DINING

Fabulously French

Dining at Pierre’s Bistro & Bar is no ordinary experience. Brought to life by award-winning chef Pierre Gagnaire, the venue champions French cuisine created using simple ingredients with bold flavour combinations

For decades, French cuisine has been equated with gastronomic prestige. Freshly baked bread, a sumptuous selection of cheese and an endless list of delicate pastries are among the many standout items on a traditional menu. Simplicity and freshness have always been the culinary focus in France and magical flavours are born out of creative combinations that rely on the use of butter and herbs as a base for almost every sauce. While it might seem effortless on the surface, French cuisine demands a certain passion and dexterity in the kitchen.

Executed perfectly, epicurean excellence is guaranteed. One such venue that ticks all the boxes when it comes to authentic French dining is Pierre’s Bistro & Bar. And with three-time Michelin award-winning chef Pierre Gagnaire at the helm, there’s no surprises why. With a host of top-class restaurants around the globe and a career that spans more than 40 years, Gagnaire is a respected master chef. Made famous for his pioneering culinary style, his success is attributed to his ability to create an extraordinary interplay between ingredients. He has brought this unique technique to Pierre’s Bistro & Bar – considered one of Dubai’s finest restaurants since opening at InterContinental Dubai Festival City over a year ago. 

From the chef… “When it comes to French cooking, the secret lies in the sauce. It’s what gives you a final product you can be proud of. In France, we are lucky because we have it all – the sea, the mountains, the countryside – and the inspiration comes from everywhere. At our Dubai venue, it is all about casual food with a strong French character and that Dubai touch, simply because we cater to a multicultural audience.” Pierre Gagnaire 

We recently had the chance to check out the venue and also meet the celebrated chef himself, who was in town to launch the restaurant’s new menu for the season. And while a few signatures have remained a constant on the extensive list, the chef expressed that it’s that Dubai touch that sets the venue apart from its global outposts. And this was made clear when our starters for the evening arrived. The generous portions require you to visit with a serious appetite because the staff will ensure you do not leave without trying the most popular items on the menu.

And so after a helping of freshly baked bread and a bowl of crispy baked parmesan, the honey and pine nut lamb skewer, highly recommended by our server, was the first dish on our table. Served on a bed of green curry hummus, it’s a favourite among local visitors, thanks to the tender lamb meat spiced ever so slightly to complement the creamy hummus. The pan-fried squid was another wonderful suggestion. Also popular among frequent diners, the fresh calamari is prepared in a black garlic butter sauce and drizzled with kale, mushrooms and coriander. With an extensive list of mains catering to vegetarians, pescetarians and carnivores, you’ll find yourself spoilt for choice.

While we were tempted to try a little bit of everything, the portion sizes simply won’t let you. And then again, there’s always the next time – chef Gagnaire’s creations will keep you coming back for more. We decided to sample the organic roasted farm chicken breast. Tender and flavourful in every bite, the chicken is cooked with aromatic herbs and served with mushroom cream, green pepper and potatoes.

Given our fondness for truffles, we also ordered the black truffle spaghetti, simply cooked in a delicate sauce to allow the flavour of the truffles to shine through. By this point in your meal, your appetite is sure to be well and truly satiated. Yet, one look at the dessert menu is all it will take to tempt you to order one more course.

We chose the chocolate souffled biscuit pistachio parfait served with a bitter chocolate ganache, ideal for sharing. The perfect end to a wonderful meal, as we savoured every bite, it also gave us the chance to truly appreciate the brilliant setting. The open space is accentuated with giant tropical plants, pink flamingos and brass turtles that add a touch of playfulness to the refined, brightly-lit interior. And during the cooler months, the outdoor terrace lends itself to memorable dining experiences, complete with views over the Festival Bay and the emirate’s skyline. When you dine at Pierre’s Bistro & Bar, you take more than a fond memory home with you. Every diner leaves the restaurant with a freshly baked baguette that makes for a great accompaniment to your next meal at home. All in all, the venue and the food certainly live up to the legacy of its renowned chef.

For more information or reservations 04 7011199 or pierresdubai.com  

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