Jollibee - Irvine
As a fast-food joint, Jollibee isn't immune to offering combos. The Filipino fried chicken peddler will sell you fries to go with the burgers, and then bundle in a big ol' soda to wash it all down. But the combo I like better is the one that combines their version of pancit palabok with a drumstick.
It encapsulates what Jollibee represents in one tray--the harmonious dichotomy of Filipino and American fast food. On one side, rice noodles doused with garlic-y gravy and dusted with pulverized pork rinds. On the other, a battered deep-fried chicken leg that doesn't look much different from KFC's.
After I squeezed three packets of lemon juice into it, I slurped the noodles--something I previously described as looking like pad thai, but tasting nothing like it. And then, I chomped into the chicken as a separate mouthful, steam plumes escaping from the fresh-off-the-fryer drumstick, the skin 'neath the batter rendered crisp.
But when it settled, it didn't make me feel awful like the time I had a Western Bacon Cheeseburger Combo at Carl's, all this despite the fact that Jollibee still insists you chase it with a big ol' sugary soda.
2180 Barranca Pkwy #120
Irvine, CA 92606
THIS WEEK ON OC WEEKLY:
Outpost Kitchen - Costa Mesa