Sura Restaurant

Korean food and a relaxed atmosphere in the Cristal Salam Hotel
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Time Out Says

Having only opened its doors at the tail end of last year, Sura (which translates as ‘a royal meal’) is the newest kid on the Korean cuisine block. Housed in the Cristal Salam hotel this eatery has a pretty authentic feel and even has the added bonus of a couple of karaoke rooms, if you fancy braving the mic with some pals.

Once seated we were presented with a delightful little selection of kimchi salad bowls, made up of chicken sausage and spicy radishes, among others, before the menu was delivered. First impressions of the menu itself were that it looks pretty extensive and, intrigued by the sheer weight of the tome, we were a little disappointed to find that the back half was taken up with international cuisine (salads, burgers, pasta and so on) rather than being crammed to the hilt with unusual, untried Korean delicacies.

For our starters we settled on the haemool pajeon (a seafood and cabbage pancake) and the sae woo tui-gam (fried prawns). The seafood pancake had a generous helping of juicy pieces of calamari and various other fruits of the sea, the cabbage was perfectly cooked and the pancake itself had a strong consistency which meant it didn’t fall apart when caressed with a knife. Next up were the fried prawns which were served as a huge crown on a bed of fried noodles alongside a dipping sauce sprinkled with sesame seeds. Given the decadent manner in which they were presented, taste-wise they were a tad disappointing. The batter was fine but the actual prawns lacked any real flavour themselves.

Our main course consisted of bulgogi (stir fried beef with vegetables) and a chicken katsu (fried chicken fillet). The bulgogi was a curious affair. The marinated beef had a sweet, succulent flavour that blended well with the veg and was served on a sizzling hot plate and again, was a more than generous portion. The chicken katsu was another dish that had an almost saccharine taste but had the added bite of a spicy curry
to keep proceedings lively. A perfectly adequate main dish, it left just enough room to squeeze in dessert. The Korean approach to dessert is unusual, with a preference for sweet cinnamon and rice punches. After a short deliberation we opted for the nok cha ice cream (green tea ice cream) and the ho-deok (stuffed brown pancake with syrup and nuts served with fresh melon and strawberries). Both desserts were on the money although the ice cream was very sweet.

Overall, Sura is a fine restaurant but falls just short of being brilliant. The food is good and the atmosphere is pleasantly relaxed while the staff are friendly, knowledgeable and helpful without being too overbearing. If you want to try Korean food you can do a lot worse than give this place a go.

The bill (for two)

Seafood pancake Dhs34
Fried prawns Dhs48
Bulgogi Dhs80
Chicken katsu Dhs66
Sweet pancake Dhs20
Green tea ice cream Dhs12
Total (excluding service) Dhs260

By Time Out Abu Dhabi staff  | 14 May 2013

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Show number 02 659 7666
Abu Dhabi, Al Zahiyah, Salam Street, Opp.Abu Dhabi Municipality - Al ZahiyahE16-01 - Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates

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