“Dusit Thani Abu Dhabi brings a little something for everyone this Autumn.” Dusit Thani
Of all the joints, in this fair city this little old vegetarian finds herself at a barbecue night! Fear not all my fellow veggies because this was a barbecue with a difference held at the opulent Dusit Thani Hotel. Jammed packed with carnivorous offerings there was also a wide selection of tasty fish dishes, salads, vegetables, pulses, cheeses, breads and delicious dessert for us non-meat consuming folk!
Previous to this outing I had only ever frequented the fabulous Benjarong Thai restaurant in this five-star luxurious hotel which serves the most delicious cuisine so I was excited to visit Urban Kitchen, the vast contemporary all-day international dining restaurant to see what it had to offer. Now here in the capital we are awash with large buffet and brunch style options so what has Urban Kitchen’s brand new concept, Urban’s Barbecue brought to the already crowded party?
Offering the finest Middle Eastern, Turkish and Tandoori barbecue specialties, Urban’s three chefs, Chef Aiham, Chef Bulent and Chef Bede have introduced authentic regional flavours from their very own recipes that have been passed down through generations and now available to discerning diners every Monday and Wednesday evening. Authentic accessories set the character and ambiance of the theme night and complement the various cuisines.
A couple of things struck me on my arrival, firstly this stylish restaurant is absolutely huge, secondly the choice of neatly presented colourful dishes was colossal, spoilt for choice is an understatement and thirdly at only AED 129 per person (including soft drinks only, alcohol available at an additional cost) it’s fantastic value for money! Live cooking stations are an integral part of the set-up and the chefs are on hand to guide you through the large assortment of dishes available in this lavish dinner buffet. Starting in the Arabic section I headed straight for some halloumi cheese pairing it with fresh salad topped off with pomegranates seeds and a side of miniature cheese manakish, all very fresh and moreish.
A selection of hot and cold Arabic mezzah was available with identifiable arabic favourites such as whole Arabic lamb with spiced rice, hummus, fattoush, moutabel and stuffed vine leaves to name a few, which reminded me of the Iftar buffets during Ramadan. From the Tandoori where I selected a portion of the aromatic and flavoursome vegetable dish with a side of curried potatoes. My fellow guests were tucking into Turkish style kebabs and couscous, beautifully presented marinated tikka sea bass wrapped in spinach leaves was also a clear favourite at the table. The paneer tikka dish and green marinated boneless chicken kebabs were fragrant and colourful. Turkish vegetarian flavours were represented in the spinach and onion with cooked eggs dish (Ispanakli Yumurta), it was great to sample new dishes from different cuisines all in one place.
As we were previewing this new event, we had the restaurant pretty much to ourselves and that meant a full stocked centralised dessert station teaming with Middle Eastern, Indian and international treats. The always present Umm Ali sat alongside a wide selection of fresh fruits, the delightful individual panna cottas served in quirky oversized silver spoons and the Crème Caramel were among my favourites.
This stunning hotel stands at a mighty thirty-seven floors high, blending the best of Arabian design features with the worldwide renowned Dusit Thani’s Thai warmth and hospitality. Featuring one of the UAE’s tallest, naturally lit atriums (an imposing 130-metres, 37-storeys high with two glass-walled elevators) and it’s an impressive sight and creates quite the first impression. Under the reign of experienced hotelier and new General Manager Desmond Hatton, who I had the pleasure of sitting next too during dinner, this centrally located Abu Dhabi establishment is set to achieve great things here in Abu Dhabi’s luxury travel market.
If you are free on a Monday or Wednesday evening and fancy a dose of five-star Thai hospitality for yourself then pencil in a visit to Urban’s Barbecue night and take your tastebuds on a tour of authentic Middle Eastern, Turkish and tandoori barbecue delights courtesy of the Urban Kitchen chefs and their traditional recipes. It’s the perfect venue to enjoy a relaxed dinner with friends and family, even if you a vegetarian.
Location: Dusit Thani Abu Dhabi, Sultan Bin Zayed The First Street, Al Nahyan.
Telephone: 02 418 2495
Every Monday and Wednesday from 7:00pm – 1i:30pm
Cost: AED 129 net per person (including soft beverages)
Thank you Dusit Thani for the invitation to attend this event. All the views are my own. Unless otherwise stated, all photos on this page © Jo Brett 2015. All rights reserved.