Applebee’s BGC: First in the Philippines

Applebee’s Philippines
30 September 2015 / 16 March 2016
BGC, Taguig

The famous American Diner is now in the Philippines and we visited it, in its first week and a subsequent visit a few months after.

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It opened right beside PF Changs, which sadly closed just a few weeks ago. I guess the chicken lettuce wrap wasn’t a hit for the Filipino palette.

Anyway, we went in and really liked the Western themed casual dining atmosphere. It had this homey feeling that really appealed to us since we often eat out as a family.

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And with the open kitchen setup in the main dining floor, you really get that authentic diner vibe.

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And on top of that, the staff were extremely friendly and quite accommodating. They seemed to be really enthusiastic and all smiles, I hope this goes on even after the first few years of their operations.

The FOOD

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I love this, even if its just supposed to be beef nachos but the subtle mix of the flavors plus the dip, I’m guessing its sour cream, proved to be a winner for us. Highly recommended.

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Since my wife wanted to try something Mexican, we had the Cheese Quesadilla and it was great as well. The cheese and the salsa were just right, not too overwhelming and the quesadilla itself was soft and tender but not soggy. Just the right blend of flavors and textures, a great starter to any meal.

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Chicken and Rice in BBQ Sauce
Yummy, a kids meal that is not too expensive. The sauce had a hickory tang that was just perfect, and the chicken was cooked crisp on the outside and tender on the inside. Note that the portions are really for kids, even if it’s priced at PhP 225.00

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Chicken Lime with Rice
Really spicy but good, perfect for me who loves spicy food. The lime gave it that extra kick. The sauce was immaculate and cheesy, with the crunch of tortilla chips. Wonderful and hearty. We ordered it again on our second visit – and has become one of our favorites.

On our second visit, a few months after it had opened, the place was still packed on a mid-week dinner. It was quite a welcome because restaurants often cannot sustain the interest of the Filipinos.

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Chicken Fingers/Bites

They were yummy and was a hit with the kids, we loved the dipping sauce as it perfectly blended with the crispness and tenderness of the chicken

 

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Sriracha Shrimp

We love us some spicy food, so this was quite welcome but for some reason I was on the fence. It was one of their signature dishes, but I expected more… it was just good but not overwhelmingly excellent. The shrimps were tender and succulent but I think the flavors lacked the fullness that we expected – and possibly would’ve wanted more spiciness and zing to it.

 

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Pork Ribs

One word: HEAVEN

The flavors are subtle yet in perfect consonance, the spices were to the point and the meat fell off the bones. This is definitely something that would make me go back without question. And the portions are quite large, the one pictured is only half a slab.

The Final Word
If not for the somewhat prohibitive price, it was an excellent family dinner. For this outing, with just the three of us the tab was around PhP1,200 and on our second visit was at around PhP2,000 for three people – so its not for the budget conscious.

But the food was really good, and when we tried their signature dishes like the ribs and the Chicken Lime with rice, we were not disappointed.

The ambiance is excellent and the food gave this warm fuzzy vibe.

A welcome entry to the already congested Manila diner scene.

Rating: 4 out of 5

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