The Shortlist

Yuan, Atlantis The Palm
Highly Commended for Best Newcomer
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Upon arriving at Yuan, you’ll get an immediate impression of what’s to come. An elegantly dressed hostess in black and an elaborately adorned man in brocade silk and face paint – part Beijing opera singer, part mythical deity – welcome diners ahead of a special experience. Inside, the restaurant is not overly large, yet the dimensions feel spacious and lavish, all simply decorated in ethereal tones of blue, silver and grey. Staff all seem to be Chinese and service is wonderfully faultless with plenty of guidance, recommendations and a few cultural facts offered without prompting. While the menu is definitely a fine-dining take on the cuisine, the dishes have a determinedly Chinese soul to them. The Shanghai-style rose team smoked chicken, for instance, is perfectly flavoured with a wonderful crispy skin, while the braised wagyu beef is coated in a delicious sweet and sticky marinade. Despite being such a wonderful cuisine, Dubai’s Chinese scene is not as strong as it could be, but with the arrival of Yuan, this looks set to change.
Open Sat-Wed 7pm-11.30pm, Thu-Fri 7pm-12.30am. Atlantis The Palm, Palm Jumeirah (04 426 2626).

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