The Insider

New brunches, cheese sushi and getting thrown out of Zuma ...

Asiana Hotel
Asiana Hotel
Sofitel JBR
Sofitel JBR
Lafayette Gourmet
Lafayette Gourmet
Zuma
Zuma
1/4

By the time you read this you’ll either be slavering at the prospect of stuffing your festive face with turkey, or ruing the fact that you ate so much of the stuff. Either way, you’ll doubtless have appetite for the tasty morsels of Dubai dining gossip we’re about to dangle in front of you like a bunch of grapes at a Roman dinner party.

With 2012 fast approaching, Time Out is dusting off its crystal ball to see what wonders await in 2012. Well, providing the Mayans don’t turn out to be right about the end of the world and all that stuff, the Asiana Hotel in Deira will be launching a brand new brunch. As you might be able to guess from the hotel’s name, the brunch will have an Asian flavour, drawing from the combined powers of Sonamu (Korean), Hanabi (Japanese) and Jade (Chinese). If you can’t contain your excitement until then, the hotel will be giving the new concept a whirl on December 22, 23, and 24.

More Asian-styled treats lie in store at the Sofitel JBR, which is launching a new Monday night sushi deal on January 23. The all-you-can-eat bonanza will feature maki, sashimi, California rolls and even some cheese sushi and fruit sushi for good measure, all for Dhs210 (which includes lashings of rice-based beverages). Holiday Inn Al Barsha is also jumping on the all-you-can-eat bandwagon (if there is such a thing), with its Italian promotion on Sunday nights (Dhs125 with selected house beverages). Keeping with Italian, Vivaldi restaurant in Sheraton Dubai Creek will close for renovations in the middle of next year and will reopen
as a pet shop. Okay, this isn’t strictly true – it’ll just reopen as a slightly shinier Italian restaurant.

A couple of weeks ago we squeezed a tenuous mention of Mahiki into this column – tenuous because the London-based club is more of, well, a club than a restaurant. But it has become apparent that the dining offerings at the Dubai instalment of Mahiki will be more extensive than the original, because they’ll be rustled up by one of The Ivy Dubai’s former chefs. Could prove interesting.

If you heard a little yelp of joy emanating from The Dubai Mall not so long ago, don’t be alarmed – it was us celebrating the range of Xavier David artisan cheese now available at Lafayette Gourmet. It’s not cheap (nothing is here), but the Comte is notably good. Incidentally, LG also stocks Habanero chilli peppers. On the Scoville scale of spiciness, these weigh in between 100,000 and 350,000 Scovilles in heat. To give you an idea, Tabasco sauce is about 7,000. Ouch.

Finally, we can’t help but have a bit of a grumble about Japanese hotspot Zuma, from which we were unceremoniously ejected the other week. Okay, this is a bit of an exaggeration, but having asked for the dessert menu at 9.30pm (our table was booked until 10pm), the waiter told us it would take too long for the kitchen to prepare dessert and for us to eat it before 10pm. What made us gibber with rage was that he only told us this at 9.55pm, without even having brought the menu as we’d asked. Zuma may be too cool for school, but nowhere’s too cool to invest a bit of time in teaching staff to be more courteous to customers. Until next time, bon appétit.

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