Nozomi, Marsa Malaz

For a dumpling lover, the question ‘shall we just bring you all the dumplings on the menu?’is music to my ears. Yesterday was our first visit to Nozomi and we arrived rather late and a bit wet due to the heavy rains that had hit Doha. For me dumplings are a bit of a comfort food, so it was nice to sit inside a lovely restaurant with wonderful views over the Arabian Gulf watching the rain fall.


The Saturday brunch is a very simple concept; on your table there are a selection of sauces and you chose which dumplings / buns you would like. You can then reorder as many times as you wish. The dumplings and buns are served in 3’s and brought out in stages with each dish expertly explained by the wonderful staff.


We decided to try all of the seafood and meat dumplings then choose our favourites. Each dish was freshly cooked to order and were delicious.


Our favourite dishes were the sweet Kobe beef bun which was like pulled beef with a hint of ginger, the duck rolls with spring vegetables and the deep-fried black cod dumplings which were a perfect balance of flavor with a great hit of salt.

There are three choices of sweet dumplings for dessert. We opted for the white and milk chocolate with a chocolate orange dipping sauce. They looked very festive when they arrived and each one was a parcel of chocolate heaven and devoured in one bite.

 We enviously watched another table eating  the berry and apple dumplings and we decided we had room for more so ordered those too. Little bite sized, deep-fried, fruity dumplings with a cool vanilla ice cream. Perfect.

 We absolutely loved our first visit to Nozomi. In a city where customer service is sometimes a letdown, the service here was spot on. The staff were warm, friendly and knowledgeable so credit to them. If you love dumplings, good service and a lovely view you don’t want to miss this. I enjoyed it so much I would happily drive to the Pearl on a Saturday to go again and that for me is saying something!

The recently launched Kozutsumi Saturday Brunch at Nozomi is priced at 120QR pp and for that you can eat unlimited savoury and sweet dumplings and buns.  The package also includes water and soft drinks. Book now for Saturday! (40355089)

Nozomi Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Bentley’s Grill, Radisson Blu

As Greg will confirm I spent many hours reading reviews of places I may never go and pouring over menus selecting dishes I’ll probably never eat. It’s the same when I’m invited to a restaurant. I’ll do some research by reading previous reviews to get a feel for the place. So, when I was invited to Bentley’s, I did some research and found overwhelmingly positive feedback about the food and service. One referred to the ‘wacky’ interior which had my interest! On arrival instead of ‘wacky’ interior I found a beautifully designed restaurant reminiscent of a dining room in a Scottish castle I’d been to many years ago. Wonderful heavy leather chairs, crisp table cloths, candles, roses and a fantastic open kitchen. The restaurant probably only seats 30-40 people which makes it feel cosy, I loved it.

We were given a warm welcome, shown to our table and handed menus. It was so tough to choose a starter!


I opted for the lobster cocktail (I have recently discovered a love of seafood) and Greg chose crab cakes. Whilst waiting for our starters we were brought an amuse bouche. A deep fried oyster with a ‘volcano sauce’ which was absolutely delicious and the sauce got our taste buds singing!


Shortly afterwards our starters arrived. My lobster cocktail was outstanding. Tender chunks of lobster with sweet mango and creamy avocado in a light citrus mayonnaise. It is by far one of the nicest dishes I’ve eaten this year and I’d go back for that dish alone. I was sad when it ended. Greg’s crab cakes were equally good. Light, fine, crispy breadcrumbs with a subtle crab flavour and a wonderfully sharp creme fraiche. A perfect start.


When we ordered our mains we both opted for steak and I asked what the most popular choice was. We were told the wagyu tenderloin  was the most popular so I chose that and, for comparison, Greg chose the USDA prime graded.


When the steaks arrived they were very well presented, cooked medium rare as requested and seasoned. The vegetables were lovely and crunchy and the hash brown was a perfect accompaniment along with the onion rings in a tempura style batter. We tried each other’s steaks and I felt the wagyu was a little sweeter and, as expected, had more marbelling than the USDA Prime but both were fantastic.


We were both very full but decided (in the interests of a full review!) to check out the dessert menu.

Firstly were brought a dessert teaser. A little shot glass filled with sweet berries and a white chocolate and whiskey sauce. I was a little reluctant to try this as I detest whiskey but Greg assured me it wasn’t too strong. He was right. It was a lovely sweet shot of tart berries and creamy chocolate which, even if you don’t like dessert, was a nice sweet way to end the meal.

We decided to share the molten chocolate cake which, when it arrived, lived up to its name. Rich chocolate, liquid fondant filling with a simple vanilla ice cream to cut through the richness. Definitely a dish to choose if you love chocolate!

By now we were happily full and had enjoyed a lovely evening. The staff throughout the evening were superb, they were friendly and informative. We went on a Monday night and about 1/3 of the tables were occupied. I watched closely at the food and service other tables were receiving and the table next to us described their meal as ‘outstanding’ and ‘absolutely delicious’ and on another table the waitress spent a few minutes talking through the different grades of beef to two gentleman diners who were not able to read the menu well. It was clear we weren’t getting special treatment.

I do have two pieces of constructive feedback. Firstly, it would be nice to have the rolls in the bread basket warm, however this is only my personal preference. Secondly, as mentioned, I loved the interior of the restaurant but it would be nice if the blinds on the windows which overlook the restaurants downstairs were fully closed to maintain the cosiness of Bentley’s. Two very minor things. Overall I’d really recommend Bentley’s for date night, a meal with family and friends or colleagues.

They are also running this promotion


** As mentioned I was a guest of the Radisson Blu on this occasion. All photographs and opinions are my own **

Bentley's Grill - Radisson Blu Hotel Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Monday Prime Club, Intercontinental Doha the City

Prime is one of my favourite Doha restaurants, its one of the few places I have rated 5/5 on Zomato, so when I was invited to try Monday Prime Club it was an offer I couldn’t refuse despite it being a school night. When we arrived at Prime we were intercepted by the wonderful Ally and directed to Strata where we chose drinks and took in the amazing view. Soon, other people from our group arrived and we had an hour or so chatting over drinks and delicious canapes. This was a great way to break the ice as we didn’t know any of the other diners so it was nice and informal rather than going straight to our table.


We were then taken into Prime and the large table had been beautifully arranged with individual place settings, the menu and a lovely personalised gift. Ally explained the night – 6 courses of food, wine pairings and a surprise ‘dessert extravaganza’. The wine had been decanted and so after each pairing we were challenged to guess the type of wine and its country. I scored 1/8 because I correctly guessed identified Argentina. This was a really nice touch as it was lighthearted and fun. Executive Chef Emmanuel also spoke to us about the ingredients, all personally selected and ordered in just for this menu and reflecting the products of the season.


The food theatre began with our first course of smoked salmon which was presented in a glass cloche. Once the lid was removed the smoke rose up releasing a wonderful aroma. It was perfect balance of flavours and the buttery bread was a great match. Our whole table went silent (and we’d been talking a lot!).


We then were served bouillabaisse, the bowl arrived on our table with a selection of rock fish and saffron then a delicious, deep, seafood soup was poured into the bowl out of a tea pot. Lots of ‘wows’ all around. It was velvety smooth, beautifully delicate yet packed with flavour. Chef advised that we add the rouille onto the croutons and place into the soup to absorb the flavour this worked wonderfully well. I think it may well be the best soup I have ever tasted.


Next to arrive was the guinea fowl which is a meat I love but my favourite element of the dish was the small cabbage stuffed with duck confit. I whispered to Greg it was like a mini Christmas dinner but luckily one of the other diners announced it reminded him of Thanksgiving so we were all thinking along the same tracks! Even the chef described it as ‘comfort food’ now winter has arrived in Doha.


Ally then appeared at our table with a knife selection for the venison. I love how they do this in Prime as they talk you through the knives and advise which would be best based on your cut of meat. I chose a pepper tree wood which smelt amazing, if anyone had been watching they would have thought we were crazy all sat sniffing our knives! 


The sniffing was interrupted by the arrival of the venison. Tender, meaty with a touch of sweetness from the chestnuts and the textures with the crunch of veg and silky smooth celeriac puree were heavenly.


By now we had eaten several courses and next to arrive was the goats cheese ice cream with tomato foam and rosemary biscuits. The presentation was wonderful as it was served in a little glass jar along with mini baster of olive oil. For me this dish was a little rich as I am not a fan of tomato based sauces though the goats cheese ice cream was lovely and not strong. My fellow diners devoured it in a few spoonfuls. 

We were then told to get our cameras for the ‘dessert extravaganza’ and we were led into the private dining area. What was to follow was insanely good. Chef Emmanuel and his team had set out 2 huge chocolate shells on a large marble slab and then, for the next 4 minutes, proceeded to create a work of art using chocolate sauce, fruit and cream ending with the lights being turned out and a spectacular flambe show. It was such fun and incredible to watch a ‘blank canvas’ turn into something that looked so spectacular. It was great to then sit as a group and dig in with spoons to try everything laid out in front of us. It was a chocoholics dream. I have never experienced anything like it before and the desserts were delicious, especially the molten lava chocolate cake with chilli, which definitely had a bit of a kick.

By now it was past my bedtime and we headed home, while others went to Al Jalsa garden to end their night. I can’t explain how good the food was, I don’t think my photographs can do it justice unfortunately. If you are a lover of fine dining with paired with perfectly selected wines this is a night you must not miss. By the end of the evening  we had eaten incredible food, drunk wonderful wines and spent a few hours in the company of a group of people we’d never met before but made the night such fun. Of course, non of this would have been possible without the brilliant team at Prime and the Intercon. Though it was our first experience of Prime Club there were other people around the table who had been several times and one person who was there for the sixth time so that seems to indicate what a special night it is, people coming back again and again. You are also guaranteed a difference experience each time so you never know what to expect! 

 

If you are a lover of fine dining, a real foodie or have a real foodie in your life and you want to treat yourself / them this would be perfect. The next Monday Prime Club is on December 5th, places are strictly limited to 10 people so make sure you book in advance (📞40158888). Go, I assure you it will be a meal you will remember for a long time to come. Monday Prime Club is priced at 900QR inclusive of wine pairings and 650QR without.

This is a video clip of how dessert was created. You have to agree it’s fantastic!   

​​
  ​


* Please note that on this occasion I was a guest of Prime however as always all opinions, photographs and even the videos are my own*