Debonair’s resident epicurean indulges in fancy rustic fare at David Myers’ Bleu Blanc
The brunch at Armani/Deli puts the antipasti front and centre
Everything about Armani/Deli screams Armani. Or rather, whispers it understatedly; screaming would be altogether too crass. The sleek lines, the oh-so-stylish furnishings, the glossy black veneers polished to perfection. The immaculately presented staff. The immaculately presented food. And an atmosphere of calm, of serenity, of simplicity yet eloquence. Utterly upmarket, utterly sophisticated, utterly refined, yet utterly welcoming and inclusive; true Italian hospitality.
We’re seated by the window, with spectacular views over the water surrounding Burj Khalifa, while the restaurant hosts take a moment to welcome us and explain how brunch works. No dropped spoons or spilled sauces here; dishes are presented behind spotless glass counters and faultlessly knowledgeable staff are on hand to serve your choices with a smile.
Code of London
Code of London
We take a stroll around the extensive antipasti selection to pick a few; rows and rows of beautifully created salads, terrines, tartares. Bulging twists of mozzarella di bufala, piles of glistening olives, waves of fresh-from-the-ocean seafood on ice. While we’re gone, a minimalistic silver basket has appeared on the table with a selection of breads, as well as a tray of tempura and hot polenta bites. We’re in antipasti heaven.
Appropriately at a restaurant with deli in the title, mains are not the focus; but that’s not to say they’re not as spectacular as the antipasti, though. Far from it. Succulent lamb and beef roasts, juicy chicken with rosemary potatoes, a colossal baked salmon flaking beautifully at the prod of a fork. Or, of course, made-to-order pasta just as you like it.
When we’re done with mains, there’s a dessert counter almost as extensive as the antipasti. Petite tartlets, dainty macaroons, a phenomenal tiramisu, all exquisitely presented as miniature works of culinary art. A selection of fine chocolaterie, with some bonbons and candy for good measure.
And then the cheese room. Oh, the cheese room. If ever we regret overindulging earlier in the day, it’s at Armani/Deli brunch. The restaurant boasts an entire room dedicated to the sheer love of cheese. Mozzarella, pecorino Toscano, Parmigiano Reggio, taleggio, gorgonzola, provolone… the list goes on. With grape to match. We have to prise ourselves from the room, forcefully, to finish our drinks at the table.
Service is, as you would entirely expect, seamless. Wait staff anticipate your every need, from a simple water top-up to suggestions for a change of drinks with each course. From the hosts to the chefs, every member of the team is delighted to greet guests, frequently stopping by to make sure all is okay.
A serene brunch with a loved one, a catch-up with good friends over good food, a family get-together. Armani/Deli works for all of these. It’s unmistakably Armani, and unmistakably good.
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