“The only time to eat diet food is while you’re waiting for the steak to cook.” Julia Child
Friday Brunch, the customary expat weekend outing, just got more interesting in Abu Dhabi with the introduction of the Raising The Steak Friday Brunch at The Foundry restaurant located in the Southern Sun Hotel. If I had to select one word to describe the experience it would be indulgent, oysters, foie gras and prime cut juicy steaks are just part of the extravagant fine dining set-up.
Award winning classy steakhouse, The Foundry is a beautiful contemporary setting offering an intimate brunch combining live cooking stations and serve-yourself options, while the selection may not be huge as some other hotels what it lacks in quantity it more than makes up in quality. In all honestly I find the sprawling Friday Brunches far too overwhelming and busy, fewer choices make the experience less hectic and far more enjoyable.
With freshly shucked French Belon oysters, piles of colourful seafood, ceviche, tacos, carpaccio and tartar stations, Italian antipasti and seafood smorgasbord and buckets of smouldering clams, it’s a foodie’s paradise. As it’s a steak brunch, five different premium cuts are offered including wagyu, all cooked to perfection by the chefs accompanied by a selection of sauces and truffled mashed potato.
Traditional seared foie gras with Calvados jus is part of the foie gras gallery that offers several dishes of the some may say controversial luxury delicacy interpreted in new ways by the imaginative culinary team, potted foie gras with cranberry gelee, chocolate chilli foie gras pops and the more unusual foie gras ice cream served in mini cones. As if that wasn’t enough choice beautifully presented tasting plates are offered in small cast iron casseroles, coq au vin, slow cooked lamb shank, salmon meuniere and seafood thermidor.
Vegetarians have not been forgotten either as amongst all the meat and seafood is a full salad bar, mushroom soup, vegetable quiche, spinach tortellini, pan roasted vegetables and hasselback potatoes to name a few of the things I devoured, I really liked the breads served at the table with the range of flavoured butters too. The exquisite food was accompanied by a choice of champagne that was continually refilled, cocktails including a lurid blue daiquiri, beers and wines.
As a fan of the dessert course I really liked the concept at this brunch, no rows of the usual identical miniature desserts but instead the Chefs Patissier plated selection, just a handful of delicious options garnished to order. The lemon cheesecake platter was my favourite followed closely by the deconstructed chocolate mud cake and the sticky toffee pudding, in fact everything looked good and if I had more room I would have tried the churros and the crème brûlée too, an excuse to return methinks. Children and those big kids among us can decorate muffins with a selection of ready-to-pipe icings and sweeties.
What better way to finish a brunch than to sit back and enjoy some cheese with a nice glass of vino and fortunately The Foundry’s centralised wine and cheese vault offers a range of artisan cheeses from around the globe paired with premium wines.
While the food is certainly memorable so is the chic decor, copper tones are combined with pastel pink to complete the palette, oversized overhead lights in one section and hanging spheres in another, plush velvet seating and dramatic metal alcoves that float on water, design make have overtaken comfort where the seating is concerned but the whole effect is mesmerizing. If I had to find a chink in the armour it would be that the background music was too loud for normal conversation but that was probably because we were sat directly under a speaker.
If you are looking for a more intimate brunch in the capital that offers beautifully presented and tasty food accompanied by premium beverages then the new Raising The Steak Friday Brunch at The Foundry is the consummate choice, the food and service were top notch and it was an enjoyable afternoon of over indulgence. I would say this is a ‘must-try’ brunch to add to your to-do list but more for adults than younger children although they are welcomed.
Raising The Steak Friday Brunch
Location: The Foundry, Southern Sun Hotel
Telephone: 02 818 4888
Opening Times: Breakfast: 6:00am – 10:30pm (11:00am on Fridays & Saturdays), Lunch: 12 noon – 3:00pm, Dinner: 7:00pm – 11:00pm
Friday Brunch: 12:30pm – 4:00pm
Cost*: Brunch with soft beverages – AED 229, Brunch with house beverages/cocktails – AED 299, Brunch with bubbly – AED 369, Brunch for children: Free below 6 years, age 6-12 AED 114.50 (* All prices are subject to 10% service charge, 6% tourism fee and 4% municipality fee).
Dress Code: Smart and Casual
The Foundry restaurant will be celebrating select cuts of Canadian beef from 20th – 29th October. The A La Carte service will be available from 7pm – 11pm (all steaks will be served with a choice of one side dish and one sauce).
I was invited to review this brunch. All views are my own based on my experience. Unless otherwise stated, all photos on this page © Jo Brett 2016. All rights reserved. Two additional photos used courtesy of www.tsogosun.com/southern-sun-abu-dhabi