Ramadan is a holy month filled with sacrifice and love. It is also when the religious practice of fasting is maintained between dawn and sunset. As it reaches sunset, all our Muslim brothers and sisters break their fast for the day which is referred to as Iftar. They break their fast with dates and water, move on to juices and then slowly ingest solid food into their system. The whole of Dubai and UAE are filled with Iftar buffets and deals for the family as it encourages everyone to break their fast together, like one big family.
Spice Island in Crowne Plaza offers nothing less than extraordinary for their Iftar buffet menu. Their name is apt for the world tour of dishes that come your way, a lesson through taste and flavour on the varied spices and its usage in the international culinary scene.
Starters - Enough to tickle your tastebuds
You are welcomed with a wide range of dates to juices and teas, a perfect way to start off the buffet on the right note to get those taste buds wanting more. The cold station kicked off with a seasoned collection of cheese and crackers. Their selection of cold salads are definitely worth mentioning; the Moutabel and Pineapple salad were my highlights apart from the very refreshing Nicose, Tabouleh and Kachumbari, to mention a few.
Main Course - Palates from the world over
Indian: A simple yellow dal with Cumin rice (jeera pulao) went beautifully with their lime pickle. The Mutton Curry (Gosht Ka Salan) was melt-in-your-mouth with hot buttered naan made to order. Their chef makes these by hand at the speed of lightening too! Now that's a talent.
There were an assortment of kebabs, again made to order. The Biryani was full of flavour not to mention perfect with the homemade raita.
Middle Eastern: The Oose (lamb Biryani made with Arabic spices, traditionally served during the period of Ramadan and the festival of Eid) was extraordinary. They had a mix grill platter which served the best lamb chops and fish cutlets not to mention the finger foods like the sambosa and fried kibe were out of this world. The tahini-marinated cauliflower tasted like angels marinated it themselves from the heavens above.
Mexican: There was a make-your-own-taco-and-nacho station which had all the components from a zingy salsa to a creamy guacamole and not to mention the ever so faithful sour cream. The refried beans and Mole Chicken were definitely a two serving situation.
Oriental: The Pad Thai had a perfect balance of flavours and the addition of extra crushed peanuts pleasantly complemented the dish. Apart from a live stir fry station which catered to your every stir fry desire, they also had a Sushi counter. Let me take a moment here and mention a very kind soul, Chef Rouf MP who made one of the best Sushi rolls I've had. He has been working in Dubai as a chef for 24 years. And his passion and enthusiasm for food is that of a 24 year old.
Dessert - Sweet tooth....Check!
Yes, after eating all that food I did try the desserts as well. There were a wide range of Middle Eastern sweets traditional to the Arabic palate. Kunafa, Umm Ali, Baklava and Basbussa, to name a few.
They also had a range of cheesecakes, tarts and mousses. But the show stopper would have to be the Chocolate Fountain which took center stage on the buffet and on my plate as well.
I finally ended my journey of food with a cup of Green Tea to wash away my guilty calories. This experience was definitely one to remember, with a live musical of traditional Arabic songs being played softly in the background. A beautiful Iftar evening to spend with family and friends all for the price of AED 139. If you're looking out for a Brunch venue, look no further, as once Ramadan is over they open their doors to their grand Friday Brunch which has something for everyone.
Tel: +971 4 262 5555