Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Another Buffet Thursday

I am sure it's a pure coincidence that several hotels are using the theme of Korea and Japanese cuisine for their recent buffet meal promotion. Mandarin Oriental in Central is one of them, introducing a series of special Korean and Japanese dishes in addition to their regular offerings for the dinner buffet at Clipper Lounge.

I had the opportunity to try this new menu last week, one of those rare evenings I could slip out of work early. I couldn't quite recall being at Clipper Lounge for dinner before (well Cafe Causette is usually our go-to place at this time of day instead), and I was surprised by the time I arrived slightly before 7, the place was already quite packed with people. Most of the Hongkongers may work long hours, but we always make time to be at buffet meal early - that seems to be the unwritten rule for any all-you-can-eat aficionado.

Compared to other hotels offering buffet meals at their restaurants, one at MO wasn't particularly huge, both in terms of space and food items on offer, but there's a good selection of almost everything, starting with the salad bar on one side, the sashimi/sushi and chilled seafood stations, and then sections serving cooked dishes, the carving cart, and of course, the dessert booths in the middle at this restaurant on the mezzanine floor right above the hotel lobby. And as mentioned, a number of new dishes for the regional theme were also available.

While I love the Galbijjim (Korean braised short ribs), pieces of Korean boneless fried chicken with spicy sauce (went perfectly well with a pint of Tsing Tao), or a hearty bowl of ginseng chicken soup, my favorite of the evening was the classic carved roast beef ribeye with gravy and Yorkshire pudding. Well, actually the wagyu sirloin and Korean ribeye grilled a la minute were pretty decent too, having prepared inside the kitchen and brought directly to each table, as part of their Japanese-Korean menu.

I also enjoyed the sumptuous spread of desserts, especially the bite-sized brownies dusted with icing sugar and the mini cheesecake, both for the rich flavors. I wish there were more variety of icecream flavors and condiments, but it was still good as is.

Restaurants at MO has always been a dependable choice with great food and service, and it's good that buffet dinner at Clipper Lounge is no exception.

When? May 19 2016
Where? Clipper Lounge at Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong, 5 Connaught Road, Central, Hong Kong

(The dinner was arranged by invitation)

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