A couple of weeks ago, my family and I had the pleasure of being invited to newly opened Fogo de Chão in DIFC, Dubai. This fine-dining Brazilian steakhouse might be new to our region, but has been around since 1979. It is rare to come across restaurant chains that have a long lineage of history, let alone one that started with humble beginnings and trail-blazed its presence across continents, proudly showcasing special cuts that are well and truly a part of the Brazilian heritage.
The founders of Fogo de Chão grew up on a traditional Southern Brazilian farm in Serra Gaucha where they learnt the art of churrasco grilling, a milestone that would soon pave the way for their very successful culinary careers.
Last weekend my little family and I were invited to try out the brand-new menu at Carnival by Tresind. This restaurant ranks high on my all-time favorites in the city, and never ceases to amaze. From the magical interiors to the spectacular dishes, all served with the frills and thrills we have become accustomed to when it comes to the Tresind label, I always get a tad too excited when dining here.
The new menu pays tribute to Colonial India, a time when the British reigned the country and had a significant influence on its traditional cuisine.
Love crab, but a little wary of the apron-clad hammering massacre scene? Brand new fine-dining destination Crab Market is a culinary haven for Dubai seafood lovers.
Located on the 15th floor Emirates Financial Towers (North Tower) in DIFC Dubai, the expansive new space boasts of panoramic views of the city, including the Burj Khalifa and the Dubai Frame. The interiors are tastefully topnotch with starch-white linen, plush sofas a dedicated glass room for specialty wines, and a smorgasbord of delectable fresh seafood sitting on pristine ice right at the front.
They even have live crab in the tanks, and if you so wish, you can even have a go at fishing out your catch of the day with the automated mini forklifts.
Bargain alert! If you love Italian… the pasta, the pizza, the fruity wines, the tiramisu, the works, you can have it all in unlimited quantities for a mere AED 144 per person.
This amazing offer is available for both lunch and dinner throughout the week at Ricetta, Four Points by Sheraton’s authentic Italian restaurant.
You get a taste of provencal Italy as soon as you walk into the restaurant with its cheerful red checkered tablecloths, the make-believe fruits and vegetable market and a wall plastered with classy black and white photographs of Italy.
Meat lovers rejoice! There’s a meaty new shack that has opened right by the photogenic shores of La Mer Dubai. SMK (or ‘Smoked Meat Kitchen’) is a brand new UAE-born concept spearheaded by UK Smoke Master, Luke Tully.
The team have been trained by Shoreditch London’s well-loved restaurant SmokeStak.
SmokeStak is the brainchild of Michelin Star Chef David Carter. “His permanent restaurant in Shoreditch is to BBQ what opera is to nursery rhymes.” – London Evening Standard.
Luke has recently moved to Dubai, and brings with him many years of smoked meat talent.
Last Thursday we were treated to a culinary and visual treat at newly opened Maison Rouge in Conrad Dubai. As the name suggests, the restaurant cum bar is luxuriously plush in vivid tones of red. Everything looks so theatrical even before the show begins!
We arrived a little before 9, and were ushered in with peppy, upbeat tunes by the live DJ. A well-stocked open bar adds to the ambiance, and you can also get a glimpse of the open-fire kitchen where a lineup of international delicacies are assembled together.
Le Petit Belge is a wee slice of Belgium right here in Dubai. The original branch is in a cosy little town called Maasmechelen, and we now have not one, but three in Dubai.
The JLT and Dubai Motor City branches have been around for a while now, and I was recently invited to try out their brand new branch in Double Tree by Hilton at Bay Square.
The restaurant cum bar is beautifully spacious, and the interiors are done up with classic wooden accents and dim mood lighting. You can choose to sit by the bar, the outdoor terrace, or as we did, a cushy corner that’s perfect for foodies.
I love all things Shabby Chic. The pastels, the attention to the finer details… the French have immaculate taste for interiors, as they do for the art of cooking. Both elements come together in newly opened ‘Maison de Juliette‘, a home-grown concept now open in La Mer Dubai.
The interiors here are so Instagram-worthy, and even the staff here are immaculately dressed. We got there one breezy weekday, and decided to make the most of the beautiful weather by seating on a table outdoors.
Last Saturday, I was invited to try out the Infinity Brunch at The Address, Dubai Marina. Always on the run and all over the place, I graciously accepted without really doing a background check. I assumed that as it’s at The Address Marina, I could go all out ladylike in my new Vero Moda lacy black number, and top it off with shit-loads of bronzer.
And there I was, high-heeled and astute, till we got ushered into Shades, the restaurant where the Infinity Brunch takes place every Saturday from 2 pm onwards. Shades is a poolside restaurant. The place was flooded with sun worshipers in scantily-clad swimwear, and there I was all dressed up and made up.
There was a time I’d pass by the colorfully quirky facade of Sugar Factory and mistaken it to be a candy store. The rainbow of candy options are enough to make Willie Wonka go green with envy, and for my little girl to get a major sugar high with just one look.
And then I discovered their soulfully delicious Laksa. Very few menus in Dubai offer this coconut milk based noodle soup, and who would have thought an American chain (in the guise of a candy store) could do such a good job?
That was in their Dubai Festival City branch, and they have since opened up in La Mer Dubai. I was invited for a review there, and took it as a great opportunity to catch up with a friend.