This review has been a long time coming. In fact the better part of 4 months. Whoops!
After spending 2 weeks traveling Asia, Elzaan and I stopped over in Dubai to visit some friends. One of the things on my “things to do in Dubai” list was brunch. I’m not sure why, but someone once told me that brunch in Dubai was a pretty big thing, where the only thing that rivalled the amazing food was the bottomless champagne!
I think the bottomless champagne sold me.
So, the only thing left to do, was to book a place for brunch right? Well, no. Dubai has no shortage of incredible world class restaurants, all of them doing Friday brunch (yeah, Friday is Dubai’s Sunday…or Saturday…I forget) so actually choosing a brunch place isn’t as easy as it seems.
In the end after trawling every list from “The best of Dubai brunches” to “Brunch on a budget” we all agreed on giving Asia Asia a bash, besides, we had an entertainer voucher.
Yeah, I know right! Wow! It’s a pretty epic looking place.
The crazy mix of Asian details are inspired by the ancient spice route and takes you on a journey from Asia minor all the way through to the far east in a truly spectacular fashion. If you find yourself sitting in a dimly lit booth with a Japanese Noh mask staring straight at you while Chinese bird cages swing high above you, then you’re in the right place. Located on the 6th floor of Pier 7 in the Dubai Marina, the views outside of Asia Asia are as you would expect, amazing.
Taking a trip down the ancient spice route is all good and well for your eyes, but what happens when you take your tastebuds on the same journey? Deliciousness. Thats what happens!
So brunch works a little something like this: AED 449 including Prosecco, AED 395 including house beverages and AED 295 including soft drinks. Now for those of you who have visited Dubai before (or who currently live there now) you know that drinks in Dubai are on the top side of pricey! I mean, literally the most expensive drinks I’ve had in my life! So, if you enjoy a drink or two, you’re gonna wanna take the option with either Prosecco or House Drinks – House Drinks are basically spirits, wines and beers together with a selection of speciality cocktails. We took the house drinks option and while the girls hit the wine I dived straight in to the “Asian Negroni’s”. I’m not quite sure what made them asian other than the slice of cucumber garnish but they have been to this day the best negroni’s I have had in my life. I wont tell you how many I drank that day.
Let’s move on to the food shall we?
Brunch in Dubai is always served as a bottomless affair, but rather than set up a buffet where you walk up and help yourselves, Asia Asia brings the buffet to you. See you’re presented with a menu, but it’s not really for you to order off, it’s merely a reference for the barrage of food coming your way. They literally start at the top and work their way through the entire menu till they hit dessert, or you explode. Which ever comes first.
The flavours are very much Far East meets Middle Eats and you’ll quickly find yourself digging in to a plate of spinach,date and cashew nut dumplings right before tucking in to the Malaysian flavoured chicken tajine. And when I say tucking in, its not just a turn of phrase. I mean, the food is so delicious you literally cant get enough of it. At this point I almost feel as though I should call out a favourite “thing”, but the truth was, with everything being so good, nothing really stand out as amazing. Look, some things are better than others, or some flavours appeal more to different people, but as far as quality of ingredients go, everything was spectacular.
Now the bad.
By the time we hit our mains, we were done. We had all eaten so much that we literally couldn’t eat anymore and we had to start sending food back and turning food away. That’s not great. Your meal and experience goes from one of ecstasy to one of guilt and sloth very quickly. Now, to be fair, that’s not the restaurants fault, you can skip courses or order more of anything along the way, it’s entirely up to you. I guess we just went a little overboard and filled up on sushi and tapas, rookie mistake!
So? After all that, would I recommend brunch at Asia Asia? Given the hefty price tag and the fact that I didn’t manage to sample a large part of the menu? Yes, yes, yes! Despite having eaten ourselves into a comma everyone agreed that every bite and every drink was worth it.
If you’re in Dubai, and looking to brunch you can call Asia Asia on 04 276 5900 or mail them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Okay. Stay Fancy.
PS: Special thanks to my talented photographer friend Natelee Cocks for helping me with some of the pictures above.