I am a huge fan of Fume, the quirky neighbourhood eatery with dishes as innovative as their zany menu names. I’ve been to their branch in Pier 7 a number of times (click here to read my very first Fume post, and here for a recent family brunch post), and recently got invited for an Iftar preview at Fume, Manzil Downtown Dubai.
This was my very first visit to Fume, Manzil Downtown Dubai. This branch is on the ground floor of Manzil Downtown, and has a patio boasting of spectacular views of the Burj Khalifa. Two long tables were reserved for the media, and we had a lovely time dining alfresco, cooled by the cooing breeze of the giant heavy-duty fans in the background.
Given the eclectic nature of the brand, I was curious to see if Fume could pull off something as soberly traditional as Iftar. The restaurant has created a set menu for Iftar, and although the dishes stay true to the traditional Arabesque flavours of the month, each and every treat has been given a signature ‘Fumastic’ twist.
Fume’s Iftar set menu costs AED 139 per head, and is 50% off for children under 12. Here is a rundown on just some of the ‘Fumazing’ dishes we had:
Fumezze (traditional Arabic mezze the Fume way! Don’t you just love their quirky take on words?!): a sharing platter of assorted dips including hummus, labneh and smoked muhammara, served with olives, dried fruit, and pita bread on the side.
Fetaoush: A clever take on the traditional fattoush, this one at Fume features feta cheese, fried eggplant and chunks of creamy avocado. Loved this salad!
Quinoa, Okra & Pomegranate Molasses Salad: Once again, Fume manages to add an Arabic touch to quinoa, a superfood that continues to take precedence on menu cards around the city. This salad is mildly tangy, and is satiating enough to be had as a meal on its own.
Cumin Scented Lentil Soup: A thick, warm lentil broth laced with the freshness of lemon and the aromatic aftertaste of cumin. A real comfort food I would love to delve into after a day of fasting.
Smoked Lamb Harira: A pot of indulgent goodness, this mixed lentil and wheat soup has the base of a traditional Arabic Harira soup, and has generous portions of ‘melt in the mouth’ lamb. An absolute treat.
Fume Mashawi: For our main course, we were served this enticing platter of mixed grilled featuring lamb kofta, chops, slow- braised shoulder, chicken tawook and beef medallion. The portion size is large enough to share among three, and although each piece was cooked to tender, beautifully marinated perfection, I have to say I loved the lamb chops best. Fight for that chop I say!
Daily Catch with Harra Sauce: The tomato base of this fishy dish is absolutely delicious. It tastes very similar to the slow-cooked tomato gravy of a Shakshouka, and goes very well with the Arabic rice we were served on the side. The catch of the day was Sea Bass. I have to admit I am not a huge fan of this particular fish, and found it a little overdone for my liking. Would love this with Hammour or Salmon!
At Fume, I always look forward to dessert. They do the most amazing sweet treats, often with a few unexpected twists. Their lineup for Iftar did not disappoint:
F Um Ali: This much-loved Arabic bread and milk pudding gets a Fumastic makeover with the addition of a very creamy Labneh and Honey ice-cream. The labneh flavor melts beautifully into the buttery bread pudding, and each spoonful is sinfully delicious.
Fume Baklava: A generous wedge of crisp, sugar coated baklava served with a scoop of camel milk icecream.
Basbousa with Lime Curd & Berries: The basbousa at Fume looks more like a generous block of Angel Cake. It even has its smooth, light texture, so unlike the original dense and gritty sweet. I loved it for its lightness and for the beautifully scented lemon curd it was drenched in.
Overall, Fume has done a fantabulous job at recreating Ramadan classics. In true Fume style, each dish is also christened with a quirky Fume-appropriate name. At AED 139 per head, this is a great value for money set menu. And you also get great views of the majestic Burj Khalifa as it morphs into a spiral of kaleidoscopic colours in the evening light.
The Fume Iftar Set Menu is only available at the Manil Downtown Dubai branch (although you can order some these items off the menu at the Pier 7 branch). To reserve a table, give them a call on +971 4 456 8784.
Here’s wishing you a Fumastic month of Ramadan!