DETAILS: Dhs290 (soft drinks), Dhs370 (house beverages and sparkling). Sat 2pm-6pm. Beach Rotana Abu Dhabi, Al Zahiya (02 697 9011).
Some concepts, when brought to life and put into practice just work perfectly. We can only assume it didn’t take long for the people behind the scenes at Finz to sign off the idea of a late-afternoon Saturday brunch at the waterside spot, but we reckon they were right to do so. After all, what better way to show off a seafood restaurant’s produce than with an à la carte selection of the venue’s best dishes spread out over a leisurely four hours, served with a selection of mocktails, grape or sparkling?
The setting is lovely. Finz sits out the back of the Beach Rotana, next to the hotel’s beach. The building stands
on stilts over the water.
There are seats inside the stylish dinning room, but we head to the terrace outside. There are hotel guests sunbathing close to us, but try not to be too distracted and focus on the shimmering waters, the view of Al Maryah Island across the way and listen to the waves gently lapping underneath you.
While your environs are very fine indeed, the atmosphere is good, too, thanks mainly to the chilled-out tunes being mixed by DJ Miki Love. Staff are also excellent. Well-versed in the packages, quick to offer top-ups on drinks and happy to recommend mocktails based on our tastes.
There are two options to choose from. The soft drinks package includes mocktails (a big tick from us) and the house beverage package includes sparkling (another big tick). Both represent good value, given the four-hour running time and the quality and quantity of the food.
The first big arrival is a seafood tower. On the top tier are two types of prawns (we prefer the shelled ones), oysters (big, bursting with ocean flavours) and tasty mussels. Underneath are pots of crab salad, salmon ceviche and tuna tartare as a couple of sauces. The latter is our pick of those. Although we enjoy the salmon, it’s not like any ceviche we’ve had before.
A choice of seafood pasta and lobster bisque is up next. We go for the bisque, which is superb. The rich, creamy soup is poured over a delicious, sweet serving of meat from the crustacean. It’s sublime.
By this point you’ll be filling up, but feel free to tell the staff to take it easy, “laze” is in the name after all.
There’s a choice of white fish for mains. The hake is meaty, crispy and seasoned perfectly. The sea bream is more delicate but just as declicious. They both come with couscous, black rice and grilled vegetables.
The pick of the desserts is the a wonderfully moreish bowl of chocolate. It’s happy to let it’s simple ingredients shine, much like the brunch as a whole.
The bottom line
A brilliant way to spend a Saturday.