Thai Fridays at Food Exchange Manila

Starting January 2020, Food Exchange Manila, the all-day dining and buffet restaurant of Novotel Manila Araneta City, will be featuring classic Thai dishes on its Friday dinner buffet spread. Thai Fridays is perfect for those who are curious to try Thai cuisine or for travelers who miss the local dishes they enjoyed in Thailand.

Priced at ₱1,688 net per person, the Thai Fridays buffet spread features Thai dishes available in all food stations of the restaurant. There were a few Chinese, Japanese and Indian dishes and French desserts available in the buffet, but the majority of dishes served were Thai dishes. It did actually felt like dining in a buffet restaurant in Bangkok.

I started my dinner by ordering a Pad Thai (Thai stir-fried noodles) from the noodle station. It had a well-balanced blend of sweetness, saltiness, and tartness. A squeeze of lime will bring out the fragrant flavors of the dish. I love my pad thai with lots of cilantro. If you are not a fan of cilantro, make sure you remind the staff preparing your pad thai.

My first plate included Yum Som-o Goong (ยำส้มโอกุ้งสด) or pomelo salad with prawns, Pla Pao (ปลาเผา) or Thai salt-grilled fish, Gai Tod (ไก่ทอด) or Thai-style fried chicken, and Khao Man Gai (ข้าวมันไก่) or Thai-style chicken rice. The fish was moist and very flavorful while the fried chicken was mildly spicy. The chicken rice is a must-try! It is a good idea to have a serving of pomelo salad as its refreshing taste really helps to cleanse the palate.

Here is the Satay Gai (ไก่สะเต๊ะ) or chicken satay I ordered from the grilling station. The chicken meat was perfectly marinated and grilled just right until golden brown, yet tender and moist. Make sure you ask for peanut sauce for this dish.

Here is my second plate which included steamed rice, Pad Krapaw Moo (ผัดกะเพราหมู) or stir-fried pork with holy basil, Tod Mun Pla (ทอดมันปลา) or Thai fish cakes, Gaeng Massaman Gai (แกงมัสมั่นไก่) or chicken massaman curry, Gaeng Karee Gai (แกงกะหรี่ไก่) or Thai yellow chicken curry, Gaeng Phed Moo (แกงเผ็ดหมู) or Thai red pork curry, and Nua Pad Nam Maan Hoy (เนื้อผัดน้ำมันหอย) or stir-fried beef with oyster sauce.

Finally for dessert, I had the Khao Niao Mamuang (ข้าวเหนียวมะม่วง) or mango sticky rice, Kluai Buat Chi (กล้วยบวชชี) or steamed banana in coconut cream, and Kanom Piak Poon (ขนมเปียกปูน) or pandan pudding. The buffet at Food Exchange Manila also includes free-flowing iced tea and during Thai Fridays, Cha Yen (ชาเย็น) or Thai milk tea is also included in the choices.

Below are the Thai dishes served during our visit. Please note that the buffet spread changes every week based on a menu rotation designed by the restaurant. This will ensure that you will be able to try a different Thai dish every time you dine during Thai Fridays.


Salad Station (left to right):

  • String Bean Salad with Mussels
  • Ground Beef Salad
  • Thai Pomelo Salad with Prawns
  • Spicy Squid Salad
  • Thai Beed Salad
  • Chicken Coconut Salad
  • Thai Pork Salad

Noodle Station (left to right):

  • Crab Bee Hoon (Poo Aob Woonsen)
  • Nasi Goreng - Indonesian-style fried rice 
  • Thai Kuay Teow - Thai-style stir-fried noodles

Fry Station

  • Thai-style Fried Chicken
  • Pad Thai

Thai Hot Dishes

  • Tom Yum Goong (ต้มยำกุ้ง) - hot and sour lemongrass shrimp soup
  • Khao Pad Sub Pa Rod (ข้าวผัดสัปปะรด) - pineapple fried rice
  • Pad Krapaw Moo (ผัดกะเพราหมู) - stir-fried pork with holy basil
  • Tod Mun Pla (ทอดมันปลา) - Thai fish cakes
  • Gaeng Massaman Gai (แกงมัสมั่นไก่) - chicken massaman curry
  • Gaeng Karee Gai (แกงกะหรี่ไก่) - Thai yellow chicken curry
  • Gaeng Phed Moo (แกงเผ็ดหมู) - Thai red pork curry
  • Nua Pad Nam Maan Hoy (เนื้อผัดน้ำมันหอย) - stir-fried beef with oyster sauce

Carving Station

  • Pla Pao (ปลาเผา) - Thai salt-grilled fish
  • Kao Ka Moo (ข้าวขาหมู) - pork trotters rice

Grill Station (left to right)

  • Cold Clams
  • Cold Mussels
  • Marinated Fish
  • Marinated Chicken
  • Marinated Pork
  • Chicken Satay

Thai Dessert

  • Khao Niao Mamuang (ข้าวเหนียวมะม่วง) - mango sticky rice
  • Kluai Buat Chi (กล้วยบวชชี) - steamed banana in coconut cream
  • Kanom Piak Poon (ขนมเปียกปูน) - pandan pudding

Free-Flowing Drinks

  • Infused Water
  • Pineapple Iced Tea
  • Novotel Signature Pandan Iced Tea
  • Thai Milk Tea
  • Tea, Black Coffee, Espresso, Flat White, Cappuccino

Food Exchange Manila
Ground Floor, Novotel Manila Araneta City
General Aguinaldo Avenue, Araneta City Complex, Quezon City
Metro Manila, Philippines
Contact: +63 (0)2 8990-7888
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