Ben Lerwill highlights five of the best dining experiences in the Emirati capital
Brunch at the Ritz-Carlton
Like in neighbouring Dubai, Friday brunch is an institution in Abu Dhabi — and remember, the UAE weekend runs from Friday to Saturday. At the Ritz-Carlton, attention falls on Giornotte, the hotel’s all-day restaurant designed in the style of a traditional Italian villa. Its award-winning Friday brunch runs from 12.30-16.00, with 30 live cooking stations offering everything from carvery meats to burritos. Live music, wine, oysters and around 40 different cheeses add to the occasion, and there’s even an after-party hosted in the hotel’s Sorso Bar.
Drink gold leaf coffee at Emirates Palace
If there’s anywhere that knows the meaning of proper, all-frills luxury, it’s Emirates Palace. As one of the most expensive hotels ever built, it tends to do things a little differently. So when it’s time for your afternoon coffee, why not go the extra mile and order a cappuccino topped with 24-carat gold flakes? It’s pure extravagance, of course, but is a fitting complement to the hotel’s famously decadent chocolate cake. High tea is served daily from 14.00-18.00 — make sure to book in advance.
Breakfast on the beach at Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi Hotel and Villas
Get the day off to a memorable start by taking breakfast on the beach. The property looks onto white sands, and the hotel’s Beach House restaurant serves a breakfast menu from
09.00-11.00. You’ll find the usual high-end spread of fresh juices and pastries, as well as house favourites such as apple beignets and salmon quiches. Order a coffee and linger as the sun rises over the sea. abudhabi.park.hyatt.com
Afternoon tea at Observation Deck at 300
Jumeirah at Etihad Towers takes high tea literally. Perched 74 floors above the city, the hotel’s Observation Deck at 300 — named for its altitude in metres — gives visitors the chance to gaze down onto Abu Dhabi’s urban landscape while enjoying a classic afternoon tea. Expect freshly baked scones, gourmet sandwiches and an army of cakes and Arabian fancies. And as well as teas sourced from Morocco, Japan and beyond, it also has five exclusive blends of its own.
Dinner at Bord’Eau
With almost a dozen awards to its name over the last six years, Bord’Eau stands as one of the best restaurants in Abu Dhabi. If you’re looking for French fine dining in a grand setting, with service to match, this is the place. Situated within the Shangri-La Hotel Qaryat al Beri, it offers signature dishes such as line-caught sea bass with Oscietra caviar and, on its dessert list, a vanilla and Grand Marnier souffle. For a really unforgettable experience, try ordering the five-course blind tasting menu, complete with paired wines. shangri-la.com