Jasmine Dim Sum Brunch
Hot Tea, Fiji Water
Tradition Egg Tart with Bird’s Nest / Cheese Baked Bun / Fried Shrimp Roll / New Years Pastry / Lotus Blossom Sesame Ball / Purple Yam Taro Bun / Cheese Tart
Dried Scallop and Cordyceps Congee
Bubur Cha Cha Coconut Soup with Taro and Yam
Cheesy Black Truffle Scallop / Cheesy Lobster Egg Sandwich / Bamboo Shoot Shrimp Dumpling / Quail Egg Shiu Mai / Seared Chicken and Mushroom Bun / Walnut Prawns
Roast Duck / Abalone Glutinous Rice Wrap / Shrimp, Scallop, Sea Cucumber Bean Curd Roll / Cantonese BBQ Pork Bun / Sea Moss Scallop Dumpling / Sea Moss, Mushroom, Pork Siew Mai
Steamed Golden Oyster and Sea Moss / Wok-Fried Napa Cabbage with Preserved Pork Belly / New Year Coconut Sponge Cake / Wok-Fried Udon with Shredded Pork, Bean Sprouts, Cabbage
Clams with Mignonette / Herb Crusted Lamb / Prime Rib / Roast Pork Belly / Sweet and Sour Pork / Shrimp
Rice Noodle Soup with Shrimp, Green Onion, Spicy Braised Pork, Bean Sprouts / Greens
Caramel Crepe with Fresh Whipped Cream, Candied Nuts, Fruit / Cheese Baked Bun / Cheese Tart
Chocolate Brownie Parfait / Guava Meringue Tart / Chocolate Raspberry Fudge Cake / Green Tea Cake / Tradition Egg Tart with Bird’s Nest / Traditional Museli with Fruit
Pistachio, Coffee, Raspberry, Chocolate, Vanilla, Lemon Choux / Pistachio, Caramel, Raspberry, Chocolate, Vanilla, Lemon Macarons
French Press Coffee
While opting to end the Fountains Bunch at Jasmine in favor of Lago’s mediocrity remains a questionable decision it is with good fortune that both the Worldwide and Lunar New Year see Bellagio’s gorgeous Cantonese Restaurant open during daylight hours, February’s celebration of Chinese culture carried over from the Conservatory to a Dim Sum Brunch offering nearly ninety items ranging from traditional to modern and simple to those featuring luxury ingredients.
Beginning on February 15th and ending on the 25th, a cost of $68.88 at first seeming pretty steep for Dim Sum but in reality a potential bargain depending on appetite for fresh Oysters, King Crab and items topped in Truffles or filled with Abalone, it was just prior to the Restaurant’s 11am opening that a largely Asian crowd was found in line waiting, those first entering seated immediately but only parties with reservations allowed for a short time after as the room quickly filled with patrons wandering station to station.
Replacing seats along the center and upper edges of the room with silver steam trays in addition to live stations for roast Meats, Soup and Crepes, the back half of the room overlooking Bellagio’s fountains filled with tables covered in thick linen beneath lanterns now hanging from the ceiling decorated with butterflies, it was shortly after seating that Juices, Tea, Coffee and Champagne were offered in addition to Fiji Water, after which guests were off to explore, eat and enjoy.
Clearly crafted to the exacting standards of high rollers who continue to select The Bellagio for its nearly twenty-year commitment to quality, the presence of Kenzo shirts, Louis Vuitton bags or Hermes loafers seen on nearly every guest from children to elders, it was after a quick trip around the room that one of Jasmine’s patterned plates was selected and stacked with piping hot baked bites, the Egg Tart topped in Grated Bird’s Nest immediately outpacing others offered in the 702 while both a Bun filled with Cream Cheese and one featuring Purple Yam were soft and yielding of light sweetness.
Next taking a look at Soups, Clam Chowder and Lobster Bisque left for others to enjoy and the focus instead on fragrant Congee infused with Scallops plus medicinal Mushrooms plus creamy Coconut Broth studded with tender Tubers, it would be difficult to suggest either of these as ‘better’ as both were worth every bit of stomach space, as too was a more personalized build-your-own Rice Noodle Soup station flanked by traditional condiments.
Getting back to the Dim Sum as Beverages were topped off, several trays already being replenished with fresh items from a busy kitchen, additional highlights from the next two plates included a nicely baked Scallop beneath Cheese and preserved Black Truffles plus jumbo Walnut Prawns, bursting Quail Egg Shiu Mai and Rolls featuring snappy Sea Cucumber or Sticky Rice wrapped around a generous amount of fresh Abalone.
A bit disappointed by Roast Duck, the Peking Duck Bun station from Fountains Brunch apparently too good a thing to last, additional carved Meats were highlighted by two types of Pork while the cold Seafood Station fared well despite a limited sample, residual capacity instead saved for funky yet delicious Steamed Oysters in Sea Moss plus slippery housemade Noodles dressed in Pork and Cabbage.
Rounding out the two and a half hour visit with Coffee and Dessert it was as fountains danced to new tunes played overhead that a fried Crepe made to each guest’s specifications was enjoyed alongside a couple more Dim Sum before moving on to final bites, the Dessert room of old now a well-culled station highlighted by the same Macarons offered at Forbes 5-Star Le Cirque plus Fruit and Chocolate selections from which a rich Brownie Parfait and lightly toasted Guava Tart were standouts.
FIVE STARS: Obviously not as cheap as Cathay House or anywhere else on Spring Mountain Road it would be foolish to suggest that Jasmine’s Dim Sum Brunch even belongs in the same conversation as such places in terms of Food or Service, the once (or twice) yearly event in every way a celebration that is well justified for those who can afford it and, in reality, a fairly good way to experience Jasmine for those not willing or unable to break the bank during Dinner service.
RECOMMENDED: Tradition Egg Tart with Bird’s Nest / Cheese Baked Bun / Purple Yam Taro Bun / Dried Scallop and Cordyceps Congee / Bubur Cha Cha / Cheesy Black Truffle Scallop / Quail Egg Shiu Mai / Walnut Prawns / Shrimp, Scallop, Sea Cucumber Bean Curd Roll / Abalone Glutinous Rice Wrap / Wok-Fried Udon with Shredded Pork, Bean Sprouts, Cabbage / Steamed Golden Oyster and Sea Moss / Guava Meringue Tart / Chocolate Brownie Parfait / Macarons
AVOID: Lotus Blossom Sesame Ball / Roast Duck / Green Tea Cake
TIP: Although listed as being offered through the 2/25/18 management suggested that depending on volume the event is sometimes ended sooner. Call for reservations or catch them again in late-December.
WHAT THE STARS MEAN: 5 World Class, 4 Excellent, 3 Good, 2 Fair, 1 Poor.