Dear Seasons, You Didn’t Even Try

Dear Seasons Buffet at the Manila Pavilion,

The buffet experience at Seasons last Sunday night was so disappointing that at first, I could not bear to not write about it.  The images from other blogs on the internet show how much the quality has degraded over the past few months.  You represent the hotel, and should have exerted a bit more effort.  I feel tired just thinking about it.

Appetizers consisted of salad options and chilled seafood.  The seafood pieces (crab halves, oysters, mussels) were almost always half empty.  And they weren’t even arranged, not like what you see in SukeyWasHere’s blog.  Though we came to dinner just a little past 6PM, it already looked like the salad ingredients were leftovers from lunch, not freshly prepared.

The pile of bread was tossed together in one basket.  Nope, they weren’t sorted either.  (See StreetSmartGirl’s pics for an image of what they did before)  The butter was not over ice, and no, it wasn’t chilled either.  Someone almost broke the glass plate carrying the cheese blocks trying to pry away a slice safely.  He gave up after three tries.

There was tuna sashimi the size of a stamp. And three kinds of sushi.  There was no salmon, none when we arrived, and none when we left.  Soup was a clear broth.

There were four large dimsum steamers, three of which were empty.  The fourth one had about 5 pieces of shriveled up pork siomai on one side.  Do I have to mention that the steamers weren’t steamy?  I had no problems holding them with bare hands… they weren’t even warm.

The grilling section gave you options: chicken quarters, pork liempo, squid, and fish.  The serving sizes were so big that undoubtedly you would be full after one serving.  This is a buffet, and the diners would prefer to taste a bit of everything, thankyouverymuch.

There was a pork loin with gravy that saved the day.  It kept me from finding and ranting at the manager.  Never mind the mushy vegetables that were supposed to go with it.  Broccoli is such an expensive veggie that the least you could do was to cook it right.  As a general rule, half cooked is eighteen times better than mushy for veggies.

The rest of the dishes were just plain blah… I had wished I had spent my money at good ol’  Kamayan instead.

Let me close by mentioning the dessert section.  There were cakes behind a refrigerated display, with some pinoy kakanins on top of the ref.   Beside it was a crepe section, and on the rightmost was an ice cream freezer.  To handle the demands, there was one member of the staff that was cooking the crepe while scooping ice cream and handing out the requested cakes.  She was in so much panic that she didn’t care if the chocolate slice over my cake fell and didn’t make it to my expecting hands.  How could I complain when you could clearly see that there was a long line at the crepes and ice cream section too?  And apparently, panic makes you forget that you can’t use the same plastic glove to prepare the food and scratch your nose.

Oh, and notice that there was no mention of shrimp anywhere?  That was just crazy.

I know you have not always been this way, because some friends had given good feedback months ago.  I also know that this was not an isolated case, because a friend who went there a week before I did had the same bad experience.  That buffet was not worth the money the people there had paid for, whether or not they had used discount vouchers.

You know you can do better, but I didn’t feel that you tried.


I wish I had taken pictures so that you could have a visual of what I had experienced.  Seeing the pictures of what the buffet had been a few months ago leaves me in shock.


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