The Straits is a multi-cuisine restaurant located two levels below the ground floor in the Hormuz Grand Hotel. They recently started their Saturday brunch buffets and I was invited last week with a friend to try it out.
The hotel resonates with charm and has a chic and modern theme running through its décor, especially in the large and elegant lounge and lobby areas. The restaurant imitates similar décor and has a beautiful view of the outdoor pool area.
The brunch offers two packages, unlimited buffet with alcoholic beverages priced at OMR 27++ and unlimited buffet with non-alcoholic beverages priced at OMR 21++. Mr. Adharsh Jayakumar who is the Asst. Restaurant Manager at The Straits was glad to show me around and explain me why the Saturday brunch at the Straits is now one of the best upcoming brunch joints in Oman (:
By the way, there is no price difference between the vegetarian and non-vegetarian selections as both options have almost the same number of dishes.
To begin with, we were welcomed by an insane spread of make your own salads, ready salads, seafood salad (including a bucket of mussels), soups, breads, pickles and choices of cheese to accompany wine.
We had a little bit of everything. My favourites included the beef salad, mango & chicken salad, tuna salad, tabouleh, hummus and lentil soup. My friend ordered a glass of fine Merlot (Masia J Sauvignon Blanc) which was light, crisp and made the meal very delightful.
I chose a Mojito for myself which was incredible and one of the best I’ve tasted.
The Straits serves a delicious spread of local and international delights from an interactive kitchen, where the guests can watch the chefs live in action as they whip up culinary a la minute at this incredible restaurant. For example, their live grill corner! It not only adds a grand look to the live kitchen but also adds oomph to the produce being cooked on it.
We tried the chicken kebabs, beef koftas and jumbo prawns from the grills.
The chicken was a bit dry but the beef and prawns were totally delectable.
The ambience is extremely welcoming, the staff well dressed and sporting their best smiles and a live jazz band performing at one end which kind of made my meal very enjoyable.
The appetizers and main courses have so much variety; there were so many dishes it’s impossible to recollect all the names. Also, the buffet items vary every Saturday.
One item that definitely got my vote was makhmali seekh kebabs. They were so tasty I had a couple of rounds of them!
The selection of condiments here were the best I’ve ever seen – different sauces (I loved sambal butter!), chutneys, homemade pickles of lamb, prawns, chicken, mangoes, lemon, carrots and so much more. Ah this was my pickle heaven.
My main course consisted of several plates of different items – I tried stir fried vegetables in beef sauce, penne with white sauce, hammour in harra sauce, kadai paneer with naan, roasted leg of lamb and lastly some chicken biryani with mixed veg raita, papad and spicy lemon pickle.
The stir fried veggies and pasta were cooked at the live kitchen. Don’t think I ate so much because there were still so many items I hadn’t tried.
You have the liberty to choose your sauces and mix and match to perfect your meal. If you can’t do it by yourself, the team is there to help you out. The service is prompt and excellent.
The desserts arrangement was simply gorgeous though taste wise they were less successful than the main course dishes. There were pastries and macarons, tarts, cakes, ice cream, payasam (yes!), a fruits platter, halwa, chocolates, waffles, pancakes and arabic sweets and so much more!
The chocolate delicacies were the best. I thought the macarons could have been softer. The Straits has a collection of homemade ice creams which you could finish up with their delicious sweet toppings. Try the halwa ice cream if you love Omani halwa!
I thought the buffet dishes were excellent and one of the best spreads I’ve ever seen. The food was not only captivating but also delighted our taste buds.
For me, The Straits gets a big YES and I think the buffet package with alcoholic beverages is quiet reasonable. We had about three rounds of drinks each and left the place with such a happy buzz. Thumps up on the great service too!
- Ambience: 9.5/10
- Service: 9.5/10
- Food: 9/10
- Price: 8/10
Restaurant: The Straits
Location: Hormuz Grand Hotel, Seeb
Restaurant hours: 12.30 PM to 3.00 PM, 7.00 PM to 10.30 PM
Contact number: +968 24350500