Let's face it: Hotel breakfast "dining" isn't usually delightful. There are those hotels with the "free continental breakfast" that is merely a plastic-packaged pastry, orange juice from frozen concentrate and coffee that is definitely brown and coffee-flavored but not necessarily good. Step up a level and you have the "boiled eggs, make-your-own waffle, cereal in plastic dispensers" hotel breakfast.
That is *not* what the 6ix Park Grill breakfast at the Hyatt Regency Irvine is about. This lovely dining experience is what breakfast should be: relaxing, brimming with true service, an inspiring yet calming environment and delicious food. I suppose that's why, in nine days of breakfasting at the 6ix Park Grill, we saw not only Southern California visitors like ourselves but also business people ready to start their day and area residents all enjoying what 6ix Park Grill had to offer (family activities kept us away from the hotel in the evening; this review is only for the breakfast hours—although I'm eager to try this restaurant some evening when we're visiting again).
First, the setting: The restaurant has a small adjoining bar area (separate from the larger bar just off the hotel's lobby). In the morning, this area is where the restaurant stages its delightful breakfast buffet. It's plenty roomy enough to serve well for this purpose, meaning breakfast diners have comfortable space to choose from the hot selections, pastries, fresh fruit, cereals and breads. The dining area is comprised of a few booths as well as many tables set in three distinct areas, separated by low dividers; this keeps the large, high-ceilinged room feeling intimate, no matter where you're sitting. You can also choose to sit in the outside dining area, visible through the glass walls at the edge of the dining area. The outside area is planted with ferns, bird of paradise and other greenery, lending a bit of a tropical feel.
Tables are set with heavy napkins, nice drinkware and heavy stainless; this does not in any way feel as if the restaurant's management has just added a makeshift breakfast in to their repertoire to maximize usage in the morning hours.
The morning servers are incredible at 6ix Park Grill. We were lucky to enjoy the professional service of Zia as well as Javier—and we would certainly ask for either one of them on our next visit. Zia was eager to bring us whatever type of eggs we desired, even though we'd chosen the breakfast buffet. He treated my mother, a very recent widow, with tenderness and true solicitude. Additionally, Zia engaged with us in friendly conversation each morning and made certain our day started at 6ix Park Grill with sincere service and a sense of being cared for by someone who was a a real professional in the service industry. Javier, our excellent server on our last morning, asked if we'd like to package up some pastries and fruit for the 10-hour drive ahead and brought us bottles of water, napkins and plastic utensils as well. These two gentleman, teamed with the other wait staff, were key in making sure our days began with comfort.
Food at the 6ix Park Grill was impeccably presented and tasted wonderful. Fresh fruit not only *looked* appealing (perfect triangles of melon, curving little grapefruit sections, rosy-red strawberry halves), but tasted ripe and bursting with flavor (keep that produce supplier!). Bacon was perfectly cooked—ranging from uber-crispy to softer, depending on your preference—but don't miss the chicken sausage. Chefs would make an omelette with whatever items you chose (including omelettes with egg whites only) and the pancakes, French toast and waffles were tasty. Pastries were small (meaning I could try a few for variety without feeling like I'd maxed out my calories for the day), flaky and tasty; we especially enjoyed the one with pecans and glazed with honey. Coffee is from Starbucks (which is served in the neighboring cafe inside the Hyatt).
We were glad we chose the breakfast buffet—not because it offered a "quantity" of food (which it did) but because of the quality and variety of food. We're back home now but are missing the food, staff and ambiance of our daily breakfasts at the 6ix Park Grill. We'll definitely return!
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