Saturday, February 14, 2015

The Grand Buffet 自助山 - Revolving Restaurant Buffet from Grand Lisboa, with History

  It’s an interesting strategy.   Macau’s Grand Lisboa Hotel decided to close their super famous The Grand Buffet 自助山 in Macau’s Casino.   Not too long after,  the whole operation and concept migrated to Hong Kong inside Hopewell Centre,  the same space Paco Roncero‘s View 62 restaurant occupied, but going back 2 decades ago was also a famous Revolving Buffet Restaurant called V66 within the same spot.    Unfortunately I seem to be old enough to remember them all from my past because I distinctly remember when Hong Kong actually carried 3 Resolving restaurants simultaneously and over-lapping each other, a short chat to my Parents confirmed this was indeed the case.   1) Juno 仙后旋轉餐廳 in 胡社生行 in Mongkok was Hong Kong’s 1st Revolving restaurant which opened during the 1960’s,  which I went for Yum Cha since around 2 years old with my mom,  and as per above-mentioned the  2) V66 Restaurant in Hopewell was my favourite place to go as a kid as I tried to work out Albert Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity by playing ping pong in a spinning atmosphere.   My ultimate favourite though was definitely (3) Furama Hotel’s La Ronda because it was just cooler, until their demise in the early 2000’s after the Economic Melt down and the hotel was offloaded for a bargain,  now already rebuilt as the AIA Insurance tower location.   



The Grand Buffet with pedigree from Macau Grand Lisboa’s fame -
No doubts on the Food Quality side.  The question I had more in my mind,  was why did this closed in Macau side but moved to Hong Kong instead?   Note that the Michelin 3 Starred Robuchon’s in HK and Macau,  8 and other Michelin recommended restaurant fall under the same Umbrella group. Good wines here as expected..



Unlimited Bread Crab -
Couldn’t get enough of this as a small eater to compensate.  Boo boo..



Freshly Steamed US Maine Lobsters -
You can have as many as you want… these aren’t pre-frozen but were air-freighted in alive to the restaurant.  I personally prefer them to be more warmed up but one can’t complain when you can eat them unlimited.

Rotational Oysters – From France and US tonight
They are freshly shucked,  although to ensure there are no broken shells they do flush the oyster flesh a bit with water.  I guess you can request them to be served without flushing??  I would request so myself.   I like the original sea taste even if it has shells from the shucking process! 

Wished I had come on a Hungrier Day … 
Really didn’t touched much but watch out for when I can be a bottom-less pit sometimes!  Angel



Italian Prosciutto,  Sopressa Ham,  Spanish Chorizo -
This actually changed during the course of the night as I noticed.  

US Maine Lobster Claws with Asparagus and Black Truffle Mayo -
This looked so neat.  After a while this changed into an Octopus dish as replacement for the 2nd session however. 




Tomato and Bocconcini Mozzarella Salad –
Loved the idea,  but from a ‘Caprese’ purist’s point of view,  could do with more Olive Oil and Basil leaves.  But still nice..

Salads and Caesar Salad -
I love salads but in a buffet setting,  I only manage to eat a little bit and it is truly dependant on the quality of salads on offer!   *Food Snob mode on.  This was quite fresh overall and appreciated

Tuna Tataki -
This was attractive enough,  but I had my other priorities.  In hindsight,  could have taken at least a bite!


Freshly made Sushi and Maki -
The Ika squid Nigiri here was made nicely, so was the Soft-Shell Crab roll.   Neat and although not out of this world,  they were actually done with precision. 


Scallops and Ama-ebi Prawns were really good,  so was the Squid Ika Sushi-
The rest of the Sea Breams and Hamachi or Salmon were also fresh.   For a buffet setting,  I can’t think of any other Competitor in HK except for The Greenery in Royal Garden Hotel which provided the same for Dinner Session.

Freshly made Prawn Dumpling -
The skin was thin but a little chewy,  overall still pretty good for a buffet setting…
These are freshly made just before dinner.  I think their skin can be adjusted better but it’s good enough for All You Can Eat !

Chinese Chicken Feet Clear Soup -
Done well indeed with pork meat within. 



Roasted Bone-In Prime Ribs -
This looked a bit Rare to most of us.  Although mostly Mygoblin rather than bloody,  we somehow wished this was cooked more thoroughly.   However the meat and beef taste was excellent.  I personally don’t mind really rare steaks so I am flexible,  but for others this rareness is not going to be a guarantee for all diners if you ask me..  




Roast Suckling Pig,  Roast Duck and Char Siu -
Suckling Pig was crispy and sensational,  it’s their famous Roast item here at this buffet.  Their Char Siu pork was also great on certain bites but depends on the cut served.  Poultry dishes were also decent.  Overall one of the best Roast Stations available in town for a Buffet setting, especially when the Suckling Pig excels beyond notable places like Fook Lam Moon or 7th Sons branches..




Tempura Station -
Fried to order.  Pretty nice actually.
Even the Tempura batter was ice bathed constantly.  

Fresh Taiwanese Fresh-Water Prawns Steamed -
This is very tempting..  I love these Taiwanese prawns for their meat and head sweetness,  but I was so full I ended up not getting any *_*



Crab Cakes with Mayo and Mango-
Tried it and pretty decent.


Pork Ribs -



Rotating 360 Degrees Harbour View -
We noticed how we always walked into the wrong buffet stations as the centre core doesn’t move!  We all had a laugh at it though

Back to the Appetizers -
Crab Cake,  Caesar Salad,  Prosciutto Ham

Truffled Macaroni Pasta made to Order -
Initially this was a Lobster Pasta.  By the time we went back to order finally, this has switched to this truffled version.  Strong truffle taste and all part of the unlimited buffet.   Wished I was a Black Hole by now but I can’t eat anymore!!  Sad smile



Curried Green Lentils -
The Indian section is looked after by the Indian Head Chef of this station.
The details to attention practiced here is not to be under-estimated,  even if most of us saved our quotas for other items in the end. 

Curried Chicken -
So wanted it but I was too full.  If you are a big Eater,  this is so for you indeed!




Steamed Dumplings -
Freshly pleated from 5pm onwards before dinner session and never frozen.    Thoughtful and tried a few items myself.  Overall this was appreciated,  only exception was the Prawn Dumpling skin which could be less chewy.




Dessert time -
Many small desserts served in Verrine Glasses here ..
Pretty neat looking



Chocolate Fountain -
Apparently this was hand built and costs a lot of money to make into reality.  Extravagant but very enticing as a chocolate fountain..   I liked the concept but the 50% Dark Chocolate was too catering for also the kids as it wasn’t very dark.

I believe I can Fly,  I believe I can Reach the Sky…
This is Dried mango with Marshmallow dipped in 50% Chocolate. 
I don’t mind if the chocolate is darker richer,  though this combination suits the kids more.




Orange Chocolate Tart,  Opera Cake, 
Cheese Cake with flowing Centre,  Panna Cotta -
Pardon me but I was full by this stage,  it was the ladies’ world onwards already!  Apparently these were good and got the ladies’ approval.



Anti-Griddle Fried Ice Cream with Marshmallows,  Oreo Crumbs and Rainbow Chocolates -
This I did have.   The freezing anti-griddle meant the ingredients such as the Marshmallows became super chewy and fun!  




Serradura -
This was sensational actually,  it had 2 types of crumby bits. 
Even in Macau where this Portuguese-Macanese style dessert originated,  one can’t easily find a really thoughtful version.   But knowing the pedigree behind this restaurant from Grand Lisboa Group,  they did a phenomenal job to impress…


Tea Pot -
Tea or Coffee is included for the $598 price for Dinner.  Out came this Cast Iron Pot for each individual…   This is so heavy and I feel bad for the staff carrying this to every individual,  but it shows the Restaurant has heart and wants to impress every guest from food down to the ending drink.  



Price:  $598 + 10%  Dinner
Food:   ♕♕♕♕ 1/2

Address:  62/F, Hopewell Centre, 183 Queen's Road East, Wan Chai, Hong Kong
Ph: 2506 0888/ 2506 0666

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