A good buffet place and it’s only Php 288 per head
“Sure mo sa inyo presyo mam?” I had to ask after I confirmed our lunch reservation at Chik Chow Food Express. This is a restaurant that offers budget buffets for only Php288/person.
Viola, who oversees Chik Chow, probably smiled at the other end of the line. She would then explain that they know the Cebuano market well enough. And it’s a very hard one to please at that. They want cheap but delicious meals, and in this order too.
I could only agree as we only want the best value for every peso spent, especially on food.
The restaurant was still empty when our group arrived before noon. We settled in our assigned table and then immediately attacked the buffet spread.
I almost felt sorry for Viola as we were actually a group composed of guys with formidable appetites. But I was relieved to see that there were plenty of food to go around, including for a batch of BPO employees that appeared a few minutes after us.
It seemed to me that most, if not all, of the Php 288 cover was spent for the food and not on the restaurant’s interiors. The only interesting decors I can remember were the large image of cherry blossoms and a lone porcelain horse inconspicuously placed beside the main buffet table.
Nonetheless, it felt like we were dining at someone else’s spacious living room. This is one of the reasons why we did not hesitate for seconds, and even more.
There are a 4 mini-food stations at Chik Chow. The main one carried the lengua estofado and other proteins, while at the back of it had the desserts and refreshments.
Beside it had most of my favorites – the pickled vegetables, lato and home-made longganisa. These provided the necessary foil to the heavy sauces from the mains – the lengua, the roast pork and the all-meat dinuguan (blood stew).
A small corner had the grilled panga (tuna collar) and fresh vegetable lumpia which came with crushed seaweed, garlic and coriander.
Chik Chow may have a simple buffet set-up but for Php 288, it was more than enough. You’ll probably get your money’s worth already after a generous refill of that fork-tender lengua.
More importantly, everything was properly home-cooked here and my colleagues could attest to this. Yes, although we are an ‘extra rice bunch,’ we also have discriminating tastebuds. You’d be surprised.
Our alternative that morning was just a dim sum buffet in Lahug. But I’m glad that we took a risk with Chik Chow. For only Php 288, it certainly and surprisingly, did not disappoint.
Chik Chow Food Express
316-C Mango Avenue, Cebu City
The restaurant also offers packed meals, catering services and short orders (especially of that lengua estofado)
Lunch: 11:30 AM – 2:00 PM
Dinner: 6:30 PM – 9:00 PM
For reservations and inquiries:
+63 32 410 9624 / +63 32 255 9959
+639236605886 / +639244662909
Major credit cards accepted.