Mainly due to the enormous amount of eating we do, we’ve been lucky enough to meet so many charming and personable servers across Abu Dhabi.
However, only after The Terrace on the Corniche’s Friday feast did we leave feeling like we became total besties with the staff. If there’s one thing you walk away with from this brilliant buffet brunch, its how super friendly everyone is who works here.
But of course the food is excellent, too, and here you’ll find fresh pasta, sushi, salads, cold seafood, grilled fish, carved meats and even
a special traditional cuts section laid out across the light and airy dining room. It’s not as huge as some of the spreads we’ve seen in Abu Dhabi, but it still manages to contain plenty of choices to suite all tastes.
We decide to go against the grain and start our brunching journey at the humongous cheese spread in The St. Regis Bar. This stylish venue makes us feel like we’ve left Abu Dhabi behind and entered some kind of country manor. As we survey the selection and notice that most of the enormous wheels are totally untouched (see it is smart to start with the cheese before you get too full up), we decide that this classy room is our favourite part of the whole hotel. Little did we know that we’d be back there in a few hours attempting to open a bottle of bubbly with a Samurai sword, but more on that later...
The fromage collection contains blue, soft and goat’s cheese, as well as some unusual varieties and much-loved classics. As we devour our choices with some fruity chutneys and crispy rolls from the tempting collection of freshly baked breads, we get the feeling we’re in for a very fun afternoon.
Then, after spying a chef serving it straight out of the fryer, we go straight for the British-style battered cod, and there’s even chunky chips and mushy peas to go with it. It’s an amazing piece of fresh fish, and eating it outside on the terrace in the capital’s glorious sunshine couldn’t be further from our childhood memories of gobbling fish and chips in the rain on the Yorkshire coast.
In fact the seafood is one of the best bits of this feast. The sushi and maki rolls are all beautifully presented, and we also get a huge pot of iced prawns, oysters and crabs delivered straight to our table. That said, the Italian plates hit the spot too and we love the aubergine parmigiana and almond and potato croquettes. The lone curry option is worth stopping for as well, and the expertly cooked mix of chicken and hot spices will delight anyone with a thing for Indian food.
As the brunch starts to draw to a close we’re called into the bar for the opening of the bubbly ceremony. If you’re lucky, you might be asked to help out, and we can say from experience that nothing makes you feel more alive than opening a glass bottle with a sword in front of a large crowd.
After all the excitement we feel like we deserve some sweet treats, and the selection is one of the best we’ve seen. We try a shamefully vast array of classics such as Eton mess, carrot cake, sticky toffee pudding and apple crumble, and leave feeling high on sugar and on the joys of brunch in general.
Dhs345 (soft drinks), Dhs430 (house beverages), Dhs595 (bubbly). Fri 12.30pm-4pm. The St. Regis Abu Dhabi, Nation Towers, Corniche Road West (02 694 4553).