Time Out Says
It’s no coincidence that Carnevale has Andrea Bocelli’s greatest hits on repeat week in, week out. The king of popera is suitable dressing for a salad bowl of a restaurant that strives for authenticity, but has got lost somewhere north of Turin.
Carnevale’s faux-Italian ambience and randomly seasoned food might be a little easier to forgive if it wasn’t cynically expensive, capitalising on tourists unwilling to venture far from the hotel’s beach. In a poorly disguised effort to wring the most out of its prime location, the smoking section is situated in a soulless expanse where residents shuffle past to use the ATM; nothing spoils a lasagne like eating it in a bus station.
The crab dumpling marinated with thyme, orange zest and aged balsamic mayonnaise jumps off the menu, but is so lacking in flavour it will likely remain half-eaten on the plate. The carbonara with apple-smoked bacon, on the other hand, is so salty it tastes like it’s just returned from six months at sea. Most of the other staples are handled with the dispiriting efficiency of a food factory, which at Dhs150 for a main meal can rankle with those not on expenses.
Perhaps surprisingly, the best part of Carnevale is the service: unfailingly helpful and engaging, they are let down by an unambitious kitchen. With so many superior options nearby, Carnevale needs to raise its game or move aside.
As Con Te Partiro labours on in the background, maybe it’s time to say goodbye to Carnevale.
By Jeremy Lawrence | 26 Mar 2008
Recommended for you in Restaurants
Diners in a hurry can get two courses for Dhs135 in Dubai and Abu Dhabi
New offer runs every Sunday to Wednesday night at the beach bar and restaurant
Dubai’s second Cereal Killer Café among eateries open at South Market, with m