Time Out tells you where to get truffle in Dubai, including popular dishes at some of the best restaurants in town, and even some more affordable ones
By Paul Clifford23 November 2016
There aren't many cities in the world where you can compile a list like this and still have some left over.
These unattractive fungi are often referred to as "the diamond of the kitchen". They are rare (as they can only be harvested in winter, grow underground and animals are used to sniff them out) pricey and very, very precious – especially the white alba variety.
Massimo Vidoni of Italtouch, known affectionately as The Truffle Man, says: "Truffles are like a gift from Mother Earth. They cannot be harvested and if you miss them, they’re gone.
"Whenever I talk about them my eyes light up. In five years so much has changed. At first, the only restaurants that wanted truffle were Italian, now you have so many using the ingredient in new and exciting ways. Chefs at Zuma, Coya and PLAY, to name just three, are taking dishes to new places with truffles. It’s an amazing time."
Our current Best Italian Restaurant award-winner has a new chef and a new menu, which includes beef carpaccio that is coated in herbs and spices and quickly seared. It’s sliced wafer-thin and served with rocket, Parmesan, black truffle and lemon juice. Dhs85.
This delectable bite is a triumph of fusion cooking. Yellowtail tartare, bound with spicy mayonnaise and flecks of spring onion, sits on a grilled rice cake. It’s topped with a slice of black truffle and fish roe. Dhs99.
The swish Peruvian joint finishes this dish with a dressing of fragrant truffle oil. It’s a risotto of sorts, but made with quinoa instead of rice. It also includes mushrooms, cheese and spicy ají amarillo chilli. Dhs95.
Anyone who has been in the latest McGettigian’s will no doubt have smelled this dish going past them. The crispy flatbread crust is topped with rocket, cherry tomatoes, smoked mozzarella, garlic and truffle aïoli. It already seems like a favourite. Dhs75.
The classy Italian restaurant in DIFC uses truffle as dessert. Home-made ice cream is infused with the earthy flavour of the ingredient and is served with a fresh helping, too, plus a biscuit. It’s unusual but it’s certainly not unpleasant. Dhs90.
British chef Tom Aikens’ casual restaurant at The Beach serves a slow-cooked beef cheek with buttered cabbage, creamed Parmesan and truffled polenta. It’s not the kind of food you’d usually eat at the seafront, but it works for us. Dhs125.
The Peruvian venue with superb views of Downtown Dubai serves a “risotto” made from quinoa and squid ink with white truffle, rocoto chilli mayonnaise, chimichurri and slow-cooked octopus. It’s zesty, fragrant and meaty. A great mix. Dhs121.
This trattoria-style Italian restaurant in Deira serves a hearty dish of rigatoni stuffed with shrimp mousse and black truffle on a base of sautéed cep mushrooms and truffle oil. One for a filling main course. Dhs140.
This dish is one of the most popular at Gordon Ramsay’s Dubai restaurant. The truffle isn’t actually involved in the main event but in the rich truffle mash that comes with it. The pairing is perfect. Dhs260.
The high-end Chinese chain serves roast duck breast with a truffle oil sauce. The meat is juicy, the skin is gloriously crisp and the flavours are beautifully balanced. It’s pricey, but it’s excellent. Dhs277.
The spears are plated up with Parmesan granita, smoked duck breast, quail egg confit, a semi-dried honey tomato, black truffle shavings and blobs of saffron aioli. Tuck into this one while you cruise the Creek. From Dhs395 (part of a five-course dinner and cruise package).
This Italian restaurant gets its truffles from Sabatino Tartuffi, a company that unearthed the world’s largest truffle (1.9kg) in 2009. For this dish, fresh white truffle is shaved over the chopped beef, which is seasoned with extra virgin olive oil and Parmesan fondue. Dhs360.
In a restaurant known for inventive twists on Asian and Mediterranean cuisines, this dish is something of a known quantity. But that doesn’t make it any less tasty. A wild mushroom risotto is covered in thinly shaved black truffle and served in a 24-month aged Parmesan wheel. Dhs450.