Located in the heart of DIFC is a casual and chic dining spot by the name of Dusty’s. When you enter Dusty’s, the first thing that is pretty evident is the attention to décor and ambience. With perfect levels of lighting, shabby chic décor and a slight touch of quirky, Dusty’s is bound to set a pretty good first impression. But believe us when we say that the setting is probably of the list to what will amaze you about Dusty’s. Right from the excellent hospitality to the scrumptious food, our entire experience at Dusty’s was an absolutely pleasant and memorable one.
However the highlight of our night would have to be when we had the privilege of speaking to the owner himself, Dusty…. He loves food, he loves experimenting with food and his vision was to kick start a restaurant that serves wholesome food of various cuisines under one roof. Not only would one be presented with a variety of dishes, but you would also get food that boasts the finest quality and flavor at unbelievable affordable prices (something initially restaurants in DIFC lacked)
It was Thursday night when we were invited for a review along with a fellow blogger & friend Lavina Ezrani (www.ezrani.com) to sample the menu!
We started off with the Appetizers which comprises of a selection of small bites, cold & hot starters. From the small bites, we tried the Tomato & Pesto Crostini which is toasted bread topped with tomato, pesto and burrata. We have a soft spot when it comes to burrata, and the combination of tomato with it sends us straight to heaven!
From the cold starters we sampled the Beef Carpaccio which is thinly sliced raw bee topped with rocket, capers, olive crostini and mustard dressing. We also tried the Lobster Tacos which is a signature at Dusty’s. The tacos were generously filled with perfected cooked and tender lobster, mango, avocado & coriander. It tasted very refreshing and light.
We also tried the Salmon and Tuna Tartare with crispy rice. Tartare is basically raw seafood marinated and cured in with lemon juice. The flavors of the tartare were bold and the crispy rice added a unique texture and complimented the dish very well.
From the hot starters we tried the Grilled Squid with a Chili Lime dressing, the dish had a very distinguished Thai flavor to it and the portion of the squid is generous making it totally worth it.
Moving on to Salads, we got to sample three of them! We started off with Crispy Duck Salad with mixed greens in a pomegranate dressing. The duck was crispy on the outside and tender on the inside! The glaze on the duck was sweet and tangy and complemented the pomegranate dressing perfectly. The dish as a whole is a perfect balance of healthy and delicious.
Our second salad was the Quinoa Salad with mixed vegetables, citrus fruits and cranberries. The dish is packed with loads of protein and the sweetness of the citrus fruits and cranberries adds to the flavor of the salad making it a winner.
Lastly, and probably the best of the lot! Is the Roasted Beetroot Salad with goats cheese and pistachio, We loved the perfectly round balls of goats cheese coated with seeds adding bursts of flavor which elevated the dish with every spoonful making us salivate even now as we write this review!
With the appetizers and salads being unbelievably good, we could hardly wait for what the main course had in store for us. We were presented with four spectacular looking dishes for us to sample which got us very excited. The first main course we tucked into was the delicious Black Cod with green chili and mango salsa. The black cod flaked as you put your fork through it and tasted clean, simple and fresh! The chili and mango salsa added a slight hint of heat; however it did not overpower the fish thus enabling the black cod to shine through.
The second main we tried was the Beef Stir Fry which bite size morsels of beef tenderloin cooked to perfection in a soy chili dressing and topped with sesame seeds. It’s pretty evident now that beef makes us go weak in the knees and this dish did in particular since the Asian twist to it gave the dish a very nice edge. We would however have preferred this dish to be served with sticky or jasmine rice to round it off perfectly!
Our third main was the signature Dusty’s Red Chicken which is a baby chicken cooked with yogurt and coriander. We loved how this dish was a play on a refined version of the traditional Chicken Tikka Masala in Indian cuisine, however it is less spicy, hence it caters to all sorts of palettes. The yogurt marinade adds to the tenderness of the chicken and gives it that perfect texture.
Lastly, for our fourth main we tried the Grilled Lamb Chops with sweet potato puree and aubergine salsa. We loved the idea of a sweet potato puree instead of regular mashed potato and the aubergine salsa complemented the lamb perfectly.
We were loving our dinner soo much we didn’t want it to end! But the feeling was bitter-sweet (pun intended) since we knew it was time for dessert. When three desserts were laid before us at our table, we were left absolutely speechless. Ever heard of a Candy Station being brought to your table before? If not then head right over this weekend to Dusty’s to satisfy your sweet tooth cravings. The Candy Station is basically a beautiful platter of silky smooth chocolate fondue surrounded by cake pops, strawberries, macaroons, meringue, marshmallows and sugared jelly cubes that gives you an instant sugar high. This dish is perfect (or maybe not) for sharing and we loved how this dessert brought out the inner child within us.
The second dessert we tried was a classic French Toast with vanilla ice-cream, having a French toast for dessert was a first for us, but we’re not complaining! The French toast was fluffy and crisp at the same time and went perfectly with the vanilla ice cream!
Finally, we indulged in the Chocolate Fondant drizzled with caramel and ice cream, The fondant was perfectly gooey and runny on the inside once we cut into it and we loved the quality of chocolate used! The desserts absolutely blew our minds like the rest of the courses, wrapping up our delightful evening perfectly.
Tomato & Pesto Crostini – 30Dhs
Beef Carpaccio – 55Dhs
Lobster Tacos – 80Dhs
Salmon and Tuna Tartare – 60Dhs
Grilled Squid – 45Dhs
Crispy Duck Salad – 80Dhs
Quinoa Salad – 60Dhs
Roasted Beetroot Salad – 60Dhs
Black Cod – 140Dhs
Beef Stir Fry – 140Dhs
Dusty’s Red Chicken – 120Dhs
Grilled Lamb Chops – 120Dhs
Candy Station – 70Dhs
French Toast – 50Dhs
Chocolate Fondant – 50Dhs
Food – 3.5/5
Service – 4/5
Ambience – 4.5/5
Value – 4/5