Sunday brunch at The Verandah in Hong Kong

Brunch. 

It's an East Coast American staple that has rapidly developed into a global phenomenon, and there's no escaping them here in Hong Kong either. Having previously reviewed the freeflow brunch at the W Hotel, last week we decided to go back to spend an absolutely glorious Sunday having brunch at The Verandah in Repulse Bay. Despite the fact that it's quite out of the way, The Verandah is renowned for its colonial, resort-chic atmosphere (fun fact: Amanda and I had our first ever photoshoot together there!) that feels like you have left Hong Kong far behind you.



The brunch buffet will set you back HK$688/adult and HK$344/child. Freeflow drinks (think champagne, two types of French white and red wines, plus Asahi beer) is an additional $188 per person. On that note, this deal is a bargain for the champagne alone given that a glass of that will usually set you back around that price here, but we found that the red and white wines (from Burgundy, Bordeaux and Loire Valley) were seriously underwhelming.

the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet
the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet freeflow champagne

The buffet itself actually consists of "appetizers". I use the inverted commas because, frankly speaking, every time I eat here, I'm too full from the "appetizer" buffet to actually enjoy the main course that comes later.
My favourite dish was the foie gras (*groan* I know - I'm trying not to eat it for moral reasons, but it tastes so good!), which is cut into small circles served delicately in their own individual tiny bowls - the texture is melt-in-your-mouth buttery, while the flavour is distinctly rich. Pairing that with the soft, crusted bread roll with olives and sundried tomato might seem a bit over-the-top for some, but it was pretty heavenly to me!

My other favourites included the Thai beef salad, the Vietnamese seafood salad (with a generous portion of seafood), and the chicken tikka (surprisingly not dry, and full of fragrant herbs and spices). For other health nuts, there's also a DIY salad bar, which comes with an array of salad options that you can mix together.

the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet
the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet
the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet
the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet

What The Boy comes back to time and time again is the seafood here. There is a huge crab platter with fresh crab meat already cracked open in the shells, as well as oysters being freshly shucked in front of you. I have to admit that I found the crab to be extremely salty (but at least tender), and the oysters were skinny, sad little things that lacked the creamy, sweet flavour I always look for in my crustaceans (yeah that came out weirder than in my head).

the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet
the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet

You are given a choice of mains with your meal. We opted for the grilled black cod on nicoise vegetables (delicious, with the fish perfectly grilled; light and soft on the palate, and complemented beautifully by the saffron sauce), as well as the beef stroganoff with sauteed spatzel and seasonable vegetables (lean but tender meat, unfortunately swimming in hard-hitting sauce). The other main options were the mushroom cannelloni and roasted New Zealand rack of lamb.

the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet grilled cod
the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet beef stroganoff

At the end, we hit up the cheese cart and dessert table. Being lactose intolerant, I can't comment on the cheese (and by this time, we were stuffed full so that even our cheese loving friend could barely stomach a bite), but the desserts were fairly average. The chocolate fondue fountain is good, with fresh skewered strawberries and marshmallows to dip into the warm oozing chocolate, and you can't go wrong with the ice cream cart (which houses four flavours). The one dessert that was a complete let down was their chocolate souffle: these were undercooked, frothy and tasteless, which I guess is unsurprising given they were being baked in a small miniature steamer in front of us.

the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet cheese
the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet dessert
the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet dessert ice cream
the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet dessert ice cream souffle

I would highly recommend coming here for the ambiance alone (and perhaps the freeflow champagne) - the food itself is good, but nothing spectacular. On a beautiful, sunny day like last Sunday, you will feel like you've been whisked to a holiday resort far away from Hong Kong, with the sunshine pouring through the large, open windows, and a view of beautifully kept lawns and garden.


There is also a live jazz band that performs both classic and modern hits, adding a relaxed, vacation-esque vibe to the restaurant. Not to mention, the service at The Verandah is outstanding, with the waiters rushing to constantly help pull out our chairs for us (I'm not being sexist here...we needed them to help us pull out the chairs because we were carrying so much food - The Boy included!), as well as being prompt to refill our drinks and offer us a small table to place our bags on.

  1. Don't want to spend so much money on brunch? If you come between 2-4 pm, it's only HK$538/adult and HK$269/child!
  2. Book well in advance, particularly if you want a window table: we'd recommend at least three to four weeks for a normal inside table, and six weeks in advance for a window table.
  3. Wear a dress if you're a girl. Preferably a long, flowy one that resembles a maternity gown. You'll thank me afterwards when the food baby has gestated.

the verandah hong kong repulse bay brunch food lunch buffet

xx Carmen

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