Cheese Dreams At Shami Gourmet

Do you crave middle eastern food when you travel outside the mid-east? I certainly get withdrawal symptoms and start frantic searches for places that serve my beloved manaoushe & falafel. The best of which you can find only in UAE. In UAE is the polar opposite as you will find every nook and corner restaurant serving felafels & Shawarma. Sorting out the best ones in my job.
I was invited to try out levantine vegetarian offerings at Shami Gourmet. They offer a wide range of dishes right from grills to gelatos. They do have decent vegetarian options for one to make a meal of. I tried,out the grilled halloumi, cold mezze platter, Arabic falafel, mix cheese manaoush and fatayer.
The food is excellent for the price they are offered on. Everything Is fairly reasonable and portions are good too! Open style kitchen gives you a glimpse of how you order is made. The staff at all times were wearing gloves and disposal head caps.
For desserts my guests and I opted for snickers gelato & berry cheesecake. The former was my favorite of the two as the gelato was creamy & absolutely on money. The generous staff let me try all the flavours they offer. Mango sorbet & ferrero rockers were my favorite of the lot. The cheesecake on the other hand was decent enough.
The day I visited they were facing some aircon issues. Despite that the staff were making a constant effort to keep all the customers satisfied. They are more popular for their deliveries as I sat there watching deliveries fly out constantly.
Overall, Shami Gourmet is a good option to try. Their prices are reasonable and the dishes are fresh & delicious! Special thanks to chef and team for taking care of all our requirements.
  • Breakfast
  • Home Delivery
  • Outdoor Seating
  • Kid Friendly
  • Wifi
  • Vegan/Vegetarian friendly
  • Wheelchair friendly

Shami Gourmet Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


Sbarro’s Pizza Experience

Sbarros is a popular brand with many branches in US. They do have branches in Dubai too.
I tried takeaway from this place when I was at my JLT office. My order consisted of Peri Peri Paneer & Classic Veggie. Both sadly were a disappointment. I know that pizza even bad can taste good but unfortunately nothing could save these. There was lack of salt and the seasonings were way off! To top that off the service was slow too! It took them 45minutes to prepare my order.
I had initially ordered pasta as well but looking at their pace I cancelled my additional orders and bid them goodbye!  The only good thing about the pizza was the crust as it was well cooked. Such a shame that they couldn’t offer a decent pizza flavor if nothing fancy.

Sbarro Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Fresh & Hot! Zpizza

am a pizza maniac, I can eat it any time of the day! So it’s obvious that I keep discovering new places and telling you folks about the same.
Glad that restaurants are taking the concept of healthy eating seriously and so following that is Zpizza. They use GMO free flour and do offer gluten free options.
I tried their meal for four option which includes two salads, two medium pizzas, coke & six pieces of their garlic breads served with marinara sauce. My choice of pizzas included, spinach & mushroom which has white sauce base & California Veggie, filled with all the possible veggies. Whoever said pizzas are unhealthy are really wrong, just look at those veggies man! For salads I tried Greek salad & California salad, both were delicious & hearty portions. The garlic bread sticks were a bit tough to chew on but i am assuming that’s because i consumed it while it was cold.
Can’t wait for Zpizza business Bay branch to open up! It’s going to be near from my office which only means one thing.. more pizza lunches!
Please note: I was sent the meal as I had won their giveaway. I was not asked to review them but they do offer genuinely good food so do check them out!
 Contact them on 04 4371644 for orders

ZPizza Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Tea & Talk at The Tea Cup

I just love driving around Jumeirah and discovering new cafes. Mostly my drives are late night and luckily there isn’t much traffic at those times which makes it easier to move around.
If you are a frequent Jumeirah person then you wouldn’t have missed out the sign that says Tea Cup cafe. Located right next to Caliburger this quaint cafe serves hot tea and variety of fusion dishes inspired by Arabian cuisine up until 4am! They have another branch as well but I like this one the most. It’s comfortable and quiet ambiance which I prefer always.
This was a review based visit and my guest and I were asked to try out many dishes they offer. We tried their famous pizza rigag, egg rigag (guest tried), Oman chips paratha roll, cheetos paratha roll, cheese honey chebab, ginger tea, chocolate shake and fruit cocktail.
The ginger tea was soothing! Back then it was crazy weather in Dubai with mix of hot and cold so this tea with generous pieces of ginger was perfect. Our chocolate milkshakes were decent enough to be enjoyed on a hot summer evening. The fruit cocktail was delicious and refreshing too!
Coming to the food, there were some hits and misses. The rigag pizza even though is innovative, I found it a tad difficult to eat as it kept falling. Their takeaway pack for Rigag looks convenient to handle though so I dont think this issue should occur. The paratha rolls were delicious, both generously slathered with Kraft cheese and topped with iconic Oman chips in one and cheetos chips in another. I did not try the chebab as it contains egg but my guest mentioned that he liked the taste of honey and cheese together with soft Arabic pancakes. All of dishes are priced reasonably and quantity wise good too.
We wanted to try desserts but none that were mentioned in menu were available for tasting. Also I found the staff bit too intervening when we placed our order because we were asked to order something else as staff mentions ” this combination will not go well”. I think it should be for the customer to decide on whether they want to try out something or not. Creating your own menu and then suggesting on not letting customers try is not exactly a great practice! I have forwarded my feedback to management the same evening of my visit so lets hope this has been taken care of. It did put me off from trying anything from the menu further.
Overall, Tea Cup is a decent option for takeaways and late night eats. As per observation their takeaway orders fly out quicker than the dine ins.
  • Kids friendly
  • Wheelchair friendly
  • Late night eats
  • Vegetarian friendly
  • budget friendly

Contact 04 3479558 or orders or visit   The Tea Cup Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato for menu 

Pasta Love At Barilla Restaurant

What do you recall when I talk about the brand Barilla? Do you recall the pasta, delicious bottled sauces? I have been using them for years. Did you know Barilla brand have restaurants too? They have various restaurants across USA and now have two in Dubai.
Barilla has a very casual and open style restaurant at Dubai Festival City Mall. Wooden tables and comfortable seating is ideal for a restaurant located at the mall.
We tried the Panzanella salad that was served with creamy goats cheese. This was refreshing and a super healthy option. My guest opted for the classic burrata which was served with roma tomatoes and aragula leaves. Coming to the main courses, I opted for the tortellini stuffed with ricotta and spinach and my guest went for the pasta primavera. As a cheese lover, the tortellini dish is heavenly. I was in love and still am so much that I did order a takeaway of the same a while back. I love how delicate little parcels gave me so much happiness! Whether you are vegetarian or not, do not miss out on this stunning Alfredo tortellini dish. My guest’s pasta dish was simple, flavorful and wholesome as it had a lot of farm fresh vegetables. We did try the pizza as well. At Barilla, the pizza is served in rectangular shape, I wasn’t so much of a fan of the pizza. I just felt it needed a bit more flavoring from the tomato sauce at the base.
For drinks we opted the grapefruit fizz and the basil spritzer, both absolutely delicious! Stunning presentation and great to accompany the classic Italian meal. Though I always prefer wine with my Italian food but these drinks were a good non alcoholic option.
The desserts at Barilla are at display right near the entrance so the passerbys are definitely tempted to try them out. We took a lot of time contemplating on what to try and then finally settled for pistachio cake and chocolate mousse cake. This is the first time I have preferred the pistachio over chocolate, the cake was super moist and has this layer of wafer biscuit at the bottom which adds a crunchy element to the dish. The hazelnut chocolate crunch mousse cake was delicious and simple. There are other desserts too like the strawberry tart, tiramisu and many more that can be viewed at the display.
We ended our meal with some flavorful Lavazza coffee.
The staff at Barilla were a gem! Really helpful and always there to give suggestions and even help me pronounce some Italian terms. I did have a brief meet with the chef Rita Fegatilli and her team. A true Italian with passion for food and she was very excited to talk about the techniques and dishes prepared.
If you are located near Dfc or are at the mall, Barilla is the place to try out. The food is take on classic Italian flavors. The dishes are your usual pasta and pizza but the treatment of freshest ingredients by the chef make all the difference to the dish.
Barilla will soon be introducing breakfast concept. They also have a branch at outlet village mall.
  • Kids friendly
  • Wheelchair friendly
  • WiFi
  • Vegan friendly

for more images from my review, visit Barilla Restaurants Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sicilia – Mövenpick Hotel Ibn Battuta Gate Dubai

Sicilia is what I would describe as a modern tavern with rustic charm. Dim lights, relaxed seating with wooden tables, wine bottles on the top of wooden barrels, all add to the ambiance.

Luckily this invite was on a weekend so I was completely relaxed and calm which is exactly what is needed for Italian food. The restaurant is easy to find, located on ground floor right beside Chor Bazaar at Movenpick Hotel Ibn Batutta. The hotel lobby has 88 arabic lanterns, its a breathtaking view!

Coming back to Sicilia, the menu is limited but consists choice of pastas, pizzas and desserts that can all be paired well. Before we place our order, our server brings a huge Margerita pizza. Perplexed as we hadnt ordered one, the server was quick to read my thoughts and explained that its from the chef and pointed at the kitchen window where Chef Marcello waved back at us. Isn’t that the sweetest gesture ever?


Munching on some delicious pizza and their complimentary brioche bread, we set to order our appetizers. I chose the Tropea Onion Confit with aged goat cheese, pear and pistachios while my guest chose to have Buffalo Mozzarella and Tomato Salad served alongside taggiascho olives. The Confit onion that was topped with goat’s cheese which is an acquired taste but personally I love it! The Buffalo Mozzerella salad was fresh and brought out the flavors of Italian tomatoes.

For our mains we wanted to focus on Pastas so I opted for the Gnochetti Asparagus & Moliterno fondue and my guest wanted to try risotto which he is crazy about. However the menu doesn’t have any vegetarian risotto option. We highlighted this to our server, she swiftly consulted the chef and came back to us stating that it will be prepared as per our liking. Few minutes later our table was filled with waft of cheese, there was my Gnochetti and my guest’s option, Asparagus and mushroom risotto. The quantity for the prices is a bit less but there has absolutely been no compromise on the quality of ingredients. I preferred my guest’s risotto more than my gnochetti. Both dishes were creamy and cheesy and delicious!


Risotto with Mushroom & Asparagus


Gnochetti with Moliterno Fondue

Coming to the desserts, I was recommended the chef’s special Apple Rennete and my guest opted for Hot Gianduja Chocolate Cheesecake. Honestly I am not an apple fan but my dessert was spot on! The dessert contained trio of elements such as apple fritter, apple pie  ice cream which actually tasted like ice cream and apple gateaux, all tied with Calvados cream. The Hot Gianduja Chocolate Cheesecake was presented a very quirky manner, it was in a deep plate with meringue resembling a mushroom. It was delicious and rich of chocolate! Gianduja is a well known Italian chocolate brand and the cheesecake was a perfect rendition to it.


The Hot Gianduja Chocolate Cheesecake


Apple Rennette

Post our meal, the sous chef, Mr Marcello explained us how the menu has been created. The restaurant’s head chef , Chef Stephano wants to provide a unique dining experience to all. The food is comforting and the chefs are ready to accommodate diners who have specific dietary requirements such as vegan/vegetarian. Though he personally prefers diners to enjoy Chef Stephano’s creations as they are.

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I am surprised at how low the ratings are for Sicilia at Zomato. I really feel that this place is a hidden gem and a must try for those who crave authentic Italian food paired with some fantastic selection of wines. There is something beautiful about the rustic decor and dim lights that I loved a lot. Chef wanted to transport diners to Sicily in Italy and he was successful at it! The restaurant is always filled with tourists and those celebrating special occasions, therefore its recommended to book well in advance.

Contact them on 04 4445613 for bookings.

Sicilia - Mövenpick Hotel Ibn Battuta Gate Dubai Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato




Restaurant Review- Flippin Awesome Pizza!

Its been a while I have reviewed restaurants, I like writing about food its my favorite thing to do.

Today I am reviewing Flippin Pizza Ibn Battuta Branch, a pizzeria in a mall that is worth a visit. I have been to this pizzeria on several occasions and ordered delivery as well. It all started when one of my friend’s visited the place and tweeted to me a picture of a screen showing scenes of New York . For those who don’t know, I am obsessed with NY City ❤ ! Flippin pizza has a large TV screen which looks like a window, the live scenes are of people walking by on NY streets, giving you a feel that you are seated in their New York pizzeria. Love the idea, very innovative.

Anyways so I was decided to check out the awesome place and I have to say I wasn’t disappointed at all. The ambiance is very modern with wooden panels and comfy red seats. After you have placed the order, the server also places a complimentary basket of baby buns served with pizza sauce on your table. The buns were delicious, warm and fresh! I love this trend that is going on of placing bread basket for the diners, many restaurants are adopting it.

As I mentioned previously, I have tried Flippin pizza many times, most of which have been deliveries. Some dishes that you must try are:

Ricotta cheese Salad – the tang from the pomegranate goes so well with the soft and moist ricotta.

Chicken tenders- probably one of the most succulent and best in town.

Four cheese pizza- absolutely delightful dish, not only is it great for kids but adults will enjoy this tasty treat too!

Vegetarian Pizza- One of best tried for sure, lovely crust and generously topped.

Vegetarian the colors

Vegetarian the colors

Triboro pizza- I didn’t enjoy this one much but my friends do so here is the mention for it. I am not too much of a meat lover but those who do, will love this pizza.

Veggie Lasagne- YUM YUM YUM! Lip smacking, delicious and cheesy!


The base of the pizzas is very light, hand tossed and delicious.The menu mentions ‘Dough is made fresh daily with no added oil or sugar or no high fructose corn syrup’ gives one more reason to add pizza to your meal plan. 😉 Their largest 18′ pizza is good for upto four people. I couldn’t have more than two slices of the pizza. You can also request your pizza to be made in two different flavors (Eg: Brooklyn and Triboro)

The service is quick, time is stated when order is placed. A bit of disappointment when it comes to drinks as twice they arrived after the arrival of main courses. For delivery, it has been quick and within the stipulated time period (around 60 minutes).

I am very glad the restaurant owners take customer suggestions seriously. A while back, Flippin pizza did not have any regular sized pizzas. They served only 13′ and 18′ pizzas but after so many people including myself who requested ( on social media platforms) a smaller size of pizza, the same was introduced! Now only if they add a bit more varieties in pizza especially for the vegetarians, that would be great!

I wish Flippin pizza good luck with their new branch which has opened its doors this week on Jumeirah Beach Road. Can’t wait to check it out 🙂

Food: 4/5

Service 3.5/5

Ambiance 5/5

Complimentary bread to tingle your taste buds 5/5 😉

A bit on pricier side, cost for two: 150-200AED.