The word “plus” when searched in a dictionary means “with the addition of”— so when my sister-in-law told us that she would treat us at Tong Yang Plus at SM Mall of Asia on her birthday, I became curious and excited to experience what this new hotpot and grill buffet restaurant can offer in excess. So yes, I expected something more—in terms of choices and flavors!
As we headed inside, we were greeted with a wide variety of desserts like Filipino favorites kakanin, turon, banana cue, fresh fruits, cakes, chocolate fountain with marshmallows, gummy bears, and various flavors of ice cream that kids would surely love (my son and nephews actually did!)
The highlight of the dessert section is the halo-halo station where you can make your own halo-halo. Usual ingredients like sago, gulaman, beans, pinipig, saging na saba, ube and leche flan are available. It is nice that the restaurant staff regularly fills up the ingredients, so diners can continuously make their own halo-halo.
We went straight to the long table reserved for us. You can call them to reserve a table, especially when you are dining with a large group—just make sure that you arrive on time as many walk-in diners come every day.
If you are coming for dinner, you can come as early as 5:30 p.m. and you can stay until the restaurant closes at 10. For lunch diners, you can come on or before 11 a.m. and you can stay up until 2:30 p.m.
The rule really is to come early so you can secure seats and avoid being placed on the waiting list. Plus, you also need enough time so you can try each offering from the wide assortment of Filipino, Chinese, Japanese, and Korean dishes.
Each table has hotpots and grillers where you can cook your food. The great thing about Tong Yang Plus at Mall of Asia is that they have mini pots for each diner, so everyone gets to enjoy their chosen soup individually. Other hotpot restaurants only have 2 pots per table.
Soups available are sinigang, chicken sate, laksa, malatang, vegetable soup, Chinese herb, and Korean Kimchi. Before you start dining, the waiter assigned to your table will ask for your preferred soup base for your hotpot. You can also add your chosen noodles to your soup.
If you want to start your dinner with some appetizers, you can troop to the appetizer section. You can find there Japanese specialties such as sushi, sashimi and maki; Chinese staples like siomai & shrimp dumplings; and pickled cucumber, cabbage, and authentic Korean kimchi.
When it’s time for some grilling, you can proceed to the meat section—filled with a wide array of pork, beef and chicken including imported U.S. Beef, Yaki-Tori Chicken BBQ, pork neck & belly, fat beef, imported beef balls, and Chicken sausage.
There is also a sliced meat section that offers beef chuck eye roll, beef karubi, beef, striploin, pork neck, and pork belly.
You can then jump to the seafood section where you can enjoy a bountiful spread of shrimps, crabs, blue marlin, salmon belly, clams, lapu-lapu fillet, tuna belly, and spicy squid. Right beside the seafood section is the vegetable section where you can find healthy treats for your soup. You can also try barbecue roasting on your hotplate by combining a wide array of available condiments.
Filipino dishes like sweet and sour pork, Bicol express, binagoongan and a lot more can also be enjoyed.
Tong Yang Plus offers unlimited juices and coffees—all included in the buffet rate. So you can really try all their concoctions!
Apart from the seemingly endless choices of dishes, what we really enjoyed was the fact that we got to grill, roast and fry—all by ourselves! But if you don’t feel like cooking your own food, you can always ask for the assistance of the staff and waiters.
Their rates are also reasonable, given the wide assortment of dishes that you get to enjoy. Adult weekday lunch rate is P588 per head, while adult weekday dinner rate is P688 per head. Prices are fixed at 688 on Saturday, Sunday and Holiday. Kids below 3 ft. enter for free, while the rate for kids 3 ft to 4ft is P188; and rate for kids 4ft. to 6 ft is P388.
Senior citizens also get 20% and 50% discounts, if they are 60- 74 years old and 75 years old and above, respectively. A birthday celebrant also gets to dine for free, if accompanied by one paying adult.
The ambience of the restaurant is lovely as well. Its lighting is great, as it uses a wide variety of lighting fixtures that are also colorful—making the place more vibrant!
Overall, our dining experience was awesome! Here are some tips that I can share with you when you dine at Tong Yang Plus:
- Start your dining experience by getting small portions of each dish, so you can try all the wide assortment of dishes.
- Don’t drink too much so you won’t feel full right away. A glass of water or juice is enough.
- Start light. Start with the Appetizer section.
- Don’t eat too much rice, a cup will do.
- Make room for some desserts. Remember that there are still desserts, so ensure that you can still take up all of them.
- Prioritize imported meats as you don’t get to eat them every day.
- Maximize the allotted time for buffet eating. You can rest for a couple of minutes, talk to friends or take bathroom breaks in between meals.
Don’t eat in a rush and enjoy the dining experience!