The business lunch at Sucre DIFC promises much, not least some Latino flair, but also meats cooked the Argentine way (indirectly) on a ‘parilla’ (grill). I was instantly in love and at home with Sucre’s interior – rustic, earthy, chic-casual and very, very unpretentious…a breath of fresh air in super stuck up DIFC. Enhancing the feel-good experience for me were the South American staff members, their English deliciously accented, their demeanour genuinely friendly – and of course, my companions.
All three of us ordered the same starter – Spicy Octopus Tostada, pieces of octopus hidden (=lost) under a colourful crown of thorns made of cabbage, which in turn sat on top of a toasted tortilla layered with an avocado spread. I found it fussy, difficult to eat and too sweet for my liking. Jose and I both had the Striploin as our main, testing the chef’s skills by asking for doneness on either end of the medium-scale – rare for me and well for him. Kambiz ordered the Sea Bream with Clams & Chorizo. I knew he didn’t like it from the way he picked at it rather than eating it with the same gusto he does when he likes something. For a restaurant boasting a parilla, our steaks were scandalously disappointing – doneness wrong, seasoning? what seasoning? and meat quality which warranted 6-hour braising not urgent indirect heat. It nearly ruined the whole experience for us – nearly.
Jose’s sinfully delicious Dulce de Leche Fondant was Sucre’s saving grace. It made our Basque Cheesecakes taste like they were made in Japan – sugarless and bland – even with the strawberries.
The question I always ask myself at the end of a meal, especially if I’m at a new restaurant is, will I go back? Jose said the Dulce de Leche was enough to take him back. Although I was disappointed with the food, I too will go back but not only for the dessert. I’ll go back for the ambiance and vibe, the service and you know, I think there’s a lot more that kitchen has to offer than those best-forgotten steaks. I’ll go back to find out what. Watch this space. My special thanks to our Colombian waiter, Rueben, who was truly amazing. The business lunch at Sucre costs Dhs 115 and is a two or three-course affair, the third being dessert – a Dhs35 extra.
Xerxes (pronounced Zûrk’seez) – Food Adventurer Extraordinaire – Shamelessly Exploring the Boundaries of Gluttony
Xerxes physically dines at, or orders from, each and every venue he reviews. He pays in full for whatever he and his companions eat, drink, take away or occasionally throw at each other. Xerxes accepts no money, gifts, discounts or free meals in return for reviews or favouritism. What you have read was NOT influenced in any way by the venue. Join him on his culinary journey on Instagram: @ravenousxerxes or reach out to him via email on firstname.lastname@example.org.