Was invited at Kebab Bistro to try out their Parsi buffet, a couple of weeks back. Situated at the rather quiet part of Al Karama, behind Karama GPO, is an unassuming little restaurant. We arrived a little past lunch time but the place is still packed with families and groups of friends.
The restaurant is modest in space and was literally packed so we had to wait for a while for some seats to be vacated. I actually didn't mind as it gave me time to check the place out, watch how the families enjoy their food, and look at the photos of influential Indian personalities on the wall. The ambience is reminiscent of a family kitchen and dining area. I love how the high open ceiling, mirror wall accents, and hanging lamps compensated for the little space.
Having known a few Indian dishes, I was very much eager to know what a Parsi buffet would be like. Good thing the owner of the restaurant gave us some details about what they offer.
Parsi cuisine refers to the traditional cuisine of the Parsis of India. The Parsis, whose name means "Persians", are a member of a group of followers in India of the Iranian prophet Zoroaster, who emigrated to India.
Popular Parsi dishes include: Chicken farcha, Patra ni machhi, Dhansak, and desserts such as Lagan nu Custard which is a traditional dessert in Parsi wedding feasts. These were all offered in Kebab Bistro's Parsi buffet, plus some vegetarian stew and Chicken Sali Boti (a gravy dish served with thin potato crisps), for AED 49 per persion.
The Patra ni machhi —steamed fish fillet with green chutney in banana leaves—is good, there's no fishy taste, but it was a little spicy for me. The Mutton Dhansak—mutton with lentil gravy—and rice are good too. The Chicken Farcha—batter fried spicy chicken—had that distinct Indian spice, which would have been perfect if the chicken meat wasn't dry.
Patra ni machhi and Mutton Dhansak
For ala carte dishes, we had their Fish Biryani, Chicken Korma White, Tawa Paratha, and Chappati, and Mint Lemonade and Mango Lassi for our drinks.
Both drinks were refreshing, the first one had that perfect sweet and sour combination with a light minty taste, while the latter was on the richer texture and a distinct mango flavor with a hint of sweet, sour, and salty tastes.
Mint Lemonade and Mango Lassi
The Fish Biryani came in a hefty serving with generous fish chunks and well seasoned rice. It was too spicy for my liking, though. You'll love it if you're into spicy dishes.
We were supposed to have mixed grill but I saw Chicke Korma White in the menu and I knew I had to get it. :p It wasn't what I expected it to be, though. The chicken came in huge parts instead of small fillets like what I tried in other restaurants, and the sauce was on the sweet side with Kebab Bistro.
Nevertheless, I still enjoyed dipping the Tawa Paratha into the creamy gravy. The Chappati was a bit on the dry side.
Fish Biryani - AED 30
Chicken Korma White (AED 26), Chappati (AED 3), and Tawa Paratha (AED 3)
For dessert we had the Lagan nu Custard which is a Parsi which is a caramel custard sans the caramel syrup, with some (I don't know what kind of) nuts which added texture to its rich creamy goodness.
Lagan nu Custard - AED 10
It's my first time to try Parsi dishes and I'm no expert in it, let alone in Indian food, but Kebab Bistro claims that they serve authentic Parsi and Indian food, and that they are also the first restaurant in Dubai to serve Parsi dishes, so I'll just take their word for it. :) Overall dining experience was decent. Props to the owner, Ms. Oofrish, who was very hands on not just to Mark and I but also to all of the diners.
The à la carte dishes were reasonably priced and the buffet of 6 dishes at AED 49 is already a steal. Place is cozy and gets easily packed so make sure to come early or bring in some patience while you wait in the queue.
Ground Level, Al Wasl Ruby Building
Behind Karama GPO, Al Karama
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
+971 (0)4 3271211
*Table reservation recommended.
We were guests at Kebab Bistro and our meal was complimentary, but as always, this post is sincerely written and all views and opinions are my own.