Another player in the Dubai brunch scene has just recently emerged and Mark and I got to sample their offerings in yet another remarkable #ZomatoMeetup. Special thanks to Zomato UAE and The Palace Downtown. Thank you for making Mark's first #ZomatoMeetup experience an awesome one! :)
Being far from the usual international brunches, HypnoThai Brunch offers a glimpse into the world of Thai cuisine. Not only do they offer all-you-can-eat Thai food, but you will surely be mesmerized by the view of the Dubai Fountains. Add to that the upbeat music filling the air all throughout the afternoon, what else would make for a perfect Friday afternoon than this?
I haven't tried much Thai dishes except from Pad Thai and Green Chicken Curry so I was very much excited to explore more Thai food in our HypnoThai Brunch.
There's not much selection if you compare it with other Friday brunches, since it focuses on Thai cuisine, but there are an array of starters and salads plus gorgeously crafted desserts.
There's also an alluring assortment of delightful mains which are brought to your table and served freshly to your plates.
Adding to the culinary adventure are signature homemade iced teas, botanical sodas, fresh coconut, fresh juices, mocktails, and grape beverage choices.
Mark and I both got fresh coconut served right out of the coconut shell for our drinks. Both were filled with fresh sweet coconut water. Too bad it only had a little hole, I would have wanted to scoop out the meat.
We started off our Thai feast with salads and soup. I arrived quite late, Mark went ahead of me and they were already halfway through their starters when I got to the place. I only got to sample a few starters since the servers were already prepping us up for the mains. :p
This Tom Kha Gai soup may not be as inviting as it may seem, but it surely had something more to offer. Flavors of coconut and lemon grass from the thin white soup cover each tender chicken chunks. The mushrooms and green onions also added texture to the dish. One unassuming dish which shouts out deliciousness in every spoonful.
I had been craving for vegetable spring roll for quite some time and Thiptara's version satisfied my cravings. While the Satay Gai (chicken satay) was tender, I found it lacking with flavor maybe because it was served to us without the satay sauce, which the other plates had.
The vegetable dumplings were good but the Ka Noum Jeehp Sai Gai was my top pick! I loved how the wonton wrapper was just thin giving way for the flavorful filling. I initially thought it only had chicken in the filling, but checking the menu, it was a combination of chicken, shrimp, and squid. No wonder it had an incomparable goodness! Delightful as is but goes perfectly well with some sweet chili sauce. Yum!
The mains included an assortment of beef, chicken, seafood, vegetable, and noodle dishes. My top picks are the beef and lobster dishes!
The Nuer Phad Prik Tai Dum is basically stir-fried Wagyu beef slices with garlic, chili, and peppercorn sauce. Perfect with their hot steamed rice, the tender beef glazed with peppery and garlicky sauce had a balanced sweet and salty taste. The green beans, if my palates served me right, still had the crunch, which I liked, gave a contrast in texture with the tender beef.
I thought the stir fried veggie dish, Phak Phak Ruam Mit, was of the usual taste just by the looks of it but it was surprisingly good. I would have loved it more if the veggies weren't overcooked.
A gorgeous looking dish always sets my expectations high in terms of its taste and I'm glad that this Kung Mung Korn Phad Prik Tai Dum didn't disappoint! Huge chunks of mildly sweet wok-fried Canadian lobster meat, each perfectly coated and smeared with a well-seasoned sauce and spring onion and black pepper, sink into my teeth in every bite. This is definitely my favorite!
I was very much anticipating a Pad Thai dish, but we were served with Pad See Ew instead. The flat rice noodles with chicken, veggies, egg, and soy sauce were a little bland and more on the sticky side which somehow felt weird to the bite. While the Pad Thai is more on the sweet, sour, and nutty flavors, Pad See Ew is supposed to be on the salty side as it's flavored with soy sauce, but Thiptara's version was just a little bland for my liking.
I think the Gaeng Kiew Wan Gai, green chicken curry, was good that it was gone in no time, I didn't get to try it. Would love to try this one when we get back.
Desserts were served on our table but Mark and I didn't like what it included, so we helped ourselves to the dessert station.
Mark's plate had the usual dessert choices, minus the coconut jelly which he got for me. The dainty moulded jelly was just too cute to eat! I just wish I enjoyed eating it as much as looking at it. It kind of tasted bland for me. The rest of Mark's choices were okay, but we both agreed and specifically loved the rich chocolaty taste of the round chocolate dessert.
Khao Niew Mamuang, simply mango sticky rice, is a popular Thai dessert but I haven't tried it yet, or let's say I never chose to try it before since we also have our own Suman at Mangga (sticky rice and mango) in the Philippines. But Thiptara's mango sticky rice was just so chic I finally gave in to my curiosity.
Served in a margarita glass with edible flower, black Thai rice with coconut milk, and ripe mango chunks, this has got to be the most chic mango sticky rice that I have seen. And did I tell you that it was oh so good?! Better if there were more mango slices. :p I actually craved for it the morning after. It would definitely make for a perfect breakfast! Aaahh!
We also ordered some mocktails. Mark had Fruit Punch, a mixture of orange, pineapple, fresh strawberry, and passion fruit; while I had Green Paradise, a concoction of sweet basil, lime, syrup, and pineapple juice. I loved Mark's choice better as mine had too strong citrus flavor which somehow made my tummy uneasy.
They also have a selection of exotic fruits which somehow made me miss the ones that we also have back in the Philippines.
Not sure if Thiptara was just overwhelmed or unprepared with two long tables of around 40 "hangry" foodies, but I'd love to go back on a private lunch or dinner and maybe try their Pad Thai and green chicken curry. Thiptara's ambience makes for a lovely intimate date. :D
After our brunch, we went to get some cocktails and some one-of-a-kind shisha in the hotel's bar, Fai Bar, which is just across Thiptara. Will share the details on that in my next post. :)
And we also savored the beauty of The Palace, which was nothing short of wonderful!
For updates about The Palace Downtown Dubai's restaurants you can visit and like them on Facebook: www.facebook.com/thepalacedowntowndubai, or follow them on Twitter: @PalaceDowntown or Instagram: @palacedowntown. You can also visit their website at www.theaddress.com.
Ground Level, The Palace Downtown Dubai
Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Boulevard,
Downtown Dubai, Dubai
United Arab Emirates
+971 (0)4 2753077
Nearest Metro Station: Burj Khalifa/Dubai Mall (Red Line)
We were guests at Thiptara and our meal was complimentary, but as always, this post is sincerely written and all views and opinions are my own.