Hot on the heels of the new Shabestan, which opened at the Lime Tree Hotel in Jumeirah a fortnight ago, we have another new Iranian restaurant gracing Dubai’s dynamic culinary scene – one with a most un-Iranian name – Bait Al Jadeed. Located on Jumeirah Road where Atmosfire by Barbeque Nation used to be, the restaurant boasts one of the most successful conversions I have seen. In fact, my untrained eye drew an immediate link to Hestooran, a beautifully designed restaurant in Tehran with historical overtones in its interior. Beautifully designed, period furniture, day beds, authentic Persian table linen and copper dining ware – I give the restaurant an “A” for optics.
Service started off on a different level to anything I have previously experienced at an Iranian restaurant in Dubai, with a warm welcome at the entrance, hand-wash at the table followed by a beautiful estekan of tea accompanied by small bowls of dried fruit and nuts. Small things which made a big difference. But while the staff were very friendly, hospitable and accommodating, there were moments of disorientation and confusion; one example of this was that our order needed to be placed several times. I’ll admit, these quirks were ironed out as they got into their groove. It helped that we were the only occupied table in the restaurant; I shudder to think what it’ll be like at capacity. One must bear in mind though that they’ve only just opened.
First of the food to arrive was a well-presented bowl of Aash Reshteh which I felt was very good. Ayda said it reminded her of her grandmother’s aash. It turned out to be a false dawn because what followed was one disappointment after another. The two dishes which drew universal condemnation from our table of seven were the Shishlik Lamb Chops and Kabab Bolghari (Bulgarian), neither of which should have left the kitchen. Both were left almost untouched. Just those two dishes cost AED430!!!
The rest of our meal included an unspectacular mixed grill of kababs: Koobideh, Jujeh, Maasti Meat and Chicken, a very mediocre Khoresh Bademjan and finally, the only dish I liked, Ghormeh Sabzi. Nothing served was better than what one would expect from mall-based Noon-O-Kabab. Adding insult to injury was the exorbitant cost of this underwhelming meal – a whooping AED1745!
As things stand I cannot recommend Bait Jadeed for anything but afternoon tea, and that too will probably cost as much as a full meal at Rivas down the road. This is a restaurant which has so much going for it. Sadly its food is not on that list. I will go back to try it again in a couple of weeks. Till such time as there is a drastic change in their kitchen, I suggest you consider other options. I rate this restaurant no more than a 5/10.
Xerxes (pronounced Zûrk’seez) – Food Adventurer Extraordinaire & Aspiring (=Amateur) Food Blogger – 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 email@example.com.