October signals the start of the “season” in Doha – new restaurant openings, showcasing of new menus and more. This is the time to break out of your dining rut and try something new or perhaps revisit a place you haven’t been to for some time. And believe me, there is plenty to try…
As an addendum to this regular post, you should also read my update on the new openings in Doha in coming months – many in October. Stay tuned for reviews and sneak peeks!
I am the first to admit I have been a harsh critic of this restaurant – I felt it often didn’t live up to the hype, pedigree and stunning location. But the chef seems to have been given a more honed brief and it doesn’t seem the menu is trying to be “all things to all people” anymore. Gone are the dumplings and huge menu and say hello to a new purpose.
There is a new focus on Thai and Vietnamese flavors and the results are promising. at a recent unveiling of the new menu I loved the tart scallop ceviche with the crunch of water chestnuts and a sushi roll stuffed with buttery Wagyu as well as juicy and gamey lamb cutlets with a creamy Panang curry sauce.
Must order: The lamb cutlets and any of the sushi.
Everyone’s favorite cafe is not resting on its laurels and has revamped its menu. While it continues to have the usual eggs, flatbreads and sandwiches, you can also expect a few surprises. The Pioneer burger is a savory sensation of ground Angus beef, beef cheese and smoked beef bacon. the best thing about the burger is the bun – soft but doesn’t fall apart. While breakfast is where it gets more creative – the Deep Blue eggs Benedict is a soft crab cake topped with avo and a home made hashbrown.
Another surprise is the sweet meets savory pancake stack – two poached eggs, buttermilk pancakes, smoked cured beef bacon, caramelized banana, honeycomb butter, maple syrup, strawberry jam. Sigh.
Must order: The Asian fusion flatbread and the Mexican eggs.
It’s not often restaurants outside of the Doha vicinity are showcased. I’m also guilty of recommending and visiting places in the West Bay/The Pearl nexus. This tiny specialty cafe in Al Wakra is worth a visit in you live that way or are in the hood. A short and sharp menu of cakes and coffees, both hot and cold.
Throw in an industrial chic interior, friendly staff and decent parking – I’m a fan! I’m told it’s the brainchild of a group of Qatar Uni students and a Doha-city location is in the works.
Must order: The cheesecake cold coffee and the lush honey cake.
Not new, but an old favorite at the Doha Marriott worth another look and then some. I had dinner here a couple of weeks ago with a friend and had to ask myself why I didn’t go more often. It’s juts…grown-up.
This place is pure class – from the leather wing back chairs to the perfectly attired service team and of course, the food. There are few places that can do a steak as well as JWs – cooked to perfection and the sides are worth the visit alone. They have a new express lunch menu if you want something fast and delicious.
Must order: Start the a half dozen of the Oysters Rockerfeller (creamy spinach gooeyness and a serving of the crunchy Crab Louis salad and then dive head first into the 15 ounce rib eye.
A short and sharp list this month but full of good eats and good value for all budgets. Have a delicious month and roll on winter!