RATE YOUR PLATE @ Red Hot World Buffet

Recently, Impact Food were invited to journey through Nottingham’s Red Hot World Buffet. The restaurant, which in reality is just a short stroll away from The Cornerhouse, offers a vast range of cuisines from around the globe. From Mongolian to Italian, sushi to pancakes, it goes without saying that this ultimate buffet has something for everyone… or does it?

“WOW!” Our initial reaction was one of amazement as we took in the magnificent décor and descended through the ‘airport’ into the international dining room. The extensive Red Hot buffet occupies one end, where each corner houses a different cuisine. The hotplates are surrounded by gigantic statues, some fantastic wall art and even an aeroplane hanging from the ceiling. But where to fly first?


Deciding on a cuisine by cuisine approach, (who wants soy sauce mingling with their chicken korma?), our first stop was the Indian section, later crowned the tastiest destination on our Red Hot tour. Starters included the following favourites: onion bhajis, vegetable samosas and pakora, and the bowls of mango chutney, raita and the less commonly seen tamarind chutney were full and chilled.

“The starters were crisp but not oily, many of the curries were full of complex flavours and warming spices”

In order to minimise the legwork, we piled our plates high with curries, pilau rice and naan on our first tour of the buffet, but the moment of truth was still to come: the taste test. The starters were crisp but not oily, many of the curries were full of complex flavours and warming spices, particularly the vegetarian options of chana masala (chickpeas) and matar paneer (a type of cheese); an endless supply of freshly baked naan bread was there to mop up every last bit of sauce. Success!


After a few minutes break, it was time for round two: to China. We crossed the buffet space to find authentic straw baskets of dim sum, paper-thin pancakes and aromatic duck. Whilst the duck could have been crispier, the accompanying shredded leek and cucumber were vibrant in colour and fresh in taste, and a classic hoisin sauce married all together well: proof again that Red Hot gets the favourites right. That said, there was the opportunity for foodie discoveries: we found the steamed vegetable gyoza (dumplings) to be little packages bursting with oriental flavour, a definite must-try. Unfortunately, we cannot say the same for the Chinese main course dishes, many of which were one-dimensional in taste, unappealing to the eye and in some cases a real task to eat – we’d prefer the shells to be removed from our sweet and sour prawns before serving.

“Steamed vegetable gyoza: little packages bursting with oriental flavour, a definite must-try”

Initial interest in the excitement of the stir fry live-station was diminished by the open storage of the meat components, and the selection of sauces and vegetables was not as extensive as we would of hoped for. Instead, our third plates took us to Red Hot’s very own burger joint; we opted for a simple cheese burger and simple it was, on a rather deflated looking bread bun. That said however, the meat patty was piping hot, topped with mustard, red sauce and slice of cheese, and as one element of an unlimited buffet it was a decent size.RATE YOUR PLATE @ Red Hot 2

It would have been a crime to miss out on the pride of the British Isles, and so our final savoury dish was, yes, a (Wednesday) roast. Succulent turkey and pork were order of the day, with sides of plump Yorkshire puds, crispy roast potatoes and gravy. Less impressive were the miniature carrots, which looked to have come all the way from…a tin. Nevertheless, if you’re craving comfort food, this section has all the answers; other hot plates contained cottage pie, toad-in-the-hole and golden cauliflower cheese.


After racking up a combined total of eight, yes EIGHT, plates of main courses, we somehow still had room for a dessert, or four. Red Hot’s pudding offering is to be admired: sponges, fruit, ice cream, and even a chocolate fountain tempted us into the sweetest corner of this giant food hall. Our favourite plate had to be the triple chocolate pancake because, let’s face it, how can one criticise triple chocolate?

“Red Hot’s pudding offering is to be admired”

The pancake menu is extensive, poor decision makers beware, but for those seeking something a little less ‘overload’ the sour cherries atop of the Black Forest pancakes balanced the chocolate batter and sauce perfectly. In fact, we thought many of the desserts could benefit from the addition of fresh fruit; we’d have liked strawberries with our ‘Say Cheese’ ice cream, wild berries with our mini patisserie mouthfuls and melon to freshen us up after a heavy buffet binge (or to dunk under the chocolate fountain…who are we kidding?)


FULL of food, different cuisines, flavours, smiles and diners, Red Hot buffet is the place to eat if you’re a group of diverse taste, poor decision makers, or just very hungry bellies! You cannot hope for a taste sensation on every plate, a well-balanced and healthy meal or innovative cuisine, but the classics are well executed and the incredibly vast range of dishes means that you could discover a new favourite dish or just fill your plate with your go-to your takeaway option. Either way, in an average dining time of two hours, how many plates would you tally-up?

Red Hot World Buffet
Corner House,
Trinity Square,
0115 9589 899

(Don’t forget to check out their student discount!)

Heather Corser and Lauren Wilson

Image credits: Lauren Wilson and ‘Naomî’ via Flickr

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