Joe’s Back­yard

→ Open daily 5pm-2am. Hol­i­day Inn Dubai Fes­ti­val City (055 709 4509).

Time Out Dubai - - FOOD -

A NEW AD­DI­TION to the Dubai Fes­ti­val City din­ing scene, this bar­be­cue restau­rant is a de­cent spot for din­ner post-shop­ping, if you don’t fancy eat­ing at any of the plethora of restau­rants in the ad­ja­cent mall.

Set on the rooftop of the Hol­i­day Inn, the ter­race af­fords good views out across the wa­ter and city sky­line and has a chilled­out, mel­low vibe – ex­actly what you’d hope for from a back­yard­style venue. In­side there are large win­dows, as well as TVS if you want to catch the game while you grab a bite.

We’re promised a 2.5-me­tre open grill, though, and on our visit that’s not fired up.

An­tic­i­pat­ing a hearty feast, we skip the ap­pe­tis­ers and plough straight in with mains. If, how­ever, you do want to pick, there are a range of sta­ples to start you off such as bar­be­cued chicken wings, sticky veal back ribs and brisket slid­ers.

Mains in­clude var­i­ous steak cuts from the USA, Aus­tralia, South Africa, Brazil and Ar­gentina, as well as lamb chops, tiger prawns and salmon.

Want­ing to try a se­lec­tion, we opt for the Joe’s Cuts shar­ing plat­ter. Brisket, steak, chicken and sausages ap­pear be­fore us.

The lat­ter – The Mat­tar Farm bangers – are lo­cally pro­duced, which is a wel­come sight on the menu (there’s also a full sausage shar­ing se­lec­tion, if you’re par­tial). Un­for­tu­nately they’re not as tasty as we’d hope though, and on the greasy side. The beef is also rather fatty.

The bar­be­cued Cor­nish hen is the win­ner, with ten­der, juicy meat perfectly cooked and ro­bustly sea­soned.

The meat is all fine, but not out­stand­ing, and at Dhs275 with­out sides, it seems ex­pen­sive for the lo­ca­tion. Sides are all Dhs25, while an ex­tra pot of sauce is Dhs10.

Of the sides that are avail­able (on our visit most of the veg­etable op­tions aren’t on of­fer), a sat­is­fy­ingly dense, baked mac ’n’ cheese is the high­light, while the mash is equally rich.

Drinks, though, are rea­son­ably priced as house grape starts at Dhs37, while bot­tles of hops are are around Dhs38, with draught hops start­ing at Dhs30.

Joe’s Back­yard doesn’t blow us away, but it could be a cool enough spot with stronger food.

WHAT IS IT... A rooftop bar­be­cue restau­rant in Dubai Fes­ti­val City WHY GO... The mel­low vibe and de­cently-priced drinks

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