Having begun to weary of brunches, FACT’s Asad Khan experienced Papagayo Brunch at Fuego which truly impressed and restored his faith in the good old Friday tradition.

It’s all asado. In Latin America, the word ‘asado’ could mean two things. One: a cooking technique specifically roasting or barbecuing beef or other meats on a grill or open fire. And two: a barbecue party where guests can pick out said barbecue and roast, like an open buffet. It wouldn’t be erroneous to say that Papagayo Brunch at Fuego, JW Marriott Marquise City Centre Doha, is fully focused on the concept.

Too much eating to excess from a grand buffet that’s often only lukewarm is not my preference for a Friday afternoon. Brunches of that sort are no longer a novelty for me. So, imagine how relieved I was when I sat down at Fuego. It’s sophisticated, classy and hugely enjoyable, especially with the live band playing.

Welcome drinks are made and served right before you on a trolley the moment you enter the place — oh how refreshing as you contemplate the afternoon ahead.

The menu here starts with appetisers, such as Salmon Leche De Tigre, and ends with Wagyu Carne De Onca. They serve the assorted list of 10 appetisers at once, and then give you enough time to properly savour and enjoy them before bringing the mains to your table via waiter service rather than a buffet scramble. The menu offers a fair selection for vegetarian options as well with Salada Mista and Guacamole.

Each of the appetisers comes with a selection of fun sides and sauces. An in-house guacamole is served in a small bowl with a generous helping of the freshest tortillas. I can categorically say I have never tasted a fresher, tangier mix of guacamole in all my days here. It was so Latin guactastic.

The Moqueca De Garoupa (Brazilian coconut-seafood stew), potato gratin with jack cheese, Columbian-style bean stew and very tasty Argentinian-style braised and smoked beef with potatoes — everything was flavourful and perfectly cooked. The smoked beef was so meaty, dark, savoury and altogether delicious, you might want to have a little bowlful by itself for a takeaway.

The selection of taste and menu offerings is a great mix of food here, along with some adaptations to provide familiarity to the local palate. The food is wildly impressive for the price you pay but it’s the compellingly designed space of the restaurant that makes up the overall experience.

The dessert was the priceless finish. It was both a highly sociable dish but also a work of art. What looked like just a normal cake slice was much more. It was rather very festive featuring coconut and pineapple. And the best thing, naturally sweet and moist to the core. Apart from that, fried pastry dough with Dulce De Leche dip was very warm in terms of its texture. You’ll love every bite of it. With desserts on the table, it looked like a psychedelic fantasy and I thoroughly enjoyed getting stuck into it because of the sweet tooth.

The brunch is superbly curated and the dishes carefully calibrated to deliver delicate flavours. Highly recommended! ✤