A culinary gem that opened in Dubai this September, Sean Connolly at Dubai Opera carries the name of the British-born Australia-based chef, famous for his numerous restaurants all over the world, and popular TV shows including My Family Feast.
The décor of the rooftop restaurant is grandiose yet sleek, and has a distinct ocean theme – the roof emulates the delicate curves of an oyster shell, and the pastel, aqua and coral shades seem to make the large space look endless.
The terrace area is the ultimate weekend destination. Spacious, full of light, and directly below a head-spinning Burj Khalifa view, the garden makes you want to savour every minute of the four-hour brunch.
It is no secret that Dubai residents are spoiled when it comes to a Friday brunch. But what stood out to us when we arrived was the combination of the attentive service and lively ambiance of the place – the smooth house beats from the DJ booth set the perfect tone.
Of course, you can’t miss an Instagram opportunity, and the artwork gives you plenty of backdrop options. We especially liked the bright pink fans featuring Sebastian Gamboa’s name.
The food offering at the brunch is delicious. It’s served a la carte, with sharing plates so that you can try a bit of everything. First, we enjoyed oysters from across the globe at the open buffet. Then, we had five starters, and couldn’t get enough of mildly spicy sashimi salad and prawn ponzu, which was perfectly complemented by the refreshing mint and watermelon salad.
Mains included the ocean beef tenderloin, king crab and chili linguine, and a mushroom dish for the vegetarians. The delicate beef, the exquisite mushroom mix, and creamy hand-crafted pasta were lovely, but our favorite part of the meal was actually the side dish – you can’t go wrong with duck fat fries.
A lemon tart, cherry sorbet, and salted caramel popcorn semifreddo made it next to impossible to say no to dessert. We had no other choice but to accept a second helping.
This is the sort of brunch that you leave without that lethargic feeling you get from a huge all-you-can-eat buffet. We’re putting this on our must-visit list, whether you fancy going all-in for the brunch, or just popping to the bar for some mixed drinks before you see a show at the opera.
Visit the Sean Connolly website here