Incredible, rustic Italian food with views of the Burj Khalifa? Sign us up. Say ciao to Via Veneto Dubai, a fairly new* ‘osteria e cucina’ located along the bustling MBR Boulevard in Downtown Dubai…
This spacious licensed eatery will transport you to Italy. Think wooden tables and chairs, rustic interior touches and an authentic Italian playlist. The staff are friendly and casual, adding to the welcoming vibes here. The venue is divided between two parts – a casual cucina, which is open for breakfast lunch and dinner, no reservations required and accessible through the Boulevard
Downtown, ground floor entrance. And a slightly fancier Osteria, which encourages reservations, only serves lunch and dinner and is accessible via the Manzil Hotel, level M. If you sit outside at Via Veneto you will be able to see the sparkling Burj Khalifa – a.k.a the world’s tallest skyscraper – making this the perfect place to take out-of-towners you want to impress. Plus, if you visit at the right time, you may well catch the dazzling Burj Khalifa light show.
The Huntr visited Via Veneto (the Osteria) for a weekend lunch. From the antipasti section of the menu we opted for the bruschetta (48AED) which is comprised of house baked rustic Italian bread, tomatoes, spicy hazelnut and chickpea salsa. It’s the perfect starter to share and very appetizing. We also couldn’t resist ordering the Polpo Alla Grigilia (84 AED) – a.k.a grilled octopus. This dish comes with potato, sweet pepper, and a roasted garlic puree and is drizzled in lemon and parsley sauce. It’s tender and tasty. Don’t miss it.
Next, we decided to share two Italian icons – a pizza and a pasta. For the pasta, we selected Spaghetti Frutti de Mare (129 AED) – home-made spaghetti, prawns, squid, clams, mussels, chilli, and parsley. This dish comes highly-recommended. It’s great for sharing, and very simple but stunning. For the pizza, we decided to try La Gina (90 AED) – tomato sauce, fior di latte, figs, artichokes, mushroom, stracchino cheese, and balsamic vinegar. Another fantastic dish, perfect for sharing and also, highly-recommended.
Then, for the main event – from the ‘secondi’ section of the menu – we shared the Milanese (235 AED), which features 350 grams of breaded veal cutlet, grilled cherry tomatoes, rocket salad and grana padano. This signature dish from Milan has a delicious crispy outer layer, and tender meat inside. It’s simple but wonderful, and the perfect match with a good glass of grape or a refreshing mocktail.
To end a truly fabulous meal on a sweet note, we ordered the Italian classic Tiramisu (48 AED), which was creamy with a strong taste of coffee. Divine. And the Milliefoglie (48 AED) which is comprised of caramelised puff pastry, candied orange, sweet cream, and almonds. It’s showered with edible flowers and therefore very Instagrammable.
Via Veneto is a great addition to the Downtown Dubai dining scene. The Osteria is the perfect pre-Opera lunch or dinner venue, and a great place to take visitors during the cooler months thanks to its impressive Burj Khalifa views. But it’s also the perfect place to enjoy a casual dining experience, any night of the week, and transport yourself to Italy – thanks to its casual Cucina. Stupefacente!
*Via Veneto opened in July 2017