What’s Farzi Cafe all about
Farzi Cafe Dubai is a new restaurant that’s the first international branch of a successful chain from India. It’s a bright, contemporary space in the newest part of Dubai, the extension of City Walk. It was full on a week day lunch time when we visited.
The Farzi Cafe opened at the beginning of April 2016 and is already buzzing with Ladies who Lunch, business men and a few bloggers! Admittedly most of the Ladies who Lunch were from the subcontinent, but if Indians are coming to an Indian restaurant, that speaks volumes for it’s food!
Where is Farzi Cafe located
Farzi Cafe is located in the new bit of the City Walk extension, so that’s past the Sephora shop towards the Cafe Brass, take this service road and park underground. You come up into a newish, small mall, then take any back door out of the mall into the pedestrian street with restaurants and shops on both sides, look for Farzi, or the red London phone box, you’ve found Farzi Cafe!
Farzi Cafe is not on Google Maps at the moment, but Bubo Barcelona is, so if you find this, you’re very close to Farzi Cafe.
What kind of Food and Drink to expect at Farzi Cafe
There is a fair amount of molecular gastronomy happening at Farzi Cafe, so it’s really quite contemporary in it’s approach to cooking and presenting food. Shivankit the manager of Farzi Cafe describes the word Farzi as being connected to an illusion. I think the best way to describe Farzi as it applies to the cuisine here, is Interpretation.
So I recommend the Raj Kachori to start with, a tangy, yoghurt based filling in a crispy pastry shell, it’s served with a tamarind foam on top instead of the usual dollop of imli chutney together with some slivers of crispy bhindi. Seemed well priced at AED 24.00
We got a smoking amuse bouche to start with! Farzi’s interpretation of a bite size morsel of sweet lassi, all in one smoky molecue, have a look here. I would have liked a salty one of these but apparently the sweet version was more popular in Gurgaon in India so that’s what’s come across for the moment.
I don’t eat beef but was assured by my fellow diner that the pieces of wagyu in the Shepherds pie, served with mashed potatoes and beetroot crisps were of very high quality and well seasoned. Again, this was Farzi’s interpretation of how the main ingredients of a classic dish – Shepherds Pie could be put together. The mashed potato and beetroot crisps were delicious. The aloo chaat potatoes could have been a bit spicier for me though.
You can also choose from a variety of tapas style starters and make your entire meal from these, but do try some of the main courses as well. I recommend the spicy, but not too spciy South Indian lamb with flaky paranthas (more paranthas please Farzi Cafe) and the biriyani which seemed to be very popular.
The vegetarian Khao Swe was also a favorite at many tables around us, and comprised of a coconut creamy vegetable curry served with a bowl of rice and a combination of crispy Bombay mix type toppings to sprinkle over. Another vegetarian favourite seemed to be the arancini type rice and daal (lentil) balls with a tiny rolled up poppadom on top. I’d love a baked version of this please! AED 27 for a few arancini balls.
Puddings at Farzi Cafe
I didn’t see many puddings going out while we were lunching at Farzi Cafe, maybe the ladies were watching their waistlines, but they were missing out. I really liked the puddings here and highly recommend you leave room for some when you come and try it.
Their interpretation of the Middle Eastern classic Bakkalava was Goldilocks right. So instead of a very compact square of pastry stuffed with nuts and drizzled with quite a bit of honey, expect delicately layered squares of filo pastry. Still bite size with a pinch of pistachios for filling, drizzled with a bit of honey and finished with more pistachios and dried roses on the side. I loved it. I didn’t need the vanilla ice cream on the side, it would have been fabulous to have had a dollop of kulfi instead though! Well priced at AED 29.00
It was a perfect accompaniment to my very good Americano. They will have a barrista on site soon at Farzi Cafe.
More molecular gastronomy going on with their Tres Leches dessert. A large clot of moussey cream is frozen at the table using liquid nitrogen, and this is one type of milk product that’s then added to the very good rice kheer. The frozen cream is then smashed up like a meringue, again garnished with pistachios and dried roses on the side. Single cream is then drenched over it, the third of the the tres leches I think, but it all seems to work quite well.
The Farzi Details
Farzi Cafe has no alcohol licence as yet, unlike it’s branches in India. But they do have a wide variety of mocktails and juices, and more molecular gastronomy going on with these too. The coffee is really good. I’m not one for mocktails unless they involve elderflower and soda, and really don’t like my drinks on the sweet side so Shivankit brought me a Curry Leaf Martini to try!
Well it tasted like a curry leaf/wheatgrass shot and possibly would have gone down better in the morning as a breakfast shot, but it certainly wasn’t sweet!
There is a gorgeous looking bar, but no cocktails as yet. We’ll ask them for a competition meal so you can try it and see what you think.
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