Big Apple brunch at Tr!beca

A laid-back bar brunch at JBR

1/4

We’re not Entirely sure what an “organic social revolution” is. But at Dhs299 for four hours of it at JBR’s vegan-friendly Tr!beca, we’re keen to find out.

The Big Apple is your classic Friday bar brunch, with a healthy selection of à la carte options, plus a small but solid buffet on offer – as well as decent drinks selection.

As you might have guessed from the name, this bar takes inspiration from New York’s trendy Tribeca neighbourhood, which is lined with former industrial buildings now turned into hipster hangouts.

The exposed brickwork features huge murals of singers and American movie icons, with an eclectic mix of chairs and old leather sofas for brunchers to sink back into.

There are also tables made out of crates and random vandalised objects hanging from the ceiling, meaning Tr!beca comfortably ticks all the boxes on the edgy checklist.

Once we’re seated in the cool bar area our waiter explains that “organic social revolution” concept. The idea isn’t fine dining, it’s “fun dining” (so far, so cliché), and it’s about having that fun by making smarter choices when it comes to food.

To us, such talk is dangerous – we immediately grow fearful that there won’t be much more than limp salads on offer.

Happily, we needn’t have worried and are quickly proved wrong by a well-stocked and presented buffet spread that includes a sizeable cheeseboard, various hot dishes (the vegetarian lasagna and beef stew are particular highlights) and enough carbs to fuel a marathon runner.

Of course, there are also loads of salads on offer here, too, and they’re delicious. We enjoy the classic caprese, starring super-fresh tomato, mozzarella and basil pesto, as well as the strawberry and goat’s cheese mix.

We’re also invited to pick a single à la carte option from the menu. Tr!beca has made quite a splash recently after advertising a fully vegan brunch, but despite the list of dishes being attached to our clipboard, we’re not allowed to order from it. Apparently it’s only available on a different package, as well as an interesting range of mixed organic beverages, although strangely we can’t see it advertised anywhere.

We settle for the closest thing we can find, which is a vegetarian Philly cheesesteak.

While the dish that arrives is more a collection of chopped vegetables and doesn’t really resemble a steak in any way, it’s delicious – and served in a very cheesy cheddar bun.

It’s laid-back (this is a tees and trainers type shindig) and there’s a mix of couples and groups. As the afternoon goes on the vibe picks up, and a singer takes to the stage.

The service, as with on previous visits, is still a bit all over the place, with drinks taking a long time to appear and some confusion over packages.

Minor quibbles aside, this is a well-priced bar brunch that starts at a reasonable hour and offers a good selection of food that will happily cater to many tastes.
Dhs199 (soft beverages), Dhs299 (house beverages), Dhs399 (bubbly). Friday 1pm-5pm. JA Ocean View Hotel, The Walk, JBR (050 345 6067).

WHAT IS IT...
A laid-back bar brunch at JBR

WHY GO...
The relaxed vibes and affordable price point

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