When London’s West End icon, The Ivy, opened in Dubai critics were initially dubious – the UAE doesn’t boast the calibre of stars that makes the UK equivalent so famous. However, they needn’t have worried. Here, the biggest star at the The Ivy is The Ivy itself. While frequented by the who’s who of the region as well foodies and socialites alike, and the odd celebrity of course, it doesn’t rely or need ‘ambassadors’ to raise its profile – its fantastic food and friendly service does that.
Much like its London brother, the emphasis is on dark woods, leather and table-clothed tables with miniature lamps. The statement stained glass windows have also been replicated here. However, to inject some local identify many of the walls are adorned with paintings by local artists. The feel is very much of a sophisticated gentlemen’s club, though women are very much welcome.
The menu is largely quintessentially, hearty British dishes with a mix of European cuisine. You certainly get value for money with the Goliath portions. If you’re not counting the calories – and here you seriously shouldn’t be as you’ll miss out on so many great dishes – the seared foie gras with apple galette and cherries is a real treat for the taste buds, while the steak and kidney pie with french-fries may be a simple dish its flavours are anything but. For the more figure conscious the piri piri tiger prawns won’t disappoint neither will the roast monkfish with lobster potato and mussels.
When it comes to desserts stick to the classics. The chocolate bombe will blow your mind.
There are no pretensions here. The atmosphere is gregarious yet not overbearingly so. It’s the type of place you could bring a date or enjoy a big celebration. The service is understated but friendly to the point where you’ll wish they were part of your party.
A private dinning section makes it perfect for hosting surprise birthday parties, celebrating engagements or even popping the question. For such a big, and warranted reputation, the prices are affordable. Plus it’s just one of those restaurants you must tick off your list.
A romantic date or private party, either way you won’t be disappointed.
The Ivy,The Boulevard, Ground Level, Jumeirah Emirates Towers.
(04) 3198767, theivy.ae
Credit: Image courtesy of The Ivy