“We are pleased to see new and exciting openings at Yas Mall month after month, as they come in line with our commitment to ensuring that the mall delivers an exceptional experience to visitors of all ages and cultures.” Talal Al Dhiyebi, CDO at Aldar Properties.
As if I don’t eat out enough, one of my recent invites was to Dine Around Yas Mall as part of a progressive lunch tour taking in five of the sixty-two indoor and outdoor restaurants located in the mall, yes five restaurants in the space of two hours, say whattttt?!? My inner piggy, which is fast materialising itself as my ever-expanding waistline, could not resist accepting this invitation so off I trotted in my loosest trousers and baggiest top.
First stop on our taste adventure was Café Bateel which originated in Saudi Arabia, one of the restaurants located within the Cascades Dining area of the mall. Bateel successfully combines traditional Arabic cuisine with European cafe culture and offers diners a range of gourmet date products, chocolates, pastries and a vast selection of foods for those with a discerning palate. The distinctive green and gold cafe offers delicious, wholesome food and beverages with a nod to Arabian heritage and strong Italian influences. We got to try the Bateel Date Shake, a sweet thick combination of vanilla ice cream, milk and fresh Rhutab dates (moist and semi-ripe variety), an open sandwich of Mediterranean buffalo mozzarella, grilled artichokes, eggplant, onions, roast bell peppers and jirjir pesto, a bitesize jar of flavoursome Date Bircher Muesli made with a blend of muesli, dates, grated apple, plain low-fat yoghurt and mixed fresh berries, all washed down with Bateel’s signature sparkling date drink made from the finest handpicked Saudi Arabian Bateel dates and no added sugar. Alongside the range of delicious gourmet foods and delicacies, Bateel offers date-infused sweets and chocolates to have boxed in beautiful gold packaging to takeaway and anything can be customised to order for a gift. See the full menu here.
Next stop was a little hidden gem, Dish Dash restaurant located in the outdoor area of Cascades with fantastic views of the musical water feature outside the adjacent Ferrari World. I never even realised that this Middle Eastern establishment existed and I’m pleased to report that it was a good, both in terms of food and its modern interpretation on traditional decor. We were treated to a feast of colourful authentic Arabic cuisine with fresh salads, breads and meat dishes. I had the Lebanese breakfast favourite of cheese Manoush (it’s like a pizza) which I love and it was also available with Arabic spice zaatar. This is also a great place to smoke Shisha if that’s something you enjoy and they offer a full range of flavours.
I have to admit at this stage with two venues already visited I was pretty full but there was no stopping as we re-entered the main mall and made our way to British high-street favourite Giraffe for our third stop. The gluttony was relentless as a mountain of food had been set up offering a fantastic spread showcasing some of their signature main course dishes and drinks. Giraffe, offers an eclectic menu of international favourites from around the globe in a relaxed family friendly restaurant located in the centralised Town Square area of the mall. Along with the Giraffe menu classics, offering everything from breakfast to burgers, salads, sandwiches, Asian inspired cuisine to British favourite fish and chips, the Yas Mall location offers some ‘local’ style dishes such as Lamb Kofta with pomegranate and pistachio tabbouleh and the naughty ‘Yas’ Sundae packed with baklava, praline & vanilla cream. I tucked into some Edamame that had been wok fried in soy and chilli, sampled some of the Tunisian Roasted Veggie and Feta Salad, Falafel served with tzatziki dip on Arabic bread topped with pomegranate seeds and a delicious Hippy Hippy Shake of pineapple, passion fruit, mango, banana and pomegranate juice. We even had a visit from a cuddly giraffe mascot! See the full menu here
It really was time for a coffee which was good timing as the next stop was the Illy cafe for the first of two dessert stops. The Illy cafe or Espressamente as it’s known is located just across from Giraffe in Town Square, where centuries of Italian coffee tradition meet the modern barista’s expertise in an understated but elegantly bright stylish and art filled location. We were seated in the terrace area outside of the cafe itself and although I’m usually a Cafe Latte girl in a break from my own tradition I tried the very tasty cold rich and creamy coffee illycrema, a sort of cross between a drink and a shake so thick you could have eaten it with a spoon. We were presented with a layered Tiramisu lightly dusted with chocolate and then covered in cold espresso by our server, I can thoroughly recommend it to anyone that has a sweet tooth, it was light and luscious but so big I shared with a fellow guest.
The tour finale was at the newly opened Guylian Belgian Chocolate Café, the first of its kind in the region, where we were invited to indulge in the finest Belgian hot chocolate, exquisite cakes and decadent desserts and indulge we did, I mean really who wouldn’t! Their signature Belgian sea creature and shell inspired chocolates were presented on three-tiered plates in afternoon tea style and even though I was way past stuffed to the brim it was chocolate, my kryptonite. I also road-tested a few of the petite offerings along with mini desserts purely for blog research purposes of course! The teenager was consumed with jealously about this last stop until I produced the Guylian goody bag that I received containing a box of the chocolate treats. Guylian’s award-winning chocolates range includes the world-famous chocolate Sea Shells, truffles, assorted pralines, bars and many other gourmet creations made with the finest Belgian chocolate, all so very yummy and available to purchase from the retail section of the cafe in Yas Mall.
For those of you who have not yet visited Yas Mall, a world of diverse global dining awaits you across a variety of cafes, restaurants and the multi-cuisine food court. You can have Asian at P.F. Chang’s (the other half and the teenagers favourite), Indian at Asha’s, Italian at Al Forno, indulge at the famous American Cheesecake Factory and why not have coffee in Australia’s Coffee Club, which is really good. Pie Face, Jamba Juice and the world’s largest Rogo’s Rollercoaster Restaurant are all firsts in this region and now you can try Abu Dhabi’s first and recently opened Angelina Café, a luxurious Parisian bistro. The Cascade Dining area is home to Nar, American chain Texas Roadhouse, Lemon Grass, Steers, BurgerFuel, Galitos, Fish and Co as well as Café Bateel and Dish Dash that I’ve already mentioned. Foodies can also look forward to six more venues that are in the pipeline including Emirati restaurant Al Fanar, Indian Diner Masala Street, Lebanese restaurant Boubouffe, Asian cuisine at Yu Shan Fang, Iranian at Esfahan and Italian at Bucca Di Beppo, holder of the Guinness world record for the biggest Spaghetti bowl. For all the information on Yas Mall’s Dining options click here.
Thank you Yas Mall, Café Bateel, Dish Dash, Giraffe, Illy Cafe and Guylian Chocolate Cafe for my progressive breakfast, lunch, dinner and supper. I really enjoyed visiting new places where I experienced different flavours and dishes and revisiting those I’ve been to before.
Location: Yas Island
Telephone: 800 YASMALL
Opening Hours: Stores, Restaurants, Food Court & Attractions
Sunday to Wednesday: 10:00am – 10:00pm Thursday to Saturday: 10:00am – 12.00am
Geant Hypermarket Daily: 9:00am – 12:00am
Vox Cinemas Daily: 9:00am – 12:00am For movie information check the VOX cinema movie guide: www.voxcinemas.ae
I was invited to attend this event but all the views are all my own. Unless otherwise stated, all photos on this page © Jo Brett 2015. All rights reserved. Last photos used courtesy of Yas Mall/TohPR. Read more about Yas Mall in my previous posts Be Where It’s All Happening: Yas Mall, Restaurant Review: Rogo’s Roller Coaster Restaurant and Cinema Princess