Monday, December 8, 2008

Zen Restaurant Review

Location: Zen Restaurant, Za’abeel Park, Dubai

Review:

For a newcomer, finding gate 6 of Za’abeel Park was not the easiest battle to win considering the general lack of directions/ signage in Dubai. After locating gate 6, we then faced round 2 of our confusion; where exactly is Zen? After parking a certain distance away, we walked to the entrance and were informed that Zen was, in fact, right in front of the entrance. We were all smiles considering the appetite we had built up!

As we marched forward towards the restaurant, we noticed the obvious lush green environment and a lake that surrounds the restaurant – a great first impression. After entering Zen, there’s a certain sense of comfort that engulfs you. This could be attributed to the peaceful ambience within the restaurant, although the lack of customers was quite apparent.

To start off, we were recommended iced teas. Both the Thai Iced Tea & the Green Iced Tea with honey were quite satisfying and worth a try. Moving on to the food, we felt that the server was not very knowledgeable and fortunately the owner gave us his personal attention. I was recommended the “Laab Tofu” a salad not on the menu but specially offered to meet my vegetarian taste buds. I was definitely pleased with the suggestion! It was a perfect mix of the right spices, the results being delicious. My friends enjoyed their soups and we all savored the next recommendation from the owner – “Pad Sieu Che.” Although we normally go for the typical Pad Thai, we particularly enjoyed this dish which to summarize I would describe as Thai flat noodles. My friends also tried some Non-Veg dishes, Malays Mee Goreng, Stir Fried Noodle Chicken and Joru Che ; All fantastic dishes, savored to the last morsel!

The only area of slight dissatisfaction was the service. There was possibly only one server that night who was not the most helpful – it was the manager that made the difference.

Come October, the restaurant will offer its outdoor seating overlooking the small lake and I can already see it overflowing with Dubai’s foodies.

Overall, I truly recommend this place especially for Thai food lovers!

To summarize I could say “A truly ‘hidden’ gem!”

Pricing:

The bill didn’t hurt the pocket too much either and therefore Zen is easily one of those restaurants you would visit frequently.

Average price per person (including drink/starter/main course): AED 80/person.

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