It could be easy to pass by Leopold's of London and just assume it has the characteristics of just another mall eatery. Although, I am not sure how you can miss that wonderful smell of strong roasted coffee or those tempting cakes in the front window. Leopold's of London, somewhat awkwardly referred to "LOL", is one place that I know I can depend on for a great simple meal, And they take their coffee and tea seriously.
I went to check out the Nation Towers location for dinner last week, which is definitely my favorite location in Abu Dhabi. It is spacious and the seating area is dimly lit, overlooking the corniche, although there is no outdoor eating area. Leopold's is known for their pizza, salads and their burger.... but they also have a fantastic menu of main dishes too. I am actually not quite sure how they manage to have such a dependably good menu. The burger is juicy and flavorful, the pizzas are thin and rich and their salads are healthy but more importantly, interesting.
The super Kale and Broccoli Salad is a large bowl of seared kale, steamed broccoli, Lebanese couscous, pine nuts, and tahini dressing on the side. Such a flavor-packed bowl of goodness. You can always add grilled salmon or chicken on top, if you are one of those healthy types. A newer dish on their menu is the Deconstructed Quinoa Biryani (you won't yet see it on their online menu). Basically, it is a Biryani, but just not in the Biryani pot. It comes on a large dish with pappadams and two yogurt sauces. It was flavorful, filling and even a little spicy....I also loved the addition of the roasted cashews!
The Sumac-Rubbed Salmon was another winner. Moist even when cooked well-done, with lots of sumac. It is accompanied by a super crunchy and refreshing arugula salad with goat cheese and thinly sliced red onions.
Now, because I don't want to be too healthy I had to order their crispy fries too. Thick cut fries that are golden and crispy on the outside but buttery soft on the inside. The little one also went for the chicken tenders from the kid's menu. They were very good, but I am not one for processed meat so I might offer up the Kiddie Fish and Chips next time.
If you can muster some space for a sweet you should try the decadent Date Pudding or the Carrot Cake. The Carrot Cake is not as sweet or as rich as its American counterpart, but instead a little lighter, leaving you with a little more subtle spice, and yes it still has cream cheese frosting. If you are a coffee lover, like me, you might want to go to Leopold's just for the coffee. They have about 5 different ways they can prepare it from French Press, to Syphon, to your usual espresso machine. And in addition to all of the classics, there are a handful of specialty coffee drinks as well. I mean they even have a Roast Master who comes to your table to help you decide which bean you like best. How cool is that? I wish we could take this kind of care in picking a lot of other things we eat and drink.
Leopold's is hard to beat for coffee, tea and simply tasty food!
Leopold's Of London