A couple of weekends ago The Husband and I popped up to Atlantis to check out the new Gordon Ramsey offering in Dubai, Bread Street Kitchen. Ramsey’s latest restaurant is imported from London as one in a series of laid back, brasserie type dining establishments, the other outlets being Singapore and Hong Kong.
Venue: Bread Street Kitchen
Location: Atlantis, Palm Jumeirah
Booking: Atlantis has a central reservations booking system for all restaurants, whilst there were no problems in making this particular booking I do get irritated by the constant questions; have you dined with us before? Are you aware of the dress code? Etc. This isn’t purely confined to Atlantis, a lot of Dubai hotels have this annoying habit. Just let me give you my name and time I want to book and we’re done, thank you very much.
Welcome at the venue: We were quite early and there were several staff waiting to greet us at the entrance.
Look & Feel: The vibe of the restaurant is a warm and urban. The space is vast but due to the décor and table placement it doesn’t feel too sparse, even with relatively few people inside. It did however, feel slightly bland, as if the concept has been transplanted from London to Dubai but without the same kind of atmosphere. There is an outside terrace which was pleasant, if you can ignore the garish pink and green Atlantis walls.
Service: Service on the whole was excellent. There were a couple of minor mishaps, initially we asked if we could have a table outside, not having specified that when we booked. That was no problem which was great and we were asked if we’d like to sit at the bar for a drink first. The hostess advised there was an outside bar so we opted to try it out. After being sat at the bar for a while with no service I asked the bar tender if we could see the drinks menu when he informed us that this bar was soft drinks only which wasn’t really what we were looking for. Luckily the restaurant manager came over and rectified the situation and quickly produced the drinks menu. Later on when we asked for some tea and coffee I was given the strangest chamomile tea I’ve ever had. It turned out to have been over brewed and it was swiftly replaced so no issues there. The restaurant had only been open for 5 days when we visited and with this in mind I think the service was totally satisfactory.
Food: To start The Husband had tomato and raspberry gazpacho soup and I had the burrata and tomato salad. Both were excellent although I think the soup was the winner, a beautiful combination of flavours that worked incredibly well on a warm evening. For main course we shared the beef wellington. This is the signature dish of the restaurant and it shows, it was absolutely delicious. The Husband is still raving about it now which gives you some idea of how good it was. We shared a dessert which was an incredibly light cheesecake, perfect after a heavier main course.
Ambiance: Unfortunately, I think this is where Bread Street Kitchen comes unstuck. Despite the wonderful food, this restaurant is located in one of the biggest hotels in Dubai and it’s not one of my favourite hotels either. There’s nothing wrong with Atlantis per se, it’s just got that theme park vibe about it which turns me cold. If you’ve got kids or you’re on holiday it’s probably perfect, as neither of those applies to us it’s really not somewhere I want to hang out. In the restaurant we were surrounded by families enjoying their holiday which is absolutely fine if you’re in a similar situation but since we weren’t and it was a Friday night I personally would have preferred something a little more up market. That said, it is billed as a casual restaurant so perhaps it’s our fault for heading up there on a weekend night.
Overall verdict: If you’re in the area – i.e. staying at Atlantis or on the Palm elsewhere – then I would definitely check this restaurant out. The food is fantastic and absolutely worth a visit. If you’re not anywhere near then I’d be tempted to give it a miss but more to do with the general atmosphere of Atlantis than anything inherently wrong with Bread Street Kitchen. I’d give it a 7/10, the food was excellent and service good, it’s just lacking any real ‘wow’ factor to make a second trip worthwhile.
N.B The Husband disagrees and wants to go back just for the beef Wellington.