FOOD & DRINK
Eloquent Elephant restaurant review
Words by Nathan Irvine
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Pub grub love.
British cuisine often gets a bad reputation. It’s often mocked for looking bland and lacking creativity. But what it lacks in presentation it more than makes up for in flavours. Sure, you can’t really make battered cod, mushy peas and chunky chips look like a piece of art, but the combo of flavours – done right – is hard to beat.
Eloquent Elephant at the Taj Dubai, Business Bay is one such place that does it right. From its moodily lit gastropub setting, with sports on the big screens and a lively atmosphere, the kitchen is quietly putting out some of the finest British fare around. There’s international cuisine on the menu, but the UK dishes are the stars of the show.
We ventured in on a Thursday when the Bottomless Brunch is approaching full swing. It’s not as rowdy as you’d expect from a British pub, as the clientele seem to be relaxing after their working week.
It kicks off with five starters to share. A hearty chicken liver broth, filo pastry envelopes of Camembert, soft bao buns stuffed with beef, a quinoa salad and haddock goujons. Of everything on offer here, it’s the goujons and Camembert that are the most moreish.
The lightly battered goujons are crisp on the outside, and perfectly soft in the middle. They instantly take us back to walks down the British seaside – stopping off for hearty fish and chips to warm us up on a blustery day. And the Camembert parcels are simply delicious. Think samosas, but filled with hot gooey cheese. Superb.
Our mains arrive just as the entertainment for the evening launches into that Dubai brunch anthem, Wonderwall. Thankfully, it’s an original upbeat, semi-techno rendition of the Oasis classic, which makes it far more bearable. We go for the pie of the day with mash and wagyu beef burger.
The mini pie – or pies – comes atop a mountain of mash potato and gravy. Savoury pies are one of the British Isles’ best contributions to the foodie world and this chicken pie is a prime example of that. They tasted so good, that they caused a period of negotiation where a trade of pie for burger would take place. But the deal never materialised. Cue envious looks at every mouthful.
This isn’t to say that the burger wasn’t good. It definitely was. But that pie... delicious. The wagyu burger was your typical British approach. Chunky slices of tomato, lettuce and onion rings sit inside an enormous bun with the tasty beef tucked in there too. It’s like a big messy meal in your hands – the challenge is to eat it all without it falling apart, which we just about managed.
To wrap up the evening we tucked into a warm and soft sticky toffee pudding and a fruity ice cream sundae. By the time these pair of sweet treats were sunk, we were suitably stuffed. It was a big night of comfort food with a British twist that Eloquent Elephant is exceptional at delivering.
Where: Taj Dubai Hotel, Business Bay
Reservations: +971 4 438 3100
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