Acapulco Friday Brunch at Amerigos

Review: A fun, party brunch for the whole family or groups of friends

DETAILS: Dhs150 (soft drinks), Dhs255 (house beverages), Dhs350 (premium beverages), Dhs75 (kids aged six-12). Fri noon-4pm. Park Inn by Radisson Abu Dhabi, Yas Island (02 656 2222).

One thing we have to say about the brunch at Mexican restaurant Amerigos is that it is popular, so you’ll want to book well in advance. Whether it’s groups of friends, young families or couples, everyone seems keen to get in on this good-natured Friday feast.

The restaurant spills out onto an outdoor deck – perfect for the cooler climes – decorated with painted barrels and bunting (we spot a piñata, nice). Colourful sombreros adorn each table along with a pair of maracas. In case you haven’t worked it out by now, this is a fun brunch that invites you to let your hair down. Even the food is set up behind decorated Mexican ‘huts’.

Rhythmic Latin beats stream through the speakers as the crowd splits into two groups – foodies and pool-goers (the deal includes access to the pool, which is just next to the outdoor area). We’re not here to splash around, though, we’re here to eat.

Ceviche is prepared at a live station and you can choose to have it made how you like. It’s likely you’ll have to queue, but it’s a great, and clearly popular, idea. The sea bass is soft and delicate, with a sharp crunch from red onion, while cubes of mango add a freshness that keeps us intrigued with every bite.

Guacamole could do with more citrus for us and the colourful tortilla chips are too hard (maybe they’ve been sitting out too long).

Those who are worried about too many carbs and too much cheese (we know you’re out there), the parrilla (grill) should be your main port of call. Order plump prawns, tender chicken with a chilli kick, and succulent chunks of lamb.

If lamb is your thing then we highly recommend the braised leg. Shredded meat is mixed with diced potato and onion and there’s a gentle spice that runs through it that we just love.

When it comes to those carbs, go for the soft shell tacos or quesedillas.

This is another brunch that excels at desserts, too. There isn’t a huge amount of choice, but the counter is brimming with a flavoured ice creams and yogurts, churros and apple empanadas.

The tres leches cake is our pick of the bunch but we can’t really advise leaving any behind, so why not get a big plate and try the whole lot. You might need your stretchy pants at the end of brunch, however.

Nothing at this brunch is fancy, but what you will get is comforting, moreish Mexican food served in a friendly setting and coming in at good-value prices. And sometimes that’s all you need. Absolutely recommended.

The bottom line

Perfect for groups, this brunch takes one cuisine and runs with it.

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