Travel may have been scarce for many over the past year, but those missing the Italian way of life might discover a slice of it over at two new Dubai restaurants.
Chic Nonna and L’Amo Bistro Del Mare are set to open in the last quarter of 2021. Brought to the region by Italian hospitality company Mine & Yours Group, the fine-dining restaurants will join the UAE’s diverse culinary scene.
For a look inside the restaurants, scroll through the gallery above.
“There are a lot of Italian restaurants out there, but they’re very generic, they have no real link to Italy. We do see a lot of restaurants launching in Dubai – which is such an international city – but closing down,” says Piero Giglio, managing partner and director of Mine & Yours Group. “It’s all about bringing the right concept at the right time.”
So what makes this the right time? Giglio says it’s Dubai’s able handling of the pandemic that gave them the confidence to open two restaurants in the same year.
“Dubai is stable, and that shows in worst-case scenarios. During the pandemic, we managed to get a semblance of normality very quickly. And with Expo 2020 bringing in people from around the world, we know that the time is right.”
Chic Nonna will be located in DIFC. With “nonna” translating as “grandmother” from Italian, it pays tribute to homely dishes from Italy, given an elevated or chic touch.
Featuring a giant green door, reminiscent of houses in Southern Italy, the standalone restaurant will feature a bar, open kitchen and a chef’s table. Guests will be able to take in views of the Dubai skyline – including Burj Khalifa – from the retro-style upstairs lounge.
While the menu is yet to be announced, the group has brought on board chef Vito Mollica, who previously worked at Four Seasons Hotel Firenze as the group culinary director and executive chef.
Meanwhile L’Amo Bistro Del Mare will be opening, in partnership with Sunset Hospitality, at Dubai Harbour. And there will be plenty to look at from the location, such as its views of Palm Jumeirah and Ain Dubai.
The restaurant will make the most of the view, too, with 360-degree vistas visible through floor-to-ceiling windows. The interiors will also feature terrazzo-style tiles, typical in many traditional Southern Italian restaurants.
Seafood lovers can expect a catch of the day, fish from the Mediterranean and prawns brought in from Sicily. On the menu will be classics such as ricci di mare (sea urchins) and red prawns from Mazara del Vallo to complement the nautical-themed interiors.
L’Amo Bistro Del Mare is a new concept, one that might very well be going places. As Giglio puts it: “Dubai has become a world-famous destination. It used to be bringing concepts from the outside, but now things are different. People are not afraid to launch their own and then expand elsewhere.”