Where: Gossip Cafe & Desserts, Box Park.
How much: AED 200 for two (approx.)
Cuisine: Fusion appetizers, desserts
Recommended: The Ultimate Dessert
Gossip Café & Desserts, a home-grown Emirati concept, is both cozy and chic.
They really do pay attention to detail, as shown through contemporary shelves that display intricate cakes and shiny steel flowerpots. You can’t miss their sprawling LED “Live. Love. Laugh. Gossip.” sign that adds a feel-good vibe to the place.
Their menu boasts a variety of Emirati-American-International fusion cuisine that will leave you questioning your ability to make decisions. Fortunately, their servers are both friendly and helpful enough to guide you through the experience by recommending the café’s bestsellers.
We started with Risotto Bites, which was a clear favourite among the café’s guests as we saw it frequently being carried out by servers. However, it didn’t particularly strike my fancy. Golden-fried to perfection, these tiny parcels of risotto were crunchy on the outside but not as creamy and silky on the inside as one would expect risotto to be. If it wasn’t for the marinara accompaniment, they would be quite dry.
Truffle makes everything glorious. Naturally, we got the Truffle Fries that came with ketchup and a mint green pesto mayo. This was refreshing after having experienced masses of soggy fries without the slightest hint of truffle.
At Gossip, they were crunchy all the way till the end of the meal, with a delicate truffle aroma and flavor – both of which were neither overpowering nor underwhelming.
Hearty Quinoa salad will have you wishing that eating ‘healthy’ always tasted this good. It had the perfect balance of textures; crisp green beans, creamy avocado and goat cheese, and crunchy pine nuts.
Roasted beetroot added a pop of color to the mass of green spinach and arugula, while the tart apple cider vinaigrette tied up the dish beautifully. This one is most definitely a winner!
Finally, what the café is most popular for – dessert.
Appropriately named, The Ultimate Dessert is decadent, to say the least. It involves a “secret recipe”, but our server slyly hinted at chocolate and cookies with a wink.
This base comes with a pile of the Arabic equivalent to soan papdi (for anyone who doesn’t know what that is – it’s essentially cotton candy/sugar), drizzled with chocolate and caramel.
However, the accompanying ice-cream was what really stood out; we got a trio of caramel, vanilla, and dark chocolate, all of which were glossy, rich, and true to their respective flavors. Gossip makes their ice-creams in-house, and the difference in quality is obvious.
We couldn’t resist getting the Chocolate Fondant, and boy, were we glad! The cake was spongy and immediately came apart when we dug our spoons into it, only to reveal oozing gooey velvety liquid chocolate that was all too dreamy. This, too, was served with their delicious homemade vanilla bean ice-cream. Major points for serving a perfect fondant.
Overall, Gossip Café & Desserts is an ideal spot if you’re looking for a slightly upscale yet casual experience. Their servers are knowledgeable and attentive, and the restaurant’s charismatic manager made his rounds to every table; these are examples of fine service.
When it comes to the food, I would give mains a miss as there are several worthy appetizers and salads to pick from. However, do yourself a favor and do not skip dessert – it sure is worth the calories.
B-Change Foodie Rating: 7.5/10
If you’re interested, take note:
- They deliver desserts in gift boxes [and what a brilliant gift they’d make]
- For special occasions, they create customised designer cakes.
Have you been to Gossip Cafe & Desserts? Give us your take in the comments below.
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