Last Friday we were invited to the Best Dressed Brunch at Great British Restaurant. Located in Duke’s on the Palm, one of Dubai’s newest five-star hotel properties that was inaugurated in March this year, the very synonyms ‘best dressed’ and ‘British’ had me stressing over what I was going to wear!
Friday brunches are usually laid-back and casual, and post work-week, I like to sleep in and keep my brunch look as simple as possible. Not so for this one! The Best Dressed Brunch gives you an excuse to pull out that sparkly number you’d usually reserve for a special night out. And the best part of all is that they even choose a ‘best dressed’ diner who walks away with a night’s stay at this much coveted property! So here I am, all glammed up in my Debenham’s number with bright red Mac Ruby Woo lips to boot!
From the foyer to the restaurant itself, the vibes at Duke’s is all prim, proper and utterly posh. Despite its upscale interiors, the ambiance at The Best Dressed Brunch was delightfully festive, fun and inviting.
Take the patriotically decorated cocktail counter for instance. The bar man even did a little pose for me! With the Gold package, you get to indulge in a wide array of interesting cocktails, the best of which is the Pimm’s cocktail featuring rims of citrus fruit.
I was probably as delighted as my 6 year-old at discovering the model London Bridge amid the dessert counters, and of course we got humming to the tune of the well-known nursery rhyme.
The buffet here is segregated into two sections. On the one hand you have your traditional British roasts, pastas and salads, and a fresh seafood counter. I found the lamb roast a little bland. Perhaps it wasn’t warm enough for my liking. My Hubby had his drowning in gravy, and loved it. Perhaps that was what was missing from my plate.
I loved the roasted vegetables that I piled on the side of my plate, and especially so the roasted purple yams.
On the other side is a row of Indo-British curries including the much-loved Butter Chicken. Strangely they didn’t have plain rice to go with it, but the ever-friendly staff went out of their way to get a bowl of white rice for my fussy little one.
Apart from the Butter Chicken, I’d highly recommend their Chicken Korma. Sweet yet nutty and decadently creamy, this is yet another curry that calls for white rice.
However, my favorite main-course here was good old Fish & Chips. The fish were perfectly battered a deep, crunchy golden-brown and went down perfectly well with mighty gulps of interesting cocktails.
The dessert counter is heaving with treats, and was my favorite part of the brunch. Apart from the usual lineup of pastries and really delicious tart-sweet Raspberry Macaroons, they have quite a few very British treats that are not often seen in Dubai brunches. I loved the Scones with clotted cream, and their warm Toffee Pudding is to die for.
There was quite a queue-up of little children by the cotton candy machine! A nice carnival-like touch to an otherwise grownup, dressed up brunch.
With a live band playing popular tunes to some of my favorite songs from The Beatles, the BEst Dressed Brunch has this retro-like vibe I absolutely loved. The Pimm’s cocktails were being dished out faster as the afternoon progressed, and despite being a newbie in the brunching scene, the place was packed! Best to make a booking if you’re planning to visit.
The Best Dressed Brunch runs from 1 to 4 pm every Friday at The Great British Restaurant (located in the lobby level of Dukes Dubai, The Palm – Dubai).
AED 295| Brunch & soft drinks
AED 395| House beverages
AED 445| Sparkling grape
AED 545| French bubbles