Time Out Dubai Restaurant Awards 2013 details - Timeoutdubai.com

Aprons & Hammers

Nominated for Best Seafood 24 Comments

© ITP Images

Aprons & Hammers is the only crab shack on a dhow in Dubai. The dining process involves, should you wish to select it (there are regular fish, chicken and fish burger à la carte dishes too), smashing open a bucketful of crab and lobster morsels with mini hammers, and allowing the 'roadkill' to splatter onto your handily-provided apron. Fun, huh? Don't write it off as a novelty: fortunately the service is friendly, the fresh fare is tasty, portions are generous for their price, and the walk up the jetty offers one of the most impressive views of Dubai Marina you can find (point out the twisty building to visitors). The only issue is that its destination-location means it is sometimes rather quiet. Still, it only takes a few tables seated closely together to provide a fun atmosphere, and there are so many members of staff manning the ship you never feel lonely. Smash it, say we.
Open daily 12pm-12am everyday 11.30pm (last orders Sun-Wed; 12am Thu-Sat). Dubai International Marine Club, Mina Seyahi Beach Resort www.apronsandhammers.com (04 454 7097).

By Time Out Dubai staff
Time Out Dubai,

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Posted by: youssef on 11 Nov ' 14 at 08:48

Edited by TimeOutDubai.com

We have dropped by 12:30 pm with no reservation and the place was pretty empty, a very sad / not welcoming gentleman told us we have to wait to check availability, we did but his attitude was very negative. Anyway he checked and came back with YES you guys can sit, we went to the deck upstairs to another gentleman with a very depressing attitude telling us sit wherever you like then we did, then he came back saying no this one is for 4 person and you are 5 then i told him that we can accommodate, then fine. the other guy came up from ground floor obviously telling him to change tables, then the guy came again asking us to change tables and we were the only table in the whole place!!!!! then we decided to leave, because of this hustle and the waiters were just ok with that!!!!!!! the story is i don't mind changing tables, but i do care about the attitude and behavior of the people especially we are in a proper decent restaurant.

Posted by: Disappointed seafood lover on 29 Jul ' 13 at 07:16
  • Best for: Family friendly

went to the very new Dubai Downtown branch at Adress Hotel. Very newly opened. Staff numbers are high. Delightful ambience and overall setting BUT the food was a desaster. Cold, clearly not fresh and asked for what kind of fish is served it was in all cases Hammour. Dips a complete disappointment. At the table all agreed that this was the last visit. Sorry, but in the competitive environment in Dubai, it has be better ...

Posted by: Coral Goddard on 11 Mar ' 13 at 05:43
  • Best for: Family friendly

What fun - actually got my kids to eat and enjoy seafood for the first time in 14 years of trying!!

Posted by: Savio on 07 Feb ' 13 at 08:58
  • Best for: Romantic

We were at the restaurant last night to celebrate our wedding anniversary. I practically ate nothing the entire day, looking forward to gorge myself on the seafood .... was unfortunately disappointing!

The shrimp bucket was cold by the time it got to our table, and was served alongwith our appetizer.
The crab bucket was ok, not great ... but the lobster bucket was a total disappointment. The lobster was clearly cooked sometime earlier and was simply re-heated on the grill and served .... We know our seafood as we live on the coast. The supervisor denied saying "everything is served fresh" but knew better. I simply stated I could accept the platter.
Good thing is he promptly took it away and did not charge for the lobster - which was a commendable customer service gesture.

would I go back again? .... Certainly not if I'm paying!

Posted by: ivan on 15 Jul ' 12 at 06:58
  • Best for: Family friendly

Although it has a great Decor an Ambience, the food is not great, what makes it overpriced.
You can find much better Seafood around Dubai.

Posted by: Daniel on 19 Jun ' 12 at 07:21
  • Best for: Family friendly

Edited by TimeOutDubai.com

Went there last night for dinner. Seeing a Family friend off as it was her last night here. Lovely idea, on the boat - we had a great time. The food was good, not fantastic, but good. If I was being picky.. the prawns were slightly over cooked and the mussles as well.. But nowhere near enough to warrant compaining or sending back - the flavours of the sauces were lovely.. We opted for the whitewine and garlic "chefs sauce" for the mussles and it was delish. Crab was lovely, normally I get annoyed eating crab because you have to work so ahrd just to get a morsel of meat but these cabs had decent size claws and with the hammers, and variety of tools it was easy to open them up and get to the meat.. Manager came over to check everything was fine. Service was decent, our waiter wasn't the sharpest tool in the box but a nice guy and no mess ups in orders or bills.. I would reccomend this to friends, nice to go as a group and make an evening of it!

Posted by: Nicky on 26 May ' 12 at 07:54
  • Best for: Romantic

We visited Aprons & Hammers last night, after wanting to go for a while.
What a disappointment... We were served by a "pushy" waitress who told me she was bringing my crab pot with the provencale sauce "as i would like it".... I explained that I had crab a lot & just wanted it plain with some melted butter but she was persistent, and I ended up with a pot of sauce that I did not touch..
The clam chowder was average, but the crab pot was so overcooked that the meat all came out as mush & was a funny brown colour, making it impossible to dip in any sauce. My partners main (a kind of seafood stew) had so much flavouring that he couldn't taste the seafood.....to top it all, both of us have woken up with what i shall describe as "dicky tummies".
The cheapest bottle of wine was 200 dhs.
The bill came to double what we would have spent should we have gone to Red Lobster where the crab is cooked so much better & the staff dont push you to have what they want....
Best seafood in Dubai??.....actually the worst i've had so far, even seafood served at brunches where they don't claim to specialise in it far surpasses the quality of Aprons & Hammers...Don't waste your money.

Posted by: Asli on 09 Feb ' 12 at 08:39
  • Best for: Family friendly

We ate - or rather could not eat at aprons and hammers last night. stale seafood, salads drenched in too much dressing, dips overloaded with garlic... over cooked mussels in saffron butter without saffron. the fish burger and chips are better at fast food chains.
lukewarm wine...
on the other hand our waitress was so lovely and friendly and very helpful it made us feel bad to complain to her for something clearly not her doing. She did not charge us for the bucket of crab as we sent it back - it was very smelly even overcooking it could not get rid of it- or for the bucket of shrimps - so smelly it made us gag.... not paying for something we did not eat cannot make us go back there. what a lovely concept, what a lovely setting but food is not fit for human consumption.
and there was not a single person who seemed in charge.

Posted by: Ahmed on 04 Jan ' 12 at 21:33
  • Best for: Family friendly

Amazing place, amazing value, amazing service, a must in dubai!

Posted by: Bartail Flathead on 31 Dec ' 11 at 11:17

As with any hotel eatery here in Dubai, this venue is seriously over-priced. I've eaten here several times at friends' birthday bashes, and always felt ripped off for what I get. The restaurant manager is a nice guy and does his best. He is extremely patient with some of the incompetent staff, and (often) rude clientele, but at the end of the day, a bowl of boiled-up shrimp and crab is not something exotic, nor worthy of the extortionate price tag.

Posted by: Ahmed on 13 Nov ' 11 at 16:39
  • Best for: Romantic

Edited by TimeOutDubai.com

Don't know what the top comments are talking about, the service was impeccable, friendly staff and great food

Posted by: ghazwan on 08 Nov ' 11 at 07:46
  • Best for: Romantic

Went here last night. We booked it over 2 weeks ago and confirmed the same day as booking the manager and he still got it wrong. Unbelievable. Useless manager has let down the staff to be honest. As they were pretty good. Will not go back. Its one of those places in dubai that looks good on paper, but cant deliver when it comes to it.

Posted by: Camilla on 08 Nov ' 11 at 06:33

Excellent food, fun way to eat it and stunning setting. Perfect for a mid afternoon / sun setting meal.

The only downside was the manager looked like he'd just dragged himself out of bed, and was also very rude to his staff infront of us. Not only was it unprofessional, but I assume it is the reason for the waiting staff's unenthusiastic service.

However, we will definitely go back because the overall experience was fantastic.

Posted by: Wawa on 07 Nov ' 11 at 10:14
  • Best for: Family friendly

I visited your restaurant twice recently. I was impressed from the location and the food, but I was extremely disappointed about the service. The staff was laid back and not organized. Our waitress had a totally lack of manners. It's a pity that such a nice restaurant with a stunning view and good food is ruined by the staff who seem to me more like a fast food staff than a good restaurant staff.
I will visit this restaurant again because the food is delicious but the staff need a massive training.

Posted by: Wawa on 07 Nov ' 11 at 10:11
  • Best for: Family friendly

I visited your restaurant twice recently. I was impressed from the location and the food, but I was extremely disappointed about the service. The staff was laid back and not organized. Our waitress had a totally lack of manners. It's a pity that such a nice restaurant with a stunning view and good food is ruined by the staff who seem to me more like a fast food staff than a good restaurant staff.
I will definetely visit it again because the seafood is delicious but I think their staff need a very good training.

Posted by: ant on 12 Oct ' 11 at 07:11
  • Best for: Romantic

food was amazing - had so much fun smashing those crabs!

Posted by: Zeina on 19 Sep ' 11 at 08:03
  • Best for: Family friendly

Our trip to Aprons & Hammers was due to a friend’s recommendation. This is one of the best experiences I had at restaurants if you like getting food all over you. The food was superb and it was a lot of fun trying to crack the crabs. The service was great, the owner/manager visited our table and chatted with us to make sure we have a pleasant experience. The price is a real bargain for a seafood restaurant, we had a bucket of crabs, bucket of jumbo shrimps, fries, calamari, chocolate fondant and 4 beers for AED 400. Will definitely visit again.

Posted by: Juri G on 02 Sep ' 11 at 21:22
  • Best for: Family friendly

Definitely a lively vibe in this cool restaurant, the food did not disappoint either. Well worth the visit!!!!

Posted by: Raina on 22 Aug ' 11 at 05:58

This is a wonderful restaurant and the food was just super! We were there just last week and I guess because we were early and it was Ramadan, we had the whole boat to ourselves. Still, I could see that when the place would be full, it would be really fun. Also, because we were the only patrons, we got exemplary service. I therefore reserve judgment until I've been there when its busy.

The food though.... now THAT was totally wonderful. Succulent calamari (NOT rubbery) with a wonderful batter. We were only half hearted when we ordered it, but were pleasantly surprised when it arrived and we tasted it. We took a bucket of crab, a bucket of jumbo prawns and a bucket of shrimp. Plus a bottle of lovely red vino. The bill at the end was not a shocker - in fact, it was value for money, considering the amount of seafood we had consumed.

Tasty sauces, beautifully cooked meat, great fun with the hammer & other paraphernalia. Plus, the little "peach water" that you get at the end, which was a great palate cleanser & digestive.

All in all.... highly recommended. I'm going back and every time I have guests to take out - we're going there!

Posted by: micheal on 21 Aug ' 11 at 10:18
  • Best for: Romantic

super tasty n fun...loved the apronns...at unbelievable prices! best value ever in Dubai I feel. We were 2, had starters, shrimps bucket, fries, desserts (the chocolate fondant is to die for!!!) all washed down with a bottle of wine, all for 400 dhs!!

Posted by: Ryan on 20 Aug ' 11 at 18:43

Best seafood in town, the staff are friendly, the atmosphere bubbly and is very good value for money

Posted by: nicolas on 19 Aug ' 11 at 17:34
  • Best for: Family friendly

great food n great fun experience.highly recommendable for a fun night out!

Posted by: lena on 18 Aug ' 11 at 19:45

thanx to time out we when to aprons and hammers last night and the experiance was good we had the surrgested calamari and that crab with a lemony sauce so good we were even dipping the bread in side yes a messy eating experiance but great fun, the six of us had a memorable evening we will be back and look forward to winter time to sit up stairs ,lena

Posted by: G on 18 Aug ' 11 at 07:16

Where is this? did I miss the location?


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