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Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Vikings Marikina and North Edsa (Review): Eating like there’s no tomorrow

I am a serious fan of buffets, and so are my mom and my sister. I have no problems on picking who to take on those random food cravings as they are always game and hungry! I was lucky enough to see a promotion from Citibank wherein we were able to avail 50% discount from Vikings Marikina during a weekend. We did not hesitate to avail of this deal. This visit was then followed by three more and needless to say, I am now a big fan of Vikings’ SM Marikina! I have also tried the buffet at Vikings’ SM North but the Marikina branch offers cheaper rates and has more promos, so make sure to keep updated on all the branches' Facebook accounts!
 
vikings metro manila
PBB Teens sa Vikings! :P
On my first visit at Vikings, we had to queue until 12 noon as we did not have any reservation. Just imagine how happy we were when we were finally assigned a table! My next visit at Vikings Marikina, I made sure to secure a reservation. All branches accept reservations via call and private messages to their Facebook accounts.

vikings buffet
The rate at SM Marikina
View at Marikina while waiting for our table

I have only been to Vikings’ SM Marikina and SM North and have never really tried the one at MOA yet but lunch and dinner time at both branches are jam-packed! The one at Marikina is more spacious however you wouldn’t really be able to avoid the crowd who are also excited to feast on those tempting selections. Both have really elegant set-up and all the staff makes sure you are comfortably seated and your needs are attended to (service water, new utensils, etc). 



Shall we proceed with the buffet tables then? :)

I have read that the owner of this restaurant franchise have been inspired by the Norse traditional event held by the Vikings wherein there would always be overflowing food and drinks in every feast they would organize. Surely, this is very evident with how they operate and the variety of dishes is catered to suit everybody’s cravings: Western, Asian, Mediterranean cuisines are served.

Near the entrance, the start of tempting buffet displays
Upon entering, the first display I noticed was their attractive set of desserts that are sure to tempt your sweet tooth. I held myself back though, as I usually “save the best for last”. It is immediately followed by the salad and appetizer bars. You can choose to make your own salad but the ready-made ones are also available such as egg, potato and kani salad. Next to them are the cold cuts and cheese section that I made sure to try. I am not that familiar with cheeses but my visits to Vikings have made me acquainted to them. There’s also caviar which was okay and a must-try for those people who are curious on how it tastes like. I guess I have to eat more for my taste buds to get used to it. Different pastries are also available, and of course, spread to go with them as well.
salads


As usual, the Japanese section is always a hit! Every time I try to find the tempura, I just couldn’t get any. What I do is I observe when the chef cooks another batch. When he’s almost done, I’ll queue so that I will be the first one to get my hands on those babies! I think the quality of the tempura is good, comparable to those of famous “authentic” Japanese restaurants in Manila. The breading is not too thick and the taste of the shrimp will just burst into your mouth once you’ve bitten into them. Love it! Knowing the prices of tempuras outside, I got almost three platefuls of these – and finished all of them. :)


notice that empty tray, tempura of course.
At the same section, you will also find other Japanese dishes such as okonomiyaki, teppanyaki, yakitori, vegetable/fish tempura, kani fritters, etc. I thought most of these were bland and didn't taste good, some were passable though, so it may vary with how well you know your Japanese food. Maybe I have been to too many Japanese restaurants so I was used to the taste that Japanese chefs bring out to the table. But I think if you haven’t tried any of those dishes, might as well do for experience.

okonomiyaki
Kung may pambara, kelangan meron din panulak!
The Drinking Station offers all types of beverages: juices, fruit/choco shakes, coffee, tea, soda, and they even have draft beer! For fruit flavors, they have pineapple, four seasons, dalandan, mango, lemonade and more. I was disappointed with the shakes they offer because from all my visits, I only saw that they serve one flavor, say Melon Shake for Monday then Mango Shake on Tuesday. I didn’t try the beer too because it will just make me feel bloated and I don’t want that on my special buffet day. :P




In the SM Marikina branch, my favorite is placed in the middle of the restaurant, which is of course, SASHIMI! I make sure to eat lots of these because I don’t get too order too much of these on Japanese restaurants due to the price. I remember my second visit at the Marikina branch wherein I had five platefuls of just tuna sashimi! I love how fresh it is since you could see the chef prepare the fish and put it in the serving plates. In comparison though, the ones at SM North Edsa tasted like the fish had been cut days before and tasted ‘old’ to me. Hope they incorporate the same set-up that Marikina branch has.

sashimi being prepared right before my eyes
At the same station, makis and sushis are also available. There are various types of them so I wouldn’t bother typing all that was available. I don’t get much of these as they are sure to make you full on one go, so maximum of two plates of these are enough for me.

different types of sushi and maki

The Chinese section of the buffet probably was my least favorite, not that the food tasted bad, it’s because my family usually go to Chinese restaurants at least once a month and technically Chinese food is very common in Manila. If you are my friend, you’d know that sweet and sour anything is my favorite Chinese dish so I still managed to eat the pork version of it. There’s also a noodle station that I usually just pass by (not sure why though, I’m not craving for any noodles when I go to buffets).

noodle station


Cold cuts are also offered such as sausages, animal organs, etc. Different soups such as chawan mushi, miso and Chinese herbal soup are also a cute sight because of their containers, but I didn’t get any. The dimsum were okay, the siomai and xiao long bao tasted different and I guess the ones at Master Siomai or Siomai House tasted better.


dimsums! i did not bother to take the lids off
My goal every time I visit Vikings’ is to at least have 15 slices of the steak! I usually get the tenderloin, medium rare or well done. It tasted so good so of course, I reached my goal (and probably ate more than that, I didn’t really count anymore after 15). The sauces that they offered were also very delicious, I couldn’t really recall the names but the one tasted sweet and the other one was gravy sauce. I was also able to try the lamb but it’s not my favorite meat, so, meh.

meat galore!!!
Next, you’d be able to see Western favorites such as pasta, pizza, fried foods like fries, onion rings, etc. Just beside it is the Korean section that offers hit dishes such as Chapchae, beef bulgogi, yakitori (which is Japanese by the way, not sure why they put it there) and the likes. The chapchae was good though I don’t really recommend that you get a lot since it will also make you feel full.

vikings buffet

finger foods


vikings marikina
chapchae!
vikings north edsa
beef bulgogi
yakitoris, sorry for the out of focused pic, my sister might have taken this one
If you are a big fan of seafood, you can have your favorite dish cooked here. I have not really tried it though as I’m not really looking forward to eat any fish (aside from Sashimi) on my buffet visits, but you can ask the chef how you would what kind of recipes they can prepare for you.


For some reason, I always say to myself to try the hotpot, but when I finally have the opportunity to get some, my stomach always says “no!” because of how full I end up after plates and plates of sashimis and steaks. I have heard from friends though that the soup is good. I’ll make another mental note to try shabu-shabu if I get a chance to go here again with a big group.

hotpot station
Save the best for last. There’s always space for dessert. Two of my favorite mottos. Haha I’m kidding. But seriously, the dessert section is heaven, especially for people like me who LOVES sweets. I started off with some fruits to “lighten the blow” from all that heavy eating. Pineapples and dragonfruits are the best medicine for that. Kids’ favorites such as gummy worms, marshmallows are available. A great way to eat your marshies is by the chocolate fondue which they have in black, white and pink!

fonduuuuue!

all those cream puffs gone in an instant, I only managed to get one piece :(

The jellies, mousse and panacottas are not to be missed as well. There are various cakes available but I only took one slice of chocolate and two of brazo de Mercedes. There are also crepes and waffles with different toppings and jams you can choose from. Last but not the least, is the vanilla yogurt. I usually have at least two cups of these. This didn’t taste too sweet and still had a hint of sourness on it, almost comparable to that of White Hat’s. I always look forward to having the frozen yogurt on each of my visit here. Indulging in my favorite sweets surely is the best way to conclude my Vikings’ experience.

Waffle and crepe station
my most favorite machine in the restaurant
FroYo goodness
The buffet restaurant has tons of promotions that could help you save money if you’re dining, so better maximize them, so that you could keep both your stomach and wallet happy. :D
*         Birthday celebrant discounts – Celebrate your birthday at Vikings’ and dine in for free! They’ll be greeting you with a song and with a free cake too!
*       Tune in on their fanpages before big celebrations (graduations, independence day, their anniversary, etc), they usually offer discounts as well.

food blogger
One happy camper (or customer?)

Vikings' Grade: (5 as highest, 1 as the lowest)

Accessibility/Location: 5 – There are three branches of Vikings’ already: Marikina, North Edsa and MOA. Just take your pick on which one is the most convenient or nearest to you.

Ambiance/Staff: 5 – It could really get crowded especially during weekends and holidays. The staff, though, are very friendly, polite and always attentive.  I think SM North Edsa was a bit small in comparison to the branch at Marikina which looked wider and more spacious. The interiors of the place looked very elegant and sophisticated.

Food: 5 - The long line of buffet bars was epic! There’s just massive of food to select from. I have a huge appetite but I haven’t really tried every dish they have there. I had lots of favorites and I always end up feeling dizzy on each visit because I wanted to try as many dish as I could. Lol. The quality of most of the foods is fresh and the taste is passable as well.

Price: 5 – SUPER SULIT! With the selection they offer, the service and the quality of food, nah, I couldn’t really say anything else. Basta, sulit!

I don’t doubt why “Ang Pinaka” placed Vikings at Top 1 as ‘Ang Pinaka’ Patok na Buffet Resto in Metro Manila with the overall satisfaction I was able to get by only spending that money, I could never be happier! If you’re also interested to read my Buffet 101 experience that was placed as Top 2 spot, go to this post :)

Writing about this post made me crave for more. I hope my next time I would be able to finally try their branch at SM MOA. Seriously, I have been craving to go to Vikings’ every month so I bet you can say I totally love it! I’ve been to the resto for five times already and all experiences have been positive. Hope this review of Vikings would be able to help you decide whether to stop your diet for a day and go DIE-eating! :)

SM North Buffet rates
SM Marikina Buffet rates
on-going promotion at SM Marikina branch


Vikings (SM Marikina)
2nd Floor, SM City Kalumpang , Marikina City
Contact Numbers: 0917-8766888; 0919 9993888 / 570-3888; 570-4888; 570-5888
Operation Hours: 11:00 - 14:30, 17:30 - 22:30

Vikings (SM North Edsa)
4th floor, The Block-SM City North EDSA, Quezon City
Contact Numbers: 376-3888, 376-4888, 376-5888
Operation Hours: 11:00 - 14:30, 17:30 - 22:30

See you again Vikings!

14 comments :

  1. yes, this is uslit for the quantity and the price! =)

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    Replies
    1. sure is, chyng! thanks for dropping by :)

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  2. Im not a fan of buffets but Vikings is tempting since some of my friends told me na sulit daw talaga.

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    1. yup you have to! mas mura pag weekday so just in case you'd go i recommend going on a tuesday or wednesday para di rin ganun ka-crowded

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  3. In terms of food quality, which of the 2 branches you visited is better?

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    1. Hello, I think there's only a minimal difference but I liked the quality of the steaks and sashimi at Marikina

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  4. I hope to visit Vikings Marikina this coming weekend. Been to Vikings MOA once and now wanna try their branch at Marikina. Thanks to your post. Super excited now! :D

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    1. Hiya! Hope your visit turns out well, :) Parang gusto din tuloy bumalik sa Vikings ngayon haha

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  5. Replies
    1. yup everything is unlimited! (exception: i think SM North offers sake, but you have to buy it per bottle)

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  6. thank you for this very informative post. i was just considering celebrating my hubby's birthday at Vikings, and your post decided it for me. :)

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    Replies
    1. Hey Joanne! Glad to help! Enjoy celebrating with hubby! :)

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  7. how about the drinks, are they unlimited too? i mean, even for the juices?

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    Replies
    1. yup everything is! (except for sake cos for sale ata 100 per bottle)

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