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!   

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* 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* 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prime, Intercontinental Doha The City

‘I challenge you to find a fault with this meal’ said Greg at the end of our evening at Prime and for once I didn’t have anything to say. It was faultless. It wasn’t our first visit to Prime, we have been a few times before and even though it was always enjoyable I wasn’t always 100% convinced that it was as amazing as some people claimed. On one visit I found the sides a little luke-warm and on another occasion we were the only people in there and there was a lack of atmosphere. However, after our visit on Thursday I can say I understand why people love it here so much. I emailed to reserve a table and specifically asked for a table next to the open kitchen as I love to watch the chef at work preparing the food. I was not disappointed, I think we got the best table in the restaurant.


We were greeted with a lovely glass of bubbly and the menus were presented to us. Then I was faced with a dilemma – foie gras or no foie gras. I opted for the former. Greg chose the short ribs as he has had them before and they are amazing. For our main course we chose a 300g fillet steak with creamed spinach, potato gratin and onion rings. After placing our order a lovely bread basket came and shortly afterwards an amuse bouche which was a lobster and quinoa salad. There were several pieces of chunky lobster nestled on micro leaves with a lovely, but not overpowering, citrus bisque dressing. What a wonderful start.


My foie gras, which I had asked to be fried, then arrived. It was a generous serving and was so soft and buttery with rich brioche and the tang of berries and a scattering of sea salt on top gave added texture. Greg was not disappointed with the short ribs, they were crispy on the outside and melted in your mouth. Every tiny crumb was devoured.


We were then brought a refreshing lemon sorbet palate cleanser.


There were lots of ‘wows’ when our steak arrived. Not only did it look amazing but it was so perfectly cooked and seasoned I almost cried with happiness. We had selected french steak knives and they just glided through with very little effort. The side dishes were also delicious and the egg yolk was a unusual accompaniment but was really nice too. By now we were getting full but it was so hard to leave such delicious food!

We were asked if we would like dessert but we were so full we chose not to. Refusing to take no for an answer we were kindly given a complimentary ‘melting chocolate sphere’ which was a lovely touch. Hot chocolate sauce was poured over the sphere and, as it melted, it revealed cream and berries. Luckily it wasn’t too rich or bitter and we managed to eat most of it!


The service throughout the evening was excellent, very friendly and good-humoured but professional. There was also a lovely ambiance as many of the tables were occupied and this created a buzz, I do like how the tables as spaced out. We paid about 700QR for our meal as we used an Entertainer voucher meaning one of our steaks was free (offer ends July 2016). I wouldn’t hesitate to go back to Prime or recommend it to people, it really was first class. At the end of our meal we asked to see a Tomahawk steak – I think this may be what we ordered when we go back as it looks incredible.

Prime - InterContinental The City Hotel Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato