Steak houses are a dime a dozen here in Abu Dhabi, but they usually cost a pretty penny. So when you get a rare chance to to get out for a fun night, you better know where to find a great steak at a great price. This week, we are reviewing The Capital Grill, located at the Dusit Thani Hotel in central Abu Dhabi. It gets a bit overlooked since most people think of Thai food when they think of the the Dusit Thani. Few people actually know about their award winning steak house. It was revamped last year to be totally smoke-free, and feel more modern and relaxed.
Chef Daniel Antunes has just recently taken over the reigns where his friendly smile and passion for great food is contagious. He is of Portuguese background, having grown-up planning to become a doctor before abruptly changing his path at the last minute to follow his passion...Cooking. But, the two occupations are similar if you think about it....the skills needed for attention to detail, ultimate hygiene, total meticulousness, and even the ability to connect with your customer- to make them feel better or just happy and satisfied. Chef Daniel's confidence in the kitchen is the result of his years of practice. In addition to studying with some top Michelin starred chefs, he has cooked all around the world, including in Florence Italy where he mastered the art of speaking Italian and making fresh pasta. But that is a story for another time...
Here in Abu Dhabi, he is focusing on fresh flavorful meat and fish. For example, the Irish John Stone filet of dry-aged, grass fed, hormone-free beef. The premium steak is cooked simply, allowing the natural flavor of the beef to shine through. You can choose any one of a number of sauces to accompany the meat, AND your choice of a side. Both are included in the price. Additionally, you can order a la carte too. Go ahead and add a 1/2 of a buttery grilled lobster to your order. You wont be sorry.
There are also some great alternatives to beef. The grilled cod was a huge, moist, chunk of rich flaky fish on top of a bed of creamy beetroot farro "risotto". The fries were thick and crispy, well salted and served hot. The truffle macaroni and cheese is decadent and will leave you stuffed, but at the same time wanting another bite. If you sit in the main dining room, you can see the open kitchen and watch as the chefs work quickly, but surprisingly smoothly.
Desserts are the usual decadent offerings that you might hope for with a creamy chocolate fondant and a cheesecake that stand out among the others. There is also a variety of coffee and tea offerings and/or you can pair your dessert with a sweet port. I opted for the latter.
Before we end, I have to mention the fantastic service at Capital Grill. The super-friendly restaurant manager is usually around to say hello and have a chat with his new and repeat customers. He smiles when he says his staff can practically operate without him. Chef Daniel heads the kitchen with the same outgoing personality. When he is not firing up an order, you will see him pop onto the dining floor for a welcome wave, or smiling with his team as they prepare for the next onslaught of orders.
Dusit Thani Hotel
Opens at 18:00 every day