Browsing articles in "Al Hail"
Apr 13, 2012

Asmaki – Al Hail

Asmaki (Telephone: 2454 7100 – Map) is a grills and sea food restaurant located in Al Hail. The restaurant can be found on the service road next to the Sultan Qaboos Highway, if you are coming from Muscat and going towards Seeb, the restaurant would be to your left, right before the turn that takes you to Caledonian College and the Sultan’s School.

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Sep 17, 2008

Chili’s – Muscat City Centre

It’s hard to believe that we never wrote about Chili’s on the Omani Cuisine even though we mention it in almost every other post we make. Chilis is an international casual dining restaurant chain that serves Mexican/American food. The only Chili’s branch we have in Oman is found in Muscat City Centre opposite the old Starbucks near the food court. Even after the opening of three other dine-in restaurants in City Center over the past two years, Chilis is still undeniably the most popular.


(Boneless Buffalo Wings)

The crowd at Chili’s is mixed and it attracts people from all age groups, probably because it was the ONLY proper place to dine in in City Centre and the Seeb area generally for a while. Chili’s is pretty big in size andis  spacious, it has a designated place for smokers down inside and has a sitting area for those waiting for take away orders and those waiting for a table to get cleared during peak hours.


(Club Tacos)

The menu of Chili’s is pretty big and has many different sections that include starters (RO 2.5 to RO 4), salads (RO 3.2 to RO 4.9), burgers (RO 2.4 to RO 3.1), sandwiches (~ RO 3), grills (RO 4.8 to RO 7.9), steaks (RO 6 to RO 7), misc courses (RO 3.9 to RO 4.9), desserts (RO 2.5 to RO 2.7) and drinks (starting from RO 0.9). 


(Fajita Quesadillas)

There are several nice starters in Chilis, but like the majority of their dishes, they are large in quantity and should be shared with another person. I advise you to only order more than one starter if you are in a group of more than three people. Our favourite starters are the Fajita Nachos, Triple Play (Fried Cheese Rolls, Chicken Wings, and Eggrolls), Texas Fries (Chips covered with chili sauce and jalapinos), and the Boneless Buffalo Wings. Go for the Triple Play if you are three or four people, and take the Texas Fries only if your main course is not served with chips.

Selecting a main course at Chili’s can be quite hard because there is so much to choose from. If it is your first time I suggest that you go for a steak or a fajita, as they are Chili’s highlights. There are a variety of fire grilled steaks seasoned with different sauces. All steaks come with two pre-selected sidelines such corn and mashed potatoes along with garlic bread. You can always ask to have something else instead of these sidelines if you wish. The waiters might not tell you this, but you can have rice, beans, chips, or cooked vegetables instead of the corn and mashed potatoes. 


Chili’s Club Sandwiches

Another first time selection which you can go for is a fajita (not pictured), which can be chicken, beaf, or prawn, cooked with vegetables and mexican sauces and comes served with flat tortila bread and dips which you can use to create your own sandwiches as you eat. You can have a mix of chicken, beef and prawns instead of selecting one and you can also optionally add mushroom to the mix. This is one of the main courses which you can share if you do not think you can finish it all by yourself. It is a little bit messy and will require you to use your hands, so only select it if you are ready to do that.

Of course there are loads and loads of other dishes to try if you do not like any of the ones mentioned above, I always go for the Club Tacos when I feel like having something ‘lighter’ or a Fajita Pita when I feel like having a sandwich. There are also some other dishes like the pasta pictured above, the quesadillas, burgers, salads, and others.

The most popular desert at Chili’s is the Molten Chocolate Cake (RO 2.7), it is a hot chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream on top. It is enough for four people to share after a meal. If you are sick of having the awesome Molten Chocolate Cake I suggest that you try to the Cheese Cake which I only tried once but really loved.

A meal at Chilis for two people at Chilis would cost around RO 12 to RO 15 if you have a starter, two main courses, two soft drinks and a desert. 

I think that the food at Chilis is really good, it is one of the few places on Al Seeb side of town to dine in, we never get sick of it. I am not sure about how good the service is these days, it used to be much better in the past as we have had several incidents on which the service was extremely slow and sloppy even when there weren’t many people dining. However, we always go back because we love their food.

May 27, 2008

Biella – Muscat City Centre

Biella - Muscat City Centre

Biella is a new Italian restaurant that has opened in Muscat City Centre right below the Noodle House. We have been waiting for this restaurant to open for ages and have called up City Centre several times to ask when the hell it will open. I heard a couple of days ago that it has finally opened up so we had to pay it a visit ASAP. I have no idea if this is an international franchise, but I know that it has a branch in Dubai.

Biela

The atmosphere and seating area at Biella are both quite nice. There are loads of seats inside the restaurant. The place is divided into two main sections, one for smokers and the other for non-smokers, however, there are not real separators between the two sections, but we could not tell if smoke could be an issue because the place was almost empty when we went there.

Biella - Starter

Biella has just opened three days ago, so just like Japengo the other day, their menu is not fully available yet. We took a bit of time to decide on what to have, we were a little bit hungry and everything on the menu sounded delicious. We ended up having a ‘Insalata Di Pollo Con Aceto Balsamico’ (RO 3.6 – pictured above) which I thought would be some cheese coated chicken starter, but turned out to be chicken salad with cheese balls (How come I didn’t notice the insalata?!). It was alright, for a salad at least, but it was not really our usual idea of a starter.

Risotto Al Frutti Mare

My colleague and I hand originally wanted to have something from the sandwich menu, but it was not available for serving yet, so we ended up having a sea food spaghetti (pictured above) and a L’affumicata pizza (RO 4.4 – picured below) which had onions, mushrooms, pepperoni and chicken. I loved the bread of my pizza, but that was about it. I do not like mushrooms and I thought that the onions were just way too much. I probably ordered the wrong meal and that’s why I did not like it much. My colleague thought that the spaghetti was nice, but not AMAZING. I thought exactly the same about my pizza, not bad, but not the best I’ve had for sure and nowhere near that.

Laffumicata Pizza

We wanted to have a cheese cake and a chocolate fudge cake for the desserts, but none of these were available yet, so we thought that we will have a Tiramasu (RO 3 – pictured below) instead which we thought was just alright. It was quite large in size and can be shared with one or two people.

Biella - Tiramisu

We thought that the service of Biella was excellent, the staff were very friendly, probably a bit too much because the place has just opened. The place was not busy at all while were were there, so the whole fleet of waiters was buzzing on our table all the time asking us how our food was. They had a small blooper though and broke a glass we had on our table, luckily nobody got hurt.
Biella

We ordered 1 starter, 2 main courses, 1 fresh juice, 1 fruit cocktail, and 1 desert, our bill came out to RO 21.

We thought that our experience at Biella was okay, but I personally did not think that the food was all that. I would give it a 7/10 for the quality of the food and I’m being very generous. That is probably because we ordered the wrong stuff, salad was a bad idea of the starter and my choice of Pizza was badly not compatible with my taste. Might give it another chance, but only for the sake of experimentation and not when I’m craving for a good meal.

Jul 19, 2007

Review: Dosteen – Al Hail



You cannot claim that you have lived in Seeb if you have never dined at Dosteen Restaurant [مطعم دوستين] (Pronounced Dos’tain)- a random generic Indian restaurant that survived throughout the years and managed to hold itself as an era defining landmark, the same way Burj Al Sahwah and Bait Al Barakah do. Nobody I know knows when this place was first opened, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was opened in the 80s or even earlier. Dosteen faces the highway between the Al Khode and Al Hail bridges and is located almost exactly opposite Al Itihad used car showroom.

Before we start, I would like to warn you that Dosteen is certainly not for the weak-hearted or the mysophobic. It is one of few places left on Earth that still serve water in metal glasses just like Indian movies – however, they have recently started offering plastic cups for the picky and dandy.

Dosteen is relatively large in comparison to restaurants of its class, it has an isolated area for families (I do not know who dares going there), an air-conditioned dine in area, and a covered yard with some more tables. It is usually very crowded most of the time, it is normal for people to stand waiting for seats to be available when coming at peak hours. Tables are usually shared in both the outside and the inside seating area.

I don’t think that there is a handout menu in Dosteen, but there is one walled with the names of the dishes in Arabic and English – for some reason, the two sides of the menu are not the same and some dishes went missing in one or another. However, Dosteen serves 48 different wonders of the Indian cuisine. The majority of which are served with rice, naan bread, or chapati bread. Complimentary salad is served with all the dishes.

Even though Dosteen is equipped with a fleet of Indian cooks, waiters and cashiers, the waiters always seem very stressed and can be moderately rude if you cannot quickly decide what you want to eat or if you change your mind, and that, of course, adds to the ambiance of the place.

The funny thing about Dosteen is that their food is actually good, there are people that swear by its food and occasionally crave for a meal at Dosteen. I had a chicken masalah (not photographed) which was spicy the way I like it and pretty good. We ordered other stuff like grilled chicken, humus, and rice with grilled meat cubes.

The average price of a dish at Dosteen is RO 1, I think that the a soft drink can costs a RO 0.100. There isn’t much else that you can order here.

Dosteen is no fancy place, but if you are looking for a different place that has so much attitude, culture, gangster-like atmosphere, and good Indian food then Dosteen is the place to go to.