The Beach and JBR restaurants
Time Out Dubai guide to The Beach and JBR restaurants; best places to eat at The Beach and JBR defined by price and cuisine, with reviews, hours and deals.
The one-way seafront strip is a great area for people watching. Reminiscent of the European al fresco dining scene, you’ll be reminded of trips to Greece, Italy and Spain just strolling through the area which has a plethora of international food options right on the street. Seating arrangements are dotted along the pavements of JBR Walk and there are several hotel options if you’re looking to escape the bustle of the popular outdoors. Accessible by tram and known for its chilled out vibe, attracting beach-goers all day and night, JBR dining scene is especially a winner with families.
It’s by no means a pre-requisite to be a cheese lover if you’re heading for a bite to eat at Girders at JA Ocean View Hotel, but it helps.
This is because, as we eye up the menu, our stare is captured by a few particularly queso-tastic options, and of course we can’t resist.
You’d imagine that a sharable dish like nachos, priced at Dhs49, would be achievable for two people. Well, we can’t decide whether our appetite isn't on top form on our visit, or if the plate is so stacked that we find it almost impossible.
That is by no means a bad thing, you get value for your money, that’s for sure. The only problem is that it’s so unfeasibly cheesy that it feels like we’re embarking on a challenge, not a relaxed dinner.
And it’s more of the same when our mains arrived – we really wish we’d ordered in between courses, instead of all at once at the start – because the prawn quesadillas are filled to the cheesy brim, too. It’s a cheese-lover’s dream, and with a bit of a spicy kick to it, there are many who’d gladly eat here forever.
We also opt for the chilli beans burger – a beef patty topped with chilli beans, jalapeños, cheese (again) and onion rings, and served with fries. We’re ready to burst by the time we get halfway through this monster, but at Dhs70 for our burger and Dhs60 for the quesadillas, we’ve got cracking value for money.
If you’re not a fan of cheese, there are plenty of other grilled items and international meals, but approach the dairy dishes with caution, because they are not shy in slapping it on. But again, that’s not a bad thing.
The Bottom Line
Arrive hungry and roll out the door.
With a name like that, you’d expect eggspectation to serve a mean breakfast. Thankfully, it does. And the droves that flock here every weekend know it. However, there are equal amounts of burgers, pastas, flatbreads and other dishes on the menu to balance it out. But really, check out those egg dishes – especially the Lobster Benny, Southwest Sunrise omelette and Yolk Around The Clock bagel, filled with two sunny-side-up eggs, two cheeses and beef bacon.
If you’re looking for Levantine food in a flash then get yourself over to Sim Sim. The restaurant boasts a mix of traditional Arabic recipes fused with contemporary decor and a touch of Palestinian folklore. Waiters are friendly and super-efficient; you can expect your order to start arriving at your table approximately five minutes after you place it. With dishes from Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan and a special focus on Palestine, there’s a better mix than the usual Levantine staples as well as a few less common additions, such as the Jordanian galayet bandora – a tomato-based stew traditionally eaten early in the day but just as delicious at dinner time. If you’re not feeling adventurous, go for the shawarmas: simple, tasty and not dripping in grease, which is a nice change to some of the other joints out there. For authentic Palestinian fare, you won’t go wrong with an order of the musakhan dajaj, complete with perfectly tender chicken.
Although this beachside venue prides itself on having an incredible selection of teas with varying degrees of randomness, you should definitely not overlook it as a great venue for a relaxing evening dinner. The attentive staff offer you a warm welcome and you can choose to either sit within the impressively designed restaurant itself, dine on the upper balcony or the terrace as the sea breeze wafts gently over you. Appetisers include the LOL antipasti, which is a well thought-out selection of beef bresaola, smoked salmon, grilled artichokes, marinated courgette, olives and tomatoes. Then there’s the home-made garlic flatbread with some of the nicest hummus you would ever wish to taste. From that entrée you are ushered gently on to the mains, the standout being the harissa grilled chicken. The three tender pieces of breast are perfectly cooked and spiced, working in wonderful harmony with the nuttiness of the couscous and the sharpness of the pomegranate seeds. Smear some of the lovely harissa mayonnaise on to your chicken to complete the perfect mouthful. The sumac-rubbed salmon fillet is also a winner, again perfectly cooked, while the accompanying fennel, radish, mint and feta salad complements it very nicely.
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