Overall Score 9/10
Utage Japanese Restaurant on BumRes.com
“Utage” means the meeting point in Japanese. This is a great name among Japanese people or people who speaks Japanese. However, for me and many people in Thailand, it is just another cool Japanese name. Sorry about the gibberish on the name, lol… The Utage is the official Japanese restaurant of the Plaza Athenee Hotel, a five star hotel that has restaurants of almost every nationality. My previous review at this hotel was at the Silk Road, a Chinese restaurant. Now it is Utage’s turn for a review. And to follow are Reflexions, Rain Tree Café, and Smooth Curry. Basically, any restaurants that Plaza Athenee has to offer, I am going to review ‘em all.
Utage mainly serves the a la carte on regular basis but on Saturdays, their weekly ritual is the Kamikaze Brunch (the reception told me); it is the All you can eat for 1,500 Baht with tea or 2,100 Baht with alcoholic beverages such as Sake, Beer, Wine, and fruit juices. Too bad I had a rough night prior to this review; my hungover wasn’t suitable for the 2,100 choice. I couldn’t handle anymore alcohol in my system, lol… To get the full advantage of the free flowing booze, I require a full recovery. The 2,100 Baht for all the top shelf spirits and wine is tempting though.
Utage has much to offer in the menu (more than I expected) and the ordering method was convenient, just tick on your picks in the paper menu. This kind of buffet is my favorite; walking back and forth to dish my own is totally not my style. In this meal, we focused on the Sashimi since my friend and I were the Sashimi folks. We ordered a total of five large sets of Sashimi. Other selections were insignificant. Mostly all of the Sashimi was fantastic, except for the Ikura (Salmon Roe) – too small and too salty. As well as the Saba, which was just not delicious; other lower grade Japanese shop like Daijung Yakiniku could even do it better. Forget about the misses; there were many other impressive choices I want to tell you about. Most impressive of all was the Hokkigai, best I ever had in a while; fresh, soft, sweet, and tasty. Recently I had found Hokkigai dry, tough, and bland. Salmon, Hamachi, and Akami were at supreme grade; so delicious. These could easily be served as a la carte.
Other Japanese selections besides the Sashimi weren’t our focus but we still had a few; they were simply good. Tempura was the most outstanding one. Bean curd Soup was so awesome, it deserved to be in the a la carte menu more than the buffet. We also had a few sets of sushi rolls; these were my choices since I wanted to enjoy the Sashimi. My friends said that the rolls were yummy as well.
In my consideration, Utage’s extravaganza brunch buffet would be quite expensive without the member’s card. Well, with 50% discount is a great deal. In fact, the meal would still be worth it with only 30% off. At other Japanese places, each set are probably valued around 600-700 Baht already. Atmosphere was clean and basic, Japanese style. In my opinion, the interior design concept needed a more distinctive character. Also, I need to comment on the air-conditioning; Man! It was warm in there. Customer service could use some improvements; slow food, wrong dish, and no one to refill tea – oh well, it wasn’t bad at all. Great Sashimi and an expansive food selection were the charm of Utage @ Plaza Athenee Hotel, Bangkok
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