09/04/13 1:02pm

Why White Castle’s Tiny Sandwiches Beat Jollibee’s

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A bumblebee’s eye view of Jollibee’s entire sandwich menu.

C+M’s sandwich coverage has included everything from West Indian fried fish to gargantuan Mexican tortas. Lately I’ve been feeling a bit jaded, so for this week’s Sandwich Wednesday I undertook the journey to one of Queens’ most exotic dining establishments,  Jollibee.  After all I liked the spaghetti and fried chicken combo at the Filipino fast food spot so I figured why not try their new $1 Little Big Bites. I mean you can’t go wrong for a buck. Then again maybe you can . . .

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The corned beef is slightly reminiscent of barbecued beef brisket.

The menu at the home of the psychedelic bumblebee offers two types of tiny sandwiches, Spam and corned beef. Both are served on squishy slightly sweet buns with a generous slather of mayo. Spam is best served well-fried. So the floppy, somewhat slimy rectangle of mystery meat lolling out of the bun did little for me. The corned beef on the other hand was kind of tasty, calling to mind barbecued beef brisket.

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Jollibee’s crunchy chicken sandwich.

To round things out I also got a crunchy chicken sandwich ($1.79) and some four cheese French fries ($1.79). The crunchy chicken sandwich was best of all, perhaps because it made sense to my Western fast-food expectations. The four-cheese fries were kind of good, too. The menu does not disclose the members of the cheesy quartet, but I suspect Day-glo cheddar is involved.

Here’s the thing about Jollibee, as a non-Filipino I’ll never have the nostalgic enthusiasm for the chain’s food that someone who grow up with birthday parties filled with Chickenjoy and Aloha Burgers does. There is, however, a tiny fast-food sandwich that’s filled with many nostalgic memories,both good and bad: the White Castle hamburger. Of all the fast-food joints my folks took me too, it was my favorite. Right about now, I could go for two tiny hamburgers and a double cheese burger,both with onion rings on top. As for Jollibee, if they ever put crispy pata in a bun I might just forget all about Chateau Blanc.

Jollibee, 62-29 Roosevelt Ave., Woodside, 718-426-4445 

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4 Comment

  • If you grew up in Queens, the Chateau Blanc on Queens Blvd was a weekend pilgrimage after whatever bar you were at. I remember being in college and meeting high school friends I hadn’t seen in years in the parking lot at 3 am. Good times, good times…

  • The buns, I think, are supposed to be pan de sal. I think we have that corned beef sandwich here in Manila but not the spam and chicken. Honestly, it has been sometime since I ate at any Jollibee. It’s true that Jollibee is a sentimental favorite of every Filipino kid but personally, I like McDo better. McDo, that’s McDonald’s to you. 😀