Since starting this blog I’ve discovered that Actually people know very little about Qatar, and certainly isn’t on a lot of people’s bucket lists so I thought I would share something I love about Doha – that’s all the great restaurant you can chose from in this town. From High End to Cheap Eats, Doha is full of unusual and interesting restaurants. So here are my favourite restaurants in Doha from A to Z! Continue reading Doha’s Best Restaurants from A-Z
Today we went for Saturday brunch at Nozumi. It was a more low key affair than Friday brunch and had a dedicated a la carte dim sum menu!
On arrival the staff were friendly and I was impressed with the modern interior overlooking the Persian Gulf! The waiter was happy to explain the menu set up and suggested we let him order for us which we were only too happy to do. When the food arrived he was able to knowledgable explain what we were eating.
The menu is laid out in vegetable, fish and meat dumplings but each serving brought out offered a little of everything.
I have been a big fan of Westin Doha since I first went to Hunters Grill and am always eager to try their offerings. I am not a huge desserts fan, as regular readers will know, so when I read about the afternoon tea buffet I was very excited. An opportunity to have afternoon tea where I could have more sandwiches and scones and less cake. My ideal afternoon tea; that’s why what we had was even more disappointing.
Today being Friday we embraced the glorious expat tradition that is Friday brunch. After being recommended by a colleague we device to head to la veranda at the Sheraton for an Italian themed brunch at La Veranda!
So how was it?
I’ll admit it first impressions left me wondering if we had made a mistake. The restaurant itself is not in the Sheraton hotel but in the fitness centre to the right of the main hotel. Walking in past the indoor tennis courts and people in gym clothes made for a weird atmosphere but once we were in the restaurant the atmosphere transformed!
Have you ever had a meal that you got so swept up in that you forget that perhaps pictures for your blog might have been a good idea? Well that is exactly what happened to be when we went to Masseria Il Frantoio.
We had travelled to Ostuni, Puglia with my in-laws for their Ruby wedding anniversary. As with all holidays I take, the first thing I do once we have booked is look for amazing foodie options nearby. As this was such a special anniversary this made this finding somewhere nice even more important and that is how I came to stumble on the website of the Masseria Il Frantoio.
Now in my opinion, Puglia is perhaps the most underrated part of Italy and this extends to people’s knowledge of its food and drink. People may have tried the signature local pasta called Orchiette but even then its not that common a fixture on menus. Also, it is quite a difficult pasta to cook so I bet most of those who have had it, weren’t that keen.
Now the Masseria specialises in local Puglian cuisine using fresh local ingredients. The Masseria also manufactures several varieties of olive oil, which is the only oil used in the cooking here. Before dinner we were given a tour of the olive press and grounds of the Masseria (also a hotel) which were absolutely stunning and got you salivating for dinner and added to the theatre of the evening.
Usually dinner takes place on the terrace of the Masseria, but unfortunately for us there were strong winds on the day we visited which made this impossible. The inside however still provided a lovely atmosphere.
Now the interesting thing about the Menu at the Masseria is you don’t know what you are having until you arrive and you eat what you are given. I love menus like this as it means that you try things that you would never normally dream of. We had Fried bread with a tomato sauce, fried courgette flowers, the most delicious swordfish I have ever tasted and desert accompanied by an olive oil shot to name but a few.
The dinner was also paired with three wines from the local area which were all lovely. The best however was the Rose, which is unusual for me to say as I am not usually a Rose fan. I mentioned this to our waitress and suddenly more of it appeared on a table. Maybe the wine also had something to do with the lack of pictures of the food!
The dinner cost 60 Euros for I forget how many courses and wine which in my opinion was a steal! It was definitely the most authentic Italian foodie experience I have ever had and I can’t wait to go back and actually get some pictures of the food this time!
This post was part of the #TravelLinkup
My parents were in town and afternoon tea has always been on my mum’s bucket list so we decided that this was the perfect opportunity. With so many great 5* hotels in Doha we had plenty of places to choose from. We settled on the Four Seasons as it was one of the few that could cater for diabetics!
We were shown to our table quickly, given a sofa in front of the large window, with plenty of room to manoeuvre the pram.
We opted for a mixture of Earl Grey and English Breakfast tea but there were plenty of more exotic teas on offer for the more adventurous. Our boring Britishness with tea did shine through!
The afternoon tea was plentiful with a combination of sandwiches including some of a more local flavour including Cucumber and Mint Labneh and Lamb pittas as well as more traditional sandwiches. This was accompanied by a tier of cakes, and my personal favourite – a tier of scones! The scones were accompanied by cream and jam but perhaps the best thing was the jam for the diabetic. This came out warm as the chef had freshly prepared it and it was truly delicious. Often when you go to places with a diabetic, their plates can look a little miserly by comparison. This was not the case with the Four Seasons who were committed to providing an outstanding experience for all.
Overall this was a great experience for everyone and something I would not hesitate in returning to do again.
Last night we had a rare baby-free evening so decided to check out Hunters Room and Grill at the Westin Doha. Steak, rare steak is one of my all time favourite foods so having nine months of being forced to eat my steak well done, I was desperate for a ‘properly’ cooked steak.
We started at the bar for some pre dinner cocktails. The theme of many of their signature cocktails seems to be the element of grilled fruit. I ordered the Grilled Citrus Margarita while Wandermust Daddy ordered the Grilled Peach Whisky Sour which he said was one of the best whisky sours he has ever had. The atmosphere was great, especially with the live saxophonist.
The setting of the Hunters Room, is split into two from the non smoking and smoking area. The smoking area is set in a bright indoor garden and the non-smoking in a more traditional dark NY steakhouse fashion. Both lovely, depending on the kind of atmosphere you are after. As a rare romantic night out and being non-smokers we chose to sit in the more traditional area.
We started with sourdough bread with three flavoured butters including strawberry and sumac. Both of which were delicious. We then opted for the tomahawk steak which comes with three sides (our choice was asparagus, button mushrooms and confit potatoes). All of which were outstanding. The worry with a steakhouse is always whether they will be able to cook the steak correctly. Hunters did not disappoint with a perfectly cooked rare steak throughout! The portions were large so we regretted having starters – the crab cakes and Mediterranean Lobster – (only because it meant we had to share a pudding – creme brûlée). Each course was outstanding, and we can’t wait to return to try more.
On top of the outstanding food, the service has to be mentioned. The restaurant manager is affable and visible at all times running a tight ship and the waiters have obviously been trained to fine dining standards. A particular shout out goes to our waitress Anna who was attentive and very knowledgable about the menu.
We can’t wait to return to try more restaurants at the Westin if this is a standard and have a feeling this may become our go-to steakhouse in Doha!
Have you been to Hunters Room and Grill – what did you think?
As we approached gymkhana in Souq waqif last night, it dawned on me that we had never set foot inside one of the many boutique hotels in Souq waqif! I wasn’t sure what to expect but if there instagram page was anything to go by we were in for a treat.
When we entered we were greeted warmly and taken to a table with two large wicker chairs and a baby chair quickly followed. The decor makes it feel like you are in an old colonial hotel. Beautiful and impeccable.
The menus were brought and we decided to start with the gymkhana chaat. An unusual mix of paneer, chickpeas and pomegranate on a spiced biscuit base. It was very unusual but we loved the unique flavour. It was the closest thing we have had to our experience at Michelin starred Indian restaurant in London, Tamarind!
For mains we thought we’d try something traditional and something more unusual so we opted for the home style chicken curry and the ghee roasted pepper mutton. The curry tasted similar to a dhansak minus the lentils, with sweet and sour notes. Absolutely delicious! While the lamb was pulled with a spicy kick! Neither was greasy and both packed with flavour.
We finished with a chai creme brûlée which was spiced and rich and perfect for sharing.
This is definitely my new favourite curry spot in Doha and I can’t wait to try more. But perhaps my favourite thing about gymkhana was exceptional service! It was flawless from start to finish. I feel like I’ve been missing g out not trying the boutique hotels before and definitely want to explore them more.
The dinner with lassi and water cost around 300qar!
Have you been to gymkhana? What did you think
All week I had been looking forward to a weekend staycation at the four seasons. Then one look at this weeks weather made me change my mind … rain and thunderstorms. Not exactly perfect weather for a beach break. So postponing our break until the following week we were at a loss at what to do with our rainy Doha weekend. I looked in our entertainer app for inspiration when I saw for this month only there was a 2 for 1 brunch offer at hwang – problem solved!
The pre arrival I have to admit wasn’t great. It took me several attempts at calling before someone answered and then several follow up calls about our reservation.
Need I have worried? Absolutely not! Our table was ready on arrival in a lovely spot and staff were only to happy to help and explain the menu.
The concept of yum cha is small plates of food almost tapas style served to you at the table unlike most brunches in Doha which are served buffet style. I really like this as with the baby it meant we could still enjoy eating together without having to do a relay for food.
The menu is all south East Asian food and is split into sections of soups, hot and cold appetisers, steamed, wok, grilled, curries, rice and noodles, vegetables and desserts. We opted for the soft drink option. What I loved was the range of mocktails offered rather than just soft drinks. I loved the nohito while wandermust daddy loved the jasmine ice tea. I’d love to go back and try their actual cocktail range!
We started with soups while we perished the full extent of the menu. I had the Laksa which was delicious while wandermust daddy ordered the tom Kha ghai. By his own admission he is not a soup fan but this he loved. I think if it hasn’t been the start of the meal he may have ordered a second portion.
Next we tried the appetisers. We both loved the lettuce cup and the green mango salad which was particularly refreshing.
For hot appetisers we ordered the crispy wasabi prawns and the Vietnamese sping rolls. The crispy prawns weren’t particularly crispy but were very tasty.
My personal favourite course was the steamed. I loved the dim sum but our favourite was three steamed grouper which was surprisingly flavourful.
Next we selected from the grilled sections. We loved the grilled satay sticks. I liked the beef and wandermust daddy preferred the chicken. We were also fans of the fruity tofu which was a surprisingly mix.
At this point we were pretty full but determined to try more obviously for review purposes. For mains we tried he king po, the jungle curry and the BBQ chicken. We couldn’t face the rice as we were too full but loved the asparagus and broccoli sides!
We had dessert to say we tried it. I’m personally not a fan of Asian desserts. I had the chilli chocolate lava cake which was nice but we agreed the best was coconut tapioca.
So would we go again? Absolutely! We loved the small plates which allowed us to try a brill range of food and loved he fact that it was served rather than buffet style. The staff were excellent and the decor lovely. I think this might become our go to whenever we are hankering south East Asian food!
The cost for the soft drinks package was 223qar and was 2 for 1 in the entertainer app. Even for full price I think this is a great value brunch.
I’d never before been to the intercon the city but after our experience at Hwang I’m keen to try some of their other offerings!
Have you been to the yum cha brunch? What did you think?
There are loads of great restaurants in souq waqif to eat at but one of my favourites is Parisa, an Iranian restaurant.
So why do I love it?
I think this has to be the most opulent restaurant in the souq. From the moment you enter through the mirrored corridor you are transported somewhere else. The mirrored ceiling, the mural walls and the beautiful foundation in the center make this a really stunning setting.
The staff are always attentive and willing to bring out more bread even after I Have consumed my own body weight in the stuff! They are also really friendly and great with small talk and recommendations.
You can’t go wrong with a kebab but Parisa excels at them. We love getting the sharing platter so we can try them all as I can never decide which one to order!
I also love their sweet walnut and pomegranate chicken stew which is like nothing else I have ever eaten.
But the star of the show is their rice. They do different kinds, saffron and dill being my favourites. It is truly the fluffiest rice I have ever tasted.
In the evening there are usually a couple of musicians playing traditional music which really adds to the ambiance.
I usually haven’t left nearly enough room for pudding but I always managed to force myself to have one. I particularly love the pistachio ice cream with saffron biscuits
When to go
Parissa is great all year round but can’t be beaten when it’s hot and you need interior seating. But in truth go anytime you won’t be disappointed!