We loosen our belts and dig in to the city's best delivered food
Time Out Dubai Staff
With temperatures rising, team Time Out has given up eating out (okay, this isn’t strictly true) in favour of ordering in. And it seems we’re not alone – according to the good people at takeaway specialist Bombay by the Bay, deliveries during summer increase by 30 per cent. With this in mind, we’ve embarked on our most extensive takeaway feature to date. We’ve covered nine different areas across Dubai, ordering a meal for two in four different cuisines, rating them on vital takeaway criteria (see how we did it below). So whatever your taste or wherever you live, we’ve got your delivery options covered.
How we did it We rated each delivery service on the following: • Range and diversity of dishes on the menu • How easy it was to place an order by phone • Delivery time accuracy • Taste test
Discovery Gardens, Emirates Hills & Jebel Ali
Indian Copper Chimney The menu: Dishes on the traditional menu include achari chicken tikka, dahl tadkewali, jeera rice and roomali roti. On the phone: The staff handled our meal requests with ease. Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; it took 40. Food on arrival: Everything arrived piping hot, in extremely generous portions and sturdy containers, ensuring none of the extremely tasty dahl escaped along the way. Average price of a meal for two: Dhs90. (04 363 9948). 4/5
MENA Persia The menu: Prices are good value and, although the menu is fairly limited, it’s nice to find a selection of traditional Iranian stews and kebabs. On the phone: The language barrier proved a bit of a problem at first, but we persevered and got there eventually. Clock watch: They said 50 minutes; it took 20. Food on arrival: Everything was hot and mercifully free from spillage, and the food itself was hearty, wholesome and moreish. We particulary enjoyed the meat stew. Dhs100. www.persiadining.com (04 360 8880). 3/5
Pizza NKD Pizza The menu: NKD prides itself on healthy, probiotic pizzas. We went for Mediterranean pizza and ‘breadstixx’. On the phone: No hitches whatsoever. Clock watch: They said 30 minutes; it arrived right on time. Food on arrival: Hot and fresh – the flavour hadn’t withered at all en route. Dhs70. www.nkdpizza.com (04 453 4313). 4/5
Asian Lemongrass Express The menu: Lemongrass offers Thai classics such as yan woon sen, bamee gaeng and tom yam goong. On the phone: Smooth sailing. Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; it took 35. Food on arrival: It arrived so hot the kitchen could have been next door (it wasn’t). Nothing leaked, there wasn’t too much oil, and everything down to the prawns in the tom yam soup tasted fresh. Dhs70. www.lemongrassrestaurants.com (04 368 5616). 4/5
Barsha & Tecom
Indian Brick Lane The menu: Packed full of traditional British curry classics, from the balti to the onion bhaji. On the phone: Staff were helpful and had no problems understanding our order and our address. Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; pretty much bang on. Food on arrival: The aloo chat was piping hot and fragrant, while the chicken tikka had a tangy, distinctive taste. The only detraction was that the naan was a little limp. Dhs60. www.bricklanedubai.com (04 399 6786). 3/5
MENA Shawermama The menu: A funky, fast-food take on shawarmas – there are also wraps and Shawermama’s very own version of Mexican quesidillas. We ordered the ‘Shazooka’ and a family meal. On the phone: Directions were a struggle – they had to call back to ask for more detailed location info. Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; it took 65. Food on arrival: Packed neatly, still warm and extremely tasty. Almost worth the extra wait. Dhs80. www.facebook.com/shawermamauae (04 453 4704). 3/5
Pizza Red Tomato Pizza The menu: All the dough-based classics you’d expect from a good pizzeria. On the phone: There’s a well thought-out automated ordering system: press ‘1’ for delivery, ‘2’ for takeaway… When we got through to an operator, our call was handled politely and efficiently. Clock watch: They said 40 minutes; it arrived bang on time. Food on arrival: Piping hot; toppings were evenly and heavily distributed. Dhs50. www.redtomato.biz (800 866 286). 5/5
Asian Royal Kebab The menu: Despite its name, Royal Kebab features a generous number of South-East Asian classics. We ordered chilli chicken, Singapore noodles and chicken spring rolls. On the phone: The online menu was wrong, but staff were helpful and managed to guide us through our order. Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; it took 29. Food on arrival: Hot and packed with plenty of Asian flavour. Dhs90. www.rjs.ae/royalkebabmenu.pdf (04 450 8105). 4/5
The Palm Jumeirah & Media City
Indian Paratha King The menu: There are more than a hundred parathas to choose from, with all the popular choices (such as aloo and gobi) accounted for. On the phone: After being referred to the Dubai Media City number, our order went smoothly enough (although checking the menu online before you call is recommended). Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; they couldn’t have been more precise. Food on arrival: Flavours were hit and miss – the paneer kasoori had an unpleasant chemical-like aftertaste, but the aloo achari was very tasty, and you can’t beat Paratha King in terms of value for money. Dhs38. (04 396 6999). 4/5
MENA Mazaj The menu: This popular Lebanese venue offers all the usual suspects, from mixed grills to various mezze dishes, all at reasonable prices. On the phone: Straightforward to order; there were no mistakes. Clock watch: They said 20 minutes; it took 30. Food on arrival: We ordered several mezze dishes, including halloumi and a shish tawouk, but Mazaj doesn’t hold back on the portions; the hummus and moutabbal could have easily fed four. The only downside was that the bread was overly chewy – it obviously doesn’t travel well. Dhs80. (04 390 2200). 4/5
Pizza Pizza Pazza The menu: The traditional pizzas are cooked in a wood-fired oven and there are plentiful pasta options. Order: There was confusion over our location, but we got there in the end. Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; they were spot on. Food on arrival: The pasta wasn’t a congealed lump (as we feared it might be), but a flavourful and sizeable meal, and the pizza tasted home-made. Dhs80. www.pizzapazzadubai.com (04 399 6628). 3/5
Asian Sumo Sushi The menu: The citywide Japanese chain offers a range of maki, sashimi, curries and bento boxes, which covers all the main bases for sushi fans. On the phone: Our order was easily understood. Clock watch: They said 60 minutes; it took slightly longer. Food on arrival: Our chicken gyoza were steaming hot and fell apart delightfully in the mouth, while the selection of tuna maki was flavoursome, firm and freshly prepared. Dhs50. www.sumosushi.net (04 391 4141) Delivers citywide. 4/5
Bur Dubai, Karama and Oud metha
Indian British Tandoor The menu: A generous choice of mains, with ‘hotness’ indicated beside each dish. We ordered vegetable rice (very good), madras (a little rubbery) and aloo gobi (a winner). On the phone: We referred to the accessible online menu before we called, of which the staff had good knowledge. Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; it took 30. Food on arrival: The food arrived with a smile and tasted great. Dhs80. www.britishtandoor.com (04 321 1778). 4/5
MENA Moulin D’Or The menu: With everything from manakish, mezze and fatayer to grills, sandwiches, burgers and juices, everyone will find something to order here. On the phone: A gruff-sounding man took our order very efficiently, without us having to repeat directions. Clock watch: They said 30 minutes; it took 45. Food on arrival: The arayes and chips arrived soggy but warm. The kofta manakish was sublime, though the houmous wasn’t the best we’ve tasted. Dhs90. (04 336 9994). 3/5
Pizza Biella The menu: This mall fave serves all the requisite pizza options, as well as pasta and salads. We opted for the quattro stagioni and ravioli ricotta. On the phone: Biella only delivers through the Room Service website. This was a little time consuming, but we got there in the end. Clock watch: They said 60 minutes; it took 45. Food on delivery: The ravioli looked stodgy and tasted little better. The pizza, however, was excellent. But considering the price, it needed to be. Dhs180. www.roomservice.ae (800 4788) Delivers citywide 3/5
Asian Zen Restaurant The menu: The Thai and Chinese dishes are easily deciphered from the website. We ordered basil stir-fry with prawn, mango salad and sticky rice. On the phone: Staff knew their food and recommended the prawn stir fry. They were also very patient as we procrastinated over our order. Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; it took 30. Food on arrival: The food arrived via a smiling driver laden with warm food – all very good. Dhs110. www.zendubai.com (800 936). 4/5
Downtown Burj Khalifa & DIFC
Indian Gazebo The menu: The choice is huge, with lots of authentic Hyderabadi cuisine. On the phone: The man we spoke to was very knowledgeable, and offered suggestions of alternative dishes when one of our choices was unavailable. Clock watch: They said 50 minutes; it was bang on time. Food on arrival: Steaming hot and super tasty. Dhs80. www.gazebodubai.com (04 358 5550). 4/5
MENA Arz Lebanon The menu: Not a huge offering, but the standard Lebanese choices are all present and correct, from mixed grills and mezze to pastries and juices. Your order: Very straightforward: friendly, helpful and polite, plus willing to accommodate our off-menu requests. Delivery time: They said 45 minutes; it took 35. Food on arrival: Steaming hot and generous portions, though not quite as flavoursome as some Lebanese food we’ve tasted. Dhs120. www.aldaboosgroup.com (04 451 2277). 3/5
Top Takeaway! Pizza Marzano The menu: As well as pizzas, you can choose pasta, salad, soup, risotto, meat and more. Very comprehensive, and great value to boot. On the phone: We struggled with the Italian pronunciation of some dishes, but the voice on the other end of the line knew exactly what we meant. Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; it took 40. Food on arrival: The pizza was piping hot, the salad was nicely chilled, and both were as fresh and delicious as if we’d ordered them in the restaurant. Dhs80. (04 420 1136). 5/5
Asian Bento-Ya The menu: All the Japanese classics are here: we favoured the soft-shell crab roll, tori nanban bento and tempura udon. On the phone: You could tell the restaurant was busy as the ordering was manic, but efficient all the same. Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; it took 35. Food on arrival: The udon soup was still boiling hot, the sushi a little mushed from the journey, but the bento box was in perfect order. Dhs130. www.bentoya.info (04 343 0222). 4/5
Dubai Marina & JBR
Indian Bombay by the Bay The menu: We ordered the tandoori prawns, bhattika murg and paneer palak. On the phone: No problems at all: very straightforward. Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; it took a nearly two hours. As recompense, the manager offered a complimentary redelivery any time that suited us. Food on arrival: The prawns were a bit skimpy, but the chicken was well marinated and juicy, and the spinach paneer had a good amount of cheese. Dhs110. firstname.lastname@example.org (04 429 7979). 3/5
MENA CamooN The menu: MENA may be the main event, but Camoon also covers all bases with offerings of pizza, pasta, chicken tikka and a mighty club sandwich. On the phone: They understood what we wanted, where our building was and got our order right. Sounds easy, but in Dubai it generally isn’t. Clock watch: They said 30 minutes; it took 28. Food on arrival: It all felt a little tired – the tabbouleh in particular had seen better days – but for a quick Lebanese mixed grill lunch, it was fine. Dhs55. (04 447 7619). 3/5
Pizza 800 Pizza The menu: There’s an extensive range of Italian classics – we ordered the pollastrana with extra toppings of spinach and buffalo mozzarella. On the phone: We quizzed them about bases, cheeses and more. Not only were the staff patient, but they gave us some much-appreciated pizza education. Delivery time: They said 40 minutes; it took 35. Food on arrival: The pizza was excellent, not to mention generous in diameter: perfectly intact and fresh from the oven. Dhs60. www.800pizza.ae (800 74 992). 5/5
Asian The Noodle Room The menu: A comprehensive range covering food from Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand, Japan and China: expect to find crunchy rock prawns vying for attention alongside spicy kung po chicken and yam nuea salad (do not leave Dubai without trying the latter). On the phone: ‘Mr Brain?’ No, Brown. ‘Brian?’ Brown. ‘Brad?’ Sigh. Yes, Mr Brad. ‘Ah, Mr Brad, what would you like?’ Clock watch: They said 30 minutes; it took 15. Food on arrival: Every dish was vacuum sealed, so arrived as hot as the moment they poured it into the tub. Perfect. Dhs70. www.thenoodleroom.com (04 427 0442). 5/5
Jumeirah & Umm Suqeim
Indian Chicken Tikka Inn The menu: Features favourites such as mixed chicken grill, palak paneer and butter tandoori naan. On the phone: Very keen – they tried to recommend a few dishes. Clock watch: They said 40 minutes; it took 45. Food on arrival: Warm and safely sealed, the food was tasty and impressively plentiful. We particularly liked the quote on the receipt: ‘If you like the food, tell others. If you don’t, tell us.’ Dhs60. (04 432 7235). 4/5
MENA Reem al Bawadi The menu: A fine selection of traditional dishes. We contented ourselves with tabbouleh, fried chicken strips and houmous with meat. On the phone: Rather hard work, though credit to the waiter: he was very patient, albeit a little unsure. Clock watch: They said 30 minutes; it took 50. Food on arrival: Despite its delay, the food was decent. The bread was a little chewy, but the houmous and meat were very moreish. This can also be said of the chicken strips, despite their greasiness. Dhs70. www.reemalbawadi.com (04 330 6663) Delivers citywide 3/5
Pizza Itzza Pizza The menu: From the pastas, salads and pizzas on offer, we picked the spicy pollo pizza, with extra anchovies and spinach. Your order: The initial call was a bit too rushed, and a few moments later they called back to reconfirm the order. Otherwise, a relatively easy ordering process. Delivery time: They said 30 minutes; spot on. Food on arrival: The pizza was surprisingly good – the only criticism was that it was warm rather than piping hot. Dhs60. www.itzzapizza-uae.com (04 342 8280). 4/5
Asian Manga sushi The menu: Extensive and creative: we ordered King Kong (scallop tempura), Ring of Saturn (tenderloin beef wrap), Gyoza (chicken dumpling) and Gold Ring (Minced prawns and more with teriyaki sauce). On the phone: We were told to call Room Service, who were polite but rather down in the dumps, and had to call us back to inform us Manga had no shrimp dumplings. We switched to chicken instead. Clock watch: They said an hour; it took one hour 10 minutes. Food on arrival: Warm and prettily packaged. Dhs193 (incl. Dhs35 delivery). www.roomservice-uae.com (800 4788). 3/5
Satwa and Sheikh Zayed Road
Indian Delhi Darbar The menu: Features an array of north-Indian classics. We chose the aloo ghobi, palak paneer and butter chicken. On the phone: Laborious, due to poor English – but the staff were friendly. Clock watch: They said 35; it took 35. Food on arrival: Our delivery was the ideal temperature and well packaged; the curry wasn’t not too spicy (just as we requested). Dhs60. www.delhi-darbar.com (04 329 1212) Delivers citywide. 4/5
MENA Zaatar w Zeit The menu: A funky fast food joint specialising in wraps. On the phone: There’s obviously a central ordering hub: they meant business. Clock watch: They said 35 minutes; it took 25. Food on arrival: The wraps were expertly tucked into paper so no sauce escaped. The bread was fresh, the ingredients plentiful and the sauce zingy. Dhs80 (plus Dhs5 delivery). www.zaatarwzeit.net (600 522 231). 4/5
Pizza Round Table Pizza The menu: You can create your own seven-inch pizza by choosing from the selection of toppings, or challenge yourself with 16 inches. On the phone: A patient man politely explained the different choices available; he was even able to describe what ‘pizzatatoes’ were. Clock watch: They said 30 minutes; it took 25. Food on arrival: The pizza was warm but not hot enough. The chicken wasn’t marinated particularly well, but overall the meal wasn’t bad. Dhs50. (04 396 6999). 3/5
Asian Wagamama The menu: We all know and love Wagamama – the menu is full of contemporary Japanese dishes. We ordered chicken chilli men and kare lomen. On the phone: Frightfully professional yet inflexible (they were wary of special requests). Clock watch: They said 50 minutes; it took 40. Food on arrival: Perfectly packaged and still hot – the chilli men was a hearty tomatoey dish; the kare lomen a moreish coconut noodle soup. Dhs80. www.wagamama.ae (04 305 6060). 4/5
Mirdif, Garhoud & festival city
Indian India Palace The menu: From the 89 items on offer, we ordered the mutton vindaloo, chicken murg malai, ladies fingers, a dum aloo banarasi, naan and plain rice. On the phone: We knew what we wanted, but couldn’t remember the names of the dishes. Luckily, the staff were happy to talk us through it. Clock watch: They said 40 minutes; it took 30. Food on arrival: Piping hot, well packaged, plentiful and tasty. Dhs60. (04 286 9600) Delivers citywide 4/5
MENA Al Hallab The menu: Extensive and affordable. We went for chicken shish tawouk platters, mutabbal, tabbouleh and zatar salad. On the phone: The ordering process was fine as we knew what we wanted. Clock watch: They said 30 minutes; it took 50. Food on arrival: Generously sized, but some aspects were disappointing – our chicken shish tawouk was stone cold, and the chips had gone soggy. Dhs110. www.alhallabrestaurant.com (04 282 3388) Delivers citywide 3/5
Pizza Pizzaland The menu: All the usual pizza options are on offer, plus sandwiches, fries, salads and pasta. We ordered the medium vegetarian pizza. On the phone: Pizzaland is a Garhoud institution and staff seem to know exactly where you live simply from your phone number. Clock watch: They said 30 minutes; it took 20. food on arrival: It arrived piping hot and neatly packaged. The pizza had plenty of veggies and not too much cheese, so we didn’t feel too guilty about eating it. Dhs30. www.pizzaland.ae (04 282 8485). 4/5
Asian Yo! Sushi The menu: The menu covers the usual maki, nigiri and sashimi, plus katsu curries, salads and noodles. On the phone: It took a while for our call to be answered, but the ordering process was straightforward. Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; it took 45. Food on arrival: The maki and nigiri were spot on, though the portions were too small and the edamame were tasteless. Dhs80. www.yosushi.com/restaurants (04 602 3000) Delivers citywide 3/5
Indian Foodlands The menu: While the menu also covers the Middle East and China, it’s the Indian fare that keeps everyone coming back for more. We ordered the chicken chilli, rarah gosht and roti. On the phone: Polite, and we didn’t have to repeat directions. Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; bang on. Food on arrival: Excellent: no leakage, everything was steaming hot and tasted delicious. Dhs100. www.foodlands.com (04 268 3311). 5/5
Pizza Domino’s The menu: Domino’s does a great selection of carnivorous options, but we opted to go with the delicious ‘superb cheese’, adding our own toppings. On the phone: It seemed to go smoothly, but then we got frantic calls from the driver who couldn’t find our place. Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; it took 50. Food on arrival: We chose thin crust so there was no sogginess. The ‘chicken kickers’, however, were an unappetising orange colour and chewy to boot. These got binned, but the pizza was devoured. Dhs90. www.dominosmenap.com (04 265 1212) Delivers citywide 3/5
Asian The noodle House The menu: We chose Thai chicken, pad Thai and plain noodles. On the phone: After calling three numbers we found online, we were confronted by all manner of questions (phone number, email address, etc). This said, it was very professional. Clock watch: They said 30 minutes; it took 20. Food on arrival: Well packaged and extremely tasty. Dhs160. www.thenoodlehouse.com (800 666 353). 4/5
MENA Automatic Restaurant The menu: All the usual Lebanese favourites are accounted for, and this place is well-known for its deliciously creamy houmous. On the phone: A very hurried experience. The man seemed impatient and didn’t bother to ask about drinks or accompaniments, so we’d recommend knowing what you want before you pick up the phone. Clock watch: They said 30 minutes; it took 25. Food on arrival: Everything was still warm. The kebab halabi, houmous and mutabbal were delicious, but the arayes was too greasy. Dhs130. (04 265 0101). 4/5
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clifton chadwick Mar 09, 2012 07:28 am
Houston, we have a problem
Time Out Dubai has a page called:
Dubai's ultimate takeaways guide
We loosen our belts and dig in to the city's best delivered food
And the first one listed is
Discovery Gardens, Emirates :Hills & Jebel Ali
Here is what Time Out Dubai said.
The menu: Dishes on the traditional menu include achari chicken tikka, dahl tadkewali, jeera rice and roomali roti.
On the phone: The staff handled our meal requests with ease.
Clock watch: They said 45 minutes; it took 40.
Food on arrival: Everything arrived piping hot, in extremely generous portions and sturdy containers, ensuring none of the extremely tasty dahl escaped along the way.
Average price of a meal for two: Dhs90. (04 363 9948).
So we decided to try it. Chicken Kebab, Lamb Badami, Samosa, rice and Naan
Guess what? If this represents an “ultimate takeaway”, man, we are in trouble
The food took over an hour, it was hot, the portions were large, but the taste result was MEDIOCRE!!. Both the lamb and the chicken were dry and short on flavor. I cook both lamb and chicken at home and my results are much, much better.
And definitely over-priced. Not the Dhs 90 but Dhs 150!!
Basel Feb 03, 2012 04:53 pm
I dont know how you claim to cover Dubai without trying more than a handful of restaurants over and over, in Pizza its about time you try something else other than red tomato pizza and naked pizza, in Barsha itself there are about 10 pizzerias that can be tried.
I personally have liked pizza pazza until I found out about Verona Pizzeria, and I blame timeoutdubai for pushing something that has a better alternative and they are just deciding to stay quite about,
I wish that you did review Verona Pizzeria before so I would have known about it instead of ordering my best meal from the second best for a long time