Jollibee's 1st Canadian location opens in Winnipeg as hundreds wait in line
American-style fast food restaurant with Filipino-influenced dishes called the McDonald's of the Philippines
Hundreds of people, bundled in scarves and tuques, waited on a frigid Winnipeg morning to dine on fried chicken and spaghetti for breakfast.
Canada's first Jollibee restaurant — hailed as the McDonald's of the Philippines — opened Thursday on Ellice Avenue at Milt Stegall Drive.
One person in line held the number 603 and stood far back from the arch of red and yellow balloons around the main entrance, as the temperature hovered at –26 C but felt like –36 with the wind chill.
Another customer, who held number 277, told CBC News he didn't care that he'd be waiting for a while because it was worth it.
"It feels like home. I grew up eating Jollibee so yeah, I'm really excited."
Alberto Basallo was number 91 in line and knew well ahead of time what he was going to have for breakfast.
"Oh, everything that's on the menu — a little bit of spaghetti, some rice, chicken, everything on it," he said, adding that he'll be getting some to go as well.
"I'm going to take some home for my daughter; wife is waiting for it too. So I'm coming home soon."
The ninth largest fast food company in the world with more than 3,000 stores, Jollibee is an American-style fast food restaurant with Filipino-influenced dishes.
It is well-known for its pineapple-topped hamburgers, peach-mango pie, Chickenjoy fried chicken and Jolly spaghetti.
- The buzz around Jollibee: First Canadian location lands in Winnipeg
- Filipino fast food chain Jollibee is officially coming to Canada
Winnipeg was chosen as the first Canada location because it has the largest population of Filipinos, per capita, in the country.