Time Out Dubai Restaurant Awards 2013 details - Timeoutdubai.com

The Taste Initiative

Nominated for Best Newcomer 21 Comments

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Modern but with uncomplicated decor, the café looks much like any other department store pit stop, apart from one design-orientated back wall where miniature-sized versions of the furniture being sold are displayed. There are no starters or light savoury bites on the menu, however, it offers a neat selection of light, healthy-sounding European café classics, including salads, sandwiches, quiche and pizzas. The tuna steak in the tuna, minted pea and pearl barley salad is well seasoned, if a touch too salty, while the acres of green leaves underneath are subtly dressed to give a nice savoury quality without overwhelming the delicacy of the pea and mint combination. There isn’t really enough pearl barley – or peas – on the plate, but all is forgiven, because those few lone specimens are among the sweetest, greenest peas we’ve eaten in Dubai. Unsurprisingly, they're also local. The food isn’t perfect, but it's refreshing to encounter a venue pushing edible sustainability with consistency.
Open daily 8am-5pm. The Change Initiative, Sheikh Zayed Road, near Ibis Hotel, Al Barsha (800 824).

By Time Out Dubai staff
Time Out Dubai,

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Posted by: William Haddock on 05 Jun ' 13 at 19:12

Edited by TimeOutDubai.com

Worst coffee of my life ! its was completely burned. Got to know Raw sells them the beans . I have had coffee at raw and they make outstanding coffee with the same beans . I don't think i would pay double when i can get better quality with same beans at raw. I like my coffee to be done to perfection like in Jones The Grocer. Its an art not all cultures can adapt to. However the tuna salad was amazing and i loved it . Decor is not so good but good for work as I had free wifi. not so comfortable chairs and tables. too bright indoors. The store was brilliant

Posted by: Mark Taquet on 31 May ' 13 at 09:22

Overall great store. Food is average and so are the drinks . there is no vow factor into anything there. Best of all is that at the prices are low. They charge according the quality of food served. You cant blame them for that , they are honest

Posted by: Rachel on 30 May ' 13 at 12:03
  • Best for: Family friendly

I was really pleasantly surprised when I visited here, given some of the previous negative reviews. I had an absolutely delicious salad (smoked salmon) which came beautifully presented. Light and healthy. Really great. My girls had the kids menu, which was great value at 25dhs for a main, ice cream and drink (the pizza is good with a thin and crispy base.)The raw coffee really adds a plus to the menu. The service was really good.
The cafe is light and airy..a real tonic especially in this hot weather.
I will definitely go back.

Posted by: GS on 29 May ' 13 at 05:32

I can't believe soem of these reviews (the negative ones). Went with 4 girlfriends for lunch on Sunday and I'm going back tomorrow, on my birthday! Lovely light, fresh, interesting, healthy food. Great friendly but not intrusive service. Nice looking (healthy) kids menu. Perfect for a ladies light lunch or family lunch. Tick, tick, tick

Posted by: Clive Peterson on 28 Apr ' 13 at 17:41

Edited by TimeOutDubai.com

Great store with an amazing concept . But the cafe experience was a bit too cold and mediocre. Like every other cafes in Dubai you can expect the same cold attitude and behaviour from the staff. Unfortunately the whole experience was putting off my appetite. Internet was not working could hear chefs swearing at each other from inside the kitchen. My 5 year old son was asking me "mom what does 'that word' mean as he heard the chefs use abusive words . Not a family place at all .

Posted by: Sandy parker on 15 Apr ' 13 at 08:09

Bad coffee . It is also interesting to see simultaneous 6 reviews from 8 am to 9:30 am all saying wonderful things about the restaurant. I doubt as i never had such an experience. I believe company officials are doing this which is begining to be a very bad idea as we are not fools here. So time out should verify sources thoroughly

Posted by: John lenon on 15 Apr ' 13 at 08:05

Went with my kids as there was kids area to play around. Great coffee.but staff was lazy and saw them chatting with each other in a corner when i need some more milk on the side. Sandwich was cold the bread was stale . I have done so many reviews in my life as i work as a food reviewer and critic for a leading gourmet magazine here in dubai. But i should candidly this is so far most the most disappointing experience I ever had. My husband was ok though but his carrot juice was also 2 days old. I hope you guys pull up ur socks as not everyone gets a second chance

Posted by: Simran Chatterji on 04 Apr ' 13 at 17:32

Very bad value for money . Disappointing to the core.

Posted by: Jessie Thompson on 04 Apr ' 13 at 17:29

I have to say " this place is completely hyped about " Food is average and service is mediocre. ordered scones which took 25 minutes to arrive!! . Its very easy to find similar food and service for half the prize in dubai . Coffee was the only thing i enjoyed without doubt . The waiters had picked up empty glasses with the fingers inside from a table besides me and returned to my table to place fresh cutleries without washing their hands. Very unhygenic conditions , When i wanted to speak to the manager , the waiter said manager is off duty and brushed off very lightly without even asking if I am ok. Would never recommend to any of my friends

Posted by: Mahalakshmi on 17 Mar ' 13 at 05:32
  • Best for: Family friendly

Food is excellent and delicious... AMbience is great and creative..... All the decors are very creative and sustainable...

Posted by: Shilpi Dutt on 12 Mar ' 13 at 13:39
  • Best for: Family friendly

Edited by TimeOutDubai.com

The presentation of the food is great. Food taste is very fresh and feels very healthy. The staff is very amicable. As you enter the restaurant, you get a feeling of openness and space which is quite tranquil. One can just sit down on one's own with a cup of coffee with either a laptop or book and spend several hours there without getting disturbed. Since there is a lot of room, kids can easily walk around in the cafe and also feel free to grab a kids' book from the shelf, or watch TV when bored. The parents, in the meantime can have sometime to themselves.

Posted by: Manu on 11 Mar ' 13 at 15:11
  • Best for: Family friendly

I love the food. The tuna sandwich is to die for. The desserts are great- the scones, the cheesecake and the madelines. The coffee is one of the best I have had in Dubai. My kids love the pizza and the ramen with them saying - this is the best pizza I have ever had. The service is great and the servers are always smiling.

Posted by: Lisa Juhel on 11 Mar ' 13 at 11:20
  • Best for: Family friendly

The food is amazing, Nicest meal ive had since i arrived in Dubai 4 months ago :) service is excellent

Posted by: Anu on 11 Mar ' 13 at 09:10
  • Best for: Family friendly

I love this place. They have a great kids menu and my little ones love the pasta here. My fav, i would say would be tuna salad, aged cheddar sandwich (this is to die for) and their desserts. It's a cool, fun filled place

Posted by: Abhishek on 11 Mar ' 13 at 09:07
  • Best for: Family friendly

They have refurbished this place and it looks exciting. It's very warm and inviting and I absolutely love the Prawn Thai curry!!!. I am definitely going back. Also don't miss the Steve Job collage..it's stunning. Thumbs up to this place

Posted by: Manu on 11 Mar ' 13 at 08:59
  • Best for: Family friendly

I love the food. The tuna sandwich is to die for. The desserts are great- the scones, the cheesecake and the madelines. The coffee is one of the best I have had in Dubai. My kids love the pizza and the ramen with them saying - this is the best pizza I have ever had.

Posted by: Sahrish Khan on 11 Mar ' 13 at 08:11
  • Best for: Family friendly

The new decor adds a vibrant life to the place! The staff are friendly and welcoming and there's a lot for the kids to do there. Definitely worth the visit, the nomination, and the award! :)

Posted by: Sandy on 09 Mar ' 13 at 20:29

Went with family. Bread and green sallads are excellent. Coffee very good. Service was friendly but messy, with missed and misunderstood orders. Kids pancakes served on cutting board, not very suitable for a kid. Decor is what it is, simple but functional.
Shop is interesting, but weird with all kinds of stuff. Had to lol when I saw ink jet cartridges at the cashier.

Posted by: cristina helm on 09 Jan ' 13 at 12:18

Best for nothing. Lazy environment and bad food. Totally disspointed with the whole menu and outlook of the staff. looks like a office environment. very bad decor too

Posted by: mark wauhberg on 08 Dec ' 12 at 10:55

very disappointing service and food. would never go again

Posted by: Rick Martin on 24 Nov ' 12 at 09:41

I loved the food, had a tuna salad and an amazing coffee. Service is spot on and attentive . Just disspointed with the decor . Look too classroom but i was told the furniture had a 20 years gurantee on it and was made by Vitra . Overall i was happy and will definitely go back


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