Signature Brunch at the W Hotel

This weekend, my boyfriend and I celebrated our one year anniversary by visiting the W Hotel in Hong Kong for their signature seafood + champagne brunch (HK$798 per person including free flow Perrier-Jouët Grand Brut NV Champagne). Admittedly, we're a little early in our celebrations because this evening, I'm off to Switzerland for around 1.5 weeks to enjoy the fresh mountain air (yes, I know - tough life!).

To start off with, we were offered our freeflow champagne served at our table (which was constantly topped up throughout the day, so big thumbs up for the service), although there is also the option of going yourself to a drinks table that is stocked with a margarita machine, mojitos, bloody marys, gin, and peach and strawberry bellinis. There are also cute bottles full of cucumber water with mint (refreshing), lemongrass tea (disappointingly bland) and lemon water, plus two types of detox smoothies.

The first food counter you'll come across is full of cold cuts: ham, prosciutto, salami, chorizo etc, as well as a few salad variations and a solid selection of cheeses.

On the opposite back wall is a platter of fresh smoked salmon, petite lobster croissants (which are very good even though I'm not a lobster or croissant person), a "foie gras and berry garden" consisting of grilled foie gras, raspberry jelly and maple syrup jelly (foie gras purists, don't get too excited: it tastes like a mousse, which means it doesn't have the full rich and creamy texture or flavour), and the salmon gravadlax (which we recommend).

At the seafood station, there are oysters, Boston lobster (both claw and body), snow crab, yabbies, mussels (surprisingly plump although slightly salty), prawns and brown bread crab, as well as crab soup (the pumpkin version isn't too creamy, so don't be worried about being too full after that). This is the most popular section of the buffet, so be sure to prioritise a visit there if you're a seafood lover.

The main counter offers a variety of meat (predominantly beef and lamb) grilled over a small fire, Mediterranean style (which results in a slightly tough texture and smokey flavour), as well as beef sliders and strips of Wagyu beef, vegetables, and Chinese dishes such as char siew, sweet and sour pork, and Chinese kale. There is also other Chinese dim sum favourites on offer at the very end of the corner counter, plus customised soup noodles.

Around the side of that is the Japanese section, which surprised me by being my favourite. The salmon and octopus sashimi was very fresh, and the salmon sushi (made in squares and triangles but with a Japanese style of adding a few condiments like seaweed) was delightful. Unfortunately in contrast, the soba noodles were disappointingly bland.

Dessert was the most impressive: the W Hotel went all out by offering a full length dessert counter including a variety of mini apple tarts, chocolate tarts, chocolate cake (which appeared to be a ganache but was disappointingly a mousse), chocolate mousse, chocolate truffles, cheesecakes, small cupcakes, and a giant cupcake (which got obliterated by the end with everyone carving a slice out of it!).

Tucked away on another side of the buffet area is a Haagen Dazs ice cream counter that also offers alcoholic Nice Pops in lemon and berry flavour, and most impressive of all, piping hot, hand made churros made right in front of you. I recommend grabbing a bowl of chocolate ice cream, adding a few churros, and getting some marshmellows covered in dripping chocolate from the nearby chocolate fondue fountain to top it off. Absolutely decadent!

On top of all this, and something I thought was a unique touch, was the final station at the entrance of the restaurant, designed to appeal to kids (and big kids like me). Dubbed a takeaway station, it offers small sealable bags with which you can fill up with a selection of candy from the large jars (go for the sour worms - they run out the fastest!).

Interestingly, despite the freeflow champagne, there were quite a few children hanging around, so it is a place you can bring your family. The atmosphere was fantastic: despite the fact that half the people were dressed up in gorgeous Summer dresses and the other half were in flip flops or sneakers, by the end, everyone was drunk, chattering and very jovial.

This brunch is only available from noon until 3pm every Sunday at The Kitchen in the W Hotel.

xx Carmen

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