A Spanish fiesta of inventive flavours make for a treat
Time Out Dubai staff
We’ve visited Toro + Ko before, and our experience was a mixed bag to say the least. But we came away feeling that this restaurant has potential, so we had to come back to see how it does brunch.
We arrive curious and hungry a little after noon and already a few tables are taken.
We’re seated outside – the best place to be in this licensed area, since inside feels dark and a little sterile owing to it being so shiny, new and empty. That said, though, the décor indoors is incredibly cool and on trend.
Food is served to your table and there’s no menu. We’re told we get a selection of tapas to begin, main courses of steak and paella – you get to choose between seafood and chicken – and a platter of desserts to round it off.
Slick staff who exude confidence and style talk us though the menu – a great start. Soon after, a selection of cold charcuterie arrives. It’s served on intensely rustic, flaky Catalan bread, with of fresh, puréed, garlicky tomatoes. It’s a light, crisp and a refreshing start that whets our appetites.
Also worth mentioning is the tartar de atún – the freshest, most delicate cubes of zesty tuna tartare, accompanied by a vibrant, inventive guacamole. The smashed avocado comes with a garnish of basil and a berry vinaigrette. Next up are the creamy croquettes with their deliciously crisp coats – the chicken one, with its tender shreds of delicately smoked meat, is the highlight.
There are also tiny, patatas bravas topped with aioli, and corn on the cob smothered in a marinade of aioli, lime, espelette pepper and aged Roncal cheese. It’s awkward to eat if we’re honest, but that mix of flavours keeps us nibbling nonetheless.
A lightly golden tortilla arrives, stuffed with the softest potatoes. It disappears in seconds.
After a breather, we tuck into the steak. Cooked medium to our request, it’s tender and buttery in the middle and meaty and juicy at the edges. But the stand-out of the mains is the paella. Perfectly cooked rice comes with mountains of seafood adding to the deep flavours.
By the time we get to dessert we’re stuffed, but can’t pass up on the crisp, golden, sugar-dusted churros, which are worth a visit alone.
This is a culinary journey we’ll happily go on again. And we think you should, too. Dhs350 (soft drinks), Dhs450 (house beverages), Dhs550 (bubbly). Fri noon-4pm. The Square, City Walk, Al Safa Street (04 590 5433).
The bottom line An incredibly tasty Spanish feast.