Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Cypress Lounge Breakfast Buffet, Westin Bellevue

Another day, another hotel breakfast buffet.

This one?  Highly mediocre, one of the worst I've had this year.  Skip it.

Setting

Cypress "lounge" is a very casual restaurant.

There is no host stand, you seat yourself.
Seating.
Tables are basic wooden tables, salt and pepper, sweetener on the table, cloth napkins, basic silverware.

Food & Drink

I'll sum this one up easily.  This is not a very good buffet.
Menu
The menu is a full page, but, looks are deceiving.

The menu has exactly two options: a cold buffet for $17 or a full hot breakfast for $23.  Each includes basic coffee, water, juice, but the rest of the menu is dedicated to "elevating your coffee", but upgrading to espresso beverages, or adding on cocktails.

Cold Creations - $17.

Enjoy a selection of cold items including endless fresh fruit, seasonal berries,charcuterie, savory cheeses, smoked salmon, breakfast breads & pastries. Includes Westin Fresh by the Juicery & coffee or tea.
The cold continental buffet is included with the full buffet, and honestly, was better than the full buffet. 
Coffee.
Coffee is ordered from your server when you sit.

It is Starbucks brand, but really not very good.  Very harsh, very acidic.  I think it had been brewed far in advance. At least I was given a carafe full at my table to refill my cup as I wished, however, I didn't wish for more of this.

Sweeteners are provided on the table.

I opted for a decaf after this, and it was an americano basically, made from a robot machine.  Much, much better.
Fruit, Cereal, Milk.
First up was the least healthy selection of cereal I've seen in a long time, Kellogg's brand individual boxes.  Almost all sugar cereals!  Frosted Flakes, Apple Jacks, Frosted Mini Wheats ... ok, ok, they had Rice Krispies, Corn Flakes, and Special K Red Berries as well.

Milk (regular, soy, skim) was on the side, plus whole fruit (apples, bananas), granola bars, and granola.

I skipped this section.

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Yogurt, Cheese, Smoked Salmon

Next came some basic individual pots of yogurt, smoked salmon with traditional accompaniments, a couple cheeses, and hard boiled eggs.

I tried the cheese curds, and they were decent.
Fruit & Pastries.
Next up is the "Assorted seasonal fruit": blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, cut melons, and pineapple chunks.  The berries really were shockingly good.

On top was some very lackluster baked goods.

Slices of basic white and wheat bread.  Plain bagels only.  Soft looking croissants.  A couple fruit danishes that looked visibly stale.  Little cranberry muffins that looked sticky on top.  Blueberry muffins that were larger but looked no better.

Since I love baked goods, I couldn't resist trying a few at least, although, wow, they looked bad.

And they were basically as they looked.  The blueberry muffin had some nice big berries in it, but it was soggy overall and had no real flavor.

They *did* have a pecan danish that I've seen at other properties before and enjoyed (like at the Element Seaport in Boston), and this was no different.  It certainly wasn't a fresh nice pastry by any means, but, the filling is sorta like a maple-y pecan pie, gooey with bits of nuts, and I enjoyed the flavor of it.  The pastry isn't light, flaky, or buttery, but its a bit crunchy, and ok-ish.
Toasters, Butter, Jams.
To jazz up your bread/bagel were basic toasters, butter (no margarine), assorted Dickinson's jams, Smucker's peanut butter, and maple syrup (for the upcoming pancakes).

Full Breakfast Buffet. $23.

Enjoy our cook-to-order omelet station, eggs prepared your favorite way and endless fresh fruit, seasonal berries, charcuterie, breakfast meats,savory cheeses, smoked salmon, breakfast breads & pastries. Includes Westin Fresh by the Juicery &  coffee or tea.
For  $6 more, you can upgrade to the full hot breakfast buffet.  Save your money, unless you really like eggs.

The hot breakfast includes very basic buffet style hot foods, plus an egg station.
Pancakes, Chicken Sausage.
First up, the single hot carb: pancakes, and chicken sausage.
Buttermilk Pancake.
This was everything you expect from a horrible buffet pancake.

Thin.  Soggy.  Flavorless.

Why did I bother try it?  Well, because I was at the Westin Bonaventure in Los Angeles the week before, and they had shockingly good pancakes in the breakfast buffet. Plus, I thought some real syrup could save it?

It didn't.  It was not good at all.
Pork Sausage, Bacon.
Two more breakfast meat options came next, pork sausage and bacon.
Breakfast Potatoes, Toppings.
The final option is breakfast potatoes, followed by a standard condiment section of ketchup and hot sauces.
Breakfast Potatoes.
I also tried the breakfast potatoes, again because the Westin Bonaventure had shocked me with their insanely good hash browns.

But these were awful.

Cold, soggy, overcooked cubes of potato.  Some seasoning I couldn't identify.  Maple syrup didn't save these either.
Oatmeal.
The final element was oatmeal, with brown sugar, walnuts, and raisins available to mix in.
Egg Station.
The egg station is the big attraction, although there is not a chef posted there, and you order from your seat from the server.
Egg Order Form.
The egg order form is actually a nice idea, it allows you to specify exactly what you want, survey the options, etc.

But I don't really like eggs.
Custom Veggie & Cheese Soft Scramble.
I still ordered eggs one morning, because, well, there was just nothing else I wanted.

I went for whole eggs, soft scrambled, with swiss cheese, onions, peppers, spinach, basil, mushrooms.

The eggs were pretty basic, I believe not really whole eggs, but rather, that scrambled egg/omelet mix places use.  The mushrooms were slimy canned variety.  Everything else was standard.

The only thing I really liked was the flavorful swiss cheese, which I was able to extract because it didn't really melt in.  A feature for me, but, not likely what they were going for.

This lacked all seasoning, but salt and pepper were available at my table.
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