Restaurant Review:
Yalumba

Mankhool

What struck us most when we were invited to try the brunch at Yalumba out was its name! Yalumba has drawn inspiration from Australia’s renowned Yalumba winery located in the Barossa Valley wine region. Finding its home at the iconic Le Méridien Dubai Hotel & Conference Centre near the Dubai International Airport, the restaurant is not a new one and has marked a decade in Dubai. However, what is new is that Yalumba recently underwent a refurbishment during the summer and is now back on the Dubai food scene, all fresh and revamped. During our previous visits to the different restaurants of the hotel, we had quite often noticed the delighted squeals emerging from Yalumba, especially on Fridays and so, were quite excited to be attending this brunch and discovering if Yalumba does indeed stay true to its fun name!  

Fun is rife at Yalumba, even more so because we visited with better weather so the pool-side terrace was open and with Christmas right around the corner, the restaurant and tables were decked up with festive decorations. Colorful Christmas crackers were placed on each table and we had a jolly time pulling them apart and extracting little trinkets and funny crepe paper hats among other delights. Party hats, crowns, balloons and a Christmas tree made of bottles added to the festive cheer around the restaurant.  The restaurant was full to the brim with revelers enjoying the live music, glasses after glasses of Bubbly and extensive selection of food and desserts available. No one was in a hurry to leave and with good reason.  
Now for the food and drink. In addition to the champagne that you are continually served, you can also choose from drinks at the bar or cocktails prepared by the bar tenders. With regard to the food, you need to properly pace yourself so that you make the most of it because there’s quite a bit to choose from. Asian, Arabic, Indian, Italian, Live Barbeques, breads, cheeses and an entire room and additional counter dedicated to desserts come together to entice you when you’re brunching at Yalumba.  We cannot name each and everything at Yalumba but we can definitely list our favorites, so here goes:

  • Tronchon & Sheep’s cheese
  • Tuna Salad with Kimchi
  • Assorted Duck Terrine
  • Burrata: An entire long table houses the different kinds of Burrata along with fresh tomatoes and vegetables. This is a section you cannot miss!
  • Prawn and Seafood Dumplings
  • Roast Turkey with Mushroom Gravy and Cranberry sauce
  • Gluten free seared line Cod
  • Grilled Lamb Chop
  • Stuffed Lamb Leg with Mushroom gravy
  • Mutter Paneer
  • Chicken Biryani
We also had some chicken burgers in red and green buns fresh off the grill which were just alright. After multiple visits to the food counters, it was finally time for dessert and yes, we had enough room to spare. As we entered the room of goodies, we honestly felt like we were in a smaller version of Willy Wonka’s factory. A plethora of cakes, cookies, cupcakes, pies and more sat pretty on wall to wall tables. As if this was not enough, another part of the restaurant housed the chocolate and vanilla fountains that we bathed our candy, fruit and brownies in. On another side of this counter, little cakes and puddings sat coolly in a refrigerator, ready to be selected. To our delight, there were Yule Logs as well! Our top picks from the desserts were the following:
 
  • Chocolate Rice Krispies
  • Chocolate and Vanilla Yule Logs
  • Chocolate Cupcake
  • Chocolate Trio Cake
  • Santos Cake
There’s a reason the rice krispies have been placed first on this list and that is because they deserve top spot. A proper treat that we suggest you don’t miss out on!
Essentially, Yalumba is a proper party brunch and it honestly felt like everyone from the patrons, us included, to the servers enjoying their time at the restaurant! The live entertainment is good and guests can spontaneously burst into dance on the terrace when they feel like it. To sum up, Yalumba is the perfect place at which to let your hair down and just simply enjoy.