we wanted to dine opposite the *dancing fountain, right by the tallest building in the world - the burj khalifa.
'the dubai mall dancing fountain' is a presentation of light, music and water - set on the man-made lake of burj khalifa. at one point, the pressurized air can shoot the water up to the height of 60 floors! the fountain 'dances' to three songs -
- 'sama dubai; baba yetu, an award-winning song in swahili;
- the arab world’s top-selling dance number shik shak shok;
- and the signature piece of world-renowned italian tenor andrea bocelli, con te partiro (time to say goodbye)
it's stated in the official dubai mall website that 'the beam of light shining upward from the dancing fountain can be seen from over 20 miles away, and will be visible from space making it the brightest spot in the middle east, and quite possibly in the entire world.'
and yes, in dubai's 'tallest' and 'largest' tradition, this IS the largest dancing fountain in the world! watch my video at end this posting!
how to go? go inside dubai mall, and find wafi gourmet, or scoozi, or the foodcourt near these restaurants. walk out and you'll see the man-made lake.
when to go? everyday it starts at 6pm, and the dancing fountains will 'perform' every 20 minutes after that, until 10pm. on weekends, it'll go on for another hour.
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there's a few fine and semi-fine dining restaurants along the man-made lake - and we chose to have dinner at 'wafi gourmet', a very popular lebanese restaurant in dubai. it's situated right next to the italian-japanese fusion restaurant, 'scoozi'.
how popular? well, it took us nearly an hour before we finally got our seats - the wait list to have a 9-person seater, AND to have those seats right in front of the dancing fountain and burj khalifa is LONG.
but with great food, great view and great company - it's worth the wait!
* * *
'wafi gourmet' is a lebanese restaurant with a wonderful setting - an endless choice of sweet arabian goodies to buy like in a souq - arabic market. it's like a market AND a restaurant.
kinda like 'marche' at the curve damansara, but not as fun, i think. marche tu kita pilih-pilih then dia masak kan - lagi seronok. in diorang jual untuk kita beli-beli bungkus! nways, more on that later one!
it's a lebanese restaurant, so its menu is full of kebab and skewer choices of chicken, lamb and meat. it also has lamb chops and grilled chicken with a LOT more meat dishes and salads with arabic names that i don't know the meaning of!
mr. khairul did the ordering, asking the waiter to recommend the perfect meal fit for nine newbies to 'wafi gourmet'. the waiter was warm and friendly and had no qualms in us taking his time to ask a lot of questions on the food, the ingredients and how they're prepared.
he then suggested a delicious mix-grill plate, arabic salad and a free-flow basket of nan bread as the basic popular choice among the patrons.
alright. we ordered that one, waited and see if he's right!
* * *
in the meantime, i took khaleef for a walkabout around the restaurant. the moment i saw that it has this 'souq' concept as well as a makan place, i had wanted to take pictures.
our first stop is the salad bar; with plates and bowls of different types of arabic salad, and hummus. little bowls also contains ingredients for salads placed separately for choosy eaters!
SWEETS and CANDIES
right next to it is the lebanese delights corner where assorted arabic candies and sweets are wrapped individually in plastics, ready to be bought in grams. i tried one once and it tasted deliciously gooey, and not too sweet.
i immediately thought of my sisters looking at this - why? (cantik la buat as hantaran! haha ~wink wink~) a lovely, oh-so-geramnye-tengok sugar candies made to look like miniature fruits! you can choose which one you like from the pile, or simply buy a box of ready-packed tiny fruits.
they're super cute and looked so real! real, but really tiny!
SKEWERS and KEBABS
right by the tiny fruit section, we came to the main part of the restaurant - one that has the meat skewers and kebabs. long metal sticks with chicken chunks and lamb cubes lined the counter for patrons to choose from. meat as it is, or meat with onions, or with capsicum - have it your way.
right next to this section was a group of barrels filled with olives of many sorts! olives with corn, olives with lemon, olives with ntah ape lagi! they're all different - but all olive based. rupa macam jeruk sikit.
right in front of the skewer and kebab counter were the dried fruit. presented so elegantly in a pyramid formation - they did look yummy!
then we saw another counter with sweets and candies, this time not wrapped in plastics but placed in those cups with put cupcakes in - what are they called? get them in cubes, round or oval - i can't pick a favorite!
CAKES and CHOCOLATES
yum! my favorite corner - an assortment of cakes and chocolates! from black forrest to tiramisu - nyum nyum nyum! there's even a 'it's-a-boy' chocolate perhaps for a baby shower.
what's a middle-east souq without dates, huh? one counter offered an endless choice of dates - different types of dates to dates with stuff in them - pistachio dates, choc dates and even dates with dried peach!
HERB and SPICES
one section had barrels of herb and spices - beautifully arranged in sacks, mountain-like so it's look so presentable.
by then our little 'field-trip' around 'wafi gourmet' souq was done, and off we went to our table to see if our order had arrived.
* * *
the mix-grill plate looked festive - with an assortment of chicken, lamb and meat skewers, arabic bread as the based, as well as cut-up pickle and a dash of - daun ape tu?
the chicken, lamb and meat were all delicious - so well-marinated that the sweet-salty juices just escaped to your tastebud with every bite!
dig one with nan bread dip in hummous, and you got yourself an excellent meal for the night.
though most of them loved the chicken skewers, i personally prefer their chicken grill. less sour, softer meat - just lovely for my taste.
we not only enjoy the food - but man, the view!
remember that i told you we waited almost an hour to get this great spot? well, eating right in front of the dancing fountain, just a few hundred meters from the tallest building in the world - fantastic view or what, huh?
kahfi and khaleef had fun munching nan bread, and were especially excited when the 20 minute gap was up and it's time for the dancing fountain performance.
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khaleef and kahfi enjoying the dancing fountain
the calm, cool night, the festive ambiance of throngs of people waiting for the dancing fountain show, delicious dinner and in a company of family - what a great way to start the weekend!
us outside of wafi gourmet, just after dinner : from left : asrar, mr. khairul's mom, maklong, kahfi, youngest sis-in-law sofia, tina, mr. khairul's bapak, me & khaleef
thanks maklong, for the lovely dinner!