Andiamo! La Dolce Vita Friday Brunch, Grand Hyatt Dubai

Brunch Reviews | In Unspecified on March 22nd, 2017
200-300 AED
We said "Ciao" & "Benvenuto" to the newly refurbished Andiamo! The restaurant embodying the classic Italian concept of "La dolce vita," which means the "the good life, full of pleasure and indulgence."   Andiamo itself, is the literal Italian translation of "lets go" and aims to take diners on a gastronomic journey of epic proportions, transporting you across the various regions of Italy to see if there is more to Italian cuisine than just pizza and pasta. So...Andiamo!   THE FOOD   Aside from the expected Pizza & Pasta dishes which we will come onto later, there are stations housing frito misto, mozzarella, burrata, pork & non pork outdoor barbeques, cold cuts, savoury crepes, fresh focaccia, various antipasti dishes and an impressive display of freshly shucked oysters with lemon, strawberry & grapefruit basil vinaigrettes. The crudité station, a tripartite of Salmon Ceviche, Salmon Tartar and a Tuna Carpaccio was a nice idea although seemed a little isolated on a table next to a pillar. Agreeable in premise although not so much in its execution.     The open kitchen, complete with scorching hot pizza oven is where the authentic pizzas are the stars of the show. Chefs flip dough theatrically in the forefront while the smell of fresh dough wafts around the dining room. Chef Alberto's signature pizza balances smooth pistachio pesto, cherry tomatoes and creamy stracciatella cheese with the savoury flair of beef bresaola. There are also 2 pasta dishes to choose from, either the signature Sicilia in Bocca, which uses mezze rigatoni pasta richly enveloped in Sicilian pesto or the Tagliatelle porchini, which is relatively simple and relies on the quality of the porcini mushrooms balanced against the intensity of the garlic and parsley, all married expertly with extra-virgin olive oil and a drizzle of butter.     In a carb-heavy environment, it is easy to overstep so we were quick to sample (and re-sample) the tasty BBQ Lamb as well as the Asparagus omelette before moving onto dessert. For such a wide variety, we did find it strange that nothing was labelled and so asked the chef to come and explain a few choices as one of our guests suffered from a nut allergy. The Crème Brulee had a nice hint of cinnamon and the typical Italian trifles and tiramisu's served in glasses were a hit with our guests, we just didn't know what they were called.     THE DRINKS   We sampled some new cocktails the bar tender had mixed up and was proposing to add to the menu. The first was a signature Cucumber Gin served in a tea cup, aptly named the "The British Way." The other, a sweet Caribbean Rum cocktail called Tropical Passion. Both fresh, refreshing and with a devilish kick! We approve! Regular house pours, hops and wine are also available and although the staff were generally very helpful and polite, we often found our drinks low and had to look around for an available waiter to top us up.     THE OTHER STUFF   As the brunch was far from full on the day of our visit, the staff on arrival said that we were free to sit anywhere we liked. We took the opportunity to take ourselves outside to the vine-covered pergolas on the new terrazzo as it was a pleasant, sunny afternoon and the greenery set against the gushing sound of the geyser in the background had long since caught our attentions on the way in. As one of 13 F&B outlets in the hotel, Andiamo is already facing stiff competition from outside, as well as within it's own walls and we think this was reflected in the low numbers in attendance on the day.   Nevertheless, there was a nice ambience outside with soft, bubbly music playing, audible enough to give the terrace a bit of atmosphere but not loud enough to be intrusive. Perhaps the introduction of a live band would attract a younger crowd and inject a little more swag into the atmosphere. Overall, for the price, the quality of food and setting, this is a good choice for the lover of Italian food, although with a few tweaks could attract a larger and more wide ranging audience.   Buon Appetito!     AED199 with soft beverages AED299 with free-flowing hops and grape To book please call +971 4 317 2221 or visit Andiamo! Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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