Dubai foodie news

Organic grocery shopping, a celebrity chef visit and National Day sweets

The heat is fading in Dubai and we are back to al fresco weather. Fitting news then that Jumeirah Beach haunt Hamptons Café has just launched its rooftop terrace this month. This garden-like setting, designed to look like a typical Palm Beach café will also be the site for a brand-new high tea menu. It will offer savouries such as mini sandwiches, tartlets and crostinis, sweets such as mini éclairs, teacakes, mille-feuille and macarons, as well as scones with Devonshire clotted cream and preserves. This will be served with loose leaf tea from Camellia’s Teas, and sparkling grape juice.

More welcome seasonal news this week is the re-launch of farming season and a brand-new farm-driven grocery store, The Farmer’s Garden, due to open in December in Al Wasl Square. The shop is promising a selection of organic, gourmet and nutritious produce, although not all locally sourced. Items for sale include superfood products, organic fruit and vegetables and Portuguese olive oils. This concept has chain status in its sights, with a second and flagship store already set to open on Sheikh Zayed Road in March 2015, with more stores planned for locations including the Palm Jumeirah.

Also new for next month is the arrival of a US celebrity chef and TV personality Akira Back to Dubai restaurant Armani/Hashi. For two nights only from Monday December 8 to Tuesday 9, chef Akira will take over the kitchen cooking a nine-course menu paired with grape by the restaurant’s sommelier. Highlights from this tasting menu will include tuna pizza with white Alba truffle and ponzu sauce, Korean red snapper with micro shiso and a sweet-spicy chojang sauce, duck prosciutto with micro arugula, Kobe beef short rib accompanied by fingerling potatoes and an ‘edible Seoul Garden’.

In other Asian dining news, a brand-new restaurant opens this week at Le Royal Méridien Beach Resort & Spa in Dubai Marina. Zengo is a new Asian-Latin dining and bar concept launched by celebrity chef Richard Sandoval (the man behind Toro Toro), but as a collaboration with top Singaporean chef Akmal Anuar (of Iggy’s fame, ranked number 12 in the world). Stay tuned next week for all you need to know on this intriguing collaboration.

Finally, National Day is around the corner, so we’ve scouted out something cute and sweet with which to celebrate on Tuesday December 2. Head to New York bakery Chikalicious in Jumeirah Village Mall and you’ll find cute UAE flag cakes layered with chocolate, strawberry and pistachio. Or opt for these sweet and rather patriotic candies (above), available from Candylicious in The Dubai Mall.

Until next week, bon appétit!

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