Mediterranean Boca Restaurant in Dubai brings a fresh new perspective to the food scene here – with every sip and every bite, you are exposed to fabulous fresh flavors, meticulous execution of every dish on the menu and a swell time thanks to their attentive service.
Dubai’s weather is really having a moment these days. We’ve experienced ridiculously breezy afternoons that beg for alfresco lunches. We found ourselves in the midst of grey business towers, sitting in the bright open outdoors at Boca over the weekend – sipping on Miss Loren’s (combination of Ginger Ale, Raspberries, & Japanese Yuzu) and Pina Mash’s (punchy pineapple, coriander, chili & lime). The menu itself is simple to navigate and before we knew it, we’d ordered a mix of things from their new menu and classics.
Heads up to all restaurants out there to take cue from Boca on how to do REAL chips – they need to be chunky, twice fried for that crisp golden exterior and a generous drizzle of their house made aioli, Spanish bravas sauce and sprinkle of paprika. Even my non-chip loving other half (I know, I don’t get it either) enjoyed it thoroughly, so skip ordering this at your own peril!
Another great appetizer is their Pissaladiere with anchovies, caramelized onion and oregano, that is perfect for sharing. The salty umami flavors the anchovy lends, pairs incredibly well with the sweetness from onions. And when its served hot on a platter on a breezy cold afternoon, there’s really no chance of not devouring it quickly.
Boca’s Gnocchi is understated in its brilliance, letting the truffle truly shine. The restraint shown by the chef in his use of truffle has my respect. There’s a sense of comfort in every bite that combines the meatiness of the mushroom with the soft and delicate texture of the potato and rice flour gnocchi and the herbs.
The dish that is perhaps the best representation of what Boca stands for is their local Sole Fish Milanese with a simple nut and herb crust, sweet green peas, a sublime silk-like potato broth and a hint of lemon. The addition of dill leaves added this intensity to every bite that made it a star dish. No bells and whistles, just simple fresh flavors that work together in harmony.
As is typical of us, dessert is always shared. We picked Boca’s Even Messier Mille-Feuille unanimously. Deconstructed elegantly with thin puff pastry sheets sandwiched between Grand Marnier Chantilly spiked cream, almond praline, a generous drizzle of caramel and a dusting of powdered sugar. Light, airy and a perfect ending to a great meal – this could have easily been shared by three conservative dessert-eaters.
While Dubai might have plenty restaurants that do much, few get things right from all angles – the pricing, the food, flavors and attentive service. Boca nails all three, making it a gem worthy of repeat visits. That I had my eyes set on everything I would order on my next trips there is a fabulous thing indeed.
Location: Boca, Gate Village 6, DIFC, Dubai