When I heard about Hanare’s Champagne Brunch, I immediately told rif we had to check it out. For RM298+, you get to enjoy the buffet with a free flow of G.H.Mumm’s Champagne, while the non-alcoholic option cost RM150+ — we opted for the latter. The décor was tasteful and zen-like, and reminded me of the setup at Hajime.
The buffet spread was simple but of high quality. I was slightly disappointed with the sashimi selection as there were only two choices available; salmon and tuna. According to the chef, the shipment did not arrive in time for the buffet. The tuna belly was fatty and deliciously buttery, while the salmon and tuna slices were fresh and smooth.
Also good were the oysters, opened on the spot. Sweet, fleshy and incredible tasting, I had five of them.
My D.I.Y salad of rocket leaves, seaweed, asparagus, smoked salmon, crabmeat and salmon roe (ikura) reminded me of spring. Crisp and tangy with a burst of saltiness from the roe, I enjoyed this.
I didn’t care much for the calamari rings, which were cold and oily. The chicken karaage was decent but sadly, cold as it was left outside along with the calamari. The prawn tempura was piping hot and juicy, but the batter was a tad thick for my liking. rif however, thought it was alright.
My favourite part of the buffet was the teppanyaki section. There was a selection of wagyu beef, salmon slices, scallops and prawns. The wagyu beef was cooked medium rare for me, and it was tender and tasty from the marbling. I loved the scallops, which were large, plump and juicy. The prawns were crunchy, sweet and topped with creamy sauce – decadent stuff! Next to the wagyu, scallops and prawns, the salmon tasted quite average.
Someone once told me, that to know if a chef is good, order the simplest thing on the menu. So I ordered the tamago roll. This was very good. The rice was creamy, moist and firm, and the egg filling was oh-so-fluffy. I’ve never eaten a tamago roll this good. Even simple items like chawanmushi and miso soup were done well.
Desserts were decent but hardly memorable – fruit and jelly cocktail and azuki beans with dumpling. The food was delicious and service was good, but a few of the staff needed more training. Some of them didn’t know the names of the dishes available.
Food: 7/10 (pork-free)
Verdict: Simple spread, but the food was of good quality.