Shall I share a secret?
FooDiva’s gonna have to let you in on this little secret…Dubai FINALLY has its very own supper club. Now am not talking the racy Amsterdam import Supperclub which opens at Jumeirah Zabeel Saray any day now, but depending what you read, an underground restaurant, paid-for dinner party or even pop-up restaurant concept. For moi, I have fond memories of many a dinner at paladares in Havana a few summers ago – right up there as one of my most exquisite dining experiences ever, despite Cuban food import restrictions. It’s the friendly folks at social experience company Lime & Tonic Dubai who have created a series of secret dinner parties with chef for hire talent Tomas Reger at undisclosed locations around town.
So what’s it all about? Well FooDiva signed up for the first dinner earlier this month – an art themed one, a flashback to my arty farty design days in the UK (for my sins I studied fashion not food). Three days in advance an email arrives with details of the pick-up and drop-off points (DIFC in this case), as well as the ingredients of the dishes, sans menu, so guests can advise any dietary requirements.
Meeting up at DIFC, a bus ferries 30 or so of us to the ‘secret’ venue, in this case the rather sexy Miele cooking gallery on the Sheikh Zayed where a red carpet and lime and tonic spritzers greet us – sadly no booze allowed on this occasion – but some venues will allow you to purchase or license-dependent, BYO. After a rather lengthy Miele sales spiel (I am told this was a one-off), it’s upstairs for dinner starting with substantial canapes – one of Tomas’ fortes is good portion size.
Once seated at two long tables, we were asked to draw our favourite food (stilton in my case for simplicity!), converse arty facts with our fellow diners (mine was Leonardo da Vinci invented high heels – so the google rumour goes) and serve one of the courses yourself. Now FooDiva may be a social bunny but I wasn’t too keen on the last assignment…others loved it though. Three sublime gourmet courses later, all themed around different artists, a painting auction, prize draw, personalised cards with magnets for us all, and we were ready to be ferried back - with a stop at Hakkasan for those fancying an alcohol-infused nightcap. And all for only AED 260. I knew it was too good to be true, prices have since increased to AED 360.
Starter – Jackson Pollock (Summertime) – quail breast and roulade with lemon confit, beetroot and balsamic. Main course – Joan Miro (Sun) – fillet of beef (cooked rare yeah!) with smoked eggplant, capers, herbs and anchovies. Dessert – Andy Warhol (Banana) – banana cake, caramelised banana, whipped sour cream and a tad of cardamom.
The beauty of Dubai I find is the entrepreuneurial innovation that constantly knocks on our door, and hands down this event is something a little bit different, so if you don’t mind chatting to strangers…well beats Rock Bottom doesn’t it? (for the record I no longer frequent that establishment), then sign up for the next round of secret supper clubs – details below. And whilst am nattering all things Lime & Tonic, another compelling event and one FooDiva’s long been awaiting…a murder mystery dinner in Hakkasan’s private dining room on February 19th priced at AED 500.
Lime & Tonic organises two secret supper clubs every month starting with a fashion-themed secret supper club on February 11th and a Venetian inspired dinner on February 25th – each priced at AED 360 per head not including booze. Guests are now restricted to 15 - space still available. If you are new to Lime & Tonic, then register here for an AED 50 discount exclusive to FooDiva Friends.
So now the cat’s out of the bag, will you go? Love to hear your supper club experiences.