September 16, 2013 Beirut Lebanon Middle East

Breakfast at the Mövenpick Hotel Beirut

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Mediterranee Restaurant at the Hotel Mövenpick, Lebanon

Arrive to the lobby and go down to the eighth level where breakfast is served everyday from 6am to 10:30am at the Mediterranée restaurant. A host welcomed us, before a hostess wearing a pink classy outfit accompanied us to our table. The Mövenpick Hotel Beirut is the 6th 5 star hotel, where I have come to try their breakfast in the last couple of months.
 
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Before walking around the buffet to start eating, I laid back on the metallic chair with its relaxing cushion and started focusing on all the little details that constitutes this place. The Mediterranée restaurant is a combination of many distinct rooms, a buffet area and a live cooking station.
 
The place described:
  • Violet walls
  • Brown square tiles cover the floor
  • Ceramic design square tables surrounded by metallic chairs make the place look close to a Mediterranean Island
  • The main facing wall is all covered with brick stones and has a long sofa under it
  • Every room is centered by the piece the resistance - a big metallic chandelier with soft yellow lighting
  • Here and there, paintings of the touristic places of Lebanon decorate the walls
  • Soft lighting, soothing and classy make you feel comfortable
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After being served with a tasty American coffee, smooth without bitterness, I walked around the buffet to indulge into the wide choices:
  • Honey, Honey with pistachio, Honey with nuts, Honey with peeled sesame
  • Fig, strawberry and apricot jam
  • Plain and chocolate halawa
  • Dibs
  • Peanut butter
  • Nutella chocolate spread
  • Dried fruits: banana, coconut, strawberry, grenades, mango, prunes, grapes, figs, apricot, boumali skin
  • Walnut
  • Corn flakes: All Bran, Coco Pops, Weetabix, Corn Flakes, Weetabix Chocolate, Rice Krispies
  • Hot Section: Pork bacon, Roasted potato, Sautéed mushrooms, Grilled tomato, Beef sausages
  • Organic corner: crackers rice organic cracker, oat bran, muesli no added sugar, corn flakes bio, burcher muesli, forest honey, Soya milk, apricot compote, fig compote,prune compote.
  • Cheese and cold cuts corner: Pork ham, beef mortadella, emmental cheese, chicken mortadella with olive, cheddar cheese, labneh, hummus
  • Vegetables: bell pepper, tomato, cucumber
  • Fruit salads, red fruit muesli, plain muesli
  • Fruits: Grapes, Pineapple, orange, watermelon, menon
  • Pastries: Blueberry cake, chocolate muffins, chocolate brioche, chocolate cake, chocolate croissant, strawberry danish pastry, chausson, apricot danish pastry, pears danish pastry, plain croissant, cheese croissant, gouglof, donuts, berliner, almond brioche, blueberry muffin, berliner
  • Furn: kounafa, black olive, green olive
  • Manakish: keshek, cheese, za3tar
  • Fresh orange, water, pineapple, ice tea mango
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Breakfast started with a complimentary Mango Purée with fresh yogurt (the healthy shot or the power shot). This shot is tasty but should be served colder.
The food experience:
  • Food is good but not great
  • Makanek are deceiving, too spicy and too peppery and the same goes for the bacon. I did the mistake of starting my breakfast with these items that upset my taste buds... I had an after taste stuck in my throat the whole day
  • The croissant are way too commercial and too big. Not crunchy but rather spongy like an English cake. These rolls are a meal by themselves. They should be smaller to be eaten completely and leave space to taste something else
  • I like the manakish. A prepared dough is covered with cheese or ham then heated live. I liked its crunchiness and would recommend cheese ones more than Zaatar
  • The fruits are fresh and mouthwatering
  • The scrambled eggs are to oily and the sunny side up are undercooked. The presentation on another hand needs a quick fix
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The competition is tight so I'll allow myself to compare. Just look at the eggs plates and see the difference between Mövenpick, Four Seasons and Phoenicia. The Mövenpick ones are the least appetizing. Served on a big square white plate, with no decoration or seasoning whatsoever, the plates are not appealing. The scrambled eggs with vegetables are fresh, soggy and a bit oily. I loved the chili pepper added to them, making them spicy while adding a unique touch which differentiates them from others. The sunny side up are too thin, too watery, undercooked and close to being tasteless. They should be a bit crunchy on the sides, well seasoned and thicker for sure.
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The things I loved:
  • Lebanese bread in individual nylon bags from Le Relais
  • The choice of honey is breathtaking
  • Two Nespresso machines were available
The minuses:
  • French buns don't look or taste fresh. I missed the crunch... I'm sure they were produced this morning but maybe putting them in a nylon bag made them lose their freshness.
  • Pancakes are small as katayef, there was no choice for having them freshly prepared. A big disappointment
  • No waffles are available!
The Mövenpick breakfast is the least expensive among all the five star hotels I have tried so far - with a slight difference of couple thousands Lebanese liras. I liked the wide choice and their premium welcoming and attentive attitude, which put a smile on my face early morning. I took all the pictures I wanted without any interruptions and was taken care of like a king. Some minor culinary improvements can make of this breakfast a unique one.



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