4.262 1-Piece Chickenjoy Meal + Pancit Palabok

Cycle 4 – Item 262

24 (Tue) September 2013

1-Piece Chickenjoy Meal + Pancit Palabok


from Jollibee

in my hotel room

(The Oasis Paco Park Hotel)

-Paco, Manila, Metro Manila, Philippines-


WHO Informal Consultation on Reducing the Harmful Impact on Children of Marketing Foods, Beverages, Tobacco, and Alcohol + Singapore Diet + WHO Health Law Project (Day 1)

    1. 4.262 1-Piece Chickenjoy Meal + Pancit Palabok
    2. 4.263 Parros Clams in Spicy Black Bean Sauce
    3. 4.264 3-Piece Chicken Barbecue
    4. 4.265 Chilli Crab
    5. 4.266 White Carrot Cake
    6. 4.267 Hainanese Chicken Rice
    7. 4.268 Inasal Chicken
    8. 4.269 Mango
    9. 4.270 The Original – Verena
    10. 4.271 SPAM Musubi + SPAM Burger Hamburger
    11. 4.272 Chicken Curry with Raisin Biryani

In Manila.  Two sponsored objectives of the trip, under the auspices of the World Health Organization Regional Office for the Western Pacific (WHO WPRO): (1) to participate in a technical expert meeting on finding ways to protect children from the marketing of unhealthy products; (2) to progress the health law project that I’ve been involved with since last year.   The more important informal objective, on my own dime: (3) to visit Singapore and stuff my face.

With a 2315 ETA, I’d planned to grab something at some 24-hour joint near the hotel after checking in.  However, it turned out that the hotel is located away from all the hubbub, and I didn’t feel like walking out into the unlit unfamiliar streets of Manila after midnight in search of food.  And no room late-night service, being a “boutique hotel.”  Fortunately, or unfortunately, the front desk had a few delivery menus; the choices: McDonald’s, Pizza Hut, Wendy’s, and Jollibee.  I went for the latter, which offered a handful of local dishes, for better or for worse.

Jollibee is an American-style fastfood chain.  Founded 1978 in the Philippines, now with over 800 locations domestically and abroad.  Originally a burger restaurant, the menu now offers a wider variety of items, like fried chicken and pastas.

Chickenjoy is Jollibee’s proprietary name for fried chicken.

While I’d generally categorize fried chicken as an American food, and it came to the Philippines through the country’s long history with the States, and it’s pretty much the same here as it is over there, fried chicken has become such an ingrained part of the local food culture that it seems to be available everywhere for every meal of the day, from hotel breakfast buffets and lunch in the WHO cafeteria to dinner at shopping mall food courts and late-night snacking via 24-hour delivery joints.  It never seems to constitute the whole meal per se, just a piece or two on the side, like an essential side dish, like kimchi.

Royale with Cheese Trivia: fried chicken in the Philippines always comes with gravy and steamed rice, typically wrapped in paper.

Alas, the chicken didn’t engender much joy, neither crispylicious nor juicylicious.

Pancit Palabok is a Philippine dish.  It consists of noodles stir-fried in a shrimp/fish gravy, often with ground pork, topped with boiled egg.  One of the classics.

Also not so great.  The oddly contrasting textures were goopy and gritty and slimy.  The oddly conflicting flavors were fatty and tangy and fishy.  Weird all around.

Being a “boutique hotel,” the room didn’t have a proper table, and the desk was in the hallway, so I ate on the bed.

The Glenlivet: light and fruity, an easy sipper, good for travel.

(See also BOOZE)



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