The Italians, so the casual stereotyping goes, know a thing or two about family dining. And, clearly, in particular, so does Giorgio Locatelli. This offering from the acclaimed chef isn’t just astonishing value for money and packed with an array of decent dishes, it’s also geared around children to a degree few other brunches in the city can compete with. Want a lazy weekend afternoon? This might just save your Saturdays.
First, that price. It’s a relative snip at Dhs195 (or you can add house beverages for an extra Dhs100), and trust us when we say your money goes a very long way indeed here. Four sharing-style courses of homely, flavourful dishes arrive at the table in a steady stream, from a selection of starters including burrata, calamari, beef bresaola and pizzettes to desserts like panna cotta, tiramisu, semifreddo alla nocciola and cannoli Siciliana. In between, there’s a pasta course of ravioli and lasagne before mains of braised beef, chargrilled chicken, lamb and sea bream. Brilliantly, kids under 11 eat for free – on our last visit our family of five (with kids aged three, seven and nine) all enjoyed a chilled-out, tasty, three-hour feast for under Dhs80 a head on average.
And that figure is made even more impressive by the sprog-orientated entertainment. On arrival they’re invited into the open kitchen to make their own pizzas, which they then hungrily devour (of course they do, they made them) while being treated to a bit of fork-bending and card tricks from the resident magician. Then it’s outside to a cute raised area circled by proper canvases and paint palettes for the kids to create their own masterpieces to take home later.
Yes, there are fancier brunches in town, but ones where the whole family leave full and happy, and with free self-portraits? Now you’re talking.
Adults: Dhs195 (soft drinks), Dhs295 (house beverages). Kids: free (under 11). Sat 12.30pm-3.30pm. Atlantis The Palm, Palm Jumeirah (04 426 2626).
The bottom line
Another firm family favourite down at Atlantis The Palm.