Four long years have passed since Louie and I last had dinner in a restaurant in Greenbelt together. We used to meet here during lunch break or after OJT (last term before graduating from college) frequently. So this place must mean a lot to us! 😀
One of the real catches where we had nice memories in Greenbelt is Bubba Gump. Sounds familiar? Of course, that is if you have seen the 1994 blockbuster movie Forrest Gump, one of Tom Hanks’ greatest films. Most customers say that the restaurant’s gimmicky ambiance, engaging staff, and food are the main prizes. That couldn’t be more agreeable, except for the last. Read on the rest of my review of Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. to discover why.
Review of Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. (Greenbelt 3, Makati City)
Inside Bubba Gump are so many fun touches related to Forrest Gump, resembling what the restaurant would have looked like had Forrest run the scheme of things here himself. Quotes from the movie and memorabilia filled the walls, ceiling, tables and decorations. Note: If you have not seen the movie, go on and watch it first before dining here to have a greater appreciation of the way the restaurant was designed.
Interesting diversion: Near the entrance, Bubba Gump has a gift shop section where guests can take a good look at Bubba Gump-branded shirts, caps, keychain holders, mugs, tumblers, dolls and other souvenirs that are on sale.
After eating, I roamed around and was surprised to find that the restaurant is so spacious with a lot of different sets of tables and chairs positioned in the smoking and non-smoking areas. There’s the bar, the regular central dining, the balcony and a place I identify as a function room where a gathering for a decent-size crowd of 20-30 can be accommodated. Definitely, this place scores A+ in my books!
The coolest thing in service was having to call the wait staff’s attention by flipping the table sign from the default “Run Forrest Run” to “Stop Forrest Stop,” instead of the typical gestures like raising one’s hand or shouting “Miss” or “Mister” verbally that may just annoy other dining customers. (The same style is being implemented in Pepper Lunch.) I’d love to add another one: “Pay Forrest Pay” so immediately the waiters would know that customers are all ready to pay for the bill and they’d prepare for the check.
Staff were hospitable, extremely upbeat and entertaining. In one of our visits, the waitress even quizzed us a few trivia questions about Forrest Gump and gave us vanilla ice cream as prize for answering correctly.
Bubba Gump prides itself for using ingredients that are sourced internationally and only from premium local food suppliers. All over the world, they are known for best-tasting SHRIMPS, or as Bubba would call it – the fruit of the sea. So we were just excited to let our taste buds reminisce and remember how their “best ever” shrimps taste like.
The Popcorn Shrimp (PHp 295) may be filed under “Appetizer” on the menu, but this starter can be a meal by itself. However, the fried shrimps with roasted red bell peppers and three great dipping sauce were mediocre at best. They were not as fresh and the flavors were far from bold or exciting.
Going to the positive side of the spectrum, the Chicken Cordon Bleu (PHp 490) was awesome. This course was made with four pieces of breaded chicken breast stuffed with ham and Swiss cheese, deep-fried and served in lobster butter sauce, mashed potatoes and asparagus spears. The quantity was wholesome and the mixed taste of the ingredients was quite unique.
The bread crumbs resulted to an unyielding crispy crust which belied an unbelievably soft chicken meat. The contrast consisted of the right amount of saltiness of the ham, a good choice of smooth cheese in between, with the mashed potatoes making for a mellow touch — genius on a plate!
Price for Value: ★★☆☆☆
Bubba Gump is not a bad restaurant but just is one that serves seriously overpriced food served up in the style of the Deep South. Word of advice is to not be blinded by their culinary illusion because you can get more affordable and more delicious food from other seafood restaurants in the Philippines but maybe without the same great setting.
As said in the movie, “Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.” With that, you can order other spectacular dishes from the Bubba Gump menu, but be prepared to pay for the heavy price as well. 🙂