May 31, 2014

Al Angham – Opera Galleria

Al Angham

I was recently invited to try Al Angham (Telephone: 22077777 Map) – the fine dining Omani restaurant in the Opera Galleria. The restaurant is located after the Indus on the stretch of restaurants attached to the main compound of the Royal Opera House. Al Angham does not allow walk-ins and you must book in advance if you would like to dine at this restaurant.

Al AnghamAl Angham

The seating area of Al Angham is breathtaking, the ceilings, the wood work and everything else is just as elegant and and intricate as the inside of the Royal Opera House. If you’ve been to the Royal Opera House, this is the restaurant restaurant version of it.  In addition to the main dining area in the restaurant, there are three private dining halls, one that takes ten, another that takes eight and a bigger one that has floor seating. The private dining halls only offer set menus and do not take a la carte orders.

Paplo Soup at Al Angham

The menu of Al Angham is really quite long with about 70 different items ranging from salads, soups, hot appetisers, main dishes, and desserts. The menu of Al Angham is similar to that of Ubhar in that it is Omani food presented in a modern setting, but Al Angham uses more traditional recipes while Ubhar offers a fusion of Omani food with other cuisines. Al Angham is also obviously way more expensive as the cheapest non-vegetarian main dish on the menu costs RO 12 while the most expensive single main course on the menu costs RO 28.

Assorted Appetizers at Al Angham

Al Angham also offers a number of set menus, so what I had on this visit was some sort of set menu and taster plates – not necessarily things that you can order from the a la carte menu. For the starter we we had a Paplo Soup and assortment of appetisers. The Paplo soup had seafood cooked in dried lime and chilli. The flavor was more subtle than what you would have at other restaurants and it had a lot of proper seafood, the portion was really huge and could have been a main course on its own. I enjoyed it a lot and – especially the prawns in the soup, they were amazing. The assorted appertizer plate had a samosa, minced beef kebab and a farfeena salad. The mango pickle that was below the samosa blew my mind.  The farfeena salad was really interesting as I have never ever seen this salad outside our house before. The minced beef kebab  was also really nice. It is worth noting that the Paplo Soup is not on the a la carte menu, but soups in Al Angham usually cost between RO 5 to RO 6.

Shuwa at Al Angham

For the main course we ordered a Shuwa (pictured above – a la carte price RO 22) and a Fish Biryani (pictured below – a la carte price RO 16). Though no pictured, we were served pickles, hot sauce, and the waiters brought additional bowls of meat and fish to go with our mains. I had the Fish Biryani and I enjoyed it a lot. The spices were amazing and the fish was cooked to perfection.

Fish Biryani at Al Angham

Al Angham offers a variety of desserts, but we went for their signature ice cream dessert. The dessert came in a cup of three flavours, Frankincense & Saffron, Dates, and Camel Milk. While everybody I know raves about the Frankincense Ice Cream, I thought that the Dates Ice Cream was even more delicious. It had an amazing texture and a rich flavour, I really did not expect dates ice cream to be this good. The a la carte menu only offers individual flavours and a not a mixed cup, an individual full sized scoop costs RO 5.5.

Frankincense Ice cream at Al Angham

The service at Al Angham was impeccable, all the waiters were Omani and extremely professional and friendly. Our food came in beautiful plates and there was a whole ceremony for uncovering the mains after they were placed on our table.

There is no doubt that Al Angham is super expensive, but it is meant to be a exquisite over the top fine dine experience that you cannot have anywhere else. The setting, ambiance, service and the food are all world class.

I had a great time at Al Angham and loved every single thing I had there. I will surely go there again.

Have you guys been to Al Angham, what do you think of it?