Our picks and icks of the month…

Welcome to a fun new monthly What’s On series – Picks and Icks, where we picked what’s HOT and what’s NOT.

This month we are focusing on current food trends. From unexpected surprises in a perfectly good sweet and savoury treats to ice cream flavours that just shouldn’t exist, and unwanted food combos.

Here’s our pick of what’s hot and what’s not from the UAE’s current food trends.

Alice Holtham, Group Editor


Pick: Timing

Controversial as it may be, I rather enjoy it when a restaurant serves food when it’s ready, rather than in set courses. I’m a firm believer that the kitchen knows best. 

Ick: Dates

There are good surprise dates and there are bad surprise dates. Good surprise dates = your significant other treating you to an impromptu dinner. Bad surprise dates = dates sneakily added to sponge cakes, sauces or disguised in a chocolate coating.

Miles Buckeridge, Deputy Editor

Miles pick/ick

Pick: Baked camembert

Burrata is dead. Its milky splurge now chalked out on the nation’s tables. Baked camembert with dippy bread, fresh from supper club exile, has returned to claim the throne.

Ick: Caviar on everything

The pricing mechanics of caviar seem to heavily borrow from the modern art world, and their gimmicky addition to pretty much any food stuff for the sole purpose of wealth signalling earns a no to the roe from me.

Dinesh Ramanathan, Deputy Editor


Pick: Deep-fried pickles

Great late-night/post-bevy snack. Lasts longer than a handful of fries with just the right amount of sour.

Ick: Ketchup-flavoured ice cream

Self-explanatory. A classic example of what happens when you have too much of a good thing, even if it’s just a carnival treat.

Aarti Saundalkar, Online Reporter


Pick: Poke bowls

This customisable deconstructed sushi salad offers incredible depth and range of flavour. If you haven’t tried it yet, you need to get on the poke, mon. My topping pro tip is ahi tuna, doused in chilli sauce.

Ick: Matcha

I don’t get why people like matcha so much. To me, it looks and tastes like grass, and I will not be adding it to any of my already-perfect coffee any time soon.

Tamara Wright, Online Reporter


Pick: Ramen

For me, there isn’t any dish more comforting than a bowl of ramen. The traditional Japanese noodle dish can be made simple or extravagant, and you can’t really go wrong with either. Ready, set, slurp.

Ick: Sushi with meat

One food pairing I can’t comprehend is sushi made with meat instead of fish. In fact: I’d take pineapple on a pizza over wagyu-wrapped maki or chicken katsu sushi rolls any day.

Shelby Gee, Junior Reporter

shelby PICK/ICK

Pick: Cake, just any cake

Growing up, my mum always insisted that I would sell my soul for cake and that I’d choose a slice of cake over the party bags any day – and at the ripe age of 22, I stand by that choice.

Ick: Truffle on everything.

Look, it’s not that I hate truffle – in fact I think it can be a great addition to a meal but when it’s added to every possible menu item in merry abandon, you’ve lost me.

Manaal Fatimah, Intern 


Pick: Hot Honey

I love me a good sweet and spicy combination and hot honey strikes equilibrium in  beautiful fashion. Slap some on a crispy chicken tender and BAM – you’ve reached nirvana.

Ick: Cardamom pods in biryani

It’s a perennial struggle because you bite into one and suddenly everything is wrong in this world. In the words of one wise Miles Buckeridge – it hijacks your mouth.

Mabel Elizabeth, Intern


Pick: Mushroom burgers

Mushrooms are not known for being the most fun-gi out there. But umami-packed ‘shrooms deserve recognition for being a versatile substitute for the meat in burgers.

Ick: Fried chicken with ice cream

Sweet and spicy is a controversial combo but for me, putting ice cream on fried chicken is the most nauseating of them all. Why would you choose to eat chicken swimming in a pool of sweet milk? Red flag.

Images: Unsplash and Getty Images