8 amazing new restaurants to try in Abu Dhabi
The best of the recent openings in the capital…
The culinary landscape of Abu Dhabi is constantly shifting picnic. It is the bubbling cheese on top of a hospitality lasagne, it is the basket load of khubz rising and falling in the oven of innovation, and the shavings of truffle falling onto the risotto of variety. Ok, enough analogies, we know you get it.
Cutting to the quick, it’s enough to say — that Abu Dhabi bears witness to a truly impressive range of new restaurants every year. These are just some of our favourites, leading the gastronaissance, that have opened in the last month…
Based on level two of Nation Towers Mall, Beam could be your new favourite breakfast spot. This brand new restaurant offers some pretty impressive views over the Corniche waters, and on the menu, you’ll find gourmet coffee; a big selection of breakfast items including shakshuka, halloumi bruschetta, and a Beaming breakfast platter; and lunch options that include sizzling shawarma fries and baked salmon. It’s open 8am to 11pm daily. @beam.uae
Just when you thought Yas Bay was all out of fresh culinary concepts, out pops – Drop, a cafe that specialises in quality, gourmet coffee, now officially open. But it’s not just fancy percolation methods, and a premium bean scene, there are big reasons foodies will fall in love with Drop too. The menu was created in collaboration with Dubai cheffing legend, Reif Othman — who you may know from a number of hard-to-get-reservations-for dining establishments that include Reif Kushiyaki and Tero by Reif.
Yas Bay, Mon to Fri 8am to 11pm, Sat to Sun 8am to 2am. @wearedropcoffee
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Fosil is a new alfresco cafe pop-up at the recently upgraded and enhanced Al Wathba Fossil Dune Protected Area. It’s a concept by coffee whizkids, WKND and adds a welcome dose of baristas to these uniquely enchanting vistas. The set up looks pretty dreamy, with cosy beanbag and table enclaves dotted about the area; a jet black food truck dishing out gastro-treats; potted cacti and mirrored pillars offering a little extra IG feed fodder; and a background playlist of atmospheric Arabian music. @fosil.ae
Laung by Peppermill
Another new addition to the Nation Towers Mall cuisine scene (this time found on level 1), Luang dazzles its diners with modern interpretations of classic Indian cuisine. There’s a wood fire stove providing the perfect preparation method for select centuries-old South Asian delicacies, and a commitment to giving its patrons a food safari that goes well beyond the limits of standard Indian restaurants. Open daily 11am to 11pm. @laungbyppm_uae
Forged in the fires of London’s fine dining foundry, Mazi which means ‘together’ in Greek, found wide and passionate appeal amongst the discerning diners of the UK’s culinary capital. And so begins a new odyssey, a new location for this article of Greek legend, at The, appropriately august, St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort Abu Dhabi. The menu at Mazi Abu Dhabi is inspired by the nostalgia of co-founder Christina Mouratoglou’s childhood memories, and features a mix of established Greek classics, and thoroughly modern reimaginings. Fondly pondered items such as tzatziki, kavourosalata and grilled calamari, feta tempura, shredded lamb shoulder tacos, sea bass tartare, chicken thigh souvlaki skewers and artichoke risotto à la polita. Crafted with an eye for detail that would please even Aphrodite herself, Mazi looks every bit the postcard pantheon. Gorgeous thalasso-inspired interiors, botanical abundance on the olive garden terrace, and serving rituals worthy of an Athenian epic.
Mazi Abu Dhabi is open for lunch from Wednesday to Monday, between 12pm and 3pm, and for dinner from 7pm to 11pm. The venue is closed on Tuesdays. Tel: (02) 498 8888, @maziabudhabi
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One of the UAE’s favourite healthy frozen snack suppliers has just opened a new outlet at Yas Bay. Get your favourite fruit fix, on a stick at Pop City — full of premium ingredients and a flavour collection that includes mandarin, Nutella, Lotus, Oreo mango, pina colada, brownies, passion fruit, cheesecake, coconut sorbet, raspberry, strawberry and more. The fruit options are completely vegan-friendly.
Based in the capital’s home of unabashed elegance, Emirates Palace, and dressed to impress with princely interior design, Talea — now open — looks intent on bringing a fresh and regal energy to the city’s Italian dining scene. The concept comes from the Michelin-honoured Chef Antonio Guido, and proposes a menu built around the theme of “Cucina di Famiglia” which, for those whose Italian is limited to hand gestures and football clubs, translates as ‘family-style cuisine’. Alongside a top-tier collection of artisanal pizzas and expert-curated handmade pasta options, you can expect a glittering assembly of more rare Italian gastronomic gems. The restaurant features a fairy tale terrace, hemmed by the grand columns of the Palace’s facade, and offering romantic views across the Corniche’s dreamy blue yonder.
Emirates Palace, W Corniche Road, Tue to Sun 12.30pm to 10.30pm, closed Monday. Tel: (02) 2 690 7999, mandarinoriental.com
OK so we cheated a little, this isn’t a new one — let’s say ‘like new’ — the TGI Fridays in Al Wahda Mall has now reopened after being closed for a comprehensive makeover. One of the world’s favourite Ambassadors of flare and American cuisine, TGI Fridays delivers that weekend feeling, every day of the week.
Al Wahda Mall. Tel: (02) 4452 497, @tgifridaysuae