The 3rd – 5th of March 2011 marked that time of year in Dubai. 3 days of indulgent gluttony where it was socially acceptable to eat your weight in fine cuisine, lick your fingers unabashedly, and nick a few handy tips for the home cook book.

Whether gourmands in the making, or just an ordinary Joe with a fairly ordinary appreciation of good food, connoisseurs of all stages found themselves making their way to the Dubai Media City Amphitheatre for the 2011 edition of Taste Of Dubai.

For this annual festival of gastronomic proportions boasted a line-up of participating chefs, restaurants, and activities to beat all other years before.

Depending on your dedication to the culinary arts, adult ticket prices ranged fromDhs.60-Dhs.200, and festival hours were from noon to midnight every day of the 3-day event.

On the list of participating restaurants you would find the greats of the Emirates such as Almaz by MOMO, Rivington Grill, Indego and Mango Tree among the many others. Even more culinary outlets and brands were found showcasing their wares during the course of these three twelve-hour days, either for sale, sampling, or both.

However, if you were the sort who felt that there was more to be achieved at a dedicated food festival than just sampling and purchasing, you had the option of sitting in on one of many cookery demonstrations taking place at the Philip’s Chef’s Theatre.

Celebrity chefs of the likes of Jun Tanaka, Richard Phillips, and Tim Hughes, as well as returning taste veterans Gary Rhodes, Richard Sandoval and Vineet Bhatia, disclosed some of their best cooking secrets, sending audience members home a much better artists in the kitchen than they ever were.

Food wasn’t the only thing on the menu however, as the festival had more treats in the form of specially flown down tribute acts for both Robbie Williams and Elton John performing on stage at the venue. And with the weather just right during that time of year, there really was no excuse to not grab a plate, plop yourself on a beanbag, and taste.

This year’s chapter also delivered their promise to be child-friendly, with free entry for children under 12 and a dedicated Kid’s Zone (comprising of a play area, a mini football pitch, and ‘Little Explorer workshops) to keep the young ‘uns plenty occupied while the parents go about their rounds.

So just how “finger-lickin’ good“ did this year’s edition pan out? Nothing short of delicious.

For more information on Taste Of Dubai, or just to find out what else went down during those gluttonous 3 days, visit

– Shaahima Fahim. Images: Taste Of Dubai

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