From Time Out Dubai Eating Out 2011It’s hard to know what to expect when the route to a restaurant involves a stroll through Harvey Nichols and passing beneath a giant pink neon sign that screams ‘Almaz forever’. Bizarrely, neither of these prepares you for what’s actually inside Almaz by Momo, as this Moroccan eatery is decked out with sumptuous couches, intimately lit booths and tasteful North African decor. Once the shock of the neon has faded, allow the attentive staff to recommend the ‘harira’ – a chickpea, lentil and lamb soup that is full-bodied and rich, if a little on the oily side. Follow this up with the ‘kefta tagine’, which boasts tender balls of lamb with tomato, potato and egg, cooked and served in the traditional clay dish, unveiled with a suitably theatrical flourish at your table.
The couscous chicken, though uninspiring on the menu, is actually a hotbed of delicate flavours. Fruity without being cloying and served with skewers of moist chicken, the giant-sized portion of couscous will sate even the most voracious of appetites. If you can exercise a little restraint, do so to make room for dessert. While it may not be the most Moroccan of dishes, the chocolate moelleux is as good as any in the city. Besides, Almaz by Momo is not the most Moroccan of restaurants. With the modern mall outside threatening to encroach on its traditional sensibilities, European offerings have inevitably found their way onto the menu. Unlike the garish neon sign outside, however, the menu is a collaboration worth the trip.