Are Jollibee’s Popular Food Items Really That Worth It?

Alvin Gonzales

Staff Writer

     Jollibee, that one fast-food restaurant with the red bee at the front of their entrances. Founded in 1978, Jollibee has come a long way from just being an ice cream parlor, and has since then transformed itself into the dominant fast-food restaurant of the Philippines and has even gained great prominence outside of Asia. From Jollibee’s iconic chicken—that rivals that of KFC’s—to its unique sweet spaghetti, I will be reviewing their most popular food items and giving my honest opinions on them.

     Before I even ordered their food, I noticed that the line was different from when I would typically go there—this was because of COVID-19. Customers were required to line up six-feet away from each other and it looked like some customers who had brought along family members would choose one of themselves to line up while the rest would stay in the car. I had to stay back in my mother’s car as she went in to get the food, however, I took note of the changes that COVID-19 had brought to Jollibee. The first thing I noticed was that there weren’t any people that I could see through their windows eating inside. As I mentioned before, each customer was spaced out from one another in line, resulting in customers waiting inside and outside of the Jollibee. I took notice of a Jollibee employee who would give permission to each customer to go inside once there was space and where to exit—since people had to exit through the Jollibee’s side door to avoid contact with people in line at the entrance. 

     Their entering and exiting procedure would go like this: Wait in line to enter the Jollibee through their front entrance, an employee waiting by the entrance would permit you to go inside once there is enough space, after ordering and receiving your meal, you would head out through their exit at the side of their restaurant.

     From my observations, following this procedure seemed simple to follow, however, while waiting inside the car, I noticed one customer in a rush to go inside and completely cutting through the line and just entering the Jollibee without being given permission to, who was then kicked out by the employee waiting at the entrance, inside of the Jollibee. This was something that I respected because it showed me that Jollibee took safety precautions seriously and cares about the well-being of their workers and customers. The wait for the food took at least twenty minutes, which didn’t bother me too much knowing that service must’ve been different due to COVID-19.

     When I had gotten home, the first of my food items that I had decided to review was Jollibee’s Halo-Halo drink. In Tagalog, “Halo-Halo” means “Mix Mix,” so in order to enjoy the drink properly, you need to make sure you mix it in order to truly experience the flavors of all its ingredients. The drink consists of mung, garbanzo, and white beans, shaved ice, coconut, evaporated milk, colored gelatin, jackfruit, ube and mango ice cream, and caramel flan. The beans in the Halo-Halo were sweet, contrary to what some might think, they were not dry and did not ruin the overall taste of the drink, but rather complimented it. The gelatin was satisfyingly chewy and easy to eat, not to mention sweet and colorful. The ice cream and caramel flan would mix and melt, which made the drink much easier to eat and enjoy. Although the drink tasted great, when I had gotten the drink, they had provided me with a long, but flimsy spoon, which made mixing pretty difficult. I recommend that if you do decide to buy the Halo-Halo, you use a metal spoon to mix it easily. Another problem that I wanted to point out was the fact that my Halo-Halo had large ice chunks in it, which got in the way of mixing properly and were hard to avoid when trying to eat the other contents in the drink. Either way, I would have to say that the Jollibee Halo-Halo was perfectly sweet and has got to be a must-have when ordering from their menu.

     Jollibee’s Aloha Yumburger was the next food item I had decided to review. First off, the burger’s most prominent ingredient is the slice of pineapple inside. Although there are people that may not be so thrilled with pineapple and meat together, I feel like they just haven’t given the Aloha Yumburger a true shot yet. I was also a bit skeptical before I took a bite out of the burger, but as soon as I bit into the pineapple, I knew that the burger was perfect and had definitely belonged in Jollibee’s list of popular food items. The burger consisted of two patties, which I really liked because I feel that the addition of a second patty controlled the sweetness of the pineapple slice. The sauce they used for this burger had a pleasant sweetness and did not overpower the pineapple. The Aloha Yumburger is absolutely perfect and has nothing about it that needs changing, except for maybe an extra pineapple slice because I simply just can’t get enough of this surprising combination.

     After the Aloha Yumburger, I tried out Jollibee’s Chicken Sandwich Classic. The Chicken Sandwich Classic was just a basic burger that consisted of a chicken tender and some of Jollibee’s special ranch sauce. What I noticed about the burger was how crucial of a role the ranch sauce played. Without the ranch sauce, there just wouldn’t have been enough flavor to satisfy my taste buds. Another thing I wanted to point out was the perfectly sized chicken tender that was not larger than the bun and fit the shape of the burger perfectly. However, I feel like the burger was a bit small for me because I just couldn’t get enough of it. Simple, basic, and small, Jollibee’s Chicken Sandwich Classic will definitely leave you craving for more.

     The next food item on my list was the Jolly Spaghetti. Unlike many other kinds of spaghetti, what makes Jollibee’s spaghetti so special is their unique sweet sauce that they use for their spaghetti. Along with their sweet sauce, they add hot dog slices, ground meat, and cheese. Honestly, I wasn’t really a huge fan about their sweet spaghetti. The sweetness of the spaghetti was a bit too much for me and kind of made me not want to eat too much. Before buying the Jolly Spaghetti, I must advise that if you do plan on getting it, make sure you buy a small amount of it since it’s surprisingly stuffing and because you’ll be more likely to finish your meal with it still being nice and hot.

     Jollibee’s iconic ChickenJoy was next up and I was pretty excited. I had gotten both the Original and the Spicy ChickenJoy, but I tried the Original first. Appearance-wise, it was beautifully brown and the skin looked nice and crispy—which was exactly what the skin tasted like when I had taken a bite out of it. What I noticed about the ChickenJoy was its juiciness that was unlike any other kind of fried chicken that I have ever tasted. However, it probably wouldn’t have been as good without the gravy—which I must say hit differently than other gravies from fast-food restaurants and was quite impressive. The Spicy ChickenJoy, like the Original, was also crispy and beautifully brown, but had a noticeable orangish color to it. The spice of this chicken hits you a couple seconds after your first bite. If you’re looking for a bit more flavor for your fried chicken, I would highly recommend trying out both ChickenJoys at Jollibee and seeing which one suits your palette.

     To finish off my meal, I decided to eat Jollibee’s Peach Mango Pie. Before I get into its taste, I must say that it was quite hot when I got mine, so I would recommend that you let it cool down first, despite how tempting it may be. When it was safe, I bit into the pie; it was so crispy and I was able to hear its crispiness too. The flavor inside was so sweet and delicious because of its peach and mango filling, an amazing combo that I want no one to be afraid to try out. One more warning about the pie is about the crumbs that fall from it. This isn’t too much of a problem, but just make sure you prepare to clean up after yourself. 

     After reviewing some of Jollibee’s most popular food items, I have come up with each food’s ranking from highest to lowest: Aloha Yumburger, Peach Mango Pie, Spicy ChickenJoy, Halo-Halo, Chicken Sandwich Classic, ChickenJoy, and Jolly Spaghetti. All of Jollibee’s popular food items are worth a try, so go ahead and find your nearest Jollibee and go right inside or bring your car in through their drive-thru, experience the flavorus foods that I did, but most importantly wear a mask.

Amidst COVID-19, Jollibee is still standing and taking food orders for people. The jolly bee is still standing strong by the entrance and so are Jollibee’s devoted workers. Peeking through at the bottom right corner of the photo is a stanchion, which Jollibee has started using in order to control their lines and guide their customers to it. Posted on their entrance doors are some of their new restaurant policies that they advise customers to do.

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