Weekend Brunches just got a lot more amusing in Dubai! How could it not be when you now get brunches specializing in star ingredients throughout the courses of the brunch? One such instance is the Zheng He’s Friday Duck Brunch that was launched two Fridays ago.
Zheng He, located at Mina A Salam, boasts one of the best oriental cuisines in town. With a lavishly spaced out setting, you not only get to enjoy the rejuvenated vibe that Zheng He’s projects, but you also get to enjoy postcard worthy views of the Madinat river overlooking the Burj Al Arab. It was in our favor that when we attended the launch of the Friday Duck Brunch, the weather was more than pleasant for us to sit back, relax, enjoy the breathtaking views and devour some delicious duck! What we admired the most about this brunch was the fact that almost each and every component of this brunch was centered on duck – and that includes the desserts as well with the use of duck eggs.
The brunch comes with two options; a non-alcoholic package with a selection of brunch sharing cocktails and an alcoholic package with selected alcoholic beverages. We opted for the non-alcoholic package which consisted of the Food Menu and a selection of three mocktails – Chinese Lover (green tea, pineapple juice, orange juice, passion fruit syrup and elderflower), Elderflower (apple juice, lemon juice, fresh mint and soda water) and Harmony (kiwi juice, pineapple juice and orange juice)
Once we were served our drinks, we were then presented with an extensive food menu that looked absolutely mouthwatering. To begin with, we were presented with a beautiful spread of appetizers which include,
– Beijing Duck Wraps which were probably our most favorite appetizer. This “DIY” appetizer is served with thin pancakes, hoisin sauce and sweet syrup, celery, cucumber and shredded pieces of lusciously cooked duck. We loved how the flavor of all the ingredients married perfectly together once we wrapped them all up.
– Duck Spring Rolls were another delight to devour. The spring rolls were fried perfectly leaving them crispy and crunchy with a generous filling that went perfectly with the sweet chili sauce.
– Steamed Duck Bao is a Chinese classic starter which is a steamed Chinese bun stuffed with a duck filling. The consistency of the bun was perfectly soft and the filling was well seasoned as well.
– Pan Fried Seafood Pot Sticker was the non-duck element of the starter spread, nevertheless tasted divine. The seafood was cooked perfectly and the flavor of the sauce didn’t overpower.
– Duck Liver “Siew Mai” with XO Chilli sauce was the final dish of our appetizer. The Siew Mai tasted good; however it was the chili sauce that enhanced the flavor of this dish.
Once we were done with our starters, we were then served with a warm and hearty portion of Hot and Sour Duck Soup with Silken Bean Curd. This soup bursts with flavor with every spoonful. It’s one of those soups that you would crave when you’re sick in bed and in desperate need of something warm and comforting.
For our next round, it was time for mains! When we glanced through the menu for mains we could barely control our excitement. In spite of a very filling round of appetizers, looking at the main menu made us go hungry again. Our mains consisted of,
– Deep Fried Duck Filet with Lemon Sauce. This dish was mild and sweet with a hint of lemon that added sourness to the dish (a play on the traditional sweet and sour). The duck was crispy and complemented the sauce well.
– Wok Fried Canadian Lobster with Spicy Ginger Garlic Sauce. This was one of our favorites at the brunch. The lobster was deliciously cooked and the sauce has a nice tangy punch to it.
– Clay pot Sea bass Fish Fillet with Garlic Butter Sauce. Another mild dish, which was probably not the best dish we’ve had at the brunch but tasted pleasant nevertheless.
– Slow Cooked “Mui Choy” Wagyu Beef Brisket, Chinese Bun, Duck Meat and Fried rice. We loved the flavor of the sauce for this dish and the way the bun tasted delightful when drenched in the sauce.
– Wok Fried Duck Meat with fried rice was the final main dish we tasted and yet again another duck dish that we adored. Surprisingly, we couldn’t get enough of the duck and relished it like all the other duck dishes.
Finally for desserts we were served a platter of some delectable Chinese desserts that satisfied all our sweet tooth cravings. The platter included,
– Duck Egg Crème Brulee that tasted as delicious as any other brulee we’ve had, however it had that special touch of being cooked with duck eggs.
– Chinese Layer Cake with Duck Egg Custard. A very unique custard that
wasn’t too sweet and was lusciously soft.
– Pain Per Du with Chinese spiced Plum Compote. It was soft and light and went perfectly well with the tartness of the compote.
– Mango Coconut Egg. We loved the combination of flavors and the freshness of this dessert. The presentation was beautiful as well.
– Double Chocolate Green Tea Financier. The best among all the desserts, the combination of green tea and chocolate is uniquely brilliant.
– Seasonal Fruits Platter
Ambience – 5/5
Service – 4/5
Food – 4/5
Value – 4/5