Sofitel is known for many things: its iconic view of the Manila Bay, the spa treatments, its wellness center Vietura, and Spiral, one of the most coveted hotel buffets in the Philippines.
We at Explore love food and we love breakfast. In fact, one of our biggest reasons for staying at a hotel and going back to it is because of how enticing the breakfast buffet is. Spiral never disappoints – no matter the time of day.
Bustling in the morning sun, the scene at the restaurant is cheery and light. Servers go around on a bike to deliver your choice of local or foreign newspapers. Ladies with warm smiles plastered on their faces deliver equally warm and sweet breads and pastries. A taho server also roams the tables to bring you the classic delicacy in its purest form – via a magtataho – giving guests a sense of nostalgia and foreigners a glimpse of our culture in the comforts of a 5-star hotel. Even test tubes filled with healthy liquid concoctions are served table to table to cater to healthy guests and to make healthy living a little more fun.
The buffet itself can get overwhelming. I think every guest has, at some point, taken the time to strategize their plan of attack. The restaurant has 21 stations ranging from Filipino to Halal to satisfy different customer needs and every potential craving. Director of Sales and Marketing Alice Jenkins shares, “We have 21 ateliers so all of our different experts here can concentrate on the different food. The idea is people get to experience authentic cuisine.”
Jenkins also mentions a feat worth noting, “Last year, we were on Trip Advisor and voted number 10 in fine dining restaurants in Asia. And we just found out that we’re now number 7 in Asia.” While we definitely recommend booking a meal for lunch, dinner or even Sunday brunch, we compiled a list of our 10 favorite stations (and dishes!) to help you maximize your buffet experience in one of the best restaurants in Asia for our favorite meal of the day.
1. Cheeses and Cold Cuts Station
A personal favorite is always cheese and salami, so imagine my delight with one whole room of cheeses from all over the world with staples like brie, camembert, delicacies from France and even local finds I’ve never heard of like mango infused goat cheese.
Aside from the cheeses and cold cuts appetizingly and meticulously displayed, Spiral’s attention to detail is commendable- the cheese platters they let guests use are actually pressed wine bottles. Chic and eco-friendly.
2. Eggs Station
No matter the culture, egg is always a breakfast staple. It should come as no surprise that the egg station would be one of our favorites. Have your egg any which way or create the omelet of your choice and watch the chef prepare it for you. There’s something magical about watching deft hands create- even if it’s just an ordinary sunny-side up.
3. Juice Bar
Orange, mango, cucumber and carrot are just some of the juice options. Spiral really makes it easy for you to choose to drink healthy. Enough said.
4. Beef Tapa, Filipino Station
Pinoys love their comfort food and one of the biggest breakfast comfort dishes is tapa. Spiral brings this comfort food to life with the best selling dish that the guests lap up.
5. Indian Station
Must tries in this station are the Chicken Curry Masala, Roti Chanai, Aloo Bhaji, Puri and Poha. The flavors are rich but the breads light. Trust us, a whole plate dedicated to this station is a must.
Spiral also boasts of serving authentic Halal food made by Halal chefs right in this station.
6. La Patisserie
Ladies roam the restaurant to offer guests a selection of breads but should the guests need more, there’s an entire section dedicated to our favorite breakfast carb with your choice of grain.
The station also has a pancake and waffle section where the chef injects fun and creativity to the ubiquitous pancake by making fun shapes and character. Can you spot Mickey in the making?
7. Sausage Station
Tucked in a humble corner is the sausage station that carries different variants, meats and sizes. The popular pork choice is served in flavorful bite-sized pieces but chefs say that in-the-know guests opt for the chicken sausage. We should thank them for the tip- the chicken sausage is amazing.
8. Dimsum at the Chinese Station
The sight of stacked dim sum baskets is irresistible and looking at dumplings that seem so small and innocuous is actually tempting. The guilt is lessened though with the option of vegetable dumplings. These are best paired with a hot bowl of congee.
9. Chocolate Station
Okay, this isn’t actually open for breakfast, lest we see more guests running around at seven in the morning. Spiral, however, does sell some of their truffle concoctions and best-selling chocolate flavors throughout the day. Each of the hundreds of chocolate balls is hand-made daily and watching the chef make this cocoa dessert in the confines of a temperature-controlled glass room is mesmerizing.
Last but not the least, dessert. I’ve always been drawn to those colorful saccharine treats gorgeously plated in shotglasses. While Spiral does have a lot of desserts to cap off any meal, those who don’t wish to load up on the extra calories or glucose need not fret: Spiral also offers a variety of yoghurt mixes – equally pretty, equally delicious but a hundred times more nutritious. We suggest you get one of each for good measure but our favorites would definitely be the mango pistachio yoghurt and the raspberry granola yoghurt cup.
Check Spiral’s breakfast buffet out for yourself and let us know what you liked. Get a plate, or ten. Trust us, no one will judge.