We had been out the other day once again to the Bawabat Al Sharq Mall in Abu Dhabi. This time around we were there to try out the Indian Restaurant Zambar. Zambar serves authentic home-style cuisine from the four coastal states Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. We had been quite early that evening and had a good choice of tables available so we choose to sit below the traditional Houseboat style roof, a really cozy slightly separated arrangement of tables that gives you as well a bit more privacy.
We had been welcomed very friendly by Mark the gentleman who was our waiter and helped us big time with explaining the menu to us. While still looking for what to go for we got already complementary fried papads.
I had never had these before and must say it was delicious. I preferred it with the Tomato soup but the Mango one was great as well as the yoghurt mint one.
We went for quite some starters as a lot of them sounded just too tasty. So we got the Mushroom Pepper Fry, South Indian Calamari and a non vegetarian platter containing 4 starters including Chicken 65 and Prawns. To say this was good would be a massive understatement. The South Indian Calamari are completely different than what first would come to your mind on the word Calamari. But this version is just stunning, and it came so unexpected. I am not used to this cuisine extremely much, but was buffered by the variety and flavors. Nothing of the starters we tried was not great and tasty. And to each one we got a great explanation of what it is from Mark. The downturn of trying many different starters became apparent quite quickly. Getting very full with the starters already will impact massively on the chance to try the main course…
For the Mains we went for a Fish in a Banana Leaf and a Suriani Tenderloin Fry together with steamed rice. The Fish in the Banana Leaf did not only presented very well on the leaf, it tasted very good as well, a little spicy but not too much. The Suriani Tenderloin Fry was very tasty, not spicy at all but rich of aroma and flavor, perfect.
Not that we not had already enough eaten we as well went for some desserts! So we got the amazing Coconut Jaggery Pudding as well as two more desserts.
Overall this visit has exceeded my wildest expectations. The diversity of dishes and tastes was totally unexpected to me. The patience of Mark explaining everything up and down and again and again with so much know how and detail was just stunning. You would expect that level in a 5 Star Hotel but not in a casual dining restaurant.
As we left more than 2 hours later Zambar one thing became immediately evident, we have to come back and try out more dishes of this fabulous place.
Verdict: We have loved our visit to Zambar and do highly recommend to visit it. Great service, stunning food and a nice ambiance that won’t disappoint.
Contacts for Zambar:
02 676 5516