By Denise Jose
If there’s anything Filipinos take seriously, it’s all-you-can-eat buffets. We starve ourselves on purpose prior the feast to save on stomach space and we then unleash our inner wildlings once we’re face to face with the glorious mounds of food. There’s no shame in going in for seconds, thirds, fourths, or even fifths–in fact, the higher the cost-to-benefit ratio, the better!
If you can relate to this, this list was made for you. Here are looloo’s all-time best-rated buffet restaurants in the Metro where you will not be judged for your overflowing plates or protruding bellies. Just don’t forget to wear your comfiest pair of garterized pants when you visit these places!
10. Chef Laudico Guevarra’s
If you have balikbayan relatives who are coming home for a vacation, consider bringing them to Chef Laudico Guevarra’s. In here, they can fill up on all the Filipino food they’ve missed out on over the years! Set inside an old but classy Filipino ancestral house, this restaurant will bring back nostalgic memories of eating over at lola’s.
According to looloo reviewers, you cannot miss out on Chef Laudico’s famous angus beef tapa that’s melt-in-your-mouth tender and well-seasoned. Other dishes worthy of space on your tables are the lechon, bagnet, kare-kare, paella, and kalabasa pastillas. Just remember to reserve a table ahead of time because this place can get packed!
Chef Laudico Guevarra’s can be found at 387 P. Gueverra St. cor. Argonne St., Addition Hills, San Juan, Metro Manila.
9. Circles Event Cafe
You know how people always say to save room for dessert? Well, at Circles Event Cafe, you may actually want to put the sweets first and try everything else later because reviewers say the assortment of cakes, pastries, and ice cream here is that good!
Denise R. in her looloo review raved about her dessert experience at Circles, saying: “Personally, the highlight of the whole experience was the dessert station. They had this dark chocolate mousse with actual blackberries that was so amazingly rich and smooth, that eating it was like flavorful chocolate melting in my mouth. The sweet, slightly sour berries were a perfect complement. This is really one of the best cakes I’ve eaten.”
Circles Event Cafe can be found on the 1/F of Makati Shangri-La Hotel, Ayala Ave. cor. Makati Ave., Makati, Metro Manila.
8. NIU by Vikings
NIU, pronounced as “nee-uh”, may be the fancier version of Vikings but that doesn’t mean you need to be all prim and proper here. You can still stuff your face with a ridiculous amount of food, just in a more posh setting. looloo reviewers can’t help but rave about the ambiance here, likening this restaurant to a 5-star hotel.
When it comes to variety, you’re not going to be let down with the vast number of food stations at NIU. But make sure you get to try the ones that aren’t found in most buffet places, like the foie gras station! You also need to visit the carvings station because there you’ll find ribs, steaks, and everything else a carnivore could ever crave for. As for drinks, they have unlimited imported beers, wine, and sake!
NIU by Vikings can be found on the 6/F of SM Aura Premier, McKinley Parkway cor. 26th St., Bonifacio Global City, Taguig, Metro Manila.
7. Sambo Kojin
On days when you’re craving for both Japanese and Korean food but don’t want to have to decide between the two, solve the dilemma by eating at Sambo Kojin. Not only will you get to help yourself to both cuisines, but you also have an excuse to wipe out as many plates as you want! The buffet spread is yours for the taking at affordable prices, too.
Sambo Kojin is best known for its Japanese yakiniku and Korean barbecue but its impressive sushi selection can’t be missed either. With over fifty variants to choose from, just imagine how many times you’ll be going back and forth from your table to the sushi station! They have makimono, temaki, aburi, battera, and bou maki, all skillfully handcrafted for you.
Sambo Kojin can be found at these locations.
While getting to EDSA Shangri-La means having to pass through the heinous traffic in EDSA, it all becomes worth it when you’re finally seated at Heat and ready to dig in. Because as said by Julienne Y. in her looloo review , there’s a lot of great food to be had here: “Definitely make tummy space for the foie gras sliders, sashimi and the lava cake dessert. We also enjoyed their lobster claws, cold cuts and Japanese selection (tempura and yakitori).”
You might also want to time your visit to Heat wisely if you’re a fan of lobsters or wagyu beef. It’s Mad for Lobster night every Friday, which means you get to enjoy this crustacean in many different ways. And then on Saturday evenings, it’s Mad for Wagyu night where literally everything there is to eat has wagyu in or on it.
Heat can be found on the 1/F of EDSA Shangri-La Hotel, EDSA cor. Shaw Blvd., Ortigas Center, Mandaluyong, Metro Manila.
5. Buffet 101
It is said that the human tongue can taste up to six basic flavors. But according to Buffet 101, there’s a lot more to savor than just that. In this restaurant, you’re treated to a slew of international cuisines, which make up a hundred and one flavors when put together! Whether or not it all actually adds up to the said figure, it’s safe to say that there’s an overflowing amount of food here.
Whatever it is you’re craving for, whether it be Chinese, Japanese, Filipino, Italian, or American food, you’re most likely to find it at Buffet 101. They have an unlimited supply of sushi, french fries, hakaw, steak, pizza, and froyo but really, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. For drinks, gulp down on their refreshing kamias shake or get buzzed off their unlimited beer.
Buffet 101 can be found at these locations.
4. Seven Corners
Seven Corners may not have the widest buffet spread Metro Manila has ever seen, but what they lack in quantity, they make up for in quality. Which you can taste for yourself in their steaks and ribs!
In her looloo review, April H. was all praises for the prime rib, saying: “It was perfectly seasoned and tender, delicious with gravy. Pre-cooked and they will cook it further to your preferred level of doneness. They provide many traditional sides to go with it, like mashed potatoes and rice. I stuffed myself with two rounds of this and I’m not ashamed to admit it!”
Seven Corners is also well-loved for its Indian station where you can have unlimited helpings of biryani rice, papadums, curry, chicken masala, chicken saag, and chicken tikka.
Seven Corners can be found on the 2/F of Crowne Plaza Hotel, Ortigas Ave. cor. ADB Ave., Ortigas Center, Quezon City, Metro Manila.
Whenever there’s a milestone that needs to be celebrated, eating at Vikings always comes to mind. And that’s because one, they have one of the most massive buffet spreads in the Metro and two, they have a promo for practically everyone, for every occasion. There’s a Student Promo, an OFW Promo, a promo for your birthday, graduation, or wedding anniversary, and even a promo for the Presidential Inauguration!
From Viking’s international selection of food, you get to feast on hearty fare like fresh seafood, prime ribs, gourmet pizzas, and local favorites. But aside from the gastronomic experience, you get a visual treat too as you watch the professionally-trained chefs do their thing behind their show kitchens.
Vikings can be found at these locations.
2. Café Ilang-Ilang
Café Ilang-Ilang could possibly be the most underrated buffet spot in the Metro. But despite the lack of buzz surrounding it, reviewers have been giving it some much-deserved looloo stars throughout the years, helping it snag the number two spot on this list.
In her looloo review, Telle B. broke down everything there is to love about Café Ilang-Ilang: “I especially loved the South American or Brazil station. The lechon was amazing! It had crispy skin and really soft meat plus the rice with pineapple and coconut milk goes well with the lechon! The Japanese station is another one I make sure to visit! They have lots of maki, sushi, teppanyaki, etc. Another one would be the dessert station, they have a lot of desserts!”
That in itself is already quite the mouthful, but if you have room for more, they serve exotic dishes, too. Sometimes, you’ll spot crocodile, rabbit, deer, or horse meat in the spread!
Café Ilang-Ilang can be found at The Manila Hotel, Roxas Blvd., Manila, Metro Manila.
At the mention of Spiral, the phrases that usually come to mind are classy ambiance, excellent service, and indulgent food. It has always been one of the top destinations in the Metro if you want an unparalleled dining experience, so it doesn’t come as a surprise that it’s here again at the number one spot (it was also the champ back in looloo’s 2014 top 10 buffet list).
Spiral has twenty one dining ateliers, each one representing a different style of cooking. North Indian, Thai, Filipino, and Japanese are just some of the international cuisines you can treat your palate to, plus you also get to help yourself to meat, bread, and chocolate from their rotisserie, la boulangerie, and chocolaterie respectively. Of course, you can’t forget about their much-talked about cheese room!
Spiral can be found at Sofitel Philippine Plaza, Roxas Blvd., CCP Complex, Pasay, Metro Manila.
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