An underwhelming experience of sorts !
I was here for a Buffet Dinner on 30th December and my experience in terms of food border-lined between average and just above average. I have been to Eighty Eight in the other Hyatt Property on Nagar Road more than a month ago so it was only natural for me to draw a comparison. I was definitely surprised to observe that the dining experience in Eighty Eight both in terms of quality and quantity was much better than what I experienced in the “The Cafe” at Hyatt Regency, Viman Nagar Pune.
Ambience and seating comfort – I would rate them a very good 4/5 on this parameter.
As with any other Hyatt property the lobby area and approach to the restuarant were dazzling and the seating was comfortable with ample space between the tables to provide the required privacy for those crazy conversations over good food.
The difference here being the food wasn’t quite upto the mark as what it should have been in comparison to other competing five stars in the similar price band.
Service – I would rate them an average 2.5/5 on this parameter.
The rating is primarily because the starters were served in very less quantity at a time and the gap to have them refilled was 15-20 minutes on a number of occasions. I didn’t find any issues with the serving staff as Mr.Nand Kishore did his best to serve us with all the courtesies but I guess the Kitchen wasn’t able to support the staff completely and the infrequent serving of starters wasn’t something I could excuse easily. Another point where the service/kitchen needs to improve is the fact that their desserts counter was getting replenished at a snail pace and there was a point where the counter was almost down to its dumps and wasn’t filled for more than 25 minutes ! During our entire meal we kept waiting for a Pine apple pastry but it could never make it to the desserts section till the time we left.
Food – I would rate them an average 2.5/5 on this parameter.
I am going to talk about the different courses as below and to be really honest I had far better expectations from Hyatt Regency after having had a good meal at Eighty Eight in their other location on the Nagar Road but as the title says it was an underwhelming experience of sorts for sure.
The Starters – I would rate them a good 3.5/5 on this parameter which was incidentally the best part of the meal.
They have 2 veg and 2 Non Veg starters as part of the buffet and the ones making the cut on the day were Chicken Manchurian (4/5), Gobhi Manchurian (2.5/5), Corn Tikki (3.5/5) and Fish fingers (3.5/5). The oriental variant Chicken starter was by far the best of the evening and was crisp from outside while the chicken inside was tender and the combination worked really well. On the other hand the Gobhi Manchurian was absolutely bland when served the first couple of times. However after responding on my feedback during the third serving it came with the required sauce and the usual taste associated with the preparation. The cauliflower however was nice and crispy and not too oily which was the saving grace of the dish.
From the live counter the grilled chicken was okay and our drinks which were Fresh lime soda were a bit inclined towards the sour taste that you get in the seed of lemons so that was bit of a letdown.
The Main Course – I would give them an average 2.5/5 on this parameter.
I never expected the food to be this awkward and downright bland as it was served in the Dinner that day. The only good part of the main course were the oriental dishes, most of the other items in the main course were tasteless and devoid of anything noteworthy.
I tasted Mutton curry, paneer methi malai, tawa subzi, daal etc but none of them could provide any value for the taste buds, apart from the Fried Rice and Chicken preparation in Oriental menu, the only other item which came close to my liking was the Malvani fish curry.
Desserts – I would give them a decent 3/5 on this parameter.
The desserts were a mix of all kind of assorted pastries which were mostly decent and tasted the way they should but it came across a bit single dimensional to be honest. The desserts section could definitely be improved by adding a bit of variety instead of having same kind of desserts in different variants. The choco pastry and paan masaala based ice cream were the best in the desserts and fitting were a good way to end the meal after a disappointing main course.
At the danger of sounding like a broken record I would again like to reiterate that my experience at Hyatt in terms of food quality and service response felt short of expectations by a size-able margin and at least for improving the aspect of food taste they don’t need to look too far, they can always take a cue from their sibling Eighty Eight !
I conveyed my feedback to their Manager Mr.Manjay who actually made notes of my feedback and was all ears for it which is always a good sign. I hope the listed improvements are given the due importance since Hyatt as a brand deserves much more than what was on offer during my dining experience 🙂