DINING Culinary finds
New spots on our culinary radar
Whilst a plethora of eateries
entice diners with their promise of a variety of cuisine showcasing the best dishes from around the world all under one roof, the Dusit Thani’s newest restaurant has really nailed the idea of taking diners on a culinary journey.
Italian Pax has been magically transformed into an urban street food concept serving authentic Chinese, Korean, Japanese and Korean specialties. To make the experience more realistic, each kitchen is named to reflect the type of meals on offer: Kim’s Korean, Lucy Wong’s, Momo and Chatakana.
As you might expect -- given it has to cover four regions -- the menu is extensive, but not overwhelming. Japanese offerings go heavy on sashimi and sushi, the prawn tempura rolls are a stand-out. Noodles and wok-fried options make up the Chinese selection and with a Malaysian chef at the helm, you won’t go wrong with whatever you choose, but the Penang Char Kway Teow was a welcome recommendation. Go spicy with a vindaloo or mild with a Goan fish curry in India, and ask which naan will compliment your chosen main, the garlic version was the perfect accompaniment to the creamy butter chicken we opted for whilst Korean highlights included a traditional Kimchi hot pot for those who can take some fire and a seafood and egg pan-fried pancake that will wow even the fussiest of pescatarians.
The thing about culinary journeys is that it’s key to try everything, meaning it’s a struggle to fit in any more food... and then the dessert menu arrives -- so we will have to try the Mochi ice cream and the gulab jamun next visit. Details: Dusit Thani Dubai, 133 Sheikh Zayed Road, Tel: +971 4 317 4515, dusit.com, @24thstdubai
It’s hard to put this new
venture, from the folks behind stalwart Baker & Spice, in a box -- and perhaps that’s the fun of this twofloor eatery. It combines a multitude of diverse elements, both in its decor (think pink banquettes, brass accents, an open kitchen and a kilm-carpeted staircase) and in its menu which takes you on a trip round the world, with traditional flavours given a contemporary twist.
Tick what you want off a list -- our table of four got through most of the menu -- and plates start arriving promptly, served sharing style. Highlights included crisp savoury churros that help you polish off creamy hummus, pomegranate-flecked lamb shoulder served on smoky mutable, diced scallops atop a seeded risotto and an excellent grilled octopus.
Bigger appetites might appreciate the goats cheese pizza topped with slivers of duck and drizzled with honey or the simple, but perfectly cooked skirt steak -- don’t miss the Polish contender, short rib dumplings served complete with a strong beetroot juice shot to finish.
The nice thing about this menu is that on subsequent visits, mixing different dishes will bring about a completely different dining experience --- the smaller plates will also make excellent bar bites with expertly concocted drinks.
Sweet tooths will also be satiated -- deconstructed tres leches was intriguingly teamed with earl grey ice cream but we were drawn to the milk and cookies for a nostalgic finish.
Details: Opera District, Downtown Dubai, Tel: +971 4 338 8717,