Food and drink: Hummingbird (Yangon)

**Please note that all of Tour Mandalay’s restaurant reviews are carried out undercover and are therefore 100% unbiased. We only feature the best, thus helping to ensure you make the most out of your time in Myanmar.**

Recently, Tour Mandalay got the chance to eat at Hummingbird (Yangon), a newly opened Latin American restaurant on Phone Gyi Street (close to the upper part of China town). After hearing lots of good things, coupled with the fact they’ve just contested in the Yangon Food Fight, Tour Mandalay had extremely high expectations.

From the moment we laid eyes on the building, it was clear to see that we were in for a unique dining experience. Sandwiched in-between two gaudy looking buildings, Hummingbird’s whitewashed restaurant is a grand sight in this relatively low-key area.

Hummingbird Yangon entrance

Even the Hummingbird’s sign exudes class and style

Immediately after stepping through the doors of the Hummingbird’s entrance, we were wowed by the restaurant’s stylish and quirky interior design. As a result of the Latin American inspired menu, we were expecting to find lots of bright colours and a rowdy atmosphere, but surprisingly it was quite the opposite. If anything, it felt more colonial in style with partially exposed walls, a grand wooden staircase and old maps detailing some of Yangon’s major districts.

Map of Insein District at the Hummingbird

An old map of Yangon’s Insein District at the Hummingbird Yangon

The building comprises of three floors; downstairs is a dedicated restaurant area and upstairs is a comfortable, yet trendy bar. There’s also a small rooftop area above this, which provides a pleasant overflow space for when the restaurant/bar area’s fully booked.

Hummingbirds dining area

Hummingbird successfully blends a mishmash of styles

The Hummingbird’s carefully designed menu featured starters, hot & cold tapas, mains and deserts. Whilst it might seem limited compared to some of the 100-item menus we’ve seen of late, this helps to ensure that all of the ingredients served are fresh, tasty and full of flavour. After much deliberation, Tour Mandalay opted for the following dishes.

Please note that the following images were taken in a dimly lit environment, so please excuse the quality – it does not do these beautifully prepared dishes the justice they deserve! 

Asparagus, orange and almond starter

Hummingbird’s asparagus, orange and almond cold tapas

 

Salt and pepper calamari

Hummingbird’s salt and pepper calamari starter (with grilled lime and wasabi mayonnaise)

 

Hummingbird's Lacro main

Hummingbird’s Lacro main – a rich stew of corn, beef and pumpkin (served with chimichurri)

 

Hummingbird's ceviche of red snapper

Hummingbird’s ceviche of red snapper – cured in lime, coriander, sea salt, avocado and rose apple salad

It was clear to see that a lot of thought and love went into each of the dishes served. The ingredients used were fresh, colourful and cooked to perfection – there’s no doubt they were worthy creations of a head chef that once cooked for the Rolling Stones.

Whilst it’s likely the menu and prices will change, the starters and tapas options set us back approximately $6-7, with the lacro main priced at $14. If you ask us, this is exceptional value for a menu that wouldn’t look out of place in a Michelin-starred establishment.

To top it off, the service received at Hummingbird was exceptional. Whilst we didn’t catch her name, we were looked after by an extremely attentive British lady, who appeared to confidently manage the fully booked restaurant at all times. Acknowledgement also needs to go to each of the well-presented professional waiters and waitresses, all of whom couldn’t have done anymore to make our time here more perfect.

For those that enjoy a tipple (or two) before, after, or during the meal, you will be pleased to know that Hummingbird have created what is now one of the best cocktail menus in Yangon. Tour Mandalay sampled each of the four concoctions on the Hummingbird’s ‘Signature’ list, with the prize of best cocktail going to the lychee and cocktail number. This was particularly refreshing in Yangon’s sweltering summer heat.

Hummingbird signature cocktail

One of the Hummingbird’s signature cocktails

Unfortunately we didn’t get around to trying the Hummingbird’s desert menu, but if the above’s anything to go by, we’re sure that each one of the items listed would have been scrumptious. Instead, we opted to sample a few more cocktails in the trendy bar area upstairs. For those happy to stand, there’s always the option of enjoying your drink from the Hummingbird’s rooftop, which is a great way to appreciate the hustle and bustle of Yangon from up high.

Hummingbird's 2nd floor bar area

Hummingbird’s 2nd floor bar area, complete with giant sized stools

With so many new restaurants opening up in Yangon, it’s becoming more of a challenge to determine what’s good and what’s not. Yes, it’s possible to go off TripAdvisor and choose from any of the top 10, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re going to be the best on offer in the city’s fast developing restaurant scene. Hummingbird exudes class, quality and style – whilst it will inevitably take a while to make it’s way TA’s top 10, it’s certainly one of the best western options we’ve come across in a long time.

Why wait? Call ahead and make your reservation now.

Address: 76 Phone Gyi Road, Phone Gyi St, Yangon
Tel: 09 250 292 074

 

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