Hong Kong is the , but I have to say that I’m not usually a fan of buffets, generally finding them to be a vulgar display of excess and wastage, showcasing the greedy and profligate nature of some people. So it was with some trepidation that I went along to at West Kowloon.
Hong Kong is the land of the hotel buffet, but I have to say that I’m not usually a fan of buffets, generally finding them to be a vulgar display of excess and wastage, showcasing the greedy and profligate nature of some people. So it was with some trepidation that I went along to W Hong Kong at West Kowloon.
Happily, I have to say everything I previously thought was completely unfounded. For a start, Kitchen – one of W Hong Kong’s two restaurants – is neither excessive nor vulgar. Being much smaller in comparison to many other hotel buffets, it offers people a chance to taste and sample a range of dishes, but the variety on offer is not so big as to put people off. That said, there are enough dishes to appeal to a large cross-section of tastes, from the adventurous to the fussiest of child diners!
Looking around the restaurant, the décor is wonderful, with the space kept bright from the long window that looks out over the harbour and dockyards, giving the kids plenty to look at to keep them occupied! The room also has high ceilings and well-spaced tables, allowing for pushchairs in the aisles without causing a jam. The restaurant uses Bloom highchairs – which will be a great comfort to those dining with infants, as Hong Kong restaurant highchairs can be precarious at best, and dangerous at worst. There were quite a few families with kids of all ages, including under-ones, which is always a good sign for a family looking to enjoy a leisurely lunch buffet.
What’s on the menu?
There were stations of starters and appetisers, a salad and seafood bar, sushi and Cantonese noodle stations, dim sum, Chinese BBQ (including Peking duck pancakes), Western dishes (complete with lobster eggs benedict – yum!) and finally, the dessert table – with cheese, fruit salads, and all kinds of cakes and puddings. The restaurant offers their tasting buffet daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner, with different dishes rotating each day, so they have got this down to a tee. I was able to sample a little of each station and felt each dish was quite carefully thought out for the customer. Particularly appealing is that they cater for small people too. Nothing was overly spicy or exotic, but cleverly done nonetheless. There were even miniature fish and chip baskets!
At 2pm every day, Andrea, the W’s Sicilian pastry chef comes out for a demonstration at the sweet table. On my visit it was a giant cupcake station – a high counter table strewn with jellybeans, sweets, nuts, chocolate pieces, icing syringes of flavoured buttercream, and cupcakes. At first I thought there had been a large party there, and they were waiting to clear the tables, but no, cupcake decorating was the highlight of the day for the kids! They loved being creative with their food (and I loved not having to worry about the mess!).
A great touch is the take-away table by the entrance, with a cinema-style popcorn machine, lollipop and sweet stand plus candyfloss machine for the kids to take yet more goodies home, (if they can possibly fit any more treats into already-stuffed little bellies!).
I felt that sauces, dressings and desserts needed to be labeled more clearly. Not everything had a label, and as a mother of a child with a food allergy (nuts) this was very frustrating as I had to be extra-vigilant and stop my kid from eating quite a lot of the dishes “just in case”.
Yes, and plenty of parking space!
Yes – probably the swankiest ones you’ll find in the ‘Kong.
No need – the buffet style presentation makes it easy to placate the picky and the adventurous alike.
The buffet was excellent value at $328 per adult, and one child (from 3-12 years) eats for free with each paying grown-up. All children under 3 eat for free.
Monday to Sunday from 6:30am – 11:00pm
Kitchen, W Hong Kong, 6/F, 1 Austin Road West, Kowloon Station, Kowloon, Hong Kong. Tel: 3717 2222.