Flavio Briatore opens another venue in DIFC – but is this new steakhouse well done?

Fun fact about DIFC: there are more restaurants per square foot in the Dubai suburb than anywhere else in the city. Competition is tough, so Flavio Briatore, the man behind DIFC’s latest foodie spot, Beefbar, will have his work cut out. 

The Italian businessman has had his fingers in several pies over the years, including a Formula One team, Queens Park Rangers Football Club, and Cipriani London, but it’s Kobe beef that’s the main ingredient at steakhouse Beefbar. 

The Monaco import – located in the former Cle space at Al Fattan Currency House -is considerably larger than its next-door neighbour (and sister restaurant), Crazy Fish, and split into a laid back lounge and a more formal restaurant space. It’s got a glamourous feel. The menu, while extensive, is easy to understand and divided into simple sections for the cuts of meat.

The Kobe and Angus mini burgers with truffle cream (Dhs95) are indulgent – a hit of extremely rich flavours that melt in the mouth. We rowed with our dining partner over who had the final one (note restaurants: three is a challenging number to share). The kale salad (Dhs70) will help balance out the strong flavours, although it’s slightly overpowered by a huge serving of Parmesan cheese.

For mains, it’s all about meat. Serious meat. So serious, Beefbar’s 200g Emperor cut of prime Japanese Kobe beef will set you back more than Dhs1,000 without sides. Slightly easier on the wallet at Dhs210 is the American Black Angus centre cut rib-eye, which is cooked to perfection, as is the fillet steak (Dhs340). The generous portion of mash potato (Dhs35) is a surprise hit, and sits well alongside the Josper-grilled asparagus (Dhs60) and corn with Parmesan cream (Dhs40). There’s no serving of sauce, which some may find a little disappointing, but Beefbar’s steaks are full of flavour, so there’s a very good argument to be made for their absence.

Continuing the unashamed meat love-in, Beefbar has its own butcher shop inside, with experts on hand to advise on the best cuts to take home. Not unsurprisingly, veggies, Beefbar isn’t for you. But in a city where steakhouses are in plentiful supply, Beefbar delivers a balance of atmosphere, service and food that marks it out as something special.

Beefbar, Al Fattan Currency House, DIFC, Sun to Wed 6pm to 1am, Thurs 6pm to 2am, Fri 6pm to 2am, Sat 7pm to 1am. Tel: (04) 352 2223. dubai.beefbar.com

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