In the heart of the historical city of Malacca, a sumptuous spread of Hi-Tea and Breakfast Buffet was revealed in the Es.sence Kitchen at Holiday Inn Melaka!
Continuing from my fabulous stay at Holiday Inn Melaka, I was really lazy and actually spent a lot of time just hanging out in the hotel itself. When I checked in, my family and I headed down to the Es.sence Kitchen coffee house in the hotel to grab a bite since traffic was horrendous outside. There was a Hi-Tea Buffet spread going on that afternoon and I indulged in a plethora of sumptuous spread from various international and local dishes that day.
Starving, I quickly checked around and found Es.sence Kitchen to be widely spacious and long in interior space. The whole coffee house was so comfortable and one can choose the cool air-conditioned restaurant or enjoy a breezy al fresco air outside the coffee house. The kitchen stations were widely spread and I counted more than four stations serving from appetizers, main courses, live stations to drinks and desserts!
Appetizers are simple and features many local dishes like Samosas, Fried Money Bags, Chicken Lobak, Gado-gado, various salads, breads and soups. Featured in the soup station was Fish Maw Soup and Mushroom soups which faired decent.
For those who prefer a lighter lunch can help themselves to a DIY station for sandwiches!
Main dishes had a long row of warmers featuring a glorious Beef Rendang, Fried Chili Chicken, Kung Pao Squid, Fish Fritters, Stir-Fried Yee Mee, Nasi Kemuli and more. I love the Beef Rendang with its creamy spices and subtle hints of kaffir lime leaves, therefore I piled this on my plate with the Nasi Kemuli, which tasted a bit like briyani. Fried Chili Chicken was also very enjoyable simulating the Nyonya fried chicken redolent of spices. My partner enjoyed the Stir-Fried Yee Mee for its comfort fare.
What took center stage of the buffet was the BBQ grill station!! The BBQ was set outside on the balcony of the restaurant and a gentle breeze was softly wafting the scent of heavenly smoky aroma, so intoxicating to the nostril, as soon as one steps out from the restaurant. A chef was on standby to cater to your whimsical fancies of a myriad choice of grilled meats and seafood. I quickly picked out a bit of everything and walk around to enjoy the baby blue sky and sceneries while the chef grills my platter. A quick walk around had me salivating at freshly fried Keropok Lekor, Goreng Pisang and Cucur Udang, while I spied Baked Potatoes with its essential condiments. A Satay station was also detected with sticks of rustic spice marinated meat gently cooking on the hot coals to perfection!
At that moment, it was just a heavenly sight, smell, and sound of Mother Nature’s work at the balcony of the restaurant. Blue sky shining while the light breeze was swaying the trees to a melodic tune and the smell of charcoal grilled meats and seafood had me sighing with great happiness and a sense of serene moment during this short getaway! Life just couldn’t get any better at that moment… J
Once my grilled items were done, my platter was a sight to behold! A platter originally meant to be shared ended up mostly in my tummy alone… hehehe. A second platter was instructed since the grilled items were so delectable. I adored the Grilled Chicken as it was juicy and tender while the skin was crispy. Grilled Lamb with Mint Sauce and Grilled Beef with Black Pepper Sauce were equally satisfying. Another notable benchmark was the Satay! Marinated by the in house chef, everyone raved and raved about the authentic Satay. There is simply an aura of rustic appearance and flavors of the juicy meat that impressed us as the spices was coarsely retained in the sticks of meat to add another dimension to the satay. A satay like this deserves a standing ovation and to date, I have not found a satay that can outdo this one!!
The Cucur Udang was light and almost fluffy when savored with the sweet chili sauce while my Baked Potato was crammed with all the lovely toppings of sour cream, bacon and spring onion!
Heading back to the inside of the restaurant, I sampled Nyonya Lam Mee from the live station where there were many other spreads like Dim Sum, Roti John, Noodle Soups, and Pancakes aligned the long station. The Nyonya Lam Mee is delicious for its unpretentious fare of yellow noodles coated in the dark aromatic egg gravy.
Desserts ended up with an array of cakes, puddings, mousse, fresh fruits, local kuihs, Ais Kacang and a little more. Drinks like fruit juice, Ice Lemon Tea and hot beverages are included with the Hi-Tea Buffet. With my tummy satiated to its max, we headed back to our room for a little nap time… hehehe! (and slept like a baby!!)
As our room came with complimentary breakfast the next morning, we headed back to Es.sence Kitchen for our breakie fare after a night of slumber land on the fabulous bed. (Read how fabulous it was here!)
Expecting simple and minimal breakfast spread, I was in awed at the sight that all the stations were filled with breakfast goodies. Talk about being generous, Holiday Inn Melaka surely takes the cake as the breakfast spread was another amazing sight to behold!
Loads of bread, muffins, and pastries were piled gloriously on the long buffet station while fruit juice, soya bean, milk, coffee, tea and more were hosted at another station. Various cereals sum up the breakfast of champions to all ages!
From local fare of the quintessential Nasi Lemak with Chicken Rendang, Fried Noodles, Teochew Porridge to the full works of the American breakfast fare hit our tummies gleefully that morning.
Oodles of Sausages, Beef Bacon strips, Baked Tomato with Cheese, Sauteed Mushrooms, Hash Browns and Eggs to your fancy fared brilliantly as they were warm and juicy. A simple toast or Croissant slathered with creamy butter completed the Western breakfast cravings for my family. Kids were scramming for the station set with hot fresh Pancakes and Waffles as they slathered on gooey and sticky streams of honey, peanut butter and fresh whip cream!! (my kid included, wink!)
I, on the other hand, adored the simplicity of a white porridge topped with luscious Salted Egg Yolk, glorious Century Egg, peanut, Black Bean Fish, julienned ginger and crispy fritters! Extremely comforting and a lovely way to start off the morning fare… J
Chicken Noodle soups with rice noodles, Lou Shue Fun and more was also available.
For the healthier breakfast connoisseurs’, fear not as there are plenty of healthy breakfast fare like Yoghurt, Muesli, Nuts and Fruits, Fresh Fruits and Pastries to reel in the energy for the day.
Both dining experiences at Es.sence Kitchen has been a satisfying one! The spread is lavish while the choices are plenty with a little something for everyone. Make sure to savor the fabulous authentic Satay and BBQ items!! Prices is also another plus point as it’s very value-for-money for the Hi-Tea at RM40.80++ (adult). Hi-Tea Buffet is available on every Saturday and Sunday from 12pm to 4pm.
Holiday Inn Melaka
Jalan Syed Ab. Aziz
Toll Free: 1 800 801 881
Tel: +606 285 9000 ext. 8168
Fax: +606 285 9111
Operation Hours: 6.00am to 12 midnight daily