Category Archives: Re-Visits

Sometimes I would visit a place again. This does not mean I have nothing to say!

Re-Visit! California Pizza Kitchen in Mall of the Emirates

I have brought to myself a new problem. I am now asked “Since you review food, where do we eat?”. What do I do? Take them to a new place and risk it being good or go to somewhere I liked previously? Yup, Re-Visit it is!

My previous review of California Pizza Kitchen (Which you can read here) was pretty good! and had got one of my highest views, so a Re-Visit was going to either secure their score, pull them up or pull them down.

First up! The place.

The place looks similar to the other branch, so they do keep some consistency in their layout. Again, plenty of booths and tables. Tables are also found outside as well that let you look at… the mall? anyways.. We sat in the last booth (also the only one that was free). The seating was alright and fairly comfortable as last time. The overall feel though was more pleasurable at Dubai mall. Maybe its the high ceilings or something I am not sure. The booth overlooked the kitchen. Unlike the useless wall cut-out in Dubai Mall, this one is actually open to the kitchen, and also unlike Dubai Mall, you can see them preparing the food! I was watching the whole process. I enjoyed seeing food going and coming as well. Now, this is a kitchen cut-out!

I had the same Appetizer as last time, the Dynamite Shrimp.

“Lightly fried Shrimp tossed in spicy-sweet chili sauce and toasted sesame seeds. Served on a bed of crispy rice noodles and scallions”

It seemed almost identical. There was a slightly different taste, a little more spicy than sweet this time, but it was still just as good as last time.

Along with the Appetizer, we ordered soup, the “Adobe Chicken Chowder Soup”

I did not like this much. First of all, it did not look appetizing. It was very thick and seemed more of a pudding than a soup. It has Chicken and a whole list of vegetables in it. I would not recommend this, focus on the Dynamite Shrimp.

Leaving the soup aside, I tried a new Pizza this time, the “Jamaican Jerk Chicken”, yes, jerk.

Going through my previous review of California Pizza Kitchen, I really enjoyed the Pizza. This one was even better! On the menu it contains:

“Grilled Jamaican Jerk spiced chicken breast with spicy sweet Caribbean sauce, Mozzarella cheese, crispy beef bacon, mild onions, roasted red and yellow peppers and green onions”

Firstly, it had everything mentioned, and in very good balance. The taste was definitely there and the Caribbean sauce was sweet but not over-powering. It was just right.
The size seemed very consistent with before, and sufficient for 1 and a half person (or 2 not so hungry people), even though the Pizza is relatively thin. The Chicken was perfectly cooked, enough of them around and tasted nice.
Overall, I preferred this pizza to their “best selling pizza” and it has a lot more flavors going on. It was hot enough and right out of the oven. 6 slices that like before seems light to eat, yet nicely filling. The beef bacon, as usually is, was a little hard rather than crispy but did add a light flavor to the pizza. I liked the whole combination, it worked.

The other main dish ordered was the Spaghetti Bolognese.

Fairly straight forward. Nothing fancy or unexpected. It was cooked well, the Minced Meat sauce was tasty but there were two little points:
The first, the Spaghetti was a little peppery. Not sure if they meant it to taste that way or the Chef was a little heavy on the pepper.
The second, the Spaghetti was a little thick. I usually find Spaghetti to be thinner than this.
The taste was good though, those are just light criticisms. The Portion was quite good as well, and filling for a hungry person.The Spaghetti is left long and not cut up.
There was some Grated Parmesan, but not enough. I would like if they offered cheese on the side for people to add as they wish. The dish would have been better if was a little warmer, as by half way through, it was a little cold.

The Service: The last time, the Service was spot on very good, food arrived quick and I had a few negative comments on the Kitchen cut-out. This time though, the Kitchen cut-out was lovely, but unfortunately the rest changed too. The food was a little slow, I did have to stop and wonder “hey, where is the food?” in the pause between starters and main dishes. The service was good, no doubt, but they were not as attentive and plenty as before. I had to look around for servers to get the bill, and when I got it with a comment card, again had to look around for 2 minutes for someone to get me a pen. They were a little busy, but almost in par with my previous visit as they were polite, sweet and happy to serve.

The Value: It is quite good for the good food. 1 Appetizer, 2 Soups, 1 Pizza, 1 Pasta and 2 Soft Drinks came a little under 200 Dhs (Kinda what I estimated in my earlier review).

So how does my Re-Visit to California Pizza Kitchen compare with my Review?

These were my Ratings:

The Place:   6 / 10
The Service: 8 / 10
The Food:    7 / 10

Overall: 7 / 10

So, what did I think Deviated from the above?

I think that would be The Service. I think it should -1

The Place’s rating drops to 6.7 / 10.

To me, this does means that they are fairly consistent, sometimes the service might be good or slightly under-par but does not drastically change.

I’d recommend this place.

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Posted by on June 20, 2012 in Re-Visits


Re-Visit! Dahleez Restaurant in JBR, Dubai

For dinner, I found myself sitting in Dahleez in JBR, Dubai. I have had good experiences with them in the past. This would be a Re-Visit review, where I discuss new dishes I tried, and compare the Dining Experience with last time! (Full Review of Dahleez Restaurant JBR can be read here)

For today’s visit I had the Cream of Chicken Soup Reviewed last time and there were some Unfortunate changes. The Soup was more watery than the last time, being a Cream soup, it was better thicker.

The Contents of the Soup were lacking too, the Chicken was about less than half the amount I had received the last time.
The Soup went from Good to Fine.

For my Main Dish, I had their Dahleez Mixed Grill.

The plate seemed full of food, and it certainly was! There was 2 Skewers of Minced meat (Kufta), 1 Skewer of Chicken Cubes, 1 Skewer of Beef Cubes, 1 Piece of Lamb Chop, 1 Piece of Arayes (Basically Minced Meat cooked in Bread on the far right of the image) and 2 sides!
I shall start with the sides. The Vegetables, as before, they were ordinary. They have been Steamed more than the last time, but were still bland and needed Salting.
Fries were also ordinary, a little Salt, some sauce and you get normal French Fries.
The Kufta: 2 Skewers of Kufta were extremely soft. It had light flavors, nothing delicious but had a little flavor. picking it up with a Fork could split it. I think that was a little too soft.
The Chicken Cubes: Very good. Perfectly Grilled, tender, soft and juicy. (These are generally called Shesh Tawooq on the menu, so I would recommend ordering a Plate of Shesh Tawooq as a Main Dish)
The Beef Cubes: Grilled well, a little chewy but had nice flavor. I personally like a little contrast and the Grilled Onion in the corner when sliced and had with the Beef Cubes were good.
The Lamb Chops: It was Grilled well but was missing flavor. The piece was rather small and didn’t have more than one bite worth of meat.
The Arayes: Bland. It was cold and had no flavor.
On the top of the plate, as a typical Mixed Grill tradition, is a Toasted Bread with Tomato Sauce and Sesame Seeds on top. I don’t really fancy this personally as it was bland.

After the Meal I felt like something Sweet. I still have not decided whether to create a new section for sweets or not, so for now, its together with the Meal and I had ordered me a Tiramisu.

I have not have not had this before at Dahleez. It was really good! It was soft, creamy, and delicious. Not too much cream, not too much coffee. It was just right. The piece was fairly big and was filling sweet-wise, I neither felt like I wanted more sugar, nor felt like I couldn’t finish it. They do have a dessert stand with a fixed amount per day, which I think gives the impression (might be the truth as well) that they make them daily and once what they have is done, there’s no more.
The Presentation was interesting. I like the Sprayed Chocolate Powder around the plate but the Spoon and Fork were creative, and looked attractive on the plate.

The Service: As reviewed earlier they were all polite, attentive and willing to serve. There was plenty of staff around and do maintain their standards.

Value: Dahleez Restaurant remains good value. The Mixed Grill was 59 Dhs which is very good for the quantity of Meats served.

So how does my Re-Visit to Dahleez compare with my Review?

These were my Ratings:

The Place:   5 / 10
The Service: 7 / 10
The Food:    6 / 10

Overall: 6 / 10

So, what did I think Deviated from the above?

I think that would be The Food. I think it should -0.5

The Place’s rating drops to 5.8 / 10.

To me, this means that they are fairly consistent, sometimes the food might be good or slightly under-par but does not drastically change.

I’d recommend this place.

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Posted by on June 3, 2012 in Re-Visits

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