- By Guest Blogger Very Hungry Explorer
Michelle was born in London and lived in the UK for 32 wonderful years, before deciding that she wanted to travel more and moved to Brussels. She met some fabulous people, explored Europe and stuffed her face with frites, but three years later it was time to move on and since May, she’s called Dubai home.
She spends most of her time exploring, be it; new countries, cities, random little villages, galleries, museums, tourist attractions, restaurants, food trucks… there is just so much to see and do and photograph!
If she’s not out and about, you’ll normally find her in the kitchen, trying out new vegetarian dishes and/or opening a bottle of wine.
The giant archway makes quite the impression as you drive up to it. A stunning piece of architecture, the Ibn Battuta Gate hotel from Movenpick is inspired by the legendary 14th century explorer.
Inside the Al Bahou there is a cathedral of 88 giant Arabian lanterns hung from a high ceiling, just begging to be photographed. The Great Hall has become a street scene mapped out with excellent attention to detail. This is a truly beautiful setting for an Iftar, that really sets the tone for the traditional feast that’s about to follow.
The tables are gathered around a central space, meaning you have easy access to the dishes on offer, regardless of where you’re sitting.
There are four live cooking stations; a cart with tureens of hot soup and an excellent selection of fresh bread; a chicken shawarma stand, delicious saj manakish with all the fillings you could hope for and a carving station for the slow cooked baby lamb ouzi.
There is a small section of more international dishes, including sushi and butter chicken, but the majority of the dishes fall into the traditional Arabic category, including lamb kofta, chicken harissa and fish sayadiah, plus hot and cold mezze and salads.
The tables in the dessert area are heaving under the weight of all kinds of goodies, everything you could want to finish your meal from cheese kunafa to lemon meringue pie.
The highlight for us was Indian chicken, flame seared and very moist, it was well balanced and spicy and was complemented perfectly by the saffron rice and sauces. There were plenty of staff refilling the stations as we walked through, which meant everything felt just served and fresh, which is impressive given the size of the Iftar.
Overall, we sampled most of the dishes and they all were well cooked and seasoned. Ibn Battuta Gate is an excellent choice for a traditional Iftar. The presentation was great, the setting spectacular, a very impressive Iftar!
So this Ramadan head to the very atmospheric and traditional Iftar for AED170 for adults, 7-12 years old AED85, and under 6's are free. To book call 04 444 5613.