Cosy, low-key brunch with good food but little entertainment
Time Out Dubai staff
What’s on offer? This cosy buffet brunch takes place on the lower level of Mina A’ Salam, with views overlooking the bright turquoise canals and the surrounding courtyard (if you’re not tucked away in the corner, as we were). It's best to visit during cooler months when you can sit outside. Cuisine is a bit of a mixed bag and includes sushi (but no sashimi), a decent seafood selection, roast lamb and beef, a pasta station, dumplings and rare brunch treats such as tacos and burritos, shawarma, doughnuts and bruschetta. Drinks range from house bubbly, two varieties of slushy-style mixed drinks and Japanese rice-based drinks. We’d compare the vibe to a Sunday lunch with friends, so it’s a great place for a low-key Friday afternoon. It’s also family friendly. However, if it’s a rowdy brunch you’re after, you’ll be disappointed.
The venue? Al Muna itself is light and airy, but make sure you ask for a seat near the windows to take advantage of this. Arabic-style archways line the corridors and stained-glass detailing lets even more light through. The old-school skirt-wearing chairs and tacky tablecloths are slightly off-putting, as is the slow service (at one point we had to clear our own plates).
What sort of crowd turn out? It was mainly tanned tourists and groups of friends on the occasion we visited.
Room for improvement? The variety of food on offer is good, although the quality is somewhat lacking – nothing seems to taste as good as it looks. Service could also do with a revamp, as many of the staff were nowhere to be seen for most of the brunch.
Standout dish? The fresh oysters.
In one sentence… A low-key brunch with minimal entertainment and a good selection of food, although it’s missing a few qualities. Dhs390 (soft drinks), Dhs465 (selected beverages and sparkling grape), Dhs220 (children aged 8-12) free for children below 8. 12.30pm-4pm, Madinat Jumeirah (04 366 6730).