Love Indo Chinese? I recently discovered a hidden gem for really
good Indian and Indo-Chinese food. Located in the heart of the residential area
on Amman Street in Al Nahda 2 Dubai, Masala Wok was founded by Mr. Shareef,
a diehard foodie and experimental home cook who decided to try his luck at
becoming a restauranteur.
The restaurant has been running for 2 years now, and Mr.
Shareef and his team and astounded by its phenomenal success. Despite being
tucked away in a quiet residential area, the restaurant boasts of having the
highest rating on Zomato in the Al Nahda area and has been drawing in the crowds
from as far and wide as Marina, Sheikh Zayed and even Fujairah.
Indo Chinese cuisine, a mashup of Chinese stir-frying
techniques spiced up with the heat of an Indian palate, deserves to gain more
attention on an international scale. It’s flavors and techniques are advanced
enough to discriminate it from both origins.
Last weekend I had the absolute pleasure of enjoying a feast
of a lunch at newly opened China Bistro. Located in the foodie hub of Karama
bang opposite Spinneys and adjacent to Regis hotel, China Bistro is owned and
operated by Foodlink India.
The restaurant chain has been a big hit across Indian
metropolitan cities including Mumbai, Hyderabad and Bangalore. The Dubai opening
is the brand’s very first venture outside the home-ground.
The foodie scene of Dubai is fast evolving, and new players are introduced into the market every month. Yet only a handful can bashfully say they’ve been around for over a decade. Golden Dragon goes well past that milestone, having opened shop in Oud Metha (Dubai) as far back as 1976.
Originally an Indo-Chinese restaurant, Golden Dragon has recently revamped their menu to include more pan-Asian flavors to entice a wider set of diners. The new menu includes delectable wok-tossed dishes, soulful Thai soups, and a long lineup of interesting Dim Sums.
A true-blue foodie would agree that the tastiest of cuisines are often hidden in the shabbiest of corners. We recently uncovered yet another hidden gem, this time in the heart of Karama (Dubai), a block or so behind West Zone Supermarket. This is Real Momos, a tiny little restaurant the size of a cafeteria you’d honk down for tea at.
The cafeteria/restaurant can be spotted a block away thanks to its bright yellow signage. The interiors are sparsely decorated, and have three small tables with makeshift chairs.
We were in Ras Al Khaimah earlier this month, and stayed at Acacia Hotel. However, by dinner time, we decided to venture out towards town, enjoy the scenic corniche area and then head on to our dinner invite at Noodles Corner, located in Mangrove Hotel (yet another Bin Majid Hotels and Resorts property).
Noodles Corner, as the name suggests, is tucked away in a quiet corner of the hotel. Elaborately decorated in the auspicious red and gold Chinese symbols of luck, this quaint, dimly lit restaurant with scenic views of the Ras Al Khaimah corniche, is a budget-friendly hidden gem.
Hidden in a quiet nook of Jumeirah Lake Towers I is a neon-blue lit restaurant serving up a smorgasbord of Indo-Chinese delicacies. Blue Sapphire is managed by the very debonair Mr. John, who like the cuisine of the restaurant, has an Indo-Chinese background. Chinese by ethnicity, Mr. John grew up in the Eastern Indian state of Calcutta and is now proudly heading the kitchen of Blue Sapphire.
The glistening play of light on the vividly blue waters of JLT gave inspiration for the restaurant’s name, and apart from the stark blue lighting (which played havoc with my camera), the interiors are clean, simple and sparsely decorated with Chinese memorabilia.
A couple of weeks ago, I received an email inviting me to Grand Barbeque. The name rang a bell, and then I remembered driving past the place ever so often on the way to Jumeirah Beach Road.
Located on Al Mina Road (bang opposite Ramada Jumeirah), the bright and inviting colours of the restaurant facade look every bit a dining experience for the family. The interiors are well-lit, clean and spacious, and despite being a Friday night where most of the tables were brimming with diners, the staff were ever smiling and went out of their way to make us feel comfortable.
As true-blue foodies, we are always on the lookout for really good, tasty grub. A friend of mine recommended Orient Grill. Tucked away in the residential nook of Abu Shagara (Sharjah), she said it may not be as fancy-schmancy as some of the places we dine at, but vouched that the restaurant does a great job with Indo-Chinese cuisine. I checked out Oriental Grill on Zomato, and saw the restaurant had an average rating of 4.1 out of 5, and decided to look it up.
Located in the isolation of Barsha 1 (Dubai), Nom Nom is the little Asian ‘hidden gem’ that has been in the spotlight on social media in the past few months.
Perhaps its the quirky Instagram-friendly name, or the hashtagged chopstick logo. Perhaps its the influx of diners raving about the food and posting drool-worthy tributes. As a foodie with a genuine passion for South-East Asian cuisines, I headed to Nom Nom Asia last Wednesday night with the family to investigate on what all the fuss was about.