Brunch seems to be the latest fad taking over Khaleeji weekend schedules. An activity almost everyone in the Gulf is great at, brunching is the act of combining two main meals- breakfast and lunch- and having them smack dab in the middle of the afternoon; an amazing excuse to wake up late on the weekends. Just in case you haven’t figured it out; brunch is actually an intermingling of the two meals, word-wise (breakfast, and lunch) and food-wise.
We are big fans of Brunch. In fact, that’s one of the things we look forward to on the weekends, that and not having to listen to that irritating alarming/getting up early for two mornings a week. We’ve combined a line-up of the hottest places to brunch on your side of the Gulf just for you. Happy Brunching!
* Lilou – With its old-Paris interiors, a fabulous crowd, and exquisite food, Lilou is the perfect brunch spot in Bahrain. The menu features a mixture of cuisines: from mini burgers, to kebbas stuffed with cheese, scrumptious risotto, and gourmet sandwiches, you’re most likely going to have come back for more. Not to forget Lilou’s decadent desserts, this Adliya spot is the place to be. No reservations; expect up to a 20 minute wait at peak times during the weekends. (Tel : +973-17714440 and +97317583939; Al-Ali Mall or original one in Adliya)
* Prime and Toast – Nestled between a number of restaurants on what is now being called “The Strip”, Prime & Toast is fast becoming a brunch favorite. With their wooden interiors and crates of fruits, the restaurant feels like a modern countryside cafe. Dine on big, fat pancakes, delicious eggs, French Toast and more. Their take on the popular Eggs Benedict is so delicious! Also recommended is their Club Sandwich: one of the best we’ve ever tasted. (Jiblah – Opposite of Seef Palace – +965-22411252, and soon opening in Al Bida')
* Living Room Lounge – Breathtaking sea views, a stylish and modern place where you can brunch and chill out with great food, drinks, music and atmosphere. Open 10am till 12 midnight – 7 days a week. (Salmiyah – Marina Waves – +965-22244653)
* Napket – Napket recently introduced their breakfast menu, and it is as delicious as anything that comes out of their kitchen. Choose from a selection of eggs, sandwiches and/or muffins, indulge in their to-die-for Caramel Macchiato or delicious fresh juices and finish off with their fabulous frozen yogurt. Napket has a venue unlike no other: Indoor seating, hallway seating and a gorgeous outdoor balcony. When the weather permits, a brunch in the balcony is a heavenly experience. No reservations are needed which is a plus, just arrive and be seated. (Avenues Mall +965-22597755)
* Le Pain Quotidien – PQ has an amazing breakfast selection. It’s so large you won’t know what to choose. So choose everything! It’s perfect for a meal to be shared by all. Arabic cheeses, Continental dishes and French pastries make this a delightful menu. Their Eggs Benedict are a favorite of many, as are their organic jams and spreads. The Marina Crescent venue is the best, especially when the weather is nice. Otherwise, people watching at the Avenues is another nice option. (Marina Crescent, The Palms Hotel, Avenues Mall +965-24954631)
* Joe’s – Yummy French food. The best view you could ever capture of the dancing fountains of Khalifah’s Tower. (Downtown Burj Khalifa – Dubai Mall +971-443 41439)
* Shakespeare – Shakespeare's cafe is one of the places in Dubai were you can enjoy breakfast, brunch, lunch, snacks and deserts at the same time. The choice of location. Whether u visit it at The Village Jumeirah, or JBR the walk, or Dubai Mall, you would be able to enjoy an experience of well picked furniture, and a view of lovely frames of paintings and artworks. It’s more of a cosy place, with the comfort of home, and the service of a very welcoming staff. It’s best recommended during the nice weather were you could enjoy your meal outside. Also, their choice of cakes, macaroons and other freshly baked deserts and chocolates makes the ending of a meal worth a smile. (Jumeirah – The Village. Tel: +971-433 11757 /+971-434 46228)
* Baker & Spice – Located at Souk Al Bahar, Baker & Spice is a franchise from the UK specializing in local, organic produce. Everything is homemade and made from scratch, which guarantees consumer satisfaction. Part deli, part cafe, Baker & Spice is the type of joint we’d like to see more of in the Gulf. We highly recommend the fluffy blueberry pancakes as well as the classic eggs benedict.
* Lime Tree Cafe – Located right on Jumeirah Beach Road, our favorite aspect of this popular cafe is it’s inventive menu, which changes daily. The brunch, however, is a weekend staple- we recommend the wholesome dish of scrambled eggs on toast with a side of sausage. Be sure to leave room for dessert- their carrot cake is legendary.
* AlFaisaliya Hotel Buffet – Friday brunch at it’s best; laid back and yummy. (Tel: +966-12732000)
* The Globe @ AlFaisaliya Hotel – The Globe restaurant is encapsulated in the stunning golden geodesic orb that tops AlFaisaliya Tower and provides a unique perspective of the Kingdom’s first city. Within this dramatic three-story geodesic dome, exceptional Modern European cuisine is complemented by spectacular panoramic views of the city of Riyadh below. (Tel: +966-12733000)
* Breakfast 2 Breakfast – Cosy small place, makes you love one of the most overlooked meals of the day, breakfast. Great for brunching with friends, family or having an “tête-a-tête.” (AlTahliya Street. Tel: +966-12178233)
* D’Arcy’s Kitchen – For a relaxed brunch in Muscat, this is the place to go. Decorated in a cottage-esque style with yellow, white and blue tones and an outdoor seating, Darcy’s Kitchen has a simple cafe/bistro menu. Don’t miss the chicken melt sandwiches with a side of mashed potato and ice chilled Lemon Mint Juice. We love the tabletop cartoon drawings of the restaurant with customers dining;such a cute touch. Great for coffee, a quick snack/brunch, breakfast or a full-blown meal. (Way 2817, Shatti al-Qurm, Madinat As Sultan Qaboos. Tel: +968 24 600234)
* Seasons Tea Lounge – The extravagant atmosphere, rich ambiance, luxurious furnishings as well as an amazing view of the sea and modern Doha, set the mood for a nice brunch. The menu includes gourmet pastries, finger-sandwiches, tarts and cakes, and of course tea; all of which is tailored to perfection. The Morrocan Mint Tea is not to be missed. (The Four Seasons Hotel. Tel: +974-494 8888)
* Ritz Carlton Hotel – One of the other most highly rated places to brunch in Qatar, the Ritz Carlton brunch varies from Friday to Friday serving large and different varieties of dishes plus an open buffet. (Tel: +974-484 8000)
* Doha Marriot Hotel – Overlooking the pool and wide open area, the Marriott is another alternative for an enjoyable Friday brunch. Having a delightful mix of food stations and an open buffet, this brunch has a friendly family atmosphere about it. (Tel: +974-429 8888)
Special thanks to our Khaleejesque readers for contributing: Kifah Al Mahruqi, Abdulrahman Saud, Wadha Al-Hail and Rahab Al-Majed.
Images courtesy of The Oven Experiments