5-Star Surf & Turf
Yes, Friday brunches are indeed an artform if you can manage them correctly, but from what I’ve experienced there is very little to make the evening as epic as the afternoon…if you make it that far.
I’ve attended several and while I do not count myself as a ‘brunching expert’, I do believe that I’m getting better at it. My main thought about a Friday brunch is, “what are we going to do after?” as there never really seems to be anything that sounds like a good idea.
This is where the St. Regis Abu Dhabi has somehow heard my cry and answered strongly by introducing ‘Steak and Sushi’, a Thursday night brunch.
Meat me on the terrace
Taking place on the Terrace, this evening brunch is the perfect answer to the take-the-bull-by-the-horns Friday experience (if you’ll pardon the expression). Serving up a fabulous array of meats sourced from around the world, you’ll be hard pressed to find a better cut of steak the following morning anywhere.
Beef, chicken, lamb, cured meats, pâté, roulades, and terrines make up the bulk of the terrain footed selections, while you still have a completely dedicated all you can eat Sushi station that will satisfy even the most finicky of sushi fans in that ever popular combination of ‘Surf and Turf’.
I started with a mixed appetizer plate to partake in the broadest spectrum of options available since you can’t decide on just one. My canapé selections consisted of beef pastrami, beef salami, spicy Italian style meatballs, and a single slice each of mushroom bruschetta and of tomato.
Slices of Heaven
Getting underway with the appetizers is a great way to prime the system. For the amount of time that I sat at my table trying to mentally size up everything that was on offer, my stomach was actually starting to feel hungry even though I had been dining for just under half an hour.
The selections for my main course were difficult as the extensive selection could be overwhelming to some. But like the appetizers, I opted to take it slow at first and revisit with my favored selections after a good run had been made to sample it all.
First and foremost, I certainly wasn’t going to pass up the Parmesan Crusted Beef with Peppercorn sauce. Chef delicately carved a slice and placed it on my plate. I also selected a couple of slices of the beef tenderloin and chicken roulade. For my selection of a side it was an easy choice of roasted potatoes wrapped with bacon.
The traveling meat cart
But the real star of the evening was the Picanha, which was brought around special by a traveling chef and his meat cart.
Hailing from Brazil, the picanha is the cut of meat prized most. In Brazil the fat is not removed from the cut prior to cooking, but rather trimmed away after it is finished. Although not the most widely known cut of beef, it will certainly make you wonder what else you’ve been missing by not visiting your local Brazilian steakhouse.
Traditionally in Brazil, picanha is skewered onto a sword, or skewer nowadays, and grilled and then sliced off in bite-size morsels. The St. Regis did not disappoint, serving it exactly this way to me. Delicate to the touch and abounding in flavor thanks to the fat not being removed until after, the picanha was the hidden gem of the night. It was something that they didn’t tell me about upon arriving, but I’m giving you fair notice…wait for the opportunity, you won’t be disappointed.
No ‘food coma’?
If you’ve made it to desert, then you’re doing well. A brunch such as this will certainly make the meat sweats a possiblilty and what’s even more dangerous is the ever-popular ‘food coma’. But if not, then dessert will continue to impress.
The counter isn’t long, but as with most things, it’s not about quantity, it’s about quality. I tried the lot,
or as many as I could. Coffee opera cake, hazelnut cake, red velvet mousse, chocolate mud cake, regular opera cake, and a blueberry mousse cake made a very colorful and satisfying regimented circle on my dessert plate.
By the end of the brunch, the live music had started up in the
bar next door. Eager to finally be able to continue the evening after a brunch, we headed over and found a table right up front.
My drink of choice for the night came from the 'Forgotten Stories' list of choices as I went with the 'New York 1970'. A nice martini of Remy Martin cognac, port wine, caster sugar, lemon juice and fresh raspberries.
As the night went on, we found that the St. Regis had indeed made that leap from brunch to ‘a night out’. And the best part is, it’ll give you two whole days to recover before you return to the drab office cafeteria.
St. Regis Abu Dhabi – The Terrace on the Corniche
Every Thursday, 7pm-11pm
Phone: 02-694-4553 / Email: St. Regis Restaurant Reservations
*Price is subject to change without notice.