There really isn’t a lot of choices when it comes to Saturday brunches. This popped up on my radar when doing a bit of research a couple of weeks ago (Google, of course) – and I then noticed that we get an extra 25% discount with our Privilee membership. Made a booking online for a group of 4 and off I went to the Westin Mina Seyahi one afternoon to meet the girls for brunch.
Firstly, I got slightly annoyed with the reservations team or social media crew, or lack there-of. You get the automated message when you send them a facebook message that someone will ‘get back to you soon’. That’s when I realise that no one responded to the message I sent them back in 2014 when I was trying to make a booking for lunch then. My message is always simple – if you don’t want to use your social media channels, make sure the automated response reflects this. Then, the email I sent to the address on their facebook page bounced back. Two red flags. I managed to get hold of someone on the phone and the booking was confirmed. Moving on…
On Saturdays, they do a simple serve-to-table Spanish fare. We started off with a few dishes to share – Iberian charcuterie selection – pork salami and bresaolas. The team was nice enough to bring a halal version to the table as we had muslim friends with us. The gazpacho or chilled tomato soup – I wasn’t so keen on. Not my thing I suppose, I like my soup the old-fashioned way…. hot. There were also potatoes with mojo sauce, croquettes, and padron green peppers…. tapas for us to nibble on before the mains, or should I say… ‘main’.
I had thought the paella would be the highlight of the siesta brunch, but when it came out – we all had the – oh, is that it? look on our faces. It felt like they were maybe overbooked and ran out of seafood so tried their best to ration the number of prawns and mussels onto the rice. While they did mention the paella was for 2- this was literally the number of seafood we were served – 2 shelled prawns, 2 deshelled prawns, and 2 mussels. A bit of garnish – some chopped parsley, or a few rosemary sprigs (like their promo photo on the website) – would have at least added some colour to the rather bare-looking dish. The chicken paella was the same – we thought maybe they got the order mixed up with the vegetarian paella until the girls said oh look there is chicken. I’m pretty sure they ran out of parsley. Was it good? Yes, it was. But dining these days, presentation plays a big part of it and this was a let down..
Dessert was, like the main – one choice – cheesecake with cinammon ice-cream. It was absolutely delectable, however we did all feel it would be better if we were all given a slice each ourselves. Just make it smaller. I would have understood if we were given a platter of desserts and everyone was sharing out of a number of items, but this was one dessert. Covid times or not, it’s quite hard to cut a small scoop of ice cream into two….
Overall thoughts? With the discount, I paid 187.50 AED for the brunch including free-flow drinks. My friends paid 149.25 AED for the non-alcoholic package which is okay. For the same price-point, it would be nice if they could include the basics of coffee and tea to the brunch. Would I return? This is not the first time I’ve been to El Sur, and well, after this visit, I’m in no rush to come back, or to recommend it to family and friends either. Unless someone was specifically asking for a ‘Saturday brunch – alfresco dining – simple spanish food – free-flow drinks, under 200 AED’ then yes – El Sur is for you 😉
- Saturday Siesta Brunch
- El Sur, Westin Mina Seyahi
- AED 250 for house beverage
- AED 199 for soft beverage
- AED 79 for kids between 6-12 years of age
- Complimentary Dining for Kids under 6 years of age
- Deal : 25% off with Privilee
Note : Non-sponsored post. We paid for the brunch at El Sur, and used the 25% discount from my Privilee membership which I have also paid for.