Le Brunch at Iris Yas Island

A chilled-out buffet brunch overlooking Yas Marina

Le Brunch at Iris Yas Island
Le Brunch at Iris Yas Island  Image #2
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With brilliant ladies’ nights on Sunday and Wednesday and regular appearances from world-renowned DJs, Iris was already doing everything right in our eyes.

So when the Yas Marina bar announced that it was launching a Friday brunch, we couldn’t wait to cast our eyes over it.

As we take our seats at one of the high tables on the outdoor terrace, we notice that the place is filled with the usual young and very trendy crowd.

There’s a fresh, garden vibe, with trailing vines hanging above us and chilled-out tunes mixed by the resident DJ. We also notice that the music gets louder and more upbeat as the area fills up through the afternoon.

It’s a buffet style set-up, with a huge barbecue, a few mixed drinks stations dotted around, and live stations serving fish and chips, spicy chicken wings and pasta.

We start off with good intentions and go straight to the salad bar (we’re sure we’re not the only ones still feeling the effects of all those festive mince pies).

It’s a superb selection, and we top off our pile of greens with chicken, avocado, feta cheese and edamame beans.

However, our resolve to be healthy diminishes when we see the table filled with cheeses and freshly baked breads.

As the table is situated near the open doors, we can’t help but notice that some of them appear to be suffering a bit in the afternoon heat. But that doesn’t stop us enjoying a few chunks with a slab of the fantastic walnut bread.

It’s all very laid back and relaxed and we have plenty of time between courses to enjoy basking in the afternoon sun, and taking in the stunning views around us.

Next we move on to the sushi, which is the bit we are most looking forward to.

The station is a wonderfully colourful sight, containing some creative and beautifully presented creations.

The rolls come filled with salmon, tuna and crab, with others topped with coleslaw and rolled in black sesame seeds. It’s all wonderful, and the clear highlight of the meal.

In fact the setting is more suited to light plates such as sushi rather than the heavier dishes like the penne and tagliatelle. After all, it’s harder to dance when you’re carrying a pasta belly.

Eventually we move on to the barbecue station, where we enjoy the lamb chops, but find the chicken is too dry for our liking. The king prawns are excellent (although we manage to make a huge mess peeling them), while the steamed vegetables and roasted potatoes are all perfectly cooked and very delicious.

The highlight of the dessert options is the help-yourself whipped ice cream. It seems that nothing gets grown adults more giddy than making their own ice cream cones.

The choice of cakes is fairly small compared to other brunches, but we’re pleasantly suprised by how great they all are.

Topped with lots of cream-cheese frosting, the carrot cake is the clear favourite, but we’re also bowled over by the delightful sweet layers of the hazelnut and caramel cake.

If we have one small quibble it’s that none of the food, dressings or sauces are labelled. But with plenty of staff on hand to ask, it’s not too much of a problem really.

This is a fun, party-style brunch that really makes the most of Abu Dhabi’s beautiful winter weather. We’ll be back again soon.
Dhs190 (soft drinks), Dhs240 (house beverages), Dhs290 (premium beverages). Fri noon-5pm. Yas Marina, Yas Island (055 160 5636).

WHAT IS IT...
A chilled-out buffet brunch overlooking Yas Marina

WHY GO...
For the brilliant sushi, super cool vibes and cute ice cream cones

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