As we walked from the main hotel to the newly-built restaurant, we couldn’t help but notice that the Mina Seyahi’s grounds smelled deeply, and rather bizarrely, of vinegar 38 Reviews
Offers a two-course Italian business lunch during the week. Dhs110 (two courses) Timings: Noon-2.45pm (Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday)
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As we walked from the main hotel to the newly-built restaurant, we couldn’t help but notice that the Mina Seyahi’s grounds smelled deeply, and rather bizarrely, of vinegar. Our complaining was ended by the emergence of Bussola, all tall glass windows, immaculately-styled staircases and giant white canopies. The interior is every bit as attractive. On a light wooden floor inlaid with turquoise tiles, tables are well-spaced to create a comfortable, airy environment. From the vantage point of the upstairs bar and lounge you can keep tabs on the construction work at Dubai Marina, or turn round to soak up the calm of the ocean.
My friend’s beef carpaccio with parmesan cheese was an understated success, with the bitter rocket of the underlying salad a perfect contrast to the cool, slinky and sweet meat. It was artfully presented too; a corridor of mushrooms and green leaves was flanked by discs of pinkly translucent beef. My bruschetta sat atop clumps of lettuce while a mustardy sauce zig-zagged its way across the plate. The tomatoes were marvellously fresh and the olive oil light and cleansing but the bread was too crusty and fell to pieces at the first bite. A little balsamic vinegar would perhaps have enhanced the flavour of the dish.
With lobster, prawn, calamari, hammour and baby octopus lined up down the centre of the plate and served on salad, my grilled seafood main took up most of my side of the table. The calamari was of perfect texture, the lobster was smooth and saline, and the prawn was juicily brawny. Immersed in a concoction of bold, fresh flavours, my friend’s bucatini was excellent: the perfectly-cooked thin pasta dripped with a zesty cherry tomato and ham sauce.
My fruit salad and sorbet was so colourful and intricately presented it looked like a Miro painting on stained glass. I felt like a vandal when I popped the blackberries and kiwi slices into my mouth. My friend’s dessert came in three parts. The chocolate sausage tasted just like Christmas, rich and filled with fruit and nuts, while a spoonful of amaretto mousse was fluffy and deceptively light. But the star of the show was a quad-layered pyramid of pannacotta, which boasted a thick top layer of crushed coffee beans and was wondrously creamy.
Hopefully service will become slightly less persistent – we don’t need to be asked three times if we require more wine – but otherwise Bussola seems very promising. When the climate becomes less clammy, the whiff of vinegar subsides from the environs, and the upstairs pizzeria opens, there’ll be no stopping them.By Matthew Lee
- Previous reviews
- 15 April,2013- reviewed by Time Out Dubai staff
- 22 March,2012- reviewed by Time Out Dubai staff
- 23 March,2011- reviewed by Time Out Dubai staff
- 06 April,2010- reviewed by Time Out Dubai staff
- 25 March,2010- reviewed by Time Out Dubai staff
- 24 March,2010- reviewed by Time Out Dubai staff
- 19 March,2009- reviewed by Time Out Dubai staff
- 12 May,2008- reviewed by Mark Smith
- 26 March,2008- reviewed by Jeremy Lawrence
- 17 March,2008- reviewed by Jeremy Lawrence
- 12 March,2007- reviewed by Time Out Dubai Staff
- 20 December,2006- reviewed by Time Out Dubai Staff
- 30 April,2006- reviewed by Time Out Dubai
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