The Souq Brunch at Olea, Kempinski Hotel

It’s always so much fun catching up with friends. This time I was meeting my friend Fareem after many years. He just moved here and we happened to meet for Brunch at Levantine cuisine restaurant : Olea at Kempinski Hotel, Mall of the Emirates.

The atmosphere was vibrant from the moment we stepped in and the music, which included a live band only added to the overall feel. The brunch showcased authentic cuisine from the six Levantine nations, set amid the bustling atmosphere of a typical Souq.

Staff was extremely courteous and helpful. Layout was great and to start off, for someone who till recently, had been a ‘strict’ non-veg, on display was a treat. The bar is well stacked and there are enough appetizers to see you through your drink. Truly it’s a place for non-vegetarians. Vegetarians will find some cold mezze, cheese and zatar preparations, lentil soup, breads, fruits and Arabic desserts. It’s actually a great place to spend the afternoon with family. Kids can enjoy the lovely candy’s and cupcakes at the candy stations and enjoy some fresh air at the alfresco sitting by the pool side.

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My friend really enjoyed the lamb kababs and the shish tawook and they were just perfectly made. There was quite frankly enough on offer to confuse you – Lamb, chicken, fish, all of it. With this were the breads on offer – again without getting into the type or kind of bread, I can just remember myself picking a couple of breads to try. We tried something I presumed to be rice, which now I know is called Freekeh, and it tasted quite nice. Infact by itself, it seemed like quite a healthy thing to be having. The desserts table was laden with local delicacies – not really fond of them, but kunafa was nice.

Again the atmosphere during the brunch was great – in particular this guy you see strolling around with a great deal of paraphernalia around him serving some really good tea besides breaking into an occasional jig to some typical music.

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Cost: AED 225 for the Brunch without Alcohol and AED 295 with Alcohol . Kids under 7 years of age dine for free and over 7 years at AED 150.

JWD Rating 4.8/5

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