Wanted: fit chefs with sea legs

Le Meridien Mina Seyahi aims to introduce a new dining experience to its F&B portfolio next month. Casting off in mid-March will be The Dhow restaurant: a renovated traditional dhow from the creek turned into a trendy seafood restaurant.

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By  Sarah Campbell Published  February 20, 2005

Le Meridien Mina Seyahi aims to introduce a new dining experience to its F&B portfolio next month. Casting off in mid-March will be The Dhow restaurant: a renovated traditional dhow from the creek turned into a trendy seafood restaurant. Renovation of the decommissioned boat has taken five years, and has been the vision of Le Meridien Mina Seyahi’s managing director, Saeed Hareb. “This will be the first floating traditional dhow in the area close to Mina Seyahi,” explains Hareb. “It is close to all the top hotels. In addition to being a restaurant, it will be available for private hire, for events such as product launches, weddings, conventions and incentives.” Refurbished at a total cost of US $500,000, The Dhow will offer 85 covers inside and an additional 100 covers outside. The restaurant will be moored at Dubai International Marine Club. However, with two inboard engines, sea excursions are a possibility. “When the Palm is ready we can go through there and show people,” says Hareb. With renovation now complete the latest challenge in the life of The Dhow falls to Anston Fivaz, executive chef at Le Meridien Mina Seyahi. He admits that working in a confined area will stretch the capabilities of his team. “I will have to employ very fit and very short chefs, because of the small kitchen and running up and down stairs,” he jokes. Naturally, The Dhow will offer a seafood menu, with fresh seafood platters as the signature dishes. “We will offer cold seafood platters, similar to those served in Brittany and Normandy,” explains chef Anston. “The fish on display will be cooked in 20-30 styles, at the request of the guest. We will have an oyster bar offering 7-8 types of oyster and a sushi bar, offering really good sushi made fresh in the restaurant, as well as sashimi. We have employed a sushi chef just for this project,” he adds. Single portioned buffet starters, a fresh buffet and live preparation stations will take up the centre of the restaurant. A traditional seating area at the front of The Dhow will offer private dining space. The restaurant will also have music and an alcohol licence.

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