Monday, August 18, 2008

whatever/whenever - Kitchen @W Hotel Hong Kong

after my first encounter of this hotel chain some 8 years ago in san francisco, i have fallen in love with it. not that i can afford to stay there every time i travel, but every time i stayed in one of their hotels, there were always fond and interesting memories. and i even kept a few souvenir items from the hotel as part of our home decoration.

with that being said, you can imagine i've been eagerly waiting for the opening of w hotel in hongkong since the plan's announced a few years ago. and when it's finally "soft" opened for business on the day of olympic opening ceremony, i can't wait to make a reservation for lunch at their restaurant the following weekend, just to check out what the place's like.


as we walked in, one quick observation: while w san francisco and w los angeles westwood (definitely two of my favorites) more resembled a dance club than a hotel, w hong kong looks more like a residence. simple is definitely the new word for hip. we were quickly led to their restaurant which is on the second floor and soon we were glad that we actually made reservation in advance as we saw a few walk-in customers being turned away (it's fully-booked for lunch and dinner, they were told)

kitchen, as their "casual" restaurant was named, actually consisted of two parts - near the entrance is the cooking area, with vast space for the open kitchen and a long, "communal" high-table, designed for lone diners to share or to host a dinner event. i am sure it's a fun place to enjoy a simple meal while interacting with fellow travellers or the chefs. after going through the cooking area there comes the dining area - with huge windows facing the typhoon shelter and pier. not spectacular, but on a nice day you do get a comfortable view of blue sky and harbor.

well, nothing surprising on the menu - mostly regular dishes you would find in a hotel cafe with some fusion touches here and there. i ordered the miso-chicken sandwich while cyy ordered an all-day breakfast with eggs, sirloin steak and sausages (you can never go wrong with that, i am sure). and while we certain gave credits for the presentation of the food, i would rate their food as average - on par with say, cafe deco, i suppose. service's attentive but certainly has rooms for improvement as it's apparent most wait-staff are new and need further training.

despite some glitches here and there, which i am going to give them benefits of doubts since it's only their first week of business and i am certain being biased, i probably will come back later. i look forward to future occasions that i can enjoy a few sips and a simple meal there, either in the middle of a shopping spree at the mall next door, before or after movies, or just an evening of chilling with friends.

p.s. fyi, whatever/whenever is also how they call their concierge service.

details:
when? august 17 2008
where? w hotel hong kong, elements, kowloon
occasion? checking out a new hotel (and trying out its restaurant)
menu highlights? miso chicken sandwich with ginger vinaigrette

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