Sapori di Bice

One of the trickiest things a high-end restaurant can do is successfully open a casual dining spin off.

Why? Two reasons really…

Positioning the casual restaurant in a way that wouldn’t cannibalize the high-end restaurant’s business, i.e. offering a more casual experience at a more casual price tag.

And second, the price tag can’t be too casual or else people will start to question the sensibility of margins at the high-end restaurant.

It’s a fine balance that I believe Sapori di Bice has hit.

Sapori di Bice, as the name indicates, is a casual restaurant from the Bice restaurant group.

Bice, once a staple in the fine dining restaurant scene in Dubai, saw an unfortunately decline from the expatriation of heavy weight talent from them to Roberto’s.

Bice seems to have faded away like red lipstick after a bowl of spaghetti Bolognese. A remanence is there, a pink shade if you will, but nothing compared to the bold red in it’s heyday.

Its Friday afternoon and a friend and I are walking around City Walk on Wasel Road, investigating the mushrooming of newly opened shops and restaurants.

Shisha, pass, more shisha for heavens sakes, pass, desserts, pass, soul-less, pass, pass and pass. And then a flutter of Italian being spoken around the corner, I pear my head over and the white space draws me in.

After working up an appetite and spending a healthy amount on a new skirt in Sauce in the Hood, comfort food is in order.

Beef Carpaccio, spaghetti bolognaise and a café gelato for dessert please.

My surprisingly cute Italian waiter (attention, cute waiter in Dubai translates into an oxymoron) responds with, “Right away Miss, the spaghetti Bolognese is not on the menu but I will ask the chef to prepare something special for you.”

Could it be, I ordered something off the menu and wasn’t greeted with a deer caught in the headlights expression from my waiter?

The result, a smile and a thank you.

My beef Carpaccio arrives with a drizzle of truffle oil and slices of mushroom, both of which I feel there is no need for.

My specially prepared spaghetti arrives, I push away the Carpaccio to make room. Swirling my fork in the pasta, I create the perfect tightly wrapped bite sprinkle some Parmesan and take it all in. El dente, well seasoned and comfortable, everything a bolognaise should be.

Extra sprinkles please I say… A café gelato, maybe one of the best flavors created by man. Velvet-ty and lovely and with each spoonful my troubles and spending woes wash away.

A casual Italian that is not in a mall or in a Hotel, how lovely… Would I make a trip to City Walk for a meal at Sapori Di Bice? I’m not sure, but if I’m shopping or walking around that area, that’s the only place I’d sit down for a bite.

The next dish to try, freshly roasted chicken.

But if we’re speaking take away, I did make my way over to Sapori Di Bice just to pick up a couple of scoops of café gelato for a dinner date. How sweet it is.

THE DETAILS

LOCATION City Walk Wasel Road

OPENING HRS. 8am – 11 pm 

CUISINE Italian

PRICE PER COUPLE AED 250

TELEPHONE # 04 344 2550 

WEBSITE Sapori

THE FORK-O-METER
A Casual Hit the Spot Place

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    1. dima

      This is not just real Italian food, this is superb real Italian food. I have now been twice, once with children and another time with friends, and both times we’ve had a delightful time (cannot wait to take the husband). The service is friendly, welcoming and relaxed whilst professional and not intrusive.

    2. Darwiza

      Since this little Italian restaurant has opened around the corner from where we live we have been here several times. Every time the food as been excellent and the service friendly and helpful. The menu has everything you’d expect from an Italian from a wide range of pastas to pizzas and a few meat and fish options. All we have tried have been great, and although we’ve been too full for pudding each time we went, we’ve noticed that the Tiramisu looks gorgeous as well

    3. Rashid

      Have been @ Sapori Di Bice a couple of times since it has opened and I fully recommend it! Supper friendly and prompt service with a vast selection of truly fresh Italian dishes….. being a pizza lover and having been to the best Italian restaurants i have to admit that they are second to none. The Ravioli is just unbelievably tasty and their Rotisserie is mouthwatering………5/5 in every single aspect,, from the decor and atmosphere to the sweet Crème Brulee to finish your meal!

    4. Macaron Jabs

      Awesome post for a resto I was looking forward to!

      Will venture out during my next visit to Dubai

    5. Carla Reveti

      Love the photos, very nice shots. Being Italian living in Dubai, had to go visit Sapori di BICE with my friends & loved it! the ingredients are so fresh & the food delicious..reminded me of mama’s cooking back in Firenze! The BICE brand is an Italian Food institution, like Gucci is to fashion, it will always be loved and followed by Italians worldwide & kudos to BICE brand continuing to win top awards with BICE winning What’s On 2013 Best Italian in Dubai and BICE Mare, best seafood not only at What’s On but BBC Good Foods! thats testament to the there and Italian following and we Italians LOVE our food!

    6. fatimazahra

      We have had a fantastic meal there this evening, the food was freshly prepared and nothing was too much trouble. We would definitely recommend to anyone who enjoys authentic Italian food. Thank you!

    7. Interesting! And another olive tree (I am assuming it’s an Olive tree) in the middle of the restaurant. The interior looks very clean and uncluttered. How about the Parking – is it fuss free? You know that parking in that area could turn into a nightmare.

      • Fork It Over Dubai

        Hi Ishita!

        It is clean and uncluttered. If you are in the City Walk its a good option.

        They actually have a big parking in behind City Walk so parking is no issue here..

        xx

    8. fiona smith

      Love your blog and have been following it for a while but unfortunately have to disagree with you this time as i am in love with Sapori di BICE and feel it is a true gem of a restaurant and have visited it with friends and family weekly since it opened in December. What’s so nice about is its fresh decor and emphasis on fresh ingredient and the natural light that is found across the restaurant as its an outdoor location and not in another shopping mall which is typical of Dubai. The portions are very generous and the offering on the menu very vast offering plenty of choice which is great. Love the Italian team running the place and the waiters, it really makes you feel like you are in Italy with their accents and charm. The rotisserie is delicious and so are the pasta’s and love the fact they have organic and gluten free alternatives to most dishes which is unique in Dubai. keep up the good work on your blog though!

    9. Stunning pictures as always!!! Well done!

      I actually almost sat down for a bite last weekend with a friend, but we opted for some sushi at Y by Yabani next door (where the on-point starters outshone the sad maki rolls). However, I agree with you about the carpaccio (KISS – “keep it simple stupid”!) and have the same strong sentiments as you towards truffle oil (please make it stop!)

      One thing that I did notice from the menu I perused was that the prices were slightly on the steeper side which did leave me thinking whether it was worth it considering I couldn’t enjoy a glass of wine with my meal (which deserves a whole post all on its own!).. I’m curious to know how much you paid per head for your three course meal ;)

      Looking forward to more beautiful pictures from you! :)

      • Fork It Over Dubai

        Hey Serene,

        Thanks for your comment and embedded review of Y by Yabani – i heard it was great value for money but its sad to know that their Maki rolls are sad.

        I paid roughly AED 120 for just me starter main and dessert + water. Although I did leave full with their portion sizes. A glass of wine with the pasta – that would be ideal!

        Thanks my love

        xxx

    10. I was looking forward to this one opening, but as much your beautiful photos draw me in, your review makes me question whether it’s worth the effort. And spaghetti bolognaise…surely the Italians know it should be tagliatelle?! Agree that the carpaccio looks way too fussy. The beauty of Italian food is in its simplictiy. Either that or am too much of a purist! x

      • Fork It Over Dubai

        Hey Samantha,

        You are a Purist but that’s what I love about you! Don’t get me wrong it’s a great since you are in the area restaurant – but I’m not sure I would plan my whole evening around it…

        :)

        xxxx

    11. Schnappen

      Very nice! I want food now!