Pearls & Caviar Brunch - Shangri-la, Abu Dhabi
|The iconic pearl sculpture outside Pearls & Caviar|
|This is what you see as you walk in.|
|Denson getting the arrival drinks ready.|
|Shrimp centre stage.|
It is not a large brunch, and this excites me. It means a couple of things: less wastage, less time thinking what to over-indulge in next and higher quality of dishes. How can there be a higher quality of dishes you might wonder? Well, your margin for error is slimmer. Because you have fewer dishes, a bad dish becomes memorable for the wrong reasons. Pearls & Caviar is one of few brunches in the city where the focus is on presenting fewer dishes, but making sure they are of a high standard. I am talking here of brunches that cater for less than a 100 guests.
|Absolute pleasure being waited on by Rafy.|
First stop, oysters. You would expect a restaurant famed for its Mediterranean approach to seafood would have oysters that do it justice. The oysters, two types, do not disappoint. Both types make their way onto my plate - twice!
Next up I try the clams. Big and beautiful in appearance, chef has added a bit of coriander. The latter, in small amounts, combines well with the lemon. I have two servings. I also try a bit of sashimi and have a word with Executive Chef Paul Doyle, who is also doing his bit in making this a very interactive brunch.
My guest, meanwhile, is vegetarian, and Young Chef of The Year finalist, Sous Chef Dinesh Perera is in earshot. He listens and then offers to make a risotto. I like it the idea. Vegetarians, I am sure, have a tough time at more intimate brunches because there are fewer dishes, but this kind of gesture is what can keep a vegetarian coming back.
|Indonesian noodles with tuna.|
|Sea bass and risotto|
|Locally produced burrata - a lovely surprise.|
Shangri-la, between the bridges
Soft drinks option 290 Dhs net
Wine option 331 Dhs net
Champagne option 476 Dhs net