The Shortlist

Nominated for Best European

Picante is a delight. In a city far from overflowing with Portuguese restaurants, this place could rely on novelty alone to attract new diners. But as a regular haunt of Mediterranean expats, it’s clear that Picante goes the extra mile. Styled in a dark, rustic and quintessentially shabby-chic European decor, it’s a stylistic breath of fresh air, and the delicious home-cooked smells wafting from the open kitchen set the mood to come. Staff are simply lovely – and informative – while the lengthy menu offers a wide selection of hearty and traditional fare that is unlikely to leave space for dessert. The seafood comes particularly recommended, with everything competitively priced. The restaurant is also known for hosting very reasonable à la carte eat and drink deals, which makes it a hit with larger groups at weekends – call it advance to check their latest packages. With so scant options, we didn’t expect Portugal to taste quite so good in Dubai, but boy we’re glad it does.
Open daily noon-3pm, 7pm-midnight. Four Points by Sheraton Bur Dubai, Bur Dubai, (04 397 7444).

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