After passing by VIDA hotel several times in Downtown, I finally manage to be in here and unexpectedly for an Iftar. I am glad I was here as it was a lovely experience eating at this wonderful restaurant 3in1 located inside VIDA Hotel. For their Iftar buffet it was an extensive line up of International and Arabic dishes along with some good quality arabic desserts. The Iftar buffet is priced at Dhs 170 per adult where kids would pay only half the price.
The interior was beautiful with comfortable seatings. I love those chairs that gives me a nice back support as well as hand rest. They had candles on every table. It is a perfect place for a romantic dinner. Quite and peaceful. Infact, you actually feel you are having Iftar at home. Most importantly you only find good quality food in here.
For the drinks they had fresh juices such as apple / orange and as ramadan drinks they had Jallab, tamarind, laban and one drink which I don’t see often is the Qamardeen. Infact I enjoyed the Qamardeen the most from their ramadan drinks. Just 5 mins before Iftar we were hovering around their dates and nuts stand. If you are full of nuts then this is the best place for you to come and get over your cravings. You will find all types of them including pecans, cashews, pine nuts, pistachios, peanuts, Almonds, walnuts, hazel nuts..etc. Then you have this Hot Mezzeh space where you can choose some fatayers with filling such as lamb or spinach and manakish with cheese or zaater which they would readily heat for you in their furnace.
Then they have this wide collection of cold mezzeh which includes hummus, mouthabel, muhammara, mousaka, loubieh bil zeit, babaganoug, stuffed vine leaves, labneh with mint, zaatar and rocca salad, fattoush, tabbouleh. One of my favourite from here was a purplish beetroot salad(not sure of the exact name but definitely the content was beetroot). In other words you won’t miss any of your cold Mezzeh favourites here. They do have a nice big collection to keep you happy and most importantly they all tasted genuine.
For the maincourse they had a different format which I haven’t seen before for a buffet. They have a pre set menu which they would bring to your table once you are ready for maincourse. For today they had Mix Grill, Chicken Molokeya, and Daud Pasha as the special of the night. From the mix grill I enjoyed the sheesh taouk and Lamb chops. I was having for the first time the Chicken Molokeya and to me it was more of a soup. With a sore throat I was very happy having the hot chicken Molokeya. It was nice too, the leaves as well as the tender chicken inside it came out great.
The arabic desserts were my favourite part here. They had some of the best quality arabic desserts. Like I’ve tried Katayef from many other places but this one is the best I could enjoy in taste. Sometimes they are either too hard or cold but this one was just perfectly made. I love their katayef with cream filling in it. I could only look at the assorted mammoul too full by the time I reached here. Their mafrooka was another special. Normally you don’t get this quality until you visit an authentic arabic sweet shop and I am very impressed for a buffet they did have some true quality dessert and it was not just added for the namesake 😉
Besides the arabic dessert they did have some international desserts. Some nice red velvet cakes, carrot cakes etc. Their sago pudding was very good. There were many more but these are some of the interesting ones I can remember. You could scoop yourself an ice cream. Infact more than the ice cream I was in the love with their ice cream cones :D. The date pudding was sticking to each other so I just didn’t bother to dig in further. Have already had too much desserts for the day.
This is definitely a restaurant you must try. I’ve not been here otherwise. Not sure how their menu looks after Iftar but looking at their standards I doubt if they can ever be disappointing. If you are looking for some nice Iftar buffet then this is definitely worth a visit.
VIDA DOWNTOWN website: http://www.vida-hotels.com/Home.aspx
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