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.
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Al Mandoos Restaurant (Telephone: 9691 1140 – Map) is a new Omani restaurant by Chef Issa Al Lamki located in Al Ghubra somewhere behind the Porsche showroom. If you are coming down from the Al Ghubra bridge and going towards the Chedi, you need to go right at the first traffic lights and pass by Bank Muscat and Fawaris Bakery. You will then need to take one of the left turns on that road to find Al Mandoos Restaurant on a short stretch of shops parallel to the service road. Continue reading »
Shuwa Express (Telephone: 98072498 – Map) is a Omani fast food restaurant located in the food court of Bareeq Al Shatti.
Al Jood (Telephone: 24472630) is a Lebanese restaurant located in the commercial area of Al Khuwair right next to the Turkish House Restaurant.
Ubhar (telephone: 24699826) is an upscale Omani restaurant located in Bareeq Al Shatti mall. It is located at the main entrance of the mall and has another entrance from the inside opposite Caribou Coffee. Ubhar is the name of an ancient lost city that is now believed to be located in the south of Oman.
Here is the second bunch of reviews that were never written.
Samba – Shangri La
Had a buffet at this restaurant in the Shangri-La a couple of times and really loved it. Their buffet was about RO 13 I think with an additional discount for Omanis and local residents. Samba restaurant is Mexican/South American cuisine, but it also had a nice sushi section. Really worth the distance travelled to go there! (Plus the price is considered *cheap* for a buffet at a 5-Star hotel).
Beirut Restaurant – Qurum Commercial Area
Beirtut Restaurant is a Lebanese restaurant right behind Sabco. I’ve been to it once last year and I really liked it. The food was awesome and the place looked nice. I remember I paid by card and forgot it at the restaurant! They came shouting behind us to tell us about the card!! I tried their dishes and not their sandwiches, they have some nice juices as you can see from the photo below.
Beirut Snack, Al Khode
I went to this restaurant/coffee-shop once when it opened and really hated it. Their food sucked, their place is right on the road and their service was not so good. Never thought of going back.
We paid a visit last weekend to Kababji, one of the new kebab places in Al Khuwair, if you read any of the local newspapers you must have seen their ad campaign which has been going on for a couple of weeks now. Kababji is located next to Badr al Samaa health centre in Al Khuwair. It is an Arabic/Mediterranean grilled food dine-in restaurant and sandwich coffeeshop.
Kababji is quite spacious inside and has a separate big room for families. We were two guys, so we sat in the open section, which got slowly filled up with families once the family dining room got fully occupied. We were impressed by the staff of Kababji as they swiftly guided the families through sections of the open section and then sealed up their tables using section barriers. However, the longer we stayed the more and more families filled up the open section until we started feeling uncomfortable (you can’t look in any direction other than in front of you as people will think that you’re staring at their daughter!!) I couldn’t even photograph the place afterwards because of this!
I did not think that there was anything extra special in Kababji’s menu, it is the known Lebanese/Turkish/Mediterranean menu, for starters they have hommous, tabouleh, fettoush, moutabbale, etc. They have several types of kebab: halabi, khaskhash, istambouli, orfali, several grilled dishes, pizza-like pastries, fatayer (pies?), shawarma, a couple of rice dishes, and some sandwiches.
We ordered a Kababji Special, which is a mixed kebab grill that has kebab halabi, chicken kebab, tikka, shish tauk, eggplan kebab, and Italian kebab (don’t ask me where they got that from). The Kababji Special comes as a dish for four or for two, we got the smaller one, it came with two plates of hummous. The food we got was not the most amazing, it tasted very average and no where as good as the grilled food of other places such as the Turkish House. Some of the tikka we got was not even cooked well enough.
Starters in Kababji cost RO 1 to RO1.5, grilled sandwiches about RO 1, meal for one person RO 2.7, and meal for four RO 9.5. Shawarma sandwiches cost RO 0.350 each, a plate costs RO 2.5. Desserts cost RO 0.5 to RO 1.5.
We did not order anything other than water and our Kababji Special dish, that cost us about RO 5.
The service at Kababji was excellent, there was no shortage of waiters and the food came quickly. However, we did not think that their food was special at all, I wouldn’t say that it was bad, but I can’t see myself saying ‘oh, I feel like having Kababji’. It looks like a good place for couples and families wishing to eat in a private place, but we surely did not feel comfortable as families started invading our section of the restaurant.
Meknes (proper Arabic pronunciation is Mik’naas) is a Moroccan cuisine restaurant located in Al Khuwair, it is two blocks after the Oman Mobile headquarters if you are coming from Muscat – its flashy sign cannot be missed.
Meknes is a proper restaurant suitable for business dinners and special events. It’s very well decorated and looks quite fancy. The place is bigger than what it looks from the outside as the upper floor spans across multiple units. The restaurant has a semi-separate sheesha joint on its other side, we did not see any smoke or smell any sheesha during our stay, but I do not know if that was because the sheesha place was well isolated or because they had no customers in it at that time. There isn’t a non-smoking section in the restaurant, but the place is very spacious and did not have many actual customers when we were there, so again, we do know how it would have looked like in a busy/bad day. There are a couple of cabinet-like rooms in which people could dine in if nobody else was already in there.
Meknes’s menu has loads and loads of funny names of Moroccan food, we were given the Arabic language menu and really couldn’t understand much of it. We asked the waiter to give us the skinny on what this menu says, for starters, there were about four types of salads, Moroccan soup (Hareera), a samosa mix, and a whole set of weird sweet starters (chicken and honey wrapped up in a Qatayif like dish?) – we did not feel very adventurous so we did not try that. I had a hareera soup that came with a thick layered flat bread (we call it Mardhoof bread at home), and it was awesome. We also tried their samosas, which really took some time to come, my friend liked a lot and thought that it was well worth the wait. It came boiling hot when it finally did, it nearly burned my tongue – I can’t deny that it was quite good, but not as memorable as the soup. (Which I badly wanted to have as I loved it the first time I tried the restaurant)
For main courses, Meknes had mixed grills, fish grilled on coal, cuscus with vegs and chicken, cuscus with vegs and meat, chicken with olives and lemon, chicken with nuts, and about 15 other dishes with funny names that made no sense to us (eg. Ø¨Ø³Ø·ÙŠÙ„Ø© – Ø¨Ø§ÙŠÙ„Ø§ – Ø·Ø§Ø¬ÙŠÙ† – Ø±ÙÙŠØ³Ø©). I had chicken with olives and lemon (image below) which came with three huge buns of sweet spongy bread. I do not know how to eat with that sort of bread, I tried tearing crumbs of the bread and eating the chicken with it, it was hard and I really couldn’t taste the flavour of the chicken because of the sweet bread. I eventually gave up and started using the cutlery to eat the chicken with the sauce and managed to actually enjoy the meal, the chicken was very tasteful and very well cooked. I enjoyed it, it was good, but as I person who likes spicy food, I did not think that it was mind blowing.
My friend had cuscus with vegetables and chicken, he thought it was very good. We thought that the quantity of the food was a lot for a single person, especially if you are going to have a three course meal.
Meknes also offers fresh juices, soft drinks, special Moroccan tea, and a coffee. They have a weird selection of desserts and sidelines that we did not try. Actually, we were very boring and only had the Omani survival drink, Mountain Dew.
Starters in Meknes cost from RO 0.8 to RO 1.5, meal courses cost RO 2.5 to Ro 3.5, there are special discounts for ordering larger dish for two or more people, drinks cost about RO 1 and desserts about the same. We paid around RO 12 for our meal.
The restaurant is currently running a special Business Lunch where you can have a three course meal for RO 3.250 (hareera soup, main course, and a dessert). You can call 2447 5497 for more information. (I was NOT paid to write this!)
A funny thing that happened was that they were shooting an Omani TV series in Meknes on the day that were there, it was hilarious, Omani super star Fakhriya Khamis was there, so we thought we’ll play paparazzi and take some photos, of course it is not as exciting as shooting Beyonce on a nudist beach.. or well, it actually could be on Omani standards.
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