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When I went to the Philippines for 3 months in 2012, I really wasn’t sure what to expect. The furthest afield I’d ever been was Turkey, and I had just come out of a long term relationship. All I wanted was to get away from England and have some space, I never realised how much the country would heal my broken heart and always be special for me as the only place on earth I’m ever truly happy.
There are so many things I love about the Philippines I love whenever I go back there. The sun. The people. Halo-Halo. SM Mall. And then of course, one of my absolute favourites is Jollibee. On the face of it, Jollibee isn’t anything overly special. The main dish is fried chicken and you can either get it with rice and gravy or Jolly Spaghetti. When Jollibee announced they were opening in the UK, it was big news. Some Filipinos actually queued for 18 hours during the opening week. I tried to visit twice after it opened, and both times I was turned away because it was the evening and they had simply run out of food.
For me it was third time lucky and I finally managed to get in one Friday night to order as much food as possible to take home for the weekend. Mark my words I love a bi of luxury but I’m definitely not above eating fried chicken cold or reheating some spaghetti. I ordered two different meals and a bit of extra rice just to be on the safe side. I can’t say the ordering system was particularly pleasant. They have a numbering system like Mcdonald’s, but I stood for about half an hour watching people who had come in after me get their food while I had to wait. After all of this as you can imagine when I finally got my food I wanted out of there as soon as possible, especially after having queued for an hour and a half.
It wasn’t until I had got home that I realised they had forgot my rice. I live in Essex so it wasn’t as if I could pop back. They just point blank didn’t include the one that was part of my meal or the extra one I ordered. Disappointed, I decided to try the fried chicken. After all, the fried chicken really is Jollibee’s main attraction. Maybe it is because it was cold, or maybe it was because my love for Jollibee is more nostalgia than actually liking the product, but I wasn’t overly impressed. Compared the the Jollibee branches I have visited around the Philippines the chicken was pretty band. The Jolly Spaghetti also left a lot to be desired. The flavour was there in theory, but the spaghetti itself was burned and the entire meal felt rushed.
If anyone is wanting to try Jollibee, I’d seriously consider a trip to the Philippines. It’s a beautiful country and you’ll definitely get a better Jollibee experience in it’s native country.