“Wine is bottled poetry.” Robert Louis Stevenson
Burgers and Chateaux the invitation said, my first thoughts were a hunk of beef in a bun but I’m a vegetarian, I can’t accept! Fear not Burgers and Chateaux at La Cava located in the Rosewood Abu Dhabi offers a portobello mushroom burger for those non-carnivorous amongst us as well as a great selection of meat and seafood options.
La Cava, spanish for The Cave, is located in the hotel’s underground cellar accessed via a spiral staircase from the lobby. First impressions of this dimly-lit but refined looking space is an air of mystery, a members-only gentlemen’s club kind of vibe. Wall-to-wall bottles of the finest grape from all over the world are displayed in glass fronted cabinets made from the finest French Oak and American Walnut, climate controlled to keep their precious commodity at the optimum temperature.
Cold stone exposed walls and a polished concrete floor offset the wood, comfy leather armchairs are arranged in one section alongside high table with bar stools and a long wooden sharing table that has a magnificent heavy silver chain light fixture hanging above it. While the decor is classy and impressive, the piece de resistance of this intimate restaurant is its wine collection. 1,500 plus labels ranging from boutique to classic, many of which are extremely rare and impossible to source in the UAE, there was even some wine from the vineyard owned by Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. The Private Reserve caters to the more discerning palates, rarest of vintages are offered in a highly secured part of the cellar. An intimate cigar bar with walk-in cigar room and humidor are combined with a prized whiskey selection.
Isael Gonclaves, La Cava’s charismatic and passionate sommelier is well versed in his collection. He was an incredibly interesting man who took us on a tour of the collection. His opening stock budget was a massive AED 5 million and some of the wines in the Rosewood are worth a ridiculous amount of money, the collection is the envy of his fellow sommeliers. I asked him for his favourite wine stocked in La Cava, he took us to a separate shelf displaying four bottles of 1995 Grand Vin De Chateau Latour Pauillac from Bordeaux in France.
Every Monday evening, the Burgers and Chateaux concept is available to showcase the venue and make it appealing and accessible to those who might otherwise overlook it. Chef Francisco Sanabria prepares two different burgers each week alongside the aforementioned mushroom vegetarian option, paired with either a red or white wine selected by Gonclaves. Old American Western movies are projected onto one of the exposed brick walls to provide more unusual casual entertainment.
You can choose from the posh Classic Wagyu Bacon Cheese Burger, a traditional cheeseburger with a twist which the other half sampled, The Acapulco Crab Burger, a cilantro flavored fresh crispy crab burger with sun-dried tomato mayonnaise and the Hickory Barbecue Burger, ground sirloin steak patty flavoured with Rosewood’s signature BBQ sauce also on offer when we went was a chicken burger. The burgers are served with a portion of signature fries either curly fries, deep fried potato skins, chunky fries (which were delicious) or sweet potato crisps. I enjoyed a glass or two of the medium bodied 2012 Chateau Moulin de Bel-Air, Medoc as chosen by Gonclaves.
So if you fancy a glass of premium red and a succulent gourmet burger to start your week, enjoyed with a backdrop of a young Clint Eastwood in full cowboy attire then the Rosewood Abu Dhabi is your perfect Monday night out. I thoroughly enjoyed our evening, Gonclaves was a fascinating man to converse with and his staff, especially a young lady called Jade, were courteous and efficient. I would recommend it for an after work social occasion, an intimate date night or even to take visitors to experience something different, I guarantee you will leave full and very satisfied, even if you are a vegetarian.
Burgers & Chateaux
Location: La Cava, Lower Ground Floor, Rosewood Abu Dhabi, Al Maryah Island. Abu Dhabi
Telephone: 02 813 5552
Monday: 6:00pm – 10:00pm
Price: AED 175 for one burger and two glasses of wine excluding tax and service charges.
I was invited to review La Cava. All the views are my own. Unless otherwise stated all photos on this page copyright Jo Brett 2015. All rights reserved. First two photos are used courtesy of www.rosewoodhotels.com