Tag Archives: Steak House

Prime 68

Prime 68
For the past couple of years, driving up and down Sheikh Zayed Road, everyone has commented, either positivity or negatively about the two extremely tall towers that have now become the new JW Marquis Hotel in Business Bay. Driving up to the hotel one of my dinner guests comments that it feels exactly the same as the first time he had drove through the Marina way back when. A new road, a new area and a new boundary that has been set. Its traffic lights now relatively empty, but rest assured in a span a few short months, the “build it and they will come” mantra of Dubai will take into effect. Pressing the 68th floor we shoot up into the sky at a leisurely speed. Knowing that JW Steakhouse, an institution in the Dubai steakhouse scene, is also part of the Marriot family, my expectations start to rise with every floor that we pass. Walking into the restaurant the first thing that strikes you is how bright and lit the steakhouse is.  Proudly proclaiming that dark steakhouses are a thing of the past, Prime 68 boasts white lacquered finishing with only a touch of black that plays on its 50s theme. As a group of 9 dinner guests, we pass the romantic two seat-er booths, which have mirrored ceilings mind you, to the open space next to the glassed kitchen. Taking our seats, we are handed horizontal menus that open upwards rather than to the side, which I find interesting, but the noteworthy part is that yes its just one beautiful concise page. Weary about the service based on a review that popped up right after Prime 68's opening, I was pleasantly surprised to see that there have been some improvements. Our starters arrive and my spoon splashes into the luxurious lobster bisque I ordered. A warm creamy creation with a kiss of the sea. Recovering from the initial enchantment of the dish, my spoon fishes for pieces of lobster to surface only to be successful twice. Though some lobster bisques do not require you to add lobster meat to them, my dinner guest and I agreed, if you going to add meat, be generous with it. Looking at the very unassuming crab cake, its full-on ode to the nude color makes me take a bite in passing, only to look back startled and with a smile as if it snapped three times in my face (in the form of a triangle) telling me “I better recognize”. The fresh chunky meat paired with a spicy sauce is one of the best I’ve had. A taste of the scallops with pomegranate seeds is lovely. My dinner guest did comment he would have preferred the larger sized scallops to the mini ones offered. The star of the show arrives, the steak, and my usual, perceived by some as boring although perfect to me, cut of fillet is cooked to medium as requested. As with any circumstance, the start of the show is nothing without his or her supporting actors, the sides, oh glorious sides. Wild mushrooms, steakhouse fries, buttery mash, grilled asparagus, lobster mac and cheese, truffle gratin, onion straw and sweet potato toped with marshmallows. Dare I say, their sides may rival that of The Exchange Grill’s, my one and only steakhouse true love. The nominations for the best supporting actors go to, the crispy airy onion straws, the gooey rich lobster mac and cheese and the interesting sweet potato toped with caramelized marshmallows. All winners in my books. And for desserts cheesecake and bread pudding paired with a delicious dessert wine. After pairing the two, I vow to never have dessert without a dessert wine in hand. Taking bite of the cheesecake, I experience the first fumble of the night. Grasping for flavor I take another bite followed by another to no avail.  Beautifully presented the cheesecake whole-heartedly tries to deliver, but forgetting her lines, calls out ‘Line’ only to and empty back stage. Taking a sip of my dessert wine to forget the past and start a new, I begin with the bread pudding topped with vanilla ice cream. A combination of pudding, French toast and vanilla, it’s a type of dessert that makes you sit back and say, “Mmm that’s good!” I am going to put Prime 68 in my Top 5 steakhouses in Dubai. I still haven’t settled on the order but it’s up there. I would request that they dim the lights ever so slightly and select some interesting music just to ring in a dinner mood. At AED 500 per head (including drinks) though an expensive bill, is still competitive based on what is on the market, the quality and taste of food that was delivered.
THE DETAILS
LOCATION JW Marquis OPENING HRS. 6 pm to Midnight CUISINE Steakhouse PRICE PER COUPLE AED 1,100 TELEPHONE # 04 414 3000 WEBSITE JW
THE FORK-O-METER
Ur New Steakhouse Spot
     

The Exchange Grill

5 Steps to One of Those Epic Dinner Dates
  1. Reserve a table at the Exchange Grill
  2. Request the best seat in the house – the table next to the window
  3. First date? Special occasion? Let them know and they’ll take care of the rest, you’ll look like a superstar without moving an inch
  4. Ask the chef to tailor a special menu depending on what you both enjoy
  5. Relax, be yourself and please… no sleazy lines, we’re already impressed we accepted the date
The Exchange Grill  The Exchange Grill doors transport you to a meat lover’s heaven, complete with the best steaks in town, upscale chic interior and beautiful leather ‘thrones’. It is the land where “yes” is the law and “no” ceases to exist. Taking our seats, white napkins are placed on our laps. Have a darker shade of pants on? You have the option of a black napkin—interesting right? Granted I’m not coming back just for that black napkin, but to me, details make a difference. My Carpaccio starter arrives, and I’m hungry, but my fork doesn’t move, I can’t ,it’s too pretty, but I want to, but it’s too pretty but I’m hungry!… eventually I do. My dish is so delicately prepared that chewing is completely unnecessary and replaced by the process of pure melting in your mouth. My date’s Caesar’s Salad doesn’t offer the same enjoyment. Partly because it is in fact, a Caesar’s Salad (I personally don’t see their point in life) and partly because its design compensates the ease of eating it. At the Exchange Grill I like to go for the fillet steak— you may say boring, but nothing compares to a flawless piece of meat; how cavewoman like of me, but it’s true. My date orders a T-bone steak with his addition of grilled baby onions; ask and you shall receive here, “yes of course,” says the waiter. Our cuts of meat arrive and are cooked exactly as we requested. The tender meat glistens with juice and each bite is packed with an exquisite, rich meat flavor. The inside of my fillet is the most beautiful color that reminds me of a fresh pink rose. The steaks come with five delicious sauces including horseradish, my favorite; it gives each bite an extra kick. My favorite side dish is the onion rings which I must dwell on. They're not your typical soggy, oil dripping through the paper bag Hardees onion rings, rather they remind me of crispy, feather like puffs of perfection... must try, must have, must stop dreaming about. (A steak at the exchange grill is like a BMW X6 (your steak) with Hamann customization (your sides and sauces). Both are excellent on their own but put together—Spectacular.) We order the chocolate fondant for dessert and is perfectly cooked, a slight touch by our forks triggers a bobsled like rush of molten chocolate that swirls around our dessert plate and engulfs it warm chocolate. (Check out the water glasses, the one and only Riedel – amazing) I would definitely say: “Fork It Over; every last bite of it!”
THE DETAILS
LOCATION: Fairmont, Dubai OPENING HRS: 12:30-3,  7 - 12 pm CUISINE: Steak House PRICE PER COUPLE: AED 700 - 900 TELEPHONE #: 04 332 55 55
THE FORK-O-METER
A Love At First Site Restaurant
               

Twenty10

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Having arrived several minutes early we were escorted to a beautiful waiting area and welcomed by the barman requesting if we would like anything to drink. After an interesting cocktail, admiration of the paintings on the wall and quick tour of the restaurant we were off to our table. The first thing I realize about some tables are the rotating glass serving ‘treys’. I know a friend who would dine at a restaurant just for one of those. Opening my menu I was greeted with the following: What I got from the above was sharing, create your own and eclectic flavors everything I would like to hear at the start of the meal. So it is three girls, a menu full interesting dishes and an encouragement to share - let the frenzy of ordering begin! Three starters, 3 cuts of meat 4 types of sauces and 3 side dishes later our order is finally placed. Our starters arrive and my eyes are pleased. The first starter is composed of fennel, courgette, pick grapefruit, asparagus and hazelnut and it must be one of the freshest salads I have ever tasted and crunched into. Not being the biggest fan of duck, our warm sesame glazed duck with orange was not at all disappointing to me, it was tender well seasoned and had the right amount of orange zest to it. Biting into the lobster caesar salad I couldn’t get over its fishiness. Inquiring to the waiter Sir why so fishy? He responds saying that anchovy sauce was added to the salad; though customary for a ceasar – it wasn’t for me. The fillet steaks arrive with hats intact. They are tender and cooked to perfection. Our sauces include red wine, mushroom, avocado chili mango sweet pepper and horse-radish. Trying each sauce, passing it to the next person and commenting about the flavors is the highlight. My top pick for sides is the onion rings, roasted tomato and mushrooms. And my definite top pick for a bite would be a cut of juicy steak, a spread of horseradish sauce, a wedge of mushroom and slice of roasted tomato – Wow, wow and I’ll say it again wow. With such an excellent meal, nothing would top it off more than the perfect dessert. Having our sights set on a juicy, hot, warm fondant au chocolat our eyes quickly scan through the dessert menu until one of us shrieks where’s the Fondant, there’s no Fondant?! We instead settle for a tiramisu and complementary chocolate and dried fruit cupcakes. The tiramisu was slightly on the alcoholic side with enough rum to service a whole ship of pirates. Dear Mr. Gary Rhodes (celebrity chef and owner of Twenty10), if by some rare cosmic chance you are reading my blog, please add a fondant au chocolat to you dessert menu, a banana chocolate cake does not quite suffice. Thanks!! What makes Twenty10 different from the magnitude of steakhouses in Dubai? When I think of steakhouse I think of romantic for dinner or business for lunch.  Twenty10 is those things but something else even more important; it’s a steakhouse actually made possible for a group of friends; where sharing is definitely caring in this resto – and there’s nothing I love more than that. Does it beat my one and only favorite restaurant/steakhouse in Dubai the Exchange Grill? I'd have to say even though its different, no, but then and again... I don't think anything can.
THE DETAILS
LOCATION type The Royal Meridien CUISINE: Steak House PRICE PER COUPLE: AED 800 TELEPHONE #: 04 316 5550  
THE FORK-O-METER
A Since Your In the Area Restaurant
      Location: The Royal Meridiean – Dubai Marina. Price per Couple: AED 800.  Tel: 04 316 5550. Licensed.