Saturday 13 October 2012

Shack chic

Every celebrity chef who's anyone has an eatery in Dubai - Jamie Oliver, Gary Rhodes, Giorgio Locatelli, Antonio Carluccio, Marco Pierre White...
There are top nosheries galore. High-end dining is everywhere in Dubai.

American franchises are also very popular. Shake Shack, Fat Burger, Fuddruckers, Red Lobster, The Cheesecake Factory, TGIFs, etc, etc.

Then there are the small places that cook up authentic Indian, Pakistani, Iranian and Lebanese dishes for just a few dirhams.

Under the billowing sail of the Burj Al Arab, Dubai's iconic seven-star hotel, is Bu Qtair. A shack where the catch of the day is cooked up in fragrant Indian spices. A sandy, shabby shack in one of Dubai's most salubrious suburbs.

Each night, people from all walks of Dubai queue up in the sand for a taste of uniquely spicy seafood. Last night, Skip braved the queues and the long wait and brought home a feast.

With the kids in bed, we gorged on big prawns cooked in Indian spices. A whole fish, caught that morning, which had been marinated and deep fried. All served with a spicy coconut gravy, which I could have drunk straight, and Indian bread. Simple, delicious. It cost about the same as a Dominos delivery in Australia.

This is what I'm loving about Dubai so far. Not the valet parking. Not the well known name. Not the glitz nor glamour. But that side of Dubai that's not polished, that thrives in the shadows of hotels and beach clubs.

If you're a fan of Tony Bourdain's No Reservations you would have seen Bu Qtair in his Dubai episode.


  1. Love it. Sounds great. We watched No Reservations last night, though not on Dubai.

  2. Oh Corinne, that sounds utterly amazing! YUM YUM YUM! Nothing nicer than a takeaway feast at home. You guys must be loving those special moments together in your new home xo

  3. Yummmmm from here too.
    That sure beats a thin n crispy anytime!!
    :-) xx


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