Redefining the meaning of buffets, and dessert buffets.
Celebrating Christmas away from home is tricky — there has to be an element of “home” (i.e I need turkey and Christmas desserts!) and also an element of “local” (i.e. ok, so what do the locals do?). When your apartment does not have an oven (as with 90% of all apartments in Hong Kong), home turkey feasting is clearly out of the question (no, we refuse to microwave turkey!). So find a restaurant for a Christmas feast. Can’t be hard for an island, right? Think again. Find a venue that isn’t overhyped, overcrowded, in a shopping centre, in a hotel, or in an office building…or booked out three months ago? Find a restaurant that offers a set menu that isn’t stamped with an eyewatering price of several hundred dollars on conversion or only has one appealing dish (with the rest being needless, unappealing accessories)? This Dessert Correspondent in Hong Kong was ready to tear out her hair and give up…until we heard of Yamm at the Mira. In Melbourne, if you mentioned to someone that you dined at a buffet, you are likely to be the recipient of a rather empathetic face. Poor you, bain-maries of stodygy, soggy, pig slough, of the like that a felon in a prison or a resident of a retirement village regularly partakes in. In Hong Kong however, buffets, dear readers, are entirely, a different matter.
The first caveat: Yamm is located on the ground floor of the Mira. The Mira is a boutique hotel. However, once you are inside Yamm, there is no hotel vibe permeating the place. Think, high ceilings, squishy modular seating, enclosed dining areas for larger groups, glistening lighting. Without further ado, Christmas lunch at Yamm was a-m-a-z-i-n-g. Roasted meats carvery (beef, pork, chicken, turkey), a rotation of Asian cuisine (Indian, southern and eastern Chinese), pink fresh sushi and sashimi, made-to-order tempura, Vietnamese pho and Chinese noodle soups, extensive cold cuts, cheese and salad counters, and for good order, because it was brunch hour, cereal and breakfast pastries, Chinese congee and yum cha dumplings. Here are a few pictures.
As addicted, insatiable sweet tooths however, this Dessert Correspondent’s attention was entirely captured by the dessert buffet. Have you have seen one like it? There must have been over fifty different varieties — traditional Christmas pudding simply dripping in intoxication with brandy custard, beautifully embellished yule logs, gingerbread men (cinnamon and chocolate) next to towering white chocolate fountains, platters of mince pies, stollen bread, macaron towers, cupcake towers, garden beds of cake pops and candy cane, gummy and other sugary confectionery guaranteed to send a dentist to a cardio-surgeon, and….made-to-fire creme brulee pots! The show-stoppers were however, the individually crafted miniature desserts. Boozy rum baba, champagne strawberry jelly with popping beads, mulled wine and egg nog tartlets, red wine chocolate mousses, peppermint chocolate gateaux, cranberry and raspberry custard profiteroles, black forest trifles, spiced pumpkin and pecan slices…..we are getting hungry again re-visiting this experience in writing.
There were only two issues with dining at Yamm. Aside from the “dining in the hotel” concept (which this Melbourne-raised Dessert Correspondent is slowly overcoming), the one detracting factor of our experience at Yamm was the “can’t-swallow-that-quickly”, 2-hour timed seating concept. Overlook this however, and you have (lots of) attentive staff, an incredible spread of international savouries, and most importantly, an absolute dream of a dessert buffet. What a Christmas!
(PS: Aside from seasonal festivities, Yamm also hosts noteworthy, similarly decadent weekend brunch buffets. Detox and go!).
Dessert adventure checklist
- ☑ Dessert destination: Yamm at the Mira, 118 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong.
- ☑ Budget: $$$ (HKD 488 +10% pp)
- ☑ Sweet irresistibles: Dessert Buffet.
- ☑ Must-eat: Dessert Buffet.
- ☑ The short and sweet story: Redefining the meaning of buffet dining, and dessert buffets.