By Assunta Ng
Northwest Asian Weekly
The worst comment Chinese immigrants say about a restaurant is, not “bad food,” “ugly décor,” or “lousy service.” Simply, it is: “The customer is still hungry after eating at the restaurant.”
With our relatives from Hong Kong (HK) visiting us recently, I was mindful in picking the right restaurant so they have a good impression about Seattle. HK’s restaurants set high standards.
As a great aunt, I am eager to pamper kids. How do you satisfy a 9-year-old and 11-year-old and simultaneously, make the parents enjoy the meal?
The solution is obvious: A buffet. Something for everyone would be wonderful, so we need not worry about ordering the wrong menu items. Usually, no one will complain that they don’t have enough to eat after dining at a buffet restaurant.
Opened two months ago, Feast in Renton, was our choice. Feast is a huge venue. Entering into Feast, which is more than 25,000 sq ft, is like an adventure for everyone, following a long golden brick road, full of surprises and treasures from one spot to another.
What impressed my guests were raw oysters with shells! They loved oysters, but never dared to try them in HK for fear of contaminated seafood. Some of my guests ate as many as six oysters.
The crab legs were popular. My relatives quickly grabbed some for their plates. Just the oysters and crab alone must have been worth at least $40 -$50 per person if I treat my relatives to eat in a non-buffet restaurant.
Feast serves all kinds of seafood. We dined at Feast on Saturday noon, missing its lobster serving at dinner from Friday to Sunday.
This is everyone’s favorite site, meaning that we each consumed countless pieces. If I take them to a regular Japanese restaurant, I might go broke.
I went for the sushi counter and got a plate of delightful sashimi. No, I never wanted to eat the filling rice, just the seafood. I picked all kinds of fish, including salmon and tuna.
My other favorite item was the hand roll. It’s fresh and delicious. I could have eaten three or four, but I wanted to have room for other goodies, so I ate only one.
I thought kids would skip sashimi. I was wrong. Our 9-year-old guest had several pieces of raw salmon on her plate and her brother continued to fill his plate with crab legs.
Food from the East and West
Everything you can think could possibly be in a buffet restaurant, Feast has it. If you want steak, a chef can grill one for you. If you like fancy noodles, you can pick your own ingredients; the chef can cook them in a bowl. If you want Chinese food, there is a counter. If you like Mexican food, it’s right before your eyes. If you prefer dim sum, they have these tiny delights.
And the salad, veggies, and fruits section is impressive. These are my daily necessities. Some people say I am dumb to eat salads in a buffet. I also like soups. Yes, you might think I am silly too. Going for the most expensive and non-filling items should be the way to go. But I prefer a balanced meal, Feast’s veggie choices are plentiful and the salads are palatable. I am also a soup lover so I couldn’t resist Feast’s miso and their Western soup options.
My relatives and I ate three meals together. We cooked one meal and the other meal was in a Chinese restaurant. My grandniece didn’t really like our steamed salmon, but she clearly enjoyed the raw salmon at Feast. And she didn’t eat much at the Chinese restaurant either.
At Feast, she came alive. Her eyes twinkled when she found macaroni and cheese. Macaroni! I would never have thought about serving that for my young guests. She had seconds for macaroni and cheese.
One more surprise that excited our young relatives—cotton candy. None of us would imagine that Feast serves it. Cotton candy is mostly served at fairs and festivals. Of course, kids find cotton candy irresistible.
Feast is a really sweet restaurant. How would I even think of desserts after such a big meal! I wish I had a bigger stomach for the feast!
The Feast dessert section is thoughtfully planned. They provide a lot of light meticulous puddings. Those puddings in soy, milk, taro and other ingredients please the adult guests immensely. I enjoy Feast’s desserts because they are not over-sweet. Most restaurants prepare desserts with an excessive amount of sugar.
Seattle’s American restaurants buffets charge $49 a person. That’s much more expensive than Feast. Their price range is different on weekdays, weekends and holidays. But it is much reasonable than other buffets. The kids’ rate is even better. My grandnephew ate more than I did. Since he’s only 11, we paid way less for him than adults.
Feast serves seven days a week. It also has big rooms for parties and banquets.
This is a restaurant that I will visit again and would recommend if you want to entertain friends. See you at Feast next time. (end)
Feast is located at 485 Renton Center Way SW Renton, WA 98057