Restaurant Review: Amala, Jumeirah Zabeel Saray

Delish Indian cuisine on surprising set menus at an uber chic venue
Tuesday , 08 May 2012

Location: Jumeirah Zabeel Saray, West Crescent, Palm Jumeirah
Tel: 04 453 0000
Dress code: Smart-casual
Cuisine: Indian
Times: 6pm to 1am, Tuesday to Sunday
Price Range: $$$

Baingan ka bharta as dip, anyone? That’s just the first of the surprises at Amala, the Jumeirah Zabeel Saray’s Indian restaurant that makes a conscious effort to walk the culinary road less travelled. Just as you don’t really expect mashed brinjal taking pride of place in an amuse-bouche, you don’t really expect a menu that’s all about set options – with room for flexibility but without prices for individual dishes – at a place like Amala. It’s rather politely posh, and while there are hints of India (including a subtle zari-esque touch to the table linen), nothing’s in-your-face.  

Try the eponymous tawa menu, named after the traditional Indian griddle, if you love seafood. The massive mixed platter is packed with everything from succulent calamari and lobster to crisp tiger prawns and salmon. The vegetarian set menu has such treats as the masala okra, colocassia and green peas kebab and malai kofta. The a la carte menu is for gourmands, in that you can order everything on it as many times as you like for the set price; though, the staff reliably inform us that no one has done this yet. Someone might have a go at it – Amala is scoring high on the radar of foodies in the city. Its newly introduced curry and Reisling night, where you can try a selection of curries paired with grape picked by Amala’s sommelier, continues to add to the numbers of its regulars.

On the Menu

Pan-fried scallops
Stuffed potatoes

Malabar fish masala
Pickled quail

Sago pudding
Fried milk roll

Tawa menu (daily), Dhs390
A la carte menu (daily), Dhs255
Vegetarian set menu (Tuesdays), Dhs180
Curry and Reisling night (Saturdays), Dh350 

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