MagazinesGood Eating

Weekend indulgence

Brunches range from casual to lavish, but all will fill you up

 

GLOBAL VIEW

 

FARE International. AMBIENCE Art deco surroundings over two spacious floors with large windows overlooking Hong Kong and Kowloon. There are three private dining rooms, a patisserie and a large children's corner. COST Around HK$1,000 for two. WHO TO BRING Family and friends. TURN-ONS The incredible views from its Peak location, friendly service and relaxed atmosphere. The international selection of food - ranging from Indian, Chinese and Italian to Japanese and Western fare, including salads and a carving station - offers quality over quantity. The Himalayan tandoori chicken is a must-try, as are the barbecue pork ribs and the fennel and feta salad with pomegranate seeds. The sushi and sashimi are fresh, and we particularly enjoyed the house terrine with homemade bread. For dessert, Sunday brunch diners get a coupon for two scoops at the Mövenpick ice cream counter, and there is an array of tarts, cupcakes and desserts such as crème brûlée and trifle to choose from. TURN-OFFS Sitting near the children's corner where the clown was entertaining them could be a little noisy at times. DRINKS Sunday brunch diners have a choice of red, white or sparkling white wines, and there is a choice of fresh juices and sodas. Tracey Furniss

 

CAFÉ DECO
LEVEL 1-2, THE PEAK GALLERIA
118 PEAK ROAD
THE PEAK, HONG KONG
2849 5111
CAFEDECO@CAFEDECOGROUP.COM

 


 

FAMILY FUN

 

FARE Japanese. AMBIENCE The basement eatery is decked out in soothing natural colours and materials, with most tables offering a view of the open kitchen and its robata grills. COST HK$528 per person includes buffet, main course, dessert and unlimited drinks. WHO TO BRING The whole family – from grandparents to newborns – and friends who are OK with children. 
TURN-ONS It’s hard to go wrong with free-flowing Veuve Clicquot, but Roka’s Premium Brunch has a lot more going for it. The buffet offers a wide range of high-quality and frequently replenished items, including sashimi, oysters, salads, soba, sushi rolls, fried chicken, grilled vegetables and miso soup. We chose the black cod and lamb cutlets and found both to be well cooked and flavourful. The dessert platter was a hit with the younger crowd thanks to the brownie and raspberry sorbet. Parents of young children will also appreciate the small play area and complimentary 
meals for children under 10 (one child per adult). TURN-OFFS This is a popular spot for families, so be prepared to dodge a few children on your way to the buffet. DRINKS Original bellinis, including green tea with pear, plus beer, wine, sake, juice and soft drinks. Tama Lung

 

ROKA
SHOP 002, PACIFIC PLACE
88 QUEENSWAY
ADMIRALTY
3960 5988
WWW.ROKARESTAURANT.COM

 


 

SEAFOOD STATION

 

FARE International. AMBIENCE Conveniently located on top of Kowloon Station, the restaurant enjoys an open view of the harbour. Perked up with designer furniture, the décor is hip and trendy. COST HK$748 per person includes buffet, main course, dessert and free flowing alcoholic beverages and soft drinks. WHO TO BRING Family members and close friends. TURN-ONS The 
Kitchen’s bubbly seafood brunch isn’t just your everyday buffet, but includes molecular gastronomic compressed melon starters, seafood choices such as Coffin Bay oysters, Boston lobsters and rare desserts. Frequently replenished hot dishes, such as the miniwagyu burger, lobster benedict and smoked salmon fillet, were served in smaller portions. The dessert bar is filled with board game pawns made of brownies and QR-code-bearing cupcakes that actually work. The relaxed ambience is suitable for the whole family. We especially loved the egg-shell-shaped high chair for toddlers. TURN-OFFS As the restaurant is on the lower level of the hotel, your view might also include the cargo pier and Western Harbour Tunnel. DRINKS Veuve Clicquot Champagne, wine, Grey Goose gin, Bloody Mary, cocktails, bottled fresh juices and soft drinks. Vivien Chan

 

THE KITCHEN
6/F, W HONG KONG
1 AUSTIN ROAD WEST
KOWLOON
3717 2299
WWW.W-HONGKONG.COM

 


 

QUALITY SERVICE

 

FARE European. AMBIENCE Quiet hideaway from busy Tsim Sha Tsui with classy decorations, high ceilings and a great view of Heritage 1881. WHO TO BRING Family and best friends. COST HK$688 plus 10 per cent service charge per head, with a main course, salad counter, appetisers, soup, cold cuts and cheese. TURN-ONS From the moment you walk in, you are welcomed with the most diligent waiting services. Situated in Hullett House, it gives unparalleled views of Tsim Sha Tsui and Victoria Harbour. The open bar offers an array of dynamic appetisers and desserts, from fresh oysters to chocolate bread pudding with vanilla sauce. The seared Australian beef strip loin is cooked just right, with red wine jus and sautéed potatoes. The Champagne is refilled efficiently and is mild enough to sip a few glasses. TURN-OFFS Table arrangements could be improved so that those near the open door will not be warm and cold at the same time. The chicken cannelloni tasted like samosas, and its vodka mozzarella cheese sauce was overwhelmed by Asian spices. Puddings look great but have been put in room temperature for too long, making the texture liquid-like. DRINKS Free-flow of Champagne with three choices of summer wild berry Champagne cocktails. Gary Kwok

 

THE PARLOUR, HULLETT HOUSE
2A CANTON ROAD
TSIM SHA TSUI
3988 0101
HULLETTHOUSE.COM/#/THEPARLOUR/CONCEPT

 


 

RUSTIC ELEGANCE

 

FARE Italian. AMBIENCE The place was positively laid-back in a casual, rustic way. Still packing some understated elegance with their dark wooden furniture and an impressive terrace for alfresco dining, they have recently added a three-piece live jazz band - a classy yet cosy touch to brunch time. COST HK$548 per person for brunch buffet with free-flow alcoholic beverages from a standard drinks list. Top up another HK$100 if you fancy adding some Champagne. WHO TO BRING That special someone. TURN-ONS The French toast with bufala ricotta arrived at our table looking almost postcard-perfect. The toast was deliciously warm and moist, generously drenched with lemon compote and honey. For a slightly more savoury treat, we helped ourselves to some prime-cut pork arista. Roasted to juicy perfection, the pork was bursting with aromatic herbs. Also recommended from the live chef's station was the winning combination of fungi misti. TURN-OFFS The rest of the buffet line-up, unfortunately, was far from stellar. Some options were commendable, such as the cannellini beans with grilled onion and clams with fregula, but the others were borderline ordinary. DRINKS The buffet drinks list includes Flor Prosecco, Pinot Grigio, Peroni draught beer, Bloody Mary's and Bellini's. Razlan Manjaji

 

LUPA RESTAURANT
3RD FLOOR, LHT TOWER
31 QUEEN’S ROAD CENTRAL,
CENTRAL
2796 6500
WWW.LUPARESTAURANT.COM

 


 

COSY COMFORT

 

FARE Italian. AMBIENCE The dark wood panelling gives the restaurant a cosy feeling for dinner; in the day, it actually adds a coolness that makes it a haven from the heat. The restaurant is small, but tables are placed far enough apart for each to enjoy a reasonable amount of privacy and low noise levels. COST HK$498 with free flow of selected house wines/juices and Prosecco. WHO TO BRING Early drinkers. TURN-ONS Buffet brunches can often be excessive affairs but, with the meal served at your table, it is much easier to pace yourself and it's also more conducive to group conversations. The starter portions are comfortable and minimise wastage. You can always ask for more, which is what we did with the antipasti and the pan-fried goose liver. We were tempted by the lobster and tiger prawns, but wanted to save room for the mains. The lobster linguini was a perfect transition into the mains of excellent rib-eye steak and seafood soup. TURN-OFFS The desserts didn't impress. The black forest cake was a little dry and the panna cotta was stiffer than normal. DRINKS Wines, Prosecco, juices, tea and coffee. Winnie Chung

 

BELLA VITA
11/F, CUBUS
1 HOI PING ROAD
CAUSEWAY BAY
2577 0699
BELLAVITA.COM.HK

 


 

FINE FRENCH

 

FARE French. AMBIENCE The restaurant at The Mira hotel in Tsim Sha Tsui boasts lavish décor – crystal chandeliers, Christofle cutlery and faux ostrich-leather tablecloths. COST HK$598 per person from 11am-1pm or HK$748 from 1.30 to 4.30pm, includes buffet, main course and free-flowing alcoholic beverages and soft drinks. WHO TO BRING Someone to impress, a business partner or a visiting friend. TURN-ONS Apart from the usual seafood, Whisk’s buffet also has a premium caviar station. The kitchen also cooks up bitesized main courses from their daily à la carte menu. The 
scrambled eggs were generously paved with caviar, and the poached eggs topped with truffle foam were perfectly cooked. Beef tenderloin, freshly grilled and cooked medium rare, tasted tender and luscious. We also indulged at the cheese and dessert station for a selection of moist blueberry cupcakes and macaroons that melt in the mouth. TURN-OFFS It’s not easy to find the barbecue and dessert areas. DRINKS Champagne, wine, sangria, mojitos, Baileys, signature mocktails, smoothies, fresh juice and soft drinks. Vivien Chan

 

WHISK
5/F, THE MIRA
118 NATHAN ROAD
TSIM SHA TSUI
2315 5999
WWW.THEMIRAHOTEL.COM/PORTFOLIOS/WHISK/

 


 

PROTEIN PARADE

 

FARE Contemporary Spanish. AMBIENCE New York design firm AvroKo’s use of rich, dark woods and brick-red leather bring a touch of warmth and nostalgia to the venue. COST HK$590  for one. WHO TO BRING Family and friends. TURN-ONS The highlight was undoubtedly the protein parade. At 1pm, chefs marched roasted suckling pigs out of the kitchen, as waiters clapped to a lively soundtrack. The meat was roughly chopped with saucers, one of which was smashed on the ground for good measure. This was followed by salt-crusted whole fish, which was lit on fire to lift away the crust. The segovian-style pig had a delicately crispy skin, and the succulent meat melted in our mouths. The fish was incredibly tender, and the light drizzle of olive oil accentuated its freshness. The highlight of the dessert selection was the bread, chocolate and olive oil. TURN-OFFS The xurros (churros) with chocolate were cold and chewy. Also, the soundtrack, which is heavy on ABBA, Steps and 1990s chart-toppers, seems tacky. DRINKS Free-flow cava and sangria for HK$230; free-flow Krug Grande Cuvée for HK$1,388. Jacqueline Tsang

 

CATALUNYA HONG KONG
G/F, GUARDIAN HOUSE
32 OI KWAN RD
WAN CHAI
2866 7900
WWW.CATALUNYA.HK

 


 

QUALITY FARE

 

FARE Contemporary European. AMBIENCE Sunlit, airy modern space with lots of dark wood and comfy seats. WHO TO BRING Meat-loving friends and those with dollars to splurge. COST HK$1,600 for two with free-flow Champagne. TURN-ONS Fresh oysters and prawns make a good start to the brunch buffet with the seafood presented with little fanfare, the best way to serve quality produce. The presentation of the salads was inviting, though the space seemed like an afterthought. My French dining companion gave a thumbs-up to the foie gras station with grape and apple sauce, and the waffles were a winner, the deep pockets filled with fresh whipped cream and berries. TURN-OFFS The slow-poached eggs with serrano ham were cooked well, but the mushrooms and hollandaise sauce were too salty, overpowering this brunch staple. The wagyu burger had the requisite rich flavour in the beef patty with the tomato jam and balsamic onions cutting through the meat, but it was let down by an absence of texture that some lettuce or other crunchy greenery would have added. The fries were over-cooked, dry and oily. DRINKS Free-flow Champagne, sangria or prosecco with the buffet. Lana Lam

 

BLUE BUTCHER
108 HOLLYWOOD ROAD
CENTRAL
2613 9286
WWW.BLUEBUTCHER.COM

 

 

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