Driving along the tree-lined road that leads into the sanctuary-like 14.2-million-square-foot Al Barari estate, you simply couldn’t feel further away from the bustling Emirates Road.
Setting foot in The Farm, the bright and modern spot isn’t quite what I’d expected (the name had me thinking of Agas), but if this is what a UAE farm looks like, then I like it. As we were ushered to our table, I was impressed by the stylish interiors and the inviting sofa and hammock seating options outside. And while at first we were concerned about our terrace table, (it is June!) the outside air-con combined with views over the pond and endless shrubbery, made for an altogether cooling experience. We were handed our iPad menus and given time to flick though the list of inviting options, while sipping a refreshing passion fruit and lemon mocktail – the Passion Breeze.
Starters were a spicy Tom Yam soup with prawns the size of our fist, and Crab cakes on a bed of salad with a slightly spicy seafood sauce. Both were a total success, but we were so tempted by the Grilled eggplant rolls that we’ll defo order them next time.
The mains were a little tougher to choose from, due to daily curry and pasta specials, and regular options like the Rib-eye steak and Corn fed chicken, which come with a selection of sides. In the end we chose the Salmon rose, a salmon fillet wrapped in endive and served with angel hair vegetables, and an extravagant Saffron prawn curry, which is a steal at Dh89, when you consider it boasts a caviar topping.
Chilled out and stuffed, we still managed to find room for a scoop of a sharp yet sweet Mixed wild berry sorbet and the creamy Baked cheesecake for dessert.
On the way out we popped into the in-house grocery, and picked up some of the fresh fruit and veg that’s grown at The Farm, taking a slice of the tranquil life back to the hustle and bustle of the city.
Restaurant The Farm
Location Al Barari, opposite The Villa, Emirates Road
Timing 7.30am-11pm, daily
Tel 04 392 5660
Tasty trio: Locally sourced fare
Not only does Nobu serve up some of the most delicious sushi in the city, but the Japanese Garden, which opened at the end of last year, means they grow some of their own produce. The peaceful garden, which doubles as an al fresco dining area, grows Japanese vegetables that are as fresh as can be when they hit your plate. In fact, we challenge you to find a better edamame bean in the city, the ones served here have been grown just metres away from the kitchen, and in imported Japanese soil.
Location Atlantis, The Palm Jumeirah
Timing 7pm-11.30pm, Sat-Wed; 7pm-12.30am, Thu-Fri
Tel 04 426 2626
The menu here is constantly changing, depending on the local fruit and veg they can source, so you know that whatever you eat in Baker and Spice will be in season and at its freshest. The deli-style restaurant is perfect for a light lunch with your girlfriends, and during the cooler months you can book a table on the outdoor terrace and enjoy the always spectacular Dubai Fountain as you dine. And as the menu is dictated by what the
local markets produce on a weekly basis, you can look forward to trying something new each time you go.
Location Downtown Burj Khalifa, Dubai
Timing 8am-11pm, daily
Tel 04 425 2240
Table 9 is the epitome of a homegrown restaurant, and was opened at the end of last year by former Gordon Ramsay protégés Scott Price and Nick Alvis. The food they artfully prepare is delicious, inventive and exciting – and their amuse-bouche of Potted plant with edible soil and cauliflower mousse, always gets people talking. The root vegetables they serve up are sourced locally in the Middle East, and as the restaurant grows, they are looking forward to using more of their ingredients from local farms.
Location The Hilton, Dubai Creek
Timing 6.30pm-11.30pm, Sun-Fri
Tel 04 227 1111