Our three-day long weekend started out with a big-enough bang - lunch buffet at Straits Kitchen, Grand Hyatt Hotel, which is probably the only hotel buffet to have scored Anthony Bourdain's seal of approval.
I have a morbid fascination with buffets; the lack of self-control and excessiveness has always excited the fat kid in me (breakfast at Burger-King before ballet class, yeah?).
I'm not going to repeat the lunch buffet menu as you can get it here; while the spread wasn't painfully expansive, most of the offering is pretty spot on in terms or flavour.
When I tweeted, 'Straits Kitchen, here I cometh', PY of Much Ado About Eating replied, "please park yourself at the Indian section". I didn't see that tweet immediately but she was absolutely right. Kismet.
Whatever you do, don't miss out on the Indian section.
If you have limited stomach space, go straight for the Indian section.
Unless you are allergic to curry or you are afraid of that bomb-gone-off-in-your-tummy feeling after ingesting all those spices.
Loved those lamb racks and spinach cutlets. Plural? Hell yeah.
These deep-fried shishamos were absolutely delicious! I honestly lost count of how many I ate and a couple of spots appeared on my face the next morning (not kidding).
It's hard to take good pictures of buffet when you are not attending a media-tasting event.
Eggy fried carrot cake aka chai tow kway. It pained me to not be able to re-fill as much as I needed to ration stomach space for so many other things.
The char kway teow was ok so spend your carb-on credits on something else.
I would have missed out on the Roasted Meats corner had it not been for my mother-in-law who brought back a plate of yummy roasted duck.
The keropok was the first thing I laid hands on, and with devilishly addictive dip, I dare say, this is probably one of my top three favorites items.
Satay never really hits the high notes but me, but these were pretty good.
After all that rich food, it was good to tuck into some clean-tasting popiah.
Of course, the rojak isn't as good as Hoover Rojak but still a decent rendition.
These nonya kuehs were perfect with a cup of tea mug of teh or kopi tarik.
Peanut pancake because I lack-of-abs-solutely cannot resist man jian kueh.
Oh by the way, deep-fried in small batches, the goreng pisang and sweet potato fritter were marvellous with a dollop of coconut ice cream.
Loved the plate. Too bad I could not take it home.
It's funny, not to mention ridiculous, when people compare Straits Kitchen to hawker centres, when they are obviously different in terms of comfort level and catering to different crowds and occasion. Given the spread, you will probably have to travel to at least three to four destinations to achieve a similar level of variety; when you factor in the petrol cost or cab fare (don't forget the advance booking fee); hire for a minion to cater to your every whim (can't possibly miss out on good service, no?); and rent a mega air cooler to keep you properly cool throughout your trip, it might just save you a pretty penny to dine at Straits Kitchen.
Sidenote: I can't believe it's April. Craze-balls!