Hawksbill Restaurant

Oversized portions on Saadiyat that will suit most to a tee Reviews

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A popular getaway destination for the locals, Saadiyat is always blissful – it’s like an oasis tucked within the city. Saadiyat Beach Golf Club is a palm-tree lined destination that instantly offers a holiday feeling, and being a golf club, no expense is spared to make guests feel as though they’ve walked into somewhere upmarket when they pass through its doors.

The golf club is the quintessential golfers’ destination – with golf memorabilia adorning the walls and men in golf attire hovering around the clubhouse and course. Hawksbill is an extension of the traditional golfers’ style, with the classic argyle print, dark wooden panels and leather arm chairs all completing the scene – though a little more elegantly understated than the rest of the clubhouse.

The restaurant is quiet – given the time of the year it’s not surprising. A smattering of golf enthusiasts sit around watching the golf championships on televisions while the staff quietly potter around attending to guests’ needs.

As we perused the menu, we note an interesting, albeit unusual range of dishes – seafood, pizzas, salads, pastas, pies and bar bites – overwhelming to say the least. Despite the identity-crisis; it seems to satiate the golfers coming in after a long morning on the course – the prime duty of this eatery.

Unsure where to start, having indulged in one too many iftars we bypass the entire page of Arabic dishes, and instead opt for a goats’ cheese bruschetta and a turkey and courgette quiche to start. Considering the absence of clientele – the food does seem to take a little while longer than we’re expecting, but we’re comfortable and in no rush so we wait peacefully.

The quiche, though in the appetizers section of the menu, we feel would be a sufficient meal in itself. It’s six inches in diameter and rather dense and creamy, with a runny and cheesy centre. It comes with a light salad drizzled with balsamic vinegar, and we devour the entire thing. If we had just come off the course, this would have been the perfect hole-filler we always crave. The bruschetta is balanced on a lightly toasted bread that maintains its structural integrity – the tomatoes are diced nicely – the only part we don’t love is the goats cheese. We do like goats’ cheese, but we just don’t feel it is suited to the dish, and there is so much of it that the creaminess counters the fresh tanginess of the tomato.

It seems Hawksbill prides itself on hearty portions, because with our next orders – a roasted chicken, sage and carrot pie, and the margherita pizza, we request a side of mash-potato too – but our waitress warns us off. She says the pie is really large and a side of mash may be overkill, which we appreciate – it rarely happens that service staff take initiative to inform diners of portion sizes.

When the dishes do come out, we are grateful that the waitress recommended against the side dish – the pie is whopping large. The pizza is served on a slate tile – which is a little more creative and seems to help the pizza keep its shape. The pie is not only sizable, but it’s almost packed with a meaty filling and is served with a decent side of buttered leeks and swede. The pie’s pastry is light and crusty and the filling has all the flavours you’d want from a traditional roast dinner. The pizza is thick and rich and we only manage to devour half of it before we are defeated – it has a perfectly crispy light base – and a decent amount of tomato though the cheese is slightly oily.

We do peruse the dessert menu, but given the epic proportions of our savoury meals, we just can’t fathom even having another bite of food. Overall, the food is good – large and comforting. Perfect for a post-golf day.

The bill (for two)
Bruschetta Dhs55
Quiche Dhs65
Chicken pie Dhs72
Pizza Dhs72
Total (excluding service) Dhs264

By Time Out Abu Dhabi staff
Time Out Abu Dhabi,

Time Out reviews restaurants anonymously and pays for meals. Of course, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or independence of user reviews.

Details

  • Location: Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi
  • Tel: 02 557 8000
  • Travel: Saadiyat Beach Golf Club
  • Website | Send mail

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Posted by: Steve Miller on 01 Oct ' 10 at 09:49
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