On a Friday afternoon, streams of natural light flood the newly renovated BiCE Ristorante through floor-to-ceiling windows, which look out across the hotel’s pool.
A pianist sits by the entrance, playing smooth jazz and blues tunes, while crisp, white linen and smartly dressed tables add to the sophisticated ambience. Within minutes, BiCE’s Friday brunch has impressed.
It doesn’t take long before small plates of starters are placed in the middle of the table, inviting you to share.
The burrata with cherry tomatoes and pesto sauce is fresh, light and well-balanced, as is the salmon tartare with mango and black sesame seeds. We need a second plate of the warm goats’ cheese salad that’s served with beetroot and toasted quinoa – it’s just that good.
Sharing plates of pasta are then served (both of which are fairly bland in comparison), and a live cooking station will tempt you back for more than one portion of the indulgent ricotta and spinach tortellini.
After all this, you’re asked to order one individual main course from a choice of four. Unfortunately, this course is a bit of a let-down after such a stellar start. The slow-cooked veal ribs are too tough, while the vegetarian aubergine lasagne is more stodgy than refined. The spiced and herbed rock salt sea bream, however, is delightful.
To finish on a sweet note, there’s a dessert buffet. Small portions of classic Italian desserts are given a unique twist and, while nothing is particularly mind-blowing, the dishes are all pleasant enough and worth the extra calories.
Dhs295 (soft drinks), Dhs395 (house beverages), Dhs430 (bubbly), Dhs135 (kids aged six to 12). Fri 12.30pm-4pm. Hilton Dubai Jumeirah Beach, The Walk, JBR (04 399 1111).
The Bottom Line
The ambience will win you over within minutes, but the food might take longer.