The Fomo List selection of restaurants to try in Dubai
Pierre’s Bistro & Bar, InterContinental Dubai Festival City
I first interviewed Pierre Gagnaire about five years ago, for BBC Good Food ME. Back then, the setting was Reflets par Pierre Gagnaire – touted one of the best restaurants in Dubai at that point. The concept and menu have undergone a tremendous change ever since, to launch the all-new Pierre’s Bistro & Bar. Tucked onto the Festival City podium level at InterContinental Dubai Festival City, the restaurant features an expansive terrace to people-watch in true Parisian style, millennial pink hues that complement emerald-tone armchairs and lighting fixtures, and a casual lounge area adorned with touches of gold and lush foliage. The venue is Instagram heaven.
The menu? French classics are reinvented and you can feast on everything from frog’s legs with parley and garlic, to parmesan and rosemary madeleines. To begin the meal, we first ordered dessert as it is made-to-order and requires 45-minutes cooking time. For appetisers, we feasted on Madagascar prawns with spinach that arrived in a glass dome filled with smoke. On your palate, textures of black bread and notes of preserved lemon are immediately noticeable – a marriage of tangy, robust and fresh flavours. For mains, my dining partner chose the succulent grilled Wagyu beef ribeye (grade 5) served with a chimichurri-style topping and béarnaise sauce – definitely one of the top three steaks in Dubai – while I tried lacquered pork belly with thin slices of raw duck foie gras, a side of cranberry sorbet, beetroot jelly, and potato puree with parsley; all of which had to be eaten in one morsel, providing a medley of titillating flavours. Dessert arrived soon after, and we feasted on Apple tart Reflets complemented by vanilla ice cream, fluffy whipped cream and apple cider sauce – absolutely decadent.
Need to know: Head down to Pierre’s Bistro for lunch or at sunset. Contact +9714 701 1127
Miss Lily’s, Sheraton Grand Hotel
This buzzing Caribbean hotspot is the place to be at on a Tuesday night. Besides, you may be lucky enough to bump into a celebrity – Rihanna, Ed Sheeran and Bella Hadid have been spotted there. We suggest heading there after work for some incredibly mouth-watering nosh, before dancing the calories away. Island vibes and dim lighting set the mood, while reggae tunes liven up the ambience as you sing along and munch on specialties from the Rundown menu.
First up, take a bite of the plantain munchkins (fried sweet plantain with jerk crumbs) and crisp baby gem lettuce and tomato salad with feta cheese, cucumber, and pumpkin seeds. The highlight from the appetisers is a simple, yet moreish, jerk corn with mayo and toasted coconut – one of those dishes we need to re-create at home. Cleanse your palate with seasonal fruits blended with coconut ice cream, and passion fruit sorbet, and dive into tender-to-the-bone jerk lamb chops with Jamaican steamed cabbage, jerk rubbed rib eye with charred cabbage slaw and scotch bonnet mustard – try the hot condiments on the table too! – and noodles in a creamy coconut sauce with prawns. Each dish was packed with robust flavours, textures, and a mix of sweet, salty, spicy and sour notes. While the portions aren’t massive, you are quite full by the end of the meal. Leave a little space for dessert, a glorious piña colada cake arrives on the table with pineapple cream cheese, piña colada sauce, toasted coconut flakes and a cherry on the top. Don’t let the appearance trick you it’s actually quite light, fluffy and delightful. Stay back for the party.
Need to know: The Rundown Menu is available every Tuesday for Dhs180 per person. Contact +9714 356 2900
Ramusake, DoubleTree by Hilton JBR
Our recent Instagram video has been saved and shared multiple times, it only made sense to sum up the experience. If you need a leisurely lunch spot to dine at on a Thursday or Saturday, hotfoot to this space flooded with natural light and views of the Dubai Eye and shimmering waters.
Their Teisoku lunch menu begins with warm miso soup and crispy fried pepper squid, followed by prawn, salmon or shiitake nigiri, and spicy tuna, cucumber or classic maki rolls. We chose the spicy tuna and classic maki, of which we received two each, along with prawn and salmon nigiri – fresh fish and crustacean – yass! We absolutely love dumplings and gyoza, and chose the chicken and ginger gyoza, and prawn and shiitake, that arrived in various cooking styles – a vegetarian option is available too. The chicken gyoza was pan-fried and packed with a delectable filling, while the other was served with broth and herbs – a comfort-style soup. The Robata course portions are quite substantial. We tucked into an extremely tender beef-rib grilled to perfection, accompanied with mash boasting a hint of citrus from the yuzu, and teriyaki glazed salmon, for a nutritious main presented beautifully over a large serving of rice, with pickled daikon. End with berry jam-filled donut holes.
Video link here – The Fomo List dines at Ramusake
Need to know: The five-course Teisoku lunch is just Dhs110 per person. Only available on Thursday and Saturdays.Contact +971 4 559 5300
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Remember Guy Fieri – the celebrity chef and host of @dinersdriveindives !? His latest venture, and first in Dubai, is the licensed Reel Cinemas at Jebel Ali Village. We headed down to watch Solo and were impressed with the culinary offerings – despite hearing mixed reviews. On a serious note, eat a light lunch or better yet, skip lunch, as the two courses are massive and incredibly filling. Phase 1 (Hangry): Trash Can Nachos were demolished for appetizers, along with chicken tenders with delish dipping sauces: buttermilk ranch and brown sugar bbq – unseen because… Hangry!! And these were crisp, hot and delish. These were washed down with a refreshing jalapeño mojito and a pint. Phase 2 (The Guilt): Why, oh why did we eat all the starters! Word of advice leave space for the Beef bacon six-cheese loaded Mac ‘n’ cheese burger with melted cheese and crisp onion straws on garlic-buttered brioche bun. Oh! And it comes with fries ? Phase 3 (Food coma): Dessert is an additional Dhs25, and we tucked into a New York Cheesecake with pretzels and salted chips – decadent, but unfortunately, we hardly put a dent in it. #NoMoreFomo – For Dhs160 (movie ticket and two-course meal) it’s definitely bang for your buck. You can also buy a movie ticket for just Dhs50 and treat yourself to dessert or drinks at additional charge. #igersdubai_food #mydubai
Guy Fieri Kitchen & Bar and Reel Dine-in Cinema at Jebel Ali Village
Feel like doing something low-key? Try the licensed Reel Dine-in Cinema at Jebel Ali Village. The casual-dining cinema experience features an American classic menu and alcohol (They serve everything from beer to sparkling wine and cocktails) with Guy Fieri, host of the TV show Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives? being the brains behind the concept.
Pick your appetiser and entrée at the counter, while collecting your tickets. My dining partner and I opted for trash can nachos and chicken tenders. The red leather chairs, while a cool concept, aren’t the comfiest as they slide back quite easily, don’t recline and are quite compact. Drinks arrived the minute we sat on the red leather chairs, and once our thirst was quenched and the movie began – about 10 minutes in – the starters were served. The can was lifted up to reveal nachos with cheese, jalapenos and chilli. The five chicken tenders, on the other hand, were absolutely crunchy with dipping sauces including buttermilk ranch, peri peri, and brown sugar BBQ. We highly recommend leaving a lot of space for mains. The Bacon mac ‘n’ cheese burgers is the average size of a baby’s head – for comparison – and was voted Best Burger in Las Vegas. What’s in it? Crispy beef bacon, a six-cheese loaded mac ‘n’ cheese, veggies (lettuce, tomato, onion and pickle), crusty onion straws with sauce, and some more melted cheese; all stacked on a garlic-buttered brioche bun and served with fries. You are guaranteed to go into a food coma soon after. If you do somehow have more space, or need something sweet, try the New York marbled cheesecake topped with pretzels, salted potato chips and warm fudge sauce. Sadly, we only managed to put a slight dent in it.
Need to know: Dhs160 per person (includes movie ticket and two courses) and Dhs25 for one dessert. Refreshments are an additional charge. Contact +971 4 448 8493
Got any other recommendations? We’d love to hear from you (Comment below)