoy! Oh, joy.

- May 3, 2008 9:47 PM thelastnoel said...

Oh, don't EVER order dinoguan. It's nicknamed chocolate meat--it ain't chocolate

We all have different tastes. I for one like the same KFC Famous Bowl that Jon has been eating, but I actually hate the current taste of Chickenjoy. And there's this Filipino dish Dinuguan. It's made of pig's blood and I rather kill myself than eat it. But you won't hear me rant on the internet or someplace on how disgusted I am. I can call those who eat Dinuguan vampires, but I didn't.

It's about respect.

You don't like the food, say it then shut up. Pamie and her friends lack this quality. They practically insulted millions of people who eat at Jollibee everyday by telling everyone that those who eat Yumburgers are actually eating Wendy's goo.

Oh by the way, Jollibee just bought a stake in a US-based company :)

*Computer end log*


Posted by Jepoy @ 8/14/2008 01:52:00 AM
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Posted by Blogger Lalaine on Thursday, August 14, 2008 at 4:07:00 PM GMT+8:  
yummy jabee! gusto ko ng tuna pie at peach mango pie nila :D.. kakagutom tuloy! :D

Posted by Blogger Jepoy on Thursday, August 14, 2008 at 9:48:00 PM GMT+8:  
tuna pie? eww :P

Posted by Blogger tipay on Sunday, September 28, 2008 at 9:04:00 PM GMT+8:  
i was craving for jolly spaghetti actully so i was browsing if someone can help me copy the recipe for jolly spaghetti then i saw your blog. sarap kaya ng spag saka palabok, ng burger steak saka un springrolls nila not bad for a fast food (though i prefer my mom's springrolls hehe)! we just have our own preferences, just like when we (filipinos) taking a shower everyday and them using their underwears for 5 days in a row hahahaha
about the weird names like tuna pie, its called creativity. marketing strategy un pang-attract ng attention, see effective sa kanila pero di nila narealize kasi di nila alam may ganung factor pala. yun ang kulang ng mga puti eh, creatvity. they usually name their fastfoods based sa names, literal na names like MACDONALDS, WENDY'S, POPEYE'S. same as the canadians, mga restaurants dito ang cocorny ng names as in! di pansinin. alam lang kasi nun blogger na creavity eh maging gothic feeling marilyn manson look-a-like! hahaha

Posted by Anonymous Mich Doolittle on Friday, December 5, 2008 at 7:07:00 PM GMT+8:  
I was reading your whole Jollibee experience and was looking at it objectively. Taste buds vary from culture to culture. Jollibee is good for us Filipinos, we like the way the spaghetti tastes, sweet and spicy, rather than the italian way of cooking it. The food may look odd to you, but we look at whale fat (or oil) in Alasaka squeemish too. It's really not about Jollibee man, its about how you seem to describe our food that's offending, you make it sound like we eat junk. But hey, its your opinion.

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