Per Te or ‘for you‘ in Italian, has to be my favorite place for Italian food in Dubai. I raved about our dinner at their Jumeirah branch here, and also shared a few recipes by the talented Chef Glady of Per Te with you (try out his Wild Mushroom Risotto with Truffles or his super simple, yet elegant Almond Crusted Lamb Chops). So when I got an invite to visit their second branch in Business Bay, I was more than happy to oblige!
At just over a week old, Per Te is the latest addition to the row of restaurants on the Ground Floor of the Bay Avenue building in Business Bay. And when we got there for lunch last Friday, it was also the busiest! To avoid disappointment, I would recommend reserving a table (call 04 4371685).
We were greeted by the suave Ristorante e Café Manager Anushka Pradeep, and the very likable Chef Glady, and let them take over the menu orders for the day.
Unlike the branch at Jumeirah, Per Te’s Business Bay branch has a breakfast menu to accommodate the office rush of the Business Bay area. They also have quite a few new additions on the lunch menu, and we had the privilege of sampling a number of brand new treats.
For appetizers, we started off with the Bruschetta Al Pomodoro e Basilico.
This is a generous serving of freshly baked Ciabatta bread that has been grilled with a rub of garlic, and topped with vine tomato, basil pesto and wild rocket leaves. Chef Glady tells us the star of this starter is the vine tomato. These succulently sweet, skinless tomatoes have been so expertly blanched, that a diner would easily mistaken these for uncooked.
Next came an artistic retake on Italian flavors, the Sacchetti Di Bresaola con Caprino.
Bresaola is an aged Italian, air-dried salted beef and taking inspiration from Chinese dumplings, Chef Glady uses premium Bresaola as money bags, and stuffs them with fresh goat cheese, pinenuts, raisins and figs. Slithers of fresh Parmesan sit on the rustic board along with wedges of colorful fig to add to the drama of flavors.
Sacchetti Di Bresaola con Caprino is one of the latest menu additions at Per Te, and is currently exclusively available at the Business Bay branch. If you ask me, making a trip to Business Bay just for these little sacks is well worth your while!
And here is a round-up of the drinks we had:
My hubby enjoyed his bubbly concoction of Margarita Stagionale. His was a mashup of fresh berries, mint and brown sugar topped with 7Up.
My Strawberry Rose Sangria had the thickness of a smoothie, and the delicate hint of rose made this strawberry slush more ladylike.
Anushka recommended the Passion Fruit Mojito, and this was my favorite drink of the day. It’s a fizzy sip muddled with fresh passion-fruit pulp, and the passion-fruit seeds that flow up the straw make it an experience akin to Bubble Teas. I later found out it was Anushka who created this drink. Looks like Chef Glady’s creative genius is rubbing off on him!
Next came our round of mains. Chef Glady’s creations always manage to have us in awe. His dishes are not only brimming with the marriage of masterful flavors, but are presented in jaw-dropping artistic form.
The Bistecca con Pure Di Palate Al Tartufo is a testament to Chef Glady’s genius. How stunning is this platter of grilled beef ribeye steak?! I got click-happy as soon as it hit the table, much to the chagrin of my husband who had to patiently wait to dig in till I finished.
This is prime Angus beef from Australia with grade 2 marbling, and is served with a sinfully good truffle-infuse potato puree, and wild mushroom on the side. The meat was cooked to perfection, and scooping each forkful with a generous coating of the potato puree was pure indulgence.
When dining Italian, how can we not have pasta? Pasta came in the delicious form of Tortellini di Pesce con Pomodori e Spinaci.
This is a hand-stuffed seafood and spinach pasta that is served with green peas, cherry tomatoes, butter and generous shavings of Parmesan cheese. The delicate flavor of seafood in each bite of pasta was accentuated by the richness of a decadent butter sauce that smothered everything on this plate. At Per Te, the portions are also generously large and this platter can easily be shared by two.
Chef Glady insisted we tried the Bronzino Alla Griglia con Fregola.
This is a serving of prime sea bass that has been delicately grilled to ensure the texture of the fish is fresh and breaks into the mouth. I enjoyed the slight crispness of the skin, which went beautifully well with the tomato salsa that was served on the side. The platter also featured a handful of pretty little clams, that my daughter decided to collect for her seashell collection.
The little brown balls on the sea bass platter is Fregula. This is a special pasta variety hailing from Sardinia, and can be likened to couscous. At Per Te, you can even buy a bag of Fregula to cook in your own kitchen. Chef Glady recommends cooking Fregula in a seafood broth.
Next came my favorite round; the round of desserts!
Lieto Di Choccolato is yet another brand-new creation by Chef Glady, and ‘Lieto’ translates to ‘Glady’ in Italian. When the maestro names a dessert after himself, you already know its going to be pretty phenomenal!
Made of pure 75% cocoa, this is a seriously dense, smooth chocolate brick that sits on a crumble of roasted nuts and orange zest, and is served with a dollop of Vanilla and Passionfruit Semifredo, and a generous drizzle of creamy coffee sauce.
It reminded me of Cafe Cuba’s Silk Cake in Palmerston North, New Zealand but Chef Glady’s was a more upscale version with an Italian accent!
Knowing I have a major sweet tooth, Chef Glady generously offered us a second dessert; the Stracciatella Burrata.
This deliciously fresh mound of stringy cheese is served with generous drizzles of eucalyptus honey (which can also be bought in the Per Te store!), pistachio crumbles, fresh figs and raspberry, and is apparently a favorite among the kitchen staff in Per Te and I can see why!
“Forget the calories, its full of calcium!” jokes Chef Glady. This moreish dessert is pure heaven for cheese lovers!
Chef Glady tells us we were the first diners at the Business Bay branch to try out the Stracciatella. What an honor!
With the opening of the Business Bay branch, both Chef Glady and Anushka are playing double roles, skipping between one branch and the other. Their tireless enthusiasm for the finest Italian dining experience keeps them going.
Chef Glady introduced me to his Sous Chef, Josh. Chef Glady has full confidence he can take over the kitchen in his absence.
The staff at Per Te are very warm and friendly. When one of the waitresses saw my daughter was starting to frown with boredom, she offered to take her to the park right outside the restaurant! My daughter had a lovely time on the swings there. This is a handy tip for mummies planning to dine at Per Te, Business Bay: the Bay Avenue kiddie park is right outside!
Per Te at Business Bay is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The restaurant is located on the Ground Floor of the Bay Avenue building (Business Bay). Call 04 4371685 for reservations.