Restaurant Review – “The Untold Story” by Chef Yunus

Enigma reveals “The Inside Story”:
We were fortunate enough to celebrate the third chapter of Enigma’s culinary expedition during the Media Preview of Chef Yunus Aydin’s evolutionary take of Turkish cuisine. For years, we’ve been accustomed to Turkish cuisine being presented in a “sharing” concept where the food is wholesome, delicious and served rustically and in abundance. The journey of “The Inside Story” is rather similar, except for the fact that presentation is far more modern and contemporary and the use of ingredients in some of these dishes are beyond genius.
About Chef Yunus:
Chef Yunus has been an integral part of the Enigma family ever since its inception. He’s assisted Enigma’s much-admired guest chefs in demonstrating their stories and now he has taken the responsibility onto himself to demonstrate his own.
The Food:
Whether the dinner was on par with the previous two culinary expeditions we’ve experienced in Enigma is questionable. However, what we strongly believe after experiencing Chef Yunus’ stimulating story is the fact that he’s put all of his proficiency, knowledge and perseverance into his modernist Turkish menu. For the first time in Engima, an A La Carte menu would be available for diners in addition to a tasting menu. During our dinner, we got to experience Chef Yunus’ seven course tasting menu.
Course 1 – Ahtapot (Octopus)
We started off with the octopus that was cooked for 8 hours at a temperature of 78 degrees and served with citrus sauce and avocado cream. The presentation was intricate however the flavors were simple and straightforward. The beauty of this dish is quite evidently the octopus itself and how flawlessly it was cooked.
Course 2 – Tutsulenmis Partlican Corbasi (Smoked Eggplant Soup)
This course unfortunately did not tick the boxes for us in terms of distinctiveness or flavor. The soup which was served with fresh thyme and goat cheese tasted pleasing, however not something worth shelling money out for at a fine dining restaurant.
Course 3 – Ev Yapimi Wagyu Pastirma (Homemade Wagyu Pastrami)
We love pastrami however never got the chance to experience “wagyu” pastrami before. Needless to say, it tasted as impeccable as we imagined it to be. Served with Pear Puree, Eggplant Pickle, Spicy Dip, Rocket Leaves and Olives Crackers, this course was not only delectable but we also loved how we could play around with the condiments based on our preferences.
Course 4 – Pancarli Cous Cous (Beetroot Cous Cous)
In Turkey, the thing we called cous cous (or kuskus) is actually a round tiny pasta used in Turkish cuisine. It’s not the well grounded bulgur that we’re familiar with. The kuskus is boiled with the beetroot to obtain that electric pink color and with Duck Confit, Fresh Herbs and Asparagus. Overall, we enjoyed the texture of this dish and the flavors were spot on.
Course 5 – Levrek (Sea Bass)
We raved about the “Black Sea Findik” crust or simply put, Hazelnut crust for days! It was an odd combination but it worked brilliantly with the fish. We loved the nutty flavor and crunchy texture derived from the hazelnuts as well. Served with spinach and caramelized endive, this dish was no less than being perfectly executed.
Course 6 – 7 Baharatli Kuzu Gerdan (7 Spices Lamb Neck)
It was odd to find “lamb neck” in a menu of one of the most fanciest restaurants in Dubai, however you can trust Chef Yunus to make it work. The lamb was cooked for 36 hours at a temperature of 68 degrees making it tender and melt-in-your-mouth delicious. Served with “Incir” or figs and fondant potatoes, this dish was wholesome and bursting with flavor.
Course 7 – Yesil Elma (Apple)
Our final course has mixed reviews at the table. It was no doubt that the execution of this dessert was faultless, however in terms of taste, it could go either way based on your preference. The beautifully glossy green “Apple” comprised of Apple mousse, orange sauce and “kaymak” ice cream. If you love your desserts tart (sour), then you’ll devour this dessert within seconds.

Address and Contact Details:
Palazzo Versace Hotel
Al Jadaf
Dubai, UAE
Tel: 04 5568830

The Bill:
Tasting Menu for 1 Person – Dhs 600

Ambiance: 3.5/5
Food: 4/5
Service: 4.5/5
Value: 4/5

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