“All about the richness of Asian tradition and authenticity.” Cho Gao Marina Walk
Cho Gao may already be an established name on the Abu Dhabi dining scene but the newly opened Cho Gao Marina Walk located at the Intercontinental Abu Dhabi has turned up the heat on the original concept with their own unique spin.
The name on the door of the spacious venue may have changed, previously home to the swanky Yacht Club, but one thing remains unspoiled and that’s the stunning marina views. An extensive redesign of the interior has fully embraced the restaurant’s Far East theme; plenty of dark wood, Asian inspired decor, cultural artefacts and subdued lighting courtesy of authentic hanging lanterns that project a certain den-like ambiance.
Like its counterpart at the nearby Crowne Plaza hotel, Cho Gao meaning ‘rice market’ in Vietnamese, offers an extensive Pan Asian fusion menu that embraces the very best of Indonesian, Japanese, Vietnamese and Thai cuisine. Signature dishes such as Chinese black pepper beef, Thai roasted red duck curry and miso marinated black cod are complemented with Asian inspired mixology.
Trust me when I say the Cho Gao Martini with ketel one citrus vodka blended with passion fruit and cinnamon is really quite fabulous. With fifteen cocktails on the menu that have intriguing names such as Foam at the Mouth and Brain Freeze to choose from, it would be quite rude not to go back and sample a few more. Alongside the fancy mixology there’s a fully stocked cellar and bar with an emphasis on whiskies and single malts.
Sushi lovers are spoilt for choice with so many options all beautifully presented, the soft shell spider crab and dragon rolls were firm favourites. Vegetarians are also well catered for with starters of salted and chilli edamame, fresh rice paper and crispy spring rolls as well as vegetable tempura served with ponzu sauce. A veggie miso soup with tofu, salads, cold bao taco and assorted dim sum is enough choice to fill you up before the mains have even been thought about. Leave room for dessert as alongside usual Asian favourites of mango sticky rice and colourful tropical fruit there’s a delightful bitter chocolate cake and a trio of brulee (traditional, black sesame and green tea) that disappeared in the blink of an eye.
The large restaurant has four distinct areas with the main dining area with high, low and booth seating taking up the majority of the space. The dedicated sushi bar offers guests the chance to watch the chefs at work, the lounge area is home to the resident DJ and of course the outdoor terrace with marina views that’s perfect for alfresco drinking and dining now the weather has cooled down.
Since opening at the start of the summer Cho Gao Marina Walk has been offering just it’s dinner menu but this month sees the restaurant in full swing; Friday Brunch will be offered from 6th October and a lunch service from 15th October.
Cho Gao Marina Walk
Location: Intercontinental Abu Dhabi, King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud Street, Abu Dhabi
Telephone: 800 423 463
Opening Times: Lunch from 12:30pm to 3:30pm. Dinner from 6:00pm to 01:00am
I was invited to visit Cho Gao Marina Walk. All views are my own based on my experience. Unless otherwise stated all photos © Jo Brett 2017. All rights reserved. Additional photos used with courtesy of www.dining-intercontinental-ad.ae/restaurants/cho-gao/
Read more about the Intercontinental Abu Dhabi in previous posts here