Fashionable Italian Dining
Giorgio Armani is a symbol of style and a visionary, and he made sure that he reflected his character in his hotel, service and food. As a result, Armani Ristorante is pure, elegant and stylish, which makes it perfect for a romantic dinner.
White furniture is an indication of high standard. Using this color in any place makes it look modern and edgy, and this is exactly how Armani Ristorante would be described. Diners will undoubtedly enjoy the luxurious and comfortable embellishment of the white and pastel furnished Italian restaurant, designed by Armani Casa.
Located on the same floor as the lobby, Armani Ristorante displays a fine and elegant reflection of the Armani hotel. The restaurant oversees the great fountain of Dubai Mall, so diners can enjoy the dancing fountain in addition to their superb meal.
The restaurant manager, along with his team, greets the diners at the door and guides them to the reserved table. Tables and seating are all round. In fact, everything in the restaurant is circle-shaped, which makes it easier for the waitresses to serve diners without bothering them.
The cooking is done in a glass kitchen that can be seen from almost every part of the restaurant. The cooking team works together calmly and professionally to deliver high quality cuisine. The kitchen parade is very entertaining, as it feels like watching a live cooking show.
The restaurant is armed with Italian chefs — mostly from central Italy and a few from the north. The menu changes according to the season’s harvest, but the signature dishes stay the same year round.
Armani Ristorante draws on the rich gastronomic traditions of authentic Italian cuisine. The menu offers a mix of traditional and modern dishes that takes the diner in an adventure of exploring new horizons. The food is served in an attractive, elegant and mouthwatering fashion.
Arab News was lucky to visit Armani Ristorante during the truffle season where every presented dish contained black or white truffle.
As soon as we were seated, the chef sent a small portion of complimentary amuse-bouche soup, which was made with chicken, agnolotti (a kind of ravioli), cherry tomato and black truffle.
For appetizers, the restaurant serves a variety of cold dishes including crab meat salad with scampi, tomato and sweet peas. They also offer foie gras and pistachio terrine, pumpkin compote and beetroot.
Then came a wonderfully looking plate of risotto ai porcini e tartufo di Norcia, which is smooth, white risotto topped with codfish paste. This dish was beautifully seasoned, enabling the diner to explore the different flavors of the creamy risotto and the codfish.
The fish dish we had was a salted crust wild sea bass fillet with mashed potato and white truffle on a bed of cappuccino sauce. When you first look at the dish, the bubbles under the fillet surprise you. However, the sauce tastes nothing like cappuccino, and the chef said he just uses the coffee machine to create a curious looking dish to attract the diner.
For the main dish, the chef chose a plate of guancia vitello. This is veal cheek prepared with black truffle, porcini mushroom and veal sauce, served with baked vegetables. The dish was soft, rich and sophisticated, and the ingredients worked really well together. The sourness of the vinegar and the sweetness of the veal sauce made an excellently balanced dish.
Their menu has other choices of fish and meat, such as the Seared John Dory prepared with lime, fennel confit and organic carrots and roasted Canadian lobster in its own broth and sauteed baby vegetables.
Another smart choice is the veal tenderloin Milanese style with braised endives, radicchio and shallots. The herb confit lamb saddle with cannelloni beans, chestnuts and savoy cabbage roll is a recommended dish.
Vegetarians also get the chance to dine at the restaurant, which offers them “ricotta infornata, asparagi al cartoccio, uovo in camicia e tartufo,” which is baked ricotta, asparagus, poached egg and black truffle.
The best part comes in the end as the menu offers a variety of traditional and modern deserts including apple pie, sorbet and their masterpiece and signature dish “The Sphere.” This is a sugary, solid ball filled with creme brulee and strawberry sauce, and inside the filling is an even smaller ball filled with ice cream. On top are golden flakes, making the dish a revolution of flavors and very appetizing.
The restaurant has private dining rooms as well, designed especially for secluded dinners with the same menu. The restaurant seats 110 diners plus 20 more people in the private dining room.
Expect to pay: AED500 — AED1,000 (SR500 — SR1,000)
Location: Armani Hotel Dubai, lobby level
Opening hours: 7 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.