“ Address: 16 Hurst Street, Birmingham, B5 4BN „
Went to have dinner on 18th August 2013 wth my friends and children one from london. i was challenged and harrassed at the entrance and asked how many are paying, have we booked and we have to pay upfront and are we aware that it cost £12.99 per person and so forth. She continued to interagate me till a long queue built up. I told her i have been here a few times before and never had to pay upfront, she confirmed with the woman at the till and then reluctantly showed us our seats. i should have went elsewheer as it got worse over the course of the evening. My friend and I were asked another 3 times are we aware of how much the food cost, i didnt realise that we had broke written on our forehead.
As we counted our money and made our way to the till the vulture of a waiter who was watching us ran to the till before uss and told the woman that we are finished, pathetic idiot. I said to my friend, quick we are running off and laughed.
I asked the woman why was it necessary to ask us over 3 times about the prices and why do we have to pay upfront when i didnt have to before, her reply was, if it was over 5 people we had to and was it different staff asking about are we aware of the price, if it ws it is ok, how damn rude. i said that its rude to do that to which she said "its my opinnion" no cow bag its my experience and it was embarrassing. She couldnt careless about what i was telling her but thats how some of these buffet restaurant act, they are arrogant and rude. How is it possible to run out of a restaurant with 6 children and weare not brought up like that. We own our house and car so we do not need to go out to steal from a sub standard restaurant and we will never go there again. Bad moon has spoilt my dinner to day and i should have gone to toby carvery instead.
Ming Moon is an all you can eat buffet style restaurant situated in Birmingham, just on the edge of the city centre (opposite Oceana nightclub).
I have been to quite a few buffet places but this is one that I am quite fond of because I think the whole experience is pretty good. The entrance is grand and you feel as though you're walking in to a luxury 5* restaurant. The staff are all polite and friendly, although a lot of them can't speak Chinese (unlike other Chinese buffet places I have been to).
Costs vary depending on what time you go, and whether you go on a weekday or weekend. But prices start from £6.99 per person (lunchtime weekday) and go up to £12.99 per person (dinner weekend). So I'd recommend going during lunchtime Monday-Friday. It will also be less busy. They do have a booking system but I've never had to book before. However, I do recommend you booking if you're going on a Saturday.
The food choice is amazing and all the food is piping hot. The food aisles are split into starters, mains, sushi, and desserts. I always find that I have to go up twice to sample all the mains though. The trick is to take a little of everything otherwise you will get very full indeed. As it is a buffet, a lot of the food is similar to what you can purchase at a Chinese takeaway, but it is much warmer and there are also a few exceptions such as mussels. I enjoy all of the starters and mains and it's worth the money when it's lunchtime on a weekday.
Unfortunately, I don't have as much praise for the sushi and desserts. I find the sauce that is available for the sushi is a little too savoury. And the sushi itself leaves a lot to be desired. If you're a big sushi fan, then best if you stay away from what Ming Moon have to offer for it. As for the desserts, it's 50/50 for me. I'll give them points for presentation. All of the desserts look beautiful. The problem is, the majority of the jelly-like desserts aren't that tasty. In fact, they're pretty tasteless. The marshmallows on offer taste as though they're been out for a few days and have dried up. On the upside, they also have a huge selection of cakes which are absolutely delicious and you're sure to be able to find something to suit your tastebuds. They also have an ice cream machine, which I can't fault. Fresh ice cream is always a bonus. They do charge for it though if you choose to take it with you when you leave the restaurant.
And one last thing, when ordering your drinks (particularly if you're going to eat a lot), be sure to ask for a small glass. I've made the mistake of asking for a glass of coke several times, and being given it in a pint glass. Far too much to drink, particularly when you've got such a filling food experience.
I do really like Ming Moon though. It's not somewhere that I would go for a special occasion, but it's the perfect place to go with your friends and family just to chill out and enjoy some oriental dishes.
Ming Moon, Birmingham.
Ming Moon in Birmingham is an all you can eat Chinese restaurant in Birmingham city centre and is the number one location for my friends and I to meet up after work for a pig out meal after a stressful day, and pig out is often an understatement as you will now find out...
*** Location ***
Ming Moon, Birmingham is located in the city centre just outside China Town on Hurst Street. It is about a 10 minute walk from the central shopping area and for those of you who are familiar with Birmingham it is actually in the building that used to be Barracuda club.
The address for those of you using sat nav to find this is:
16 Hurst Street,
*** Car Parking ***
The restaurant itself has no car park so you will need to use the city centre car parks. These can be quite costly depending on your choice of car park. Using my personal experience of living in Birmingham I would advise you not to use the Arcadian car park although it is the closest it is also the most expensive, however if you have a sat nav and put in Bromsgrove Street there is a couple of car parks that are only £2.50 for a 24 hour ticket. These car parks are about a 5 - 10 minute walk away from Ming Moon.
*** Bar Area ***
As you enter Ming Moon there is a bar area in front of you. The bar area is quite small and has a few comfortable looking sofas with some low level tables. I think this is more of a waiting area than an actual bar, even though they advertise it as being a bar.
The bar staff at Ming Moon often make me smile, not because of good service, but because of their down right cheek when it comes to giving change, please don't get me wrong, when I have eaten at a restaurant I am happy to give a tip if the service I receive is decent enough to deserve one, however at Ming Moon apart from having your drinks brought to your table you do all of the rest yourself so I see no need to give a tip. However the Ming Moon staff don't seem to see it this way and there have been numerous occasions where I have literally stood at the bar waiting for my change and often had to hold my hand out and on one occasion even ask for it. Pennies I wouldn't be too bothered about but we are talking over £1.50 here for them basically bringing a drink! So my little tip here is be careful when it comes to payment as they only seem to hand back change if you are insistent and then it is reluctantly!
*** Getting Seated ***
As you walk through the entrance you are greeted by a waitress who will ask how many are in your party and then either ask you to take a seat in the bar area during busier times or during quieter times you will be seated straight away.
Once you are at your table you will be asked if you want any drinks and then told to help yourself to the food. Yes, this is why I am reluctant to give tips here!
*** The Restaurant and Menu***
As far as chinese buffets go this restaurant is rather large and also very well laid out. There are lots of tables both large and small spaced out reasonably well. Through the centre of the restaurant is the buffet area. This is a large buffet with starters at the far end and over 60 dishes to choose from for main course (as quoted on the menu). At the far end of the restaurant is a live cooking station which serves Sushi, Teppanyaki, BBQ and Dim Sum amongst other things. I have never eaten from the live cooking station but it does seem extremely popular with the chinese diners. To the left of the restaurant as you look at it from the entrance there is a whole wall of puddings to choose from including an ice cream machine and chocolate fountain with a selection of sweets for dunking!
*** Food Quality ***
From the amount of times I visit Ming Moon you would expect me to be telling you that the food quality here is amazing, but I'm not going to. My honest answer about food quality is that it seems to depend on when you go.
Our most usual visits are on a Tuesday or Thursday evening around 6pm. At this time in the evening we have always found the food to be of a high standard, however when we have been a couple of times on the occasional Sunday afternoon we have found the food wasn't so nice and often slightly over cooked.
My usual combination starts off with a plate of two pancakes with shredded duck and hoi sin sauce. I have always found these to be extremely more-some and full of flavour, the duck is always hot and not too dry. Occasionally the pancakes have been a little dry but nothing so major that a bit of extra sauce cant fix!
Following the pancakes I will usually have a couple of plates of complete random mixes of anything including fried rice, chicken balls, sweet and sour sauce, BBQ ribs, chips, chicken nuggets and chow mein. All of these foods are nice, however as I said earlier occasionally we have found the food to be slightly overcooked, by this I am referring to the chips being cooked so much that there is hardly any potato left inside, also the chicken nuggets aren't too nice either, they're kind of rubbery and don't taste much like chicken. Other than this though all of the other items we have never had any problems with, the chicken balls with sweet and sour sauce are another favourite of mine, I always find them to be nice and juicy but not greasy and the sauce has a lovely tangyness to it.
After a couple of plates of this I have been known to head back to the duck and pancakes for "just one more" before heading up to the pudding section. Ok, now I will sound extra greedy when I say I usually have about five puddings, but when you see the size of them you will understand why I have so many! Most of the puddings are like bite sized portions but they are oh so nice. My personal favourite is the pink pudding in the little dish, it is kind of like Angel Delight in looks, but tastes slightly different. The texture is thicker than Angel Delight and it has a lovely sweet taste. There are a few varieties of this desert in different colours and flavours and each one has a little squirt of cream on it along with a little sweetie or piece of fruit on it. They also have mini versions of cakes such as chocolate cake and mini vanilla custard slices.
There is a chocolate fountain and a selection of little sweeties to dunk in it, I have tried this once but found that the chocolate wasn't milky enough for me, but it was still nice.
*** Prices ***
I find the prices at Ming Moon to be pretty reasonable compared to some of the other chinese buffets in Birmingham. They aren't the cheapest but I don't mind this as the food quality is better than the cheaper ones.
The prices are:
Lunch Time, Monday to Friday from 12pm until 5pm £6.99 per person. On Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holiday Mondays this goes up to £7.99 and for children under 1.4m it is £3.99.
During the evening the prices are slightly higher, Sunday to Thursday from 5pm until 11pm £11.99 per person. Friday and Saturday from 5pm until 11:30pm the price goes up to £12.99 per person and children under 1.4m are charged at £6.99.
It is free for under 3s to eat when accompanied by an adult, this always makes me laugh when I read it as when would a 3 year old be in an all you can eat chinese unaccompanied?
*** Service ***
As I mentioned earlier the service at Ming Moon is minimal on a personal level. The only contact you really have with the waiters and waitresses is when you first enter and are seated and when they bring you your drinks. I have no problems with the way the staff talk to you, they are always polite but it is not always service with a smile.
There is always a member of staff making sure that the buffet is kept full and the food is hot, however I have on a couple of occasions found these members of staff to be a little rude and hurry you along as they are trying to see what they need to top up. While I appreciate that they have a job to do I don't really appreciate being hurried in making my food choices.
***Live Music ***
On our most recent visits to Ming Moon we noticed that they now have live music performances while you eat. The music is violin music and is played out loud over a speaker system. We found that although music can add to the atmosphere in a positive way it is often too loud at Ming Moon to the point that we cannot talk at a normal level across the table without having to raise our voices slightly.
We also found that when it is the female violinist playing she will stay on the stage area, however the male violinist has a habit of walking round and sometimes standing my your table as you are eating, which when you are trying to eat and have conversations is quite annoying.
I think they need to turn the volume down a little and keep the violinists on the stage and then they will have it just right as other than this the music does add quite a nice atmosphere.
*** Value for money? ***
I find Ming Moon to be good value for money. Although it cost slightly more than other chinese buffets in the area the food quality is better which makes it worth the extra few pennies. I have been a repeat customer to Ming Moon again and again and I will continue to be until I leave Birmingham.
*** Toilets ***
The toilets in Ming Moon are pretty clean, as with all restaurant toilets I find the actual toilet cubicles to be clean and tidy, however the sink area always seems to be a bit of a let down with tissue paper on the floors, and not many soap dispensers. There is a hand dryer on the wall but I found this to be slow and end up using tissue instead.
*** Overall ***
Overall I would recommend Ming Moon and I still get quite excited about going when we arrange a visit there, in fact I am looking forward to Thursday as we have just arranged to meet up and go again. The service isn't amazing but the food and the puddings are fab and I often find myself driving home feeling a little sick from eating way too much!
Thanks for reading :)