Wednesday, February 5, 2014

World Class Dining at Spiral, Sofitel Manila

From the moment I blew out my 30th candle, I began creating my bucket list. From the major life-changing ones to the simple, easy-to-achieve wishes, crossing out every item on my list gives me a reason to celebration big and small life victories.

Don't laugh but one item on my list reads "try the new Spiral at Sofitel Manila." Yes, I'm a true blue foodie, alright. After all, Spiral is one of the best hotel buffet outlets in the country and after hearing raves from friends who have dined here after it opened again to the public after 13 months of renovation, I knew I just have to give it a try myself. Paul and I have shared a number of good dining memories at the old Spiral.

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Luck must have been on my side when I got an invite to visit Spiral during my recent visit to Manila. Of course, despite my crazy and busy schedule, I said YES! So there we were on our last day in Manila, ready to have a gastronomical lunch at Spiral. The location was the same and there's still the iconic Spiral staircase. However, that's where the similarities end. The new Spiral boasts of 21 dining ateliers that features a wide....WIDE array of cuisines from all over the world. Imagine being able to indulge in the finest International dishes without the need to hop on a plane. We were led towards our table which was perfectly situated by the Asian atelier. Wonderful!

At this point, I feel that no words is enough to tell you about the amazing dining experience that both Paul and I had at Spiral. Here's a photo gallery to walk you through what has made Spiral one of the best hotel buffets in town:

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We began our tour by taking a peek at the 6 private dining rooms of Spiral. Here's my favorite, it's called Hidden. Obviously, this is perfect for those who wants utmost privacy while dining with your family, friends or while having a business lunch/dinner meeting. This can sit 10-12 pax.

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Here's the Salad and Appetizer Atelier. For those who wants to have a light, healthy start to their meal, this is where you should go. I love how the greens are displayed. It makes me feel like I'm getting fresh lettuce from my mom's garden (or the veggie section of a supermarket hehe). I was told that all these greens are produced locally and are organic.

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Next is Paul's favorite station -- the L'Ecailler otherwise known as the Fresh station. He just loves those huge prawns which he would happily dip into a bowl of tangy marinara sauce. You can also try the crabs, mussels and clams too. During dinner time, they also have fresh oysters available.

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While Paul would head straight to the Fresh section, I would do a beeline towards the Sushi and Sashimi Atelier. I love the juicy salmon and tuna sashimi, the hand-rolled temaki, the ebiko sushi and many more! It was my first plate and I've filled it up with all my choice sushi/sashimi already.

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I had to restrain myself from indulging with all the sushi/sashimi though after stepping into the L'Epicerie. To quote my friend Jin: "The Cheese Room at Spiral is HEAVEN!!!" I agree with her. I only I can stay in this room forever and try all the cheeses available, I definitely would!

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They got a good mix of cheeses from imported to even local ones. Here are two from Davao -- Blush and Davao Blue Cheese. I was able to try both and loved it! To think I'm not a big fan of hard cheeses but these were pretty yummy.

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I was also able to try these unique looking cheeses which were a tad too stinky and moldy for me to enjoy. Definitely not for the faint-hearted!

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Of course, cheeses go hand-in-hand with cold cuts and they got a wide range of aged ham and cured meats to complete your pairing. Wish they have my all-time favorite Truffle Prosciutto though.

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Moving on, there's the Hot Japanese atelier which will satisfy your tempura, teppanyaki and yakiniku cravings. I skipped this part as I wasn't really in the mood for anything deep-fried that day.

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Ever since I watched the movie Julie & Julia, I've always been fascinated with the French cuisine. Seeing the French Stove reminded me of Julia Child's kitchen with all the golden pots and colorful ceramic dishes. I was able to try the Veal Cheeks Stew which was melt-in-your-mouth tender!

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There's also the Rotisserie as well as the Wood Fire Oven for those who loves pizza and grilled meats. However, should you prefer your meat served Churrasco style then Spiral also has that for you. Paul tried the steak from this station and loved it very much. If you truly enjoyed a certain marinade, salt or rub, Spiral now offers bottled products that you can take home with you.

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We finally walked back to the Asian Noodles station where I saw a chef expertly creating homemade hand-pulled noodles. Wow! I love freshly made hand-pulled noodles made Chinese spaghetti style. I should make a mental note to ask the chef to make me one next time.

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Normally, I would skip the Filipino section but since I miss our local dishes very much, I helped myself to some Kare Kare, Adobo and Pinakbet. Ohhh heaven!

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There's also the Malaysian section which I skipped as I will be lots of these now that I'm back in the Lion City. Will continue to treat myself to those that I know I'll miss having for the next few months. The satay looks good though.

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Just in time for the Chinese New Year, I was really surprised to see that Spiral also offers the Yu Sheng salad. It's not very popular in the Philippines as Lo Hei is not part of our CNY traditions but it sure is nice to know that we're starting to adapt and be more aware of other traditions being practiced around us. Here, you can create your own Yu Sheng salad and enjoy it with your family.

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For those who loves freshly baked breads, help yourselves at the La Boulangerie atelier. From buttery croissants, crusty breads and baguettes, I was told that this station is the most popular area especially during breakfast time. They also got cans of flavored olive oils which you can buy and enjoy at home as well. I was able to try these at a gourmet market here in Singapore and I tell you, these are so yummmm.

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I was so happy that they served us this Crusty Olive Bread with Pesto Butter to enjoy too. I know you're not supposed to have a lot of carbs to maximize your buffet dining but I just can't resist the temptation. Try it too and I'm pretty sure you'll understand what I meant.

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Of course, you just can't end your meal without having some dessert. Take my advice, have a plate full of Chocolate Truffles. These are soooo delicious. I'm not a big fan of chocolates but I can't help but swoon as I let it melt in my mouth. No wonder, diners were busy piling their dessert plates high with these babies.

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Speaking of chocolates, don't forget to try the fondue. You'll love the creamy milk chocolate that coats your marshmallow, fruits and cookies. The other one was the Orange Fondue which was just a-okay for me.

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Want some fruits? Here's a lot of variety for you to choose from!

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While dining at Spiral, keep an eye out for this lady who offers their Specialty Drink or some bubbly for you to enjoy with your meal. We tried the healthy Blueberry Drink which was very refreshing and it wasn't too sweet too.

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It's also the perfect place to dine with the family as they have live performances that the little ones will surely love. On Sundays, kids can partake in the activities lined up just for them while their parents enjoy the buffet spread.

That ends our gastronomic tour around Spiral. How's that for fulfilling a bucket list item? Admittedly, Spiral has probably the highest buffet rate compared to all other hotel buffets but they got the widest variety too. It's basically every dish/cuisine is there to fulfill your fancy. We had a great time at Spiral and do look forward to creating more memories in our succeeding visits.

Buffet Rates (Adults):
Breakfast : Php. 1,719.55 nett (Mon-Fri) / Php. 1,965.20 nett (Sat-Sun)
Lunch: Php. 2,431.94 nett (Mon-Sat)
Sunday Brunch: Php. 3,991.81 nett
Dinner: Php. 2,800.41 nett (Sun-Thursday) / Php. 3,046.06 nett (Fri-Sat)

Visit Spiral at the Sofitel Manila, CCP Complex, Roxas Boulevard, Pasay City. Call them at 551-5555 to make a reservation.


  1. Hi Fran! I haven't been back to Spiral since it was washed out by Ondoy? Or was it Habagat? The selection looks really good. But the price is a bit steep (comparing it to other hotels) Dati kasi it was the most worth it for the price. Oh well, inflation over the years maybe.. Hehehe.. :)

  2. So expensive! But the food looks like delicious! :)


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