Bertin Bistro & Restaurant is the latest addition to the string of cafes on Al Manara Street (Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai). Modeled with the look and feel of an airy villa from the 1920’s, it is the fictional story behind Bertin that makes this newbie so unique.
Bertin Bistro & Restaurant is divided into two floors. The first floor is a bistro cum bakery. It has a chic, minimalist Parisian look and offers dishes from the semi-Germanic Alsace region of France, the homeland of the fictional Mr. Bertin.
Mr. Bertin’s love story centered around his days at his bakery and of his travels, feature on a wall connecting the ground floor to the upper level.
We were invited to the upper floor last Saturday for Iftar. A stark contrast to the white-washed ground floor, the first floor houses a restaurant based on a Spanish and Moroccan theme. Based on Bertin’s fictional travels, the decor on this level looks like something out of the pages of ‘The Arabian Nights’.
Latticed arches frame the windows looking out onto a busy Sheikh Zayed Road, and the upholstery is in jeweled tones of turquoise and amethyst purple.
With an ambiance like this, it would be apt to have a hookah in hand! Bertin’s Iftar buffet includes sheesha, and is very reasonably priced at AED 99 per person.
We broke our fast with dates and glasses of Bertin’s signature drink, the ‘Bed of Roses’, which is included in the Iftar buffet.
However, from past reviews, I was convinced this glassful was not Bertin’s showstopper, and the very obliging staff brought me a glass of ‘Bed of Roses’ in its original form. Served as a slush in a martini glass, this very rosy concoction definitely looks stunning! The addition of all that ice makes it highly refreshing, and I would recommend this drink to anyone who loves the flavor of rose (just have it in its original slushy form, and not from the buffet!).
The buffet is set at the corner of the restaurant, which makes it a little claustrophobic with the crowds queuing up right after the Maghrib call to prayer.
While we sat at our table waiting for the buffet area to clear up a little, we were served these Spanish-style tapas, a thin-crust pizza if you will. The topping consists of mushroom, cheese, and raw onion. Served hot out of the oven, they smelt very appetizing, and who doesn’t love freshly baked bread with cheese?! If it wasn’t for the raw onions, I could have had more than one slice. On foresight, restricting to one slice was a good idea or I wouldn’t be able to do justice to the buffet offerings.
The buffet is predominantly Moroccan, and includes a number of dishes that seem similar to Arabic cuisine, yet play on a different flavor combination of their own.
Given Bertin has two worlds under one roof, I am intrigued to try out the bistro downstairs. I passed by the counter on the ground floor, and their French-style desserts look so tempting!
Overall our Iftar at Bertin was a memorable experience. The service is immaculate, the ambiance is beautifully artful, and for AED 99 with sheesha, the buffet offers a number of delicious treats you won’t want to miss.
Bertin Bistro and Restaurant is located on Al Manara Street, just off Sheikh Zayed Road – Dubai. For more information on Bertin, visit their website or call 04 321 9239 for reservations.