A blog, inspired by my love for my daughter, that embraces quality food, service and experiences which make life worth living. In the words of Tennyson's Ulysses, " I cannot rest from travel. I will drink life to the lees." Seeking that incredible dining or hotel experience and writing about it.
Sunday brunch at the Hyatt Regency in Wangjing, Beijing.
The Hyatt Regency in Wangjing, Beijing, has that typical look of a Regency - glass exterior that is modern and chic. As I walk in I am quite excited about my Sunday brunch experience as I moved out of my comfort zone and was about to try a new brunch for the first time in 4 months in the city. The restaurant, Market Cafe, could not have been more contrasting to the Regency concept and as I am shown to my table, I cannot help but feel the earthiness as conveyed by wooden floors, high ceilings with wood again the main element - in fact, the wood, together with a lot of greenery reminds me of a few restaurants I have experienced in Park Hyatts. It is a gorgeous all-day dining venue that soothes and calms one immediately. Water? Yes there are a few water features too to complete the tranquil aesthetic appeal. Oh, wait, floor to ceiling windows, with view of the outside lawns ensure that I have already fallen in love with brunch even before I have been seated.
What I liked most about the brunch, other than the venue A Sense of Space
It would be easy for them to add more tables, which is customary at many buffet style brunches, but they have opted to give people space., and it is hard not to appreciate it. Because tables are quite spread out, you will feel a level of privacy. Furthermore, because space is so well utilized, I did not experience much crowding around stations.
There were 2 stand out stations for me, namely the Indian station and the Raw station. The Indian station, firstly, offered some good dishes; Mixed vegetable curry, Roasted mushroom soup and Eggplant curry were just some of the dishes available. However, it is the tandoor, an Indian oven, that really got me excited. The possibilities with a tandoor are endless. I had naan made in the tandoor, and while it was a little under-baked, I still enjoyed it.
Next, the Raw station, as I call it, surprised me because there are very few brunches, if any, in this price range that offer oysters! The oysters, by David Herve, are not bad at all. At the back of my mind is my awareness that the brunch costs 358RMB net, so one cannot expect Fine de Claire of Guillardeau! They were nicely shucked and for me the best part is that Chef did not rinse them in salty water, allowing guests to experience the real sea when they try the oyster. Also, the salmon, part of three sashimi options, was really fresh as evidenced first by the beautiful colour and then taste. Next to the oysters, the Japanese station also had okonomiyake and onigiri, simple dishes not often seen at brunch.
There are interactive elements in a number of ways. Over and above the chance to interact with staff, whom I must say, are quite engaging, there is a children's cooking class that is connected to the excellent kids' room. Having been to more than 500 brunches in the last 5 years, I have never seen such a smart way to keep kids engaged and involved. On this occasion, I watched kids, supervised by chefs, make a Caesar salad! Finally, Chefs roam around with a trolley and serve guests those extras that are not part of the buffet. I have always liked the trolley idea. and it is nicely executed here.
An excellent price, chefs who come out from behind the counter, a sensible number of stations that points to sustainability and less wasting, a nice drinks selection including a decent sparkling option in Chandon NV that ensures the price stays low, very family friendly and engaging staff and of course, a sumptuous setting will ensure that you too will fall in like with a brunch brunch that surprises on many fronts. I will definitely be back.