Teatro - Park Rotana, Abu Dhabi
|Very dramatic, very theatrical.|
|Part of the bar seating.|
|Certainly not short on a deliciously sensuous atmosphere.|
The evening kicks of with the waiter offering some edamame; a lovely light snack to get the evening going. For my starter I order the mozzarella salad and for my main I go with the wagyu beef tenderloin. The thing about the menu is that it is so diverse and varied that it is hard to decide what you want.
I am really taken in by the wine list. The first thing I notice is how reasonably priced everything is. The next thing that catches my attention is the Meerlust Rubicon 2008, a very fine South African wine. The Meerlust, a gorgeous Bordeaux blend dominated by cabernet sauvignon grapes, is smooth and spicy with plum notes and a very deep colour. A glorious wine.
|A romantic evening here would not be out of place.|
The mozzarella salad surprises me - it is just too good. While the mozzarella is as expected (rich and creamy), it is everything else around it that makes the dish memorable. There is a generous use of beetroot wedges, and with the beetroot dressing slowly moving across the plate, it is only a matter of time before the mozzarella picked up some of the dressing. This does it. Delicious. The basil seems extra fragrant. The yellow cherry tomatoes are an interesting choice, but work perfectly considering the colours on the plate. Finally, the croutons bring an extra dimension to the dish. A bit of crunch to a normally quiet dish.
|The mozzarella richly presented with pesto, basil, crutons and beetroot.|
|One of my all time favourite wines.|
|Simple but stylish presentation of the wagyu beef.|
|A lovely red reveals a perfect medium rare.|
Finally, the service, thanks to being waited on by the head waiter, is an absolute highlight. Hari has a charm and confidence that is both endearing and reassuring. You know you are in capable hands when you meet him. He proves to be familiar with his product and entered into the theatre of introducing and pouring the wine with great mastery. I watch transfixed as he pours my wine and swirls it generously to bring out the nose. Lovely.
In conclusion, Teatro proved to be a wonderful experience, rich in ambience. What it now needs is to add a distinctive quality. It is trying to be everything to everyone. A culling of the menu resulting in fewer options will in fact strengthen and not weaken Teatro. This could create an identity in which East can still meet West, but with more focus.
Theatre is something enjoyed in the East as well as the West. Teatro can indeed become, with some tweaking, a theatre that showcases these dishes, and with the open kitchen, it can really come to life. A genuine theatrical experience of cuisine from two hemispheres can be celebrated!
Park Rotana, Abu Dhabi
02 657 3333
Starters 46-82 Dhs
Mains 68-275 Dhs
Dessert 35-45 Dhs