I called it early last year – Saturday IS the new Friday when it comes brunch.
More venues around Doha are offering a more relaxed and refined Saturday brunch, giving those of us who would rather lay around in our stretchy pants watching Netflix on Fridays a chance to be social.
I’ve covered a couple of these brunches listed below in my post about this trend late last year but we have some new players to add to the list.
First off the bat is the always excellent JWs Steakhouse at Doha Marriott. Their Saturday bunch is luxurious yet also relaxed. An edited highlights version of their wider menu, you can expect plump crab cakes, a delightfully retro prawn cocktail (complete with Mary Rose sauce) and an addictive burger.
At QR390 including a comprehensive selection of cocktails, wine and beer (QR250 for soft drinks), this is as suitable for a big group as it is for two people. And who doesn’t love those leather chairs?
The folks over at W Doha know a good trend when they see one. They have started a casual Saturday brunch to rival their Friday extravaganzas. Hosted in their terrace bar Wahm, it runs from 12pm to 5pm (so you can sliiiiiide gracefully into happy hour) and is a very pocket friendly QR275 including drinks.
Expect grills, burgers and hotdogs coupled with the hotel’s signature fun atmosphere and service. My advice is to check this one out with a bunch of friends before it gets too warm.
Here’s a sleeper hit for you. La Veranda at the iconic Sheraton Doha is serving an Italian style buffet every Saturday. With arguably one of the best positions in the city overlooking the Corniche, this is an underrated choice. Brunch is every Friday and Saturday from 12.30pm to 4pm and the spread includes live pasta cooking stations, pizza and seafood. the price is QR350 soft drinks, QR450 house beverages and QR 550 sparkling wine. a little higher than most but worth it for the experience. An insider tip from me, expect to see some new things from this hotel in coming months.
It was once a fine dining restaurant with stiff tablecloths and a confused identity but in true style, La Mer at the Ritz Carlton has reinvented itself as a French bistro. Their Saturday brunch starts at a very civilized 11.30am and offers a Parisian inspired a la carte menu. This is on my must-visit list.
Shangri-la Doha’s excellent Shanghai Club has started a Dim Sum Brunch every Saturday and what a great experience this is. With live noodle making and a selection of their intricate and authentic dumplings, I should be here more often.
With a view to die for and a menu that also includes the aforementioned noodles and a selection of their mains, prices start from QR238. If you are a member of their loyalty scheme Golden Circle, you can get a handy 20 percent off your dining bill.
If you can deal with a trek to my hood, the Saturday brunch menu at the underrated Paper Moon Doha is short and very sweet. With a focused menu offering eggs, french toast and crepes as well as freshly baked pastries, this is a scaled down but wallet friendly a la carte offering.
Nozomi Doha‘s Saturday brunch is taking off in leaps and bounds, especially with groups. Their dumpling brunch every Saturday is a good way to sample their hospitality. but be warned, it’s ALL dumplings. so you have to love these little parcels of goodness to appreciate it. at QR120 for an unlimited selection of 20 dumplings, sweet and savory as well as water and soft drinks is hard to beat.
Seriously people, I don’t know what is wrong with you if you haven’t tried El Faro at the Marsa Malasz’s Saturday brunch. It has a funky, industrial vibe and some seriously good Spanish food. Their Saturday offering is a menu of unlimited tapas and paella plus desserts. Their patatas bravas is something to behold – spicy and moreish. I can also vouch for their paella, served at the table, with the proper crispy base. It’s QR240 per person, including soft drinks or QR380 per person, including wine, killer sangria, beer and cocktails. This is one you need to make time for a nap after.
Hakkasan Doha is still offering its Taste of Hakkasan men every Saturday from 12.30pm. At QR168 per person including tea, water and soft drinks or QR278 including a half bottle of sparkling wine, it’s worth it for the signature dim sum platter alone (as well as the lovely terrace and on-point staff).
I’m sure more restaurants at all ends of the spectrum will jump on board the Saturday Brunch Express after Ramadan. In the interim, stay classy!
*Here’s the bit where I say I was a guest of the restaurants I talk about above. I can say, I was a guest of the Doha Marriott (and ate my weight in the mini burgers) and have previously been a guest of all the restaurants mentioned above.