Upon entering the sweeping expanse of floor space to incorporate an open plan dining room, it’s evident that Tribeca’s inspiration is most definitely derived from the loft bars of New York’s trendy Manhattan district of the same name, despite it not being on the top floor. Its wooden interior is adorned with street art on its bare walls, with naked ceiling and steel structures adding to its effortlessly cool urban vibe. With either live music or hip RnB blaring from the speakers, all its elements so far are indicative to us as being the perfect introduction to a good night out. There is also a vast terrace area, where many prefer to congregate in the open air amid much camaraderie.
The menu is mostly organic which extends to include grape and various other drinks on offer. We recommend the cucumber cooler for a refreshing change to the norm as a pre-dinner aperitif, before perusing an abundance of guilt-free dishes to dine on. Tribeca’s ethos is to provide healthy food options within a lounge environment, which we feel could be its unique selling point. It certainly appears that way, given its mass audience on a school night.
We begin with starters of edamame, Burrata cheese with tomato, orange and mixed greens, king prawns with coconut cream and slabs of grilled polenta and baked Greek feta with cherry tomatoes. Of the four, the only dish that anyone could possible get wrong is the prawns, but they were sweet and tender, despite their size which have a tendency to be tough. So far so good, but it’s an easy sell when you have a combination of sublime and fresh ingredients that work well together, so for the true verdict, we swiftly move on to mains.
We opt for the chef’s pot pie and the Chilean Seabass glazed in honey. The pie’s melt in the mouth pulled lamb, combined with spicy pilaf curry rice, bananas, pineapples and raisins is deliciously comforting, although it may throw diners off with its description, given that pot pie alludes to a puff pastry topping. Think of it as a super mild fragrant biryani of sorts, with a fruity spin – it’s yum! The seabass comes smothered with a rainbow of sliced peppers and despite its small portion is a wise main that is abundant with flavour and fully satisfying even after just a few bites, having been prepared in coconut oil.
Dessert is always our favourite part of the meal but it gets a whole lot better when it is brought to you in a tower of deconstructed elements that makes it so much more exciting! This is one dish that will bring out the food critic in you, as you tailor each spoonful of this steamed concoction with almond crumble and passion fruit to preference with your undivided attention. A word of advice – don’t say that you’ll share because you won’t!
All in all, Tribeca certainly appears to be doing something right, even though it’s early days. We think that a year from now when it is fully established, you’ll be hard pushed to get a table. It might just be time to make yourself known as a regular!
INFO: 6pm-3am daily, JA Oceanview Hotel, JBR Walk, 04 814 5923, www.tribeca.ae
ARTISAN RAVIOLI STUFFED WITH BEETROOT & MASCARPONE WITH PEA FOAM AND SAGE BUTTER
FOR THE PASTA
1 full egg
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Flour or semolina for dusting
FOR THE RAVIOLI FILLING
200g organic beetroot
200g mascarpone cheese
30g organic parmesan cheese, grated
2 tsp fresh marjoram
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
FOR THE GREEN PEA FOAM
200g organic peas
1 tsp salt
400ml chicken, beef or vegetable stock
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
10g grated parmesan
1 Add the flour, salt, olive oil and eggs to a mixer and combine until you achieve a homogeneous dough. Store in the fridge for 30 minutes before use.
2 Boil the beetroot for 45 minutes until cooked. Allow to cool, then chop into small pieces.
3 Add the mascarpone to the beetroot and whip for 2 to 3 minutes.
4 Add the marjoram, salt, pepper and parmesan cheese. Mix to combine and set aside.
5 Prepare the green pea foam. Place olive oil, peas, potatoes and salt in a saucepan and cover with the stock. Bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 25 minutes.
6 Blend the ingredients together with a hand blender, adding extra stock or water if it is too thick.
7 Sprinkle a work surface with flour or semolina.
8 Roll out the dough to a 2mm thickness and cut the dough into 5cm x 5cm squares.
9 Put a small spoon of the beetroot filling in the centre of the squares.
10 Brush each edge of the square with water.
11 Fold the square in half sealing the ravioli, then pull the 2 bottom corners to meet, forming your complete ravioli piece.
12 Add the ravioli to a saucepan and cover with water, bring to the boil and then simmer for no more than 3 minutes. Drain.
13 Melt the butter with the sage in a separate saucepan. Add the ravioli and cook on a moderate temperature for 2 minutes.
14 To serve, spread the pea foam across your plate, place the ravioli on top and garnish with grated parmesan.