Plantation Bay offers an astonishing range of food items that various guests have judged the best, or comparable to the best, they’ve ever had:
Available at Kilimanjaro Kafé
Pancakes – Full-bodied but not heavy, smooth but not insipid. Didn’t come from a carton.
Dwarf pineapples – Crunchy instead of pulpy, and naturally sweet. Even the pith is delicious. Without any question the best pineapple on earth, and available only in Cebu and nearby islands (certainly not Manila).
Pan de Sal – Possibly the last remaining properly-made Philippine breakfast bun – chewy, stretchy, with a subtle wheat flavor. Some of our Filipino guests order it by the dozen to take home.
Longganiza – Philippine breakfast sausage of the highest order. Made in our own pantry, slightly on the lean side, with just a hint of sweetness and a smattering of spice. Nobody does it better, we humbly inform you.
Ensaymada – From our own pastry shop using an old-fashioned recipe. Beloved by all children regardless of background.
Danish Pastries – Crisp, not too sweet, with a perfect custard lining and a selection of fruity toppings.
Mangoes – Tart, firm, with hardly any fibrousness, Cebu mangoes are quite unlike their poor relations from Mexico or Africa, and are considered the world standard by connoisseurs.
Eggs any style – Cooked precisely to your preference in front of you, anything from fluffy-soft scrambleds to impeccable sunny-side ups. Few hotels (and fewer resorts) can claim as much.
Croissants – Light, flaky, buttery but not oily. You’d have a hard time finding a better one in Paris. (As a matter of fact, we never have.) From our own pâtissièr (as are all the breads, pastries, and desserts served in the resort).
Prawns Tempura at Fiji – Tiger prawns almost as big as chicken drumsticks, coated in rice-flour batter and deep-fried. Certainly the best in the country, our tempura would hold its own in Tokyo, or anywhere.
La Paz Batchoy at Kilimanjaro – If it’s absolutely authentic native cuisine you’re after, look no further. We borrowed the recipe for this quintessential Philippine onion-and-noodle soup from our very own staff cafeteria after it was discovered that some enterprising (and obviously discriminating) guests were eating there on the sly.
The World’s Best Kare-Kare at Kilimanjaro – Philippine oxtail stew with banana flowers in peanut sauce, served with shrimp paste on the side. There’s nothing quite like this dish anywhere else in the world, and ours is about as good as it gets. Messy and fun: eat with a spoon, and leave the Hermes ties and scarves at home.
Caesar Salad at Kilimanjaro – Nothing like American Caesar Salad, the Philippine version (some would say, original) is thick, creamy, garlicky, lemony, and piquant. This dressing doesn’t keep at all, and so must be prepared from scratch each time it is ordered. When our waiters are having a good day, our Caesar outshines the best from Manila; on a bad day, it’s still better than anything east of the Pacific.
Sake-Infused Oxtail at Fiji – An original Plantation Bay recipe.
Kagoshima Wagyu Sirloin at Palermo – From Japan, with the characteristic “super-marbling”. A rich and fatty steak with the strong meaty flavor of sirloin, so soft and smooth that it’s like biting through pudding.
Spaghetti Pepperoncino at Kilimanjaro – This classic spaghetti dish also known as ‘Spaghetti al Aglio, Olio e Pepperoncino’, is made only of simple ingredients, fresh sliced garlic sautéed in fine olive oil though not browned, chopped mild green chilis, and crushed black pepper. It is usually finished with shaved Pecorino cheese. We put more ingredients into our dish than Italians normally do, giving it a stronger, “in your face” flavor, that you absolutely won’t find a match to in Italy. So, it’s not “authentic”, but it’s better.
Black Lechon at Themed Dinner Buffet – Roast suckling pig, cooked on the premises using our own special recipe and cooking process. Cebu roast pig is widely-regarded by Filipinos as the best in the country, and Plantation Bay’s is about as good as Cebu gets.
Barbecued Polynesian Spareribs at Fiji – What is this obsession with baby-back ribs, we ask. Baby-back just means the pig was small and skinny. Our ribs come from meatier and – yes, we admit it – fatter pigs, and our special Polynesian barbecue sauce would make even Kansas City gourmands sit up and take notice.
USDA Prime Rib-Eye at Kilimanjaro – US cornbelt restaurants undeniably have better meat to work with, but we try harder. Our proprietary marinade combines Midwestern and other ingredients, and we wait two days for the flavors to ripen. The results are sublime – tastier, smokier, juicier than anything out of Chicago. Don’t believe us? Try it, and decide for yourself.
Spaghetti Carbonara at Kilimanjaro – Almost exactly like the best in Rome, but richer.
Cantonese Pork Char Siu at Kilimanjaro – Pork with hoisin sauce. The Cantonese make it dry; we make it moist.
Available at Route 66 Diner
Chile con Carne – Our meat is diced, not ground, and we use just the right amount of chili powder and other condiments, kidney beans, and fresh bell peppers (“chile” means pepper as in bell pepper, or is a shorthand way of referring to the whole dish; “chili” is a spice). Then we mix in yesterday’s leftovers and simmer for hours. Trust us, this is the way to do it. South-of-the-border purists might not be impressed by our “moderately spicy” chile, but if your standards are based on what’s generally available in Los Angeles or in cans, this is as good as it gets.
Hot Dogs – Really! We didn’t make them, but we searched high and low for the world’s best, and came up with a tie: Hebrew National Jumbo (all-beef), and Armor Kielbasa (beef, pork, and turkey). Then we went through a heck of a lot of trouble importing them. Plantation Bay is the only place in Asia (and probably the US, too, for all we know) which serves the two best hot dogs in the world.
Char-broiled Hamburger – Our patties are made in-house with a precise blend of different cuts of beef, and go through a multi-stage grinding process to assure the right texture and cohesion. Then they’re seared over a real fire, with the flames licking all around. In all our travels in America, we haven’t found any burger, anywhere, at any price, as outright delicious as ours. And you can quote us on that.
Eggs Benedict – Fennel reduction with lots of butter, and fried bread instead of English muffins, make for a memorable version of this breakfast favorite.
Triple B Tart at Palermo – Fresh banana, chocolate, and whipped cream. Undeniably the greatest way to end your dinner!
Crepes Samurai at Fiji – Fresh mangoes, of course. Really thin crepes. Rum. Creamy vanilla sabayon with a flame-kissed fringe. Most plates go back to our kitchen looking like they were licked clean.
Three Chocolate Fascination at Palermo and Fiji – Know what Guy Lian Fruits de Mer Belgian chocolates are? Our mousse cake is built on a similar concept, layering white, milk, and dark chocolate flavors in a single chocolate-lovers’ delight.
Homemade Ice Cream available in all restaurants – Extra rich and extra creamy Homemade Ice Cream (Peanut Butter Chocolate, Vanilla, Mango, Strawberry and Jackfruit).
Halo-Halo Sundae at Kilimanjaro – Halo-Halo: the term means “mixed up” and this is a mixture of Filipino fruit preserves and custard. The favorite Filipino dessert, and we make it even better. All ice cream instead of shaved ice.
Cheesecake at Kilimanjaro and Palermo – We realize we’re treading on thin ice here, but our semi-New York-style cheesecake, modified for Asian tastes (meaning slightly heavier, slightly sweeter, and with a moist, dense, butter-packed Graham-cracker crust), has a lot of devoted followers. Including some New Yorkers.
The Plantation Bay Room and Restaurant Satisfaction Guarantee. We would like all our guests to feel they made the right choice in coming here. And most of our guests do, so we can afford to be liberal with those who don’t:
Immediate change of heart after checking in. If after arrival you do not think you would enjoy your stay, please advise us (by calling a Duty Manager or the Front Office Manager) within 4 hours of checking in, and we will do the following:
You must, however, actually come. Our normal policies apply to no-shows and reservation cancellations made prior to check-in.
Early departure vis-à-vis the number of nights reserved. If after staying a day or more during a non-peak and non-blackout period, you decide to cut short your reserved stay, you will only be charged for the days actually stayed (you must of course leave by 12 Noon, our standard check-out time). In case you made any advance payment or deposit, the unused balance will be refunded to you in Philippine peso equivalent. Please note however that if you were accorded a discount due to the length of stay booked, an early departure may disqualify you from the discount, and the rate for the days you actually stayed will be calculated accordingly. This section does not apply to peak dates or dates that are “blacked out”, i.e., dates for which advance payment in full is required (roughly 30 days a year are peak or blackout dates); in respect of such dates, no refunds will be given for early departures.
Unsatisfactory food. When dining or drinking at any of our restaurants (but not our dinner shows or open buffets), if after eating or drinking 25% or less of the serving, any dish or drink is not to your absolute satisfaction, please advise our staff and there will be no charge for it. (We will of course offer you alternatives.) Please do this instead of just grousing about your meal later, when we can no longer ascertain exactly what the problem was or whether any staff member warrants correction.
All prices in the Philippines are subject to 12% Value Added Tax. At the same time, in accordance with industry norms in the country, Plantation Bay also adds a 10% service charge, which is distributed monthly to all the regular employees of the hotel, in equal shares. Where a figure is shown with + after the numbers, this means that 10% service charge will be added. Thus, P 100 + means that your final tab for that item will be P 110. P 100 ++ means that your final tab will be around P 123.2 for that item, after both VAT and the service charge are added. Finally, in some cases, we quote prices "Nett", which means that whatever VAT and service charge are applicable are already included in that figure; hence, P 100 Nett means that your bill will be P 100. We apologize for any confusion this might cause, but assure you that all hotels in the country do (or should do) the same thing, with the difference that we actually pay our VAT taxes, and actually pay out the service charge to our employees, whereas some might not.