Cantonese cuisine,

Hakkasan

11:51 PM UrbanModish 0 Comments


Hakkasan is a Michelin-starred Cantonese restaurant launched in 2001 by Alan Yau. It was his vision to transform the perception of Chinese food. Seventeen years later, it’s a global brand with restaurants in New York, London, Shanghai, among other gastronomical capitals, with countless accolades for its oriental cuisine, including Tatler Restaurant Awards and two-time Best Chinese Time Out winner.  Unsurprisingly, the Dubai edition is no exception.

Hakkasan’s Dubai restaurant is located in Jumeirah Emirates Towers Hotel. We walked in from the rear entrance through a blue carpet and the first thing that caught my eye was the outdoor seating arrangement. It was almost like you are dining amidst nature. You cross the fountain area and are welcomed by the staff dressed in crisp blues.



                                           


                                           


The inside area is a stark contrast to the outdoors. You feel as though you time traveled to two different areas. The inside area seems almost dark as you enter, yet on closer inspection you notice that each table is carefully illuminated. The room itself is cleverly sectioned off with wooden screens and dark oak lattices to give an impression of intimacy, though the space itself is huge. It can seat upto 276 patrons.
















We were glad we reached early as it was quieter and Milos was kind enough to give us a tour of the restaurant.

The kitchen area is also divided into separate areas, and this picture was hard to avoid being captured. I love the attention and time given in by the Chefs towards ensuring that the food is of impeccable standards.



They have a separate bar area, dining area and a smaller bar area as well. The bigger bar area is sleek and is almost 22 m. Hakkasan bar has different spirits from around the world, and that is very evident with the kind of cocktails they offer.





Like all good Dubai brunches, there are a selection of packages available – from AED 228 per person to AED 678. We were spoilt for choice and confused between what to choose. However Milos, made it easy for us and gave us the best of both worlds. I always love the surprise element when the decision is taken off your hands.



Stylish Chinese lattice designs run throughout the mood-lit dining area and outdoor pavilion, giving this vast space a cozy and authentic feel. We chose to sit outside as the weather was pleasant. The outdoor area is divided into two sections – the dining area and the lounge section. The dining area is complete with marble topped tables and cozy seating with wood and powder blue hues complete with matching cutlery.  The lounge area is a gorgeous black and red hue and immediately changes the vibe of the place.










We settled into a comfortable seating area and started our afternoon with cocktails that were suggested by Barry – I chose The Chinese Mule, and my friend had the Karavi. As opposed to Moscow mule – Chinese Mule at Hakkasan had Vodka, Kome to Mizu Sake, coriander, ginger, lime, ginger beer and was topped with star fruit.  Karavi was essentially Bourbon, Kummel, banana Liqueur, pineapple, lemon, Peychaud’s bitters and was topped with cubes of caramelized pineapple.





For the small eats we had the honey glazed baby octopus served on a bed of rice noodles. It was one of those bites that you didn’t want to get over. The crispy and sweet textures got us excited for the spread that awaited us.





These small bites are a tease before the mains.

Our table was abuzz with Dimsums. We were served Har Gau, Abalone Shumai, Wagyu beef and mushroom puff, Mooli Puff and Beancurd wrap.




Har Gau is traditional Cantonese shrimp dumpling. The seafood bites were beautiful; with elegant flavors sealed in during steaming, the fish itself melting in the mouth.



It was my first time having Abalone shumai and I’m glad I tried it at Hakkasan than elsewhere. Both the dimsums were moreish and it kept our palates on a roll.




The puff’s need a special mention. We had the Wagyu beef and mushroom puff and the Mooli Puff. Between the two – the wagyu and mushroom puff was a clear winner. The Wagyu beef and mushroom were rich and indulgent. The deep-fried pastry of the puffs was oil-free, crispy and gently yielding.





Bean curd is Cantonese dimsum wrapped with duck meat and vegetables. The duck meat was perfectly cooked and juicy and tender and tasted delish.



I loved the portions, they were filling and appetizing.

Also, the fact that they didn’t rush us into finishing each course and patiently let us finish our meal was an added bonus – isn’t that how Friday brunch scenes should look like.

We moved onto our mains – for me this was the highlight of our Brunch at Hakkasan.

Let me begin with what I loved - the Smoke Applewood Peking duck with caviar. Starting from the presentation to the actual food.  You know how Dubai’s restaurants have  a tendency to compete with each other to offer the most live cooking stations, but Hakkasan focuses on what it does best.












Peking duck  was served on a circular wooden base covered with a dome to enhance the smoked flavor along with pancakes, & caviar.  It was everything that delish stands for. The duck skin was crispy and the meat tender and juicy. Coupled with pancake and caviar, it was scrumptious and got over in minutes.

Moving to my second favorite - Wagyu beef with foie grass.  Beautifully cooked beef strips were topped with foie grass and edible flowers. The presentation in itself is so beautiful – but what’s even better is how the meat feels in your mouth. Soft and beautifully cooked in its juices and tender to break through. That combined with foie grass was a feast. This is a must try and a shame if you do miss it.




The surprise dish was Cantonese style crispy noodle with roasted duck. It was presented with a gravy topped with noodles. It was only when the server mixed the noodles with the roasted duck that I realized that I was in for a feast. We were served the crispy noodles in our dainty blue bowls - the crispiness of the noodles along with the roasted duck was a pleasant surprise and I couldn’t not finish my portion.



I’m a seafood person, but I was surprised that I kept going back to the above three than the Wok-fry tiger prawn with lemongrass and chili. The prawns are very well cooked and the flavors are amazing too. However, in comparison to the other three dishes, it wasn’t on my favorite list – blame the Wagyu beef for tasting so delish.






We both tried the hakka cocktail and loved it. It comes with both alcoholic and non alcoholic options, and we went for the former. It’s a generous mix of vodka, kome to mizu sake, lychee juice, lime, passion fruit and coconut. Served in a tall glass, It had a very tropical vibe to it and was very refreshing. When In Hakkasan, try the Hakka.



You would feel like moving around post all the rich food, but you needn’t go that far Desserts are set out next to the live cooking stations. The emphasis, refreshingly, is on quality over quantity. I loved the compact selection for those counting calories.








The fresh macarons were expertly made. The chocolate and caramel centres spilled out like liquid gold when I bit through. It was dessert heaven.




Since it was Chinese New Year, there was a beautiful section dedicated to the tradition of tying wishes to the tree to bring prosperity and good luck as well.




                                           

I need to specially mention the live cooking station - a look at the pictures will tell you why:





Hakkasan  was a great introduction to the gourmet Chinese experience, encapsulating all that’s great about fine dining in Dubai.

The food really was exceptional, the flavours an intense hit on our multicultural palate, and the service was perfect. The no-rush service, ever smiling, friendly and informative staff enhanced the complete experience. We loved the atmosphere in the restaurant, as it was fairly relaxed and very easy to have a conversation.

In addition to Hakkasan signature dishes, the Dubai restaurant’s menu includes some dishes created especially for an Emirate clientele. Our brunch choices spanned northern and southern Chinese cuisine.

Hakkasan is a must-visit for any foodie. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Contact:

Location Lower Level, Jumeirah Emirates Towers, Sheikh Zayed Road, Trade Centre Area, Dubai
Timings: 12:00 pm to 04:00 pm
                19:00 p.m to 00:00 a.m
Cost: AED 600 - 800 for two
Reserve your table at: 043848484

I was invited to Hakkasan and all views and images are © Urbanmodish, unless stated otherwise.




Have you been following Hakkasan yet in social media? Like their page on Facebook and give them a follow on Instagram & Twitter. Even better get all the details on their website



Hakkasan - Jumeirah Emirates Towers Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 



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