It’s December. Michael Buble is out of hibernation. Don’t you love this time of the year?
Last Friday we got ourselves to the Grand Plaza Movenpick in Media City to review their Winterland Festive Brunch. All I had to do to convince the girls to get dressed was ‘there is going to be a lot of cake’ and ‘Santa might come if you’re good’. I might just use the same phrase all month. It worked though, usually does.
How was the brunch?
First things first. Where IS Grand Plaza Movenpick Hotel?
If you live down in the marina end of town, you would have passed it everytime you drove up north on Sheikh Zayed Road. It’s one of the few hotels in Media City. Word of warning – there is so much construction on the way there now you or your other half might get lost
and pissed off en route to the hotel so pay attention to the roads. When googlemaps say exit onto Al Falak Street, DO that.
And where is the brunch?
Bytes, on the 4th floor. You get your wristbands from the ground floor.
For the winter months they’ve opened up the terrace and most of the table seatings are out there. I would suggest you grab a table outside if you can – if you don’t mind sitting on benches. You get the breeze, plus photos are always better there, isn’t it? Indoors, you have a selection of couches and low level tables. Felt a tad warm for us indoors as well, though the team did take note of my comment and turned up the AC.
What sorta food do they serve?
Christmas goodies with a bit of extra.
Yes, there’s definitely the traditional roasted turkey with yorkshire pudding. Cold station with seafood – Dibba bay oysters which the chef shucks in front of you. Husband was quite happy to see sushi and sashimi in the mix as well. Try their lamb stew with mash – it’s amazing. Go outside and you get live cooking stations – we were very happy to see roast pork leg with crackling, served with sauerkraut, and giant german pretzels which my girls loved. There’s bbq skewers of prawns, chicken, beef , and my eyes lit up when I saw – scallops! For those with a refined palate – you get foie gras as well. Not for me, not for me…
I’ll let the photos do the talking here. My favourite? They serve these german ’emperor pancakes’ called kaiserschmarn – it’s basically mini pancakes which I loved. Oh, there’s churros too, and your little ones will go nuts at the sticks of marshmallows, chocolate fountain, and ice cream served inc ones.
How was the ambience?
If you chose to sit indoors and you’re a bit sensitive to blaring music, look out for the speaker. If it’s facing you, move
or turn the speaker away to face another family. Lots of pop hits with some christmas tunes thrown in between. So you get Geri Halliwell and Emma Bunton asking you what you want… what you really really want, and Bruno Mars telling you to be ‘Just the way you are. There’s two beautiful ladies outside – one singing, the other the DJ – both having such a fabulous time. It’s a great festive vibe all round. And crowd? Mainly groups of friends I”ll say, with a few families around.
What about the kids?
There isn’t any kids entertainment within the restaurant itself.
What you can do is pop down in the ballroom on Level 2 which they’ve turned into a kids play area. It’s huuuuge. There’s a giant bouncy castle which we ALL ended up running around in by the end of the day. The attendants get them busy doing Christmassy arts and crafts. There’s a massive projector playing cartoons and also a kids buffet should they get hungry with mini burgers, donuts, ice cream, jellybeans, pasta. Just so – much – food! So our girls was there for quite awhile after they’ve eaten and we went to join them at the end of the brunch.
Don’t worry, the jolly red man did make an appearance with presents for everyone, even my 6 month old.
Wait wait, what about drinks?
They serve Hofbrauhaus 1L steins!!!! They must be trying to get you ‘happy’. There’s 3 cocktails – named festively ‘The Grinch’ which is a midori-based drink, Espresso Martinis of course and of course, the Aperol Spritz. When you enter they do offer you mulled wine as well but I passed – I was too hot to have something warm – straight to the cool stuff 😉
On pricing – would be good if they charge from ages 5 and above. Not many places charge 4 year olds at brunch. You and I know how much a 4-year old eats. As an overall – if all the points above suits what you’re looking for – go for it. Book up. It’s always nice to spend sometime with the kids, and then have the option of popping them in the play area should you wish to carry on having a few more 1L steins and espresso martinis. Just make sure you came by taxi. And lastly? Shout out to Mukesh for being a star and taking care of us.
- Winterland Festive Brunch
- Bytes, Grand Plaza Movenpick Hotel
- Dates : 11th and 18th December 2020
Time: 12:30pm – 4:00pm
Price: AED 159 AED (189 AED, Christmas Day) Inclusive of soft drinks & water
AED 299AED (349 AED, Christmas Day) Inclusive of house beverages & cocktails
AED 79AED (89AED, Christmas Day) Kids 4-12 years
Disclaimer : We were guests of Grand Plaza Movenpick Hotel to review the Winterland Brunch at Bytes.