Early Access To Eataly Restaurant, Dubai Mall

Thursday, December 19, 2013

When I first came across the restaurant Eataly, I wondered about its name. I couldn't put a finger on it. I thought it was a weird name for a restaurant. A few days ago, my cousin and I were talking about the pressure that participants in Master Chef Australia go through.

Cousin: Wow...cooking is such a big deal for them.
Me: They are prepping themselves for something big. Some of them go on to set-up their own little cafes and restaurants. By the way, there's a new place to gobble at Dubai Mall. Eataly.
Cousin: What?
Me: Eataly....Eeeee-taaaa-lyyyy. 

And then it hit me. Eataly sounded so much like Italy! The name seemed so apt.

Eataly is a new restaurant at Dubai Mall that specializes in Italian cuisine. What's the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Italian food? Pizza? Tiramisu? There's no doubt that you will end up tasting Italy's finest at Eataly due to the quality of ingredients used in the dishes (most are organic and free of preservatives and natural colors/flavors). Think right off the farm, fresh and delicious.

The menu offers Italy's best, from pasta to pizzas (and more!) to coffee and desserts. If you are a fan of cheese and bread like me (I can eat bread and survive- that's how much I love bread), you will be delighted to know that Eataly has a Focaccia section in addition to a cheese aisle.

And if you have a sweet tooth like me (and aren't afraid to use it), you are in for a super treat!

One of the best things about Eataly is, almost all the ingredients that the chef put in your dish can be bought at the restaurant. You can shop the aisles and pick up a few culinary gems. If you wish to create your own Master Chef version at home or replicate a dish at Eataly, here's your chance.

There's a range of products and ingredients to pick from: extra-virgin olive, all kinds of pasta, sauces, organic fruit juices, jams, hazelnut goodies, chocolate delights, cookies, nougat bars, licorice candy,...the list goes on. The only thing missing are those angry Italian chefs screaming at one other in the kitchen.

Here are a few of my recommendations:

I'm a sucker when it comes to fancy packaging; aren't these mini jam bottles cute? My favorite is the Amarene Cherry jam. There's such a huge difference between the cherry jams I've had so far and this one.

It is less sweeter than the standard jams and you can taste the cherries. No preservatives or artificial colors/ flavors there. I now have another reason to eat more bread!

I was ecstatic when I saw this. A little happy dance took place in my head. If you love Nutella, you'll love this too. The Guido Gobino Hazelnut Spread is actually a tad bit better than Nutella.

For those who aren't aware, Guido Gobino is an Italian chocolatier. The hazelnut spread is thicker when compared to Nutella. Adding this to desserts is a huge bonus - hello, hazelnut cheesecake! This also means, I have another reason to eat bread!

I devoured the Nougat bar but here's Licorice candy! I was so excited when opening this, I happened to tear open the pack and 50% of the candy fell on the ground. That was...quite an adventure.

My mum LOVES this. Eataly states that the Pomodoro, tomato pulp is the product of using the finest Italian tomatoes. Mum does not make home-made tomato pulp anymore. She reaches out for this and adds it to most of the dishes she makes. Use this in your pasta for that added flavor.

This pasta is truly amazing. Mum made this the other day (she used the Pomodoro!) and I got a really small portion of it. Apparently, my brother loved it so much he decided to eat more than his share.

While the hazelnut spread is a favorite, the star of the food crate are the Pesto and Pesto Rosso. Both are free of artificial color and preservatives. They are excellent ingredients for pasta at home and amp up the taste overall.

The Mieli di Erica Heather honey is brilliant as well. It is exceptional when you add it to chopped fruits or even milkshake.

All in all, these are some of the best products available at Eataly. I love the packaging and bottles as well. Some remind me of my grandma's kitchen.

Be sure to pay Eataly at Dubai Mall a visit to get those taste buds the true flavor of Italy! As they say in Italy, Buon appetito!

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