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How Does the New W Grill & Cocktail Terrace at Wafi Fare?

Wherever I turn of late, a new steakhouse springs up, whether it’s called just that, or a grill, same difference frankly. Gaucho at DIFC, Terra Firma at Intercontinental Festival City, The Grill at Citymax hotel, or W Grill at Wafi. Does this town not have enough decent steakhouses already? Anyhow, let’s see how the latter, the European-styled, W Grill & Cocktail Terrace as the folks at Wafi like to call it, fared.

Located in the Pyramids complex on the main thoroughfare to Wafi mall, W Grill has replaced Mahi Mahi, the seafood eatery which FooDiva never got round to visiting. Did you? Enter via Thai Chi into a huge indoor and outdoor space that can quite happily seat up to nearly 300 diners; a terraced cocktail bar overlooking the glass pyramid, a glasshouse conservatory and indoor dining area. From what FooDiva’s been told, the restaurant has not been revamped much, reflected in the slightly drab and tired decor – a real shame the look and feel doesn’t match the menu’s Art Deco typeface. Talking of the menu, you have the choice of a salad and dessert buffet, as well as a la carte starters, mains, sweets and cheese – and you can mix and match.

Having had the salad bar at the media opening last month, FooDiva was keen to try the a la carte starters. Spotting a Yorkshire pudding on a seared foie gras starter with caramelised Bramley apple compote and balsamic onion gravy helped seal my appetiser choice – but the two mini puddings arrived baked to the point of all-round crispiness, with none of the fresh, fluffy centre you’d expect to dig into. Clearly they had been reheated. I also expected the perfectly seared foie gras to sit in the pud. Other starter dishes from my dining companions included an asparagus soup with a goats cheese toast – lukewarm with a tad too much olive oil, and pan-fried prawns in a spicy garlic, chilli, parsley and olive oil sauce – whilst the sauce had plenty of punch, the prawns were a little overcooked and therefore chewy.

You can’t go to a grill without trying the steaks; FooDiva’s Australian Angus beef rib-eye, grain-fed for 150 days before slaughter was cooked exactly as per my order, rare and full of flavour like a rib-eye should be. Note, the smaller 12 oz is a huge portion. You need an accompanying sauce, in my case a smooth bearnaise to help mop up the juices. I had high hopes for a side order of duck fat roasted potatoes, but the strong after-taste lead me to think they too had been pre-cooked and reheated – but made up for in the cauliflower gratin; steaming hot with the cheese and bechamel bubbling away.

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