Verdura Mediterranean Cuisine

4:15 AM

 Mediterranean Cuisine Dream...

Embarrassed, I was.

Lost, I became.

Unwittingly parking on the wrong side of a massive Dubai mall like Ibn Battuta is always a bad start, yet I can admit I remained optimistic that I could find what I had been searching for.
After humbly asking the Mall Concierge for directions, which I found to be curiously vague, I came upon the restaurant on my right: a brightly lit, Mediterranean-style décor with natural floor-to-ceiling stone and ivy walls and a kitchen ventana to watch all the magic happen.

Discovering their naturally lit and well-conditioned shisha room was vacant, I opted to sit comfortably away from the general restaurant masses as to not disturb. I should mention here that I was accompanied by my husband, who has a history in cooking and restaurant management, as well as being quite efficient at finishing a plate.

Throughout the meal I was delightfully introduced to the restaurant manager and the gracious head chef Nabil Soliman. I always find it a welcome gesture to speak to the folks that help develop and oversee the ambiance and cuisine I am experiencing. Getting an exclusive take on what inspires and motivates a restaurant from conception and design to plating and ingredients takes the experience to another level.  

Between the main dining room and the glass enclosed shisha room was the restaurant’s in-house cold refrigerator with freshly grown wheatgrass, which is provided as a quick shot at the beginning of the dining experience. The healthy, non-alcoholic aperitif was accompanied by a thin slice of lime sat across the rim. A bold flavor indeed!

As a standard, I am a strong proponent of letting “the house” choose my meal. My reasoning? They should know their strengths and I tend to choose what I would traditionally eat, which doesn’t help to navigate the restaurant’s ideal dining experience. Following this course of action, the table was quickly filled with a variety of options of cold and warm appetizers as well as curiously fashioned drinks.

Appetizers served:
36 AED | Quinoa Salad with Pumpkin Seeds, Vegetables and Dukkah Spices (503 Kcal)
46 AED | Mini Trio Kebbeh (386 Kcal)
38 AED | Crispy Shrimp with Sumac and Chilli Mayo (860 Kcal)
28 AED | Hummus with Tahini (674 Kcal)
38 AED | Smoked Salmon with Labneh and Za'atar Pesto (217 Kcal)

Mocktails served:
28 AED | Blue Smoke | Blue curacao, fresh basil, apple slice, lemon wedges
28 AED | Blackberry Pepper Ice Tea | Lemon Iced Tea, Blackberry Syrup, Black Pepper, Blackberry

Though I dine out regularly, I am still a sucker for a good food show, and smoke and dry ice will never stop exciting my inner child (even though I completely understand the ice does not affect the taste-experience in the slightest). The Blue Smoke Mocktail, Blackberry Pepper Ice Tea, Smoked Salmon, and the Hummus all have a “smoky” presentation, from the use of dry ice to actual smoke-infused flavor-profile-enhancing fog. It’s delightful. And for the record, Verdura has my favorite hummus to-date. So take that! The crowd pleaser is the crispy shrimp with sumac and chili mayo. Not really shocked there. As far as presentation, I have to give the medal to the smoked salmon, which was not only stunning, but was revealed behind a cloud of smoke beneath a rounded glass shield and placed on the table as if it were my birthday. Applause? Almost!

Main Course served:
140 AED | Grilled Vide Veal Chops with Za'atar Butter (679 Kcal)
135 AED | Whole Grilled Sea Bass Served with Tahini and Grilled Vegetables (969 Kcal)

Our main course was a bit of a show which I can reveal delighted my husband the most. Why? Fire was involved, duh! Tableside, the server set the za’atar butter ablaze with blue-to-yellow flames, melting it over the perfectly cooked veal chops in a wildly playful presentation. I am quite sure my husband could have finished the entire serving all by himself. The chops were accompanied by a full platter of whole grilled sea bass, which was found to be light and well-seasoned. Why I favored the surrounding grilled vegetables, I can’t say, but it was a lovely variety of root vegetables and petite purple potatoes. Delicious!

Dessert served:
45 AED | Dates Cake with Caramel Sauce and Tempura Dates       (933 Kcal)
45 AED | Kunafa Roll Stuffed with Orange Pastry Cream and Ghazl El Banat       (412 Kcal)
25 AED | Morrocan Tea Blueberry

The fact that taking photographs of everything delays eating time didn’t affect the dessert course, as I had the pleasure of watching my blueberry tea flower open. It was lovely and appropriately complimentary to the kunafa rolls and date cake. What a treat! I found the kunafa roll curiously delightful with cotton-candy looking presentation and an orange pastry cream surprise inside. The dates cake was warm and well paired with ice cream and a light drizzle of caramel sauce.

My Dubai Blog RATING

Atmosphere 4/5
Cleanliness 5/5
Food 5/5
Service 5/5
Value 4/5

Overall Rating 4.5/5
[Wondering what the ratings mean? click HERE.]

+971 4 350 9350 | | IG @verdura_dubai

You Might Also Like


Most Popular Post