If you can find a Dubai brunch that features a more captivating and alluring view, then send us your answers on a postcard. Since arriving on the Dubai nightlife scene earlier this year, Stars ’N’ Bars (set in beachside hotspot La Mer) has continued to grow in popularity, and now serves to be one of the top casual bars in town. Head here on a Saturday evening and you’ll find the top deck pretty much completely rammed, with swathes of punters huddling around the many TVs strategically positioned above the central bar, keeping a beady eye on the Premier League fixtures.
On a Friday, it’s home to Funch – currently the Time Out Abu Dhabi Party Brunch of the Year (housed at original branch of this stylish sports bar in the capital’s Yas Marina). It’s known for its lively vibes, à la carte format, video games, hops pong table, table football, live music and more – all of which comes in at a very reasonable price.
So, with all that in mind, we absolutely cannot wait to head over to this Friday bash.
Pristine views dominate our gaze as we arrive on the bar’s impressive terrace, with almost panoramic eye-glory providing as much of a feast as the menu we’re eyeing up. Burj Khalifa and the entirety of the Dubai skyscraper-clad skyline on one side, palm trees and glistening waters on the other. Our gaze is diverted by the array of classic arcade machines and games dotted around – hello.
We are, however, in a minority of customers partaking in what is a cracking brunch deal. That’s not to say Stars ’N’ Bars isn’t busy, its upper level is about 90 percent full with beach revellers grabbing a drink and a bite to eat, but it’s not the party brunch we were expecting. That, in and of itself, is probably the most frustrating part – it’s more a case of unfulfilled potential than it is anything else.
The service is great – friendly, swift, helpful and attentive – there’s lively music, pickable dishes and even the option of an eight-hour drinks package for Dhs435, which includes food until 4pm and drinks until 8pm, making Funch one of the best value deals around town.
You can really take your time picking from unlimited starter plates early on, many of which would be considered cheat day treats – think beef corn dogs, Baja fish tacos, onion rings, chicken wings and more. It’s heavy, but it’s also incredibly moreish. We do reserve special mention for the grilled corn with cajun butter, lime mayonnaise and cheese – just a delight. Responsibly, we like the restriction on ordering more than one dish per person at any given time.
This is no place for food wastage.
Main courses, too, are on the dense side – we’re talking burgers, pizzas, chicken and waffles, fajitas and a whole bunch more. It’s all good quality, mind, but a particularly cheesy pizza and some cracking chicken fajitas do leave us wearily keeping our eye lids open amid a fight to stave off the carb coma.
Funch could be an absolutely storming party brunch, because it has all the ingredients to make this a real highlight of the brunch scene.
It just needs more partygoers (instead of casual beach visitors) to make this a brilliant Friday brunch, especially with so many games, activities and lively vibes to be found at this happening American bar.
Dhs250 (soft drinks and food, noon-4pm), Dhs325 (house drinks and food, noon-4pm), Dhs435 (house drinks and food, noon-8pm), Dhs285 (house drinks, 4pm-8pm). Fri noon-8pm. La Mer North, Jumeirah 1 (04 349 9903).
WHAT IS IT...
A lovely, beachside Friday bar brunch
Cheeky food and incredible views