New kids on the block

Brandi Pizzeria

Brandi Pizzeria

Dubai; No sooner have I polished off my last morsel and pressed the publish button, another new restaurant or café opens. So much so, FooDiva has a trio of goodies to share with you in this post – all tried and tested of course.

I’ve written before about my fascination with sourcing original Napolitan pizza in this town – well I’ve discovered another pizzeria – Brandi – in Dubai Mall. The pizza arrives with a ‘cornicione’ thick crust, whilst slightly soft in the middle, which according to a comment left recently by an Italian follower is true to the traditional recipe as explained in the EU’s official journal, ‘the overall pizza must be tender, elastic and easily foldable into four.’  Well that it certainly was. Pizza - Don VincenzoAside from the original Margherita named after Italy’s Queen in 1889, the Romana with anchovies is a FooDiva fave, whilst my sis aka Mrs Bubbly opted for the Don Vincenzo with capers and olives (removing the anchovies). Great to see locally produced fiordilatte mozzarella (cow’s milk not buffalo) from Italian Dairy Products as the common ingredient on all pizzas. Service is a little hit and miss sadly with waiters repeating themselves. Brandi Pizzeria is located on the second floor of Dubai Mall (next to TGI Friday). T; +971 4 3253336. Pizzas AED 38 – 65. Note 20% RoundMenu discount below.

Homey - red rice Chueng Fen dim sumJLT is brimming with new eateries, including Homey, a relatively new Cantonese on the block that FooDiva first read about on fellow food blogger Epicuruaen’s blog. With no sign of MSG thankfully, the stand-out dish is the translucent steamed red rice Chueng Fen dim sum stuffed with crispy fried shrimp pictured here – so addictive and moreish, easily a daily fix. The deep fried shrimp with wasabi sauce also deserves a mention, as does the perfectly al dente and succulent Kai Lan mustards garnished with minced garlic. The stir fried shredded beef and roasted duck whilst reasonably flavoursome had no wow factor. The décor borders on tacky, but you go here for authentic, cheap and cheerful Cantonese with friendly service. Homey is located in Cluster V, Gold Crest View 1, Jumeirah Lake Towers. T; +971 4 4317106. Home delivery also available. Dishes priced from AED 12 – 48. Open daily for lunch and dinner.

Rich - Roast beef Yorkshire pud wrapRemember the Art café at Mall of the Emirates, well that’s been replaced by Rich with its kitsch and cool Brittania interior and wait for this…roast beef Yorkshire pudding wraps…rivaling 1762’s. Slithers of roast beef, sandwiched with rocket leaves, crispy fried onions, gherkins and horseradish sauce – personally I would have preferred the beef a little rosier. Another wrap shout out goes to the marinated and spiced charcoal grilled lamb kofta in pitta with houmous dip. All sandwiches are served with french fries, sadly though the frozen variety. Juices squeezed on the spot. Slick, prompt service. Rich is located on the first floor of Mall of the Emirates near the entrance to Carrefour. T; +971 4 3410945. Yorkshire pud wrap AED 43.

For more photos of these experiences and many others, check out FooDiva on Instagram.

Have you been? Any new eateries you’d like FooDiva to review?

A bientôt.

FooDiva. x

P.S – if you love your soup, you may want to enter the Philips giveaway to win not just one but two SoupMakers. Competition closes at Cinderella time tonight, so enter here pronto!

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  • Posted under
    Barsha, British, Cafes, Cantonese, Chinese, Downtown Dubai, Dubai, International, Italian, JLT, Pizza, Restaurant Reviews, Restaurants
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9 Responses to “New kids on the block”

  1. Geordie Armani November 19, 2012 at 9:29 am

    I have Brandi on my list of things to do but have been caught up with Burger month, I love Rich was there yesterday again, good British styled food. Great review xx

    • FooDiva November 19, 2012 at 9:25 pm

      Thanks GA 🙂 Looks like it’s pizza month next for you! x

  2. Rebecca November 19, 2012 at 11:22 am

    WIsh I had enough time to go to all of these 🙂

  3. OB November 19, 2012 at 1:44 pm

    I remember reading a comment left by one of your readers on a previous post regarding Brandi in which the pizzeria was highly recommended by that person. I snickered (a lot) to myself because I had already visited Brandi. The place leaves a lot to be desired (especially when it comes to the quality of the ingredients)! The Margherita was really good (the crust impressed) but just you try ordering anything else and you will be very disappointed. The first time, I ordered a four cheese pizza (most of the cheeses lacked character and were hard to tell one from the other), a caprese salad had tomatoes that tasted like the cheap, bland stuff you get from the local supermarket (what’s the point of authenticity if it stops at the crust?), and a tiramisu that was SO ABSOLUTELY DISASTROUS that it verged on being offensive (when I asked the waiter why it was so bad, he informed that they had yet to introduce freshly made tiramisu but the chef had asked him to serve it to me anyway (this he managed with a straight face LOL 😉
    The second time I went there, I was brave enough to take relatives. The chicken pizza was a DISASTER because the toppings were , how can I put this – DISASTROUS. OK the pasta dish we had as satrters was Okayish, but we were made to believe that this place was all about authenticity and when such is the case, it really is hard even for someone as humble as myself to settle for “Okayish”. The gelato was the usual synthetic affair – again, what’s the point? My relatives didn’t say much, but they both gave me the “this is what you brought us all the way here for” type look – poor me, I couldn’t find anywhere to hide.


    • FooDiva November 19, 2012 at 9:32 pm

      We only ordered the two pizzas I wrote about so can only rave about those. The restaurant was pretty quiet but it was a Thursday lunch. Clearly your experience wasn’t on a par, so I hope the Brandi team is reading this post and can take it as constructive feedback. Appreciate your comment. Thanks.

  4. Sally - My Custard Pie November 19, 2012 at 5:06 pm

    I didn’t like the look of Rich – another cafe which yawns open into the mall – but you’ve turned my head with that Yorkshire wrap!

    • FooDiva November 19, 2012 at 9:34 pm

      Definitely one for your bucket list Sally. Portion’s huge too, easily shared even with my large appetite 🙂

      • Mrs Bubbly November 19, 2012 at 10:52 pm

        I could have had two of those wraps:)

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