Nine7One – Dubai
The world famous ‘The Oberoi Group of Hotels and Resorts’ host some spectacular restaurants in Down Town Dubai behind The Dubai Mall, including this one: Nine 7 One, which opened in 2013 and hasn’t looked back since.
Astutely named after its UAE dialing code, this fancy restaurant, though designated as fine-dining, is actually reasonably priced enough for anyone to visit and enjoy.
As would be expected of their signature eatery, Nine 7 One is beautifully designed. With an abundance of huge windows, the natural light creates a bright and airy ambiance which is perfectly complimented by an exquisitely built large water feature at its heart.
The layout is essentially comprised of two setups: a private courtyard for those looking to enjoy some more of the sun; or an indoor table under the gentle light of crystal chandeliers, which allows one to look in on world-class chefs going about what they do best in their open plan kitchen.
The strawberry mint was, arguably, the best drink we would have on our tour of Dubai. If there’s such a thing as perfectly crushed ice, then this has to be it. Here we had the prime example of how to properly use mint to compliment a fruit rather than overpower it. A wonderful mixture of fresh mint and strawberry slush.
The second concoction, however, split the crowd with watermelon enthusiasts swearing by its purity of taste and enjoying it, and vice-versa. Actually this was an introductory drink for entering the premises while deciding on your order, which, it goes without saying, beats the old water-on-the-table routine.
Fresh bread indeed, and that too complementary! This was excellent. Fresh as fresh can be, and the heady divine smell of freshly (did we say fresh?) made, quality bread we all know and love (but simply don’t get enough of back here in Britain). These are so good, in fact, that there’s always the danger of eating too much of these while waiting for your meal to arrive.
Quite frankly, one of the best starters we’ve ever had! The contrast between the crispy exterior with the salty softness of the crab coupled with the flavours of the sweet plum coming together so harmoniously with the accompanying sauces was as close to perfection as perfection could be. What a result. What a joy. Could it get much better?
Well, this certainly came mighty close. Essentially it’s a tuna steak, but what a tuna steak it was. Somehow these geniuses made the tuna and avocado work. What we have here is a cacophony of textures and flavours, which on paper shouldn’t work, but they do! We have the crunch of the lettuce, the sharp, tangy sweetness delivered by the pomegranate sauce, all complimented by the sweetness of the passion fruit granadilla, and the addition of some salty lemon sprinkle.
Thanks to chef Vishal Khulbe for granting us permission on filming him doing what he does best in the kitchen. It was a privilege and a special experience seeing quality chefs at work.
The mains were cooked sous vide for 48 hours thus making the meat ultra tender.
The idea behind this was obvious from the first bite: let the meat speak for itself; don’t tamper with it unnecessarily. Butter fried lamb chops – a simple dish that went fantastically with the local labneh yoghurt. Exquisite!
It literally melted apart in the most delicate way possible.
What it did was challenge the perception of meat needing to be firmer and tougher.
In this case, you can understand why they’ve chosen this texture since it went really well with the crunch of both the thinly sliced carrots and sweet pomegranates.
In the end, this dish was full of flavour, and a unique experience at that.
Once in a while you have a dish that shakes you to your very core; one that you’re going to remember for a very long time. Nine 7 One has two such dishes.
The aforementioned soft crab, and this extraordinary Citrus Anatomy – the best dessert we’ve ever tasted! The flavours… the flavours indeed! The balance achieved between the strong and subtle here was quite something (just wish there was more; but that’s fine-dining for you).
Yes Tiramisu isn’t everyone’s cup of coffee, but fan or no fan, this was a delight.
This certainly wasn’t overpowering, and yet not only delivered bags of flavour, but also a contrast in textures in the form of a crunchy and crumbly savaiardi biscuit that went so well with the soft mouse.
Now this is said to be one of their “most popular edible cocktail[s] made for the tapas brunch liquid nitrogen dessert station” – that’s right, an edible coctail. This Mojito sorbet is made from pure passion fruit (other flavours available), but which has been been dehydrated for 3 days.
This is then literally transformed through the use of liquid nitrogen into an edible globule which you can devour in one bite! What we were then encouraged to do was blow the vapour smoke out of our mouths (or nose if that’s more your style). It made for a very fun eating experience.
This is simply cream transformed into a lollipop ice cream in under a minute. Fresh as fresh could be. Definitely no ice crystals here though! The ice cream literally dissolved as soon as it entered the month. Sublime stuff!
Their third party trick, if you will, was a memorable one.
We never thought we’d actually bite on a fresh lemon or lime and not squint, but that’s precisely what we were able to do after being instructed to chew on some ‘Miracle Fruit’ berry! The idea is to firstly chew off the outer skin of this mysterious red berry without breaking the seed therein, and then eat the lemon and lime. By some miracle of nature, these citrus fruits somehow lose their sourness in totality only to be replaced by the taste of candy! We kid you not! It’s quite something, and one that leaves you scratching your head in confusion.
Born in foot hills of Naintial, Himalayas, India, Chef Vishal built up his passion during his early days while moving every three years with his family to different parts of the country.
During this period, he came across various food cultures. But it wasn’t until he worked in a Trattoria Kitchen that his passion for food became the driving force in his life.
After completing a PG diploma from OCLD (2002-04), he started working for Oberoi hotels as a Jnr Sous Chef.
His quest to learn more took him to the best kitchens around the world. His first stop being Charlie Trotters restaurant in Chicago, before going to Singapore, Dublin, Thailand, and then El Bulli restaurant in Costa Brava, Spain.
This journey gave him a “great understanding of different cultures, cuisines, and an opportunity to learn and work with some of the best culinarians in the world”.
Chef Rajeev started his career as part of a pre-opening team at The Trident Gurgaon (Oberoi property) in 2003.
He graduated from Oberoi Centre of learning and development in 2008.
He has worked with the Oberoi group since 2003.
His philosophy is to always use the best products and techniques to create current trend desserts.
Elegance, a clean palate, and enticement are the key words behind the success of his work.
In a vibrant market style arrangement, pick your selection from vivid grills, a boulangerie, fromagerie, molecular desserts, and add on beverages in the unique street brunch held every Friday 1-4pm. Not forgetting to pray your Jum’ah prayers first, of course!
- YES/ NO
Yes, this is fine-dining at its best, but don't be put off by the perception that fine-dining equates to expensive. This restaurant is very reasonably priced when considering you're in Dubai. This really needs to be on the top of your culinary calendar when visiting. You'll be sure to thank us, that we can say for certain.
The service is precision personified; the decor and ambiance as good as it'll get; and our review of the food speaks for itself.
5 all the way!
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Lower Lobby Level,
T: +9714 444 1407, +9714 444 1444 | W: www.oberoihotels.com