Taste of Dubai 2016 – Party In The Park

April 6, 2016 , Haiya

I’ve been dying to attend Taste of Dubai ever since I first saw ads for it on TV- back when I lived in Jeddah. And then after I moved here (2 years ago), I happened to be traveling when it happened last year. I FINALLY got to attend it this year and could not possibly have had a cooler partner in crime to accompany me than my sister, who also happened to be in town. I love such coincidences. Now I just KNEW this event is going to be awesome, but I had no idea I would have as much fun as I did.

Taste of Dubai is part of the annual Dubai Food Fest, and I can only best describe it as a party in the park that involves LOTS of stalls from all walks of the food world, be they of FMCG brands, specialty goods, restaurants, delivery companies, or my favorite: cooking demos by some of the most popular chefs in the region and the world.

ToD 2k16 really pulled through, because just one day prior, Dubai had witnessed some mad rain, and although my new suede shoes did get a good beating, there was hardly any evidence of such at the event. Bonny M performed that night, and I can’t imagine how the organizers got all those lights and the sound system up there in such short time, and working perfectly!

What really pulled me out of my warm cosy couch on that cloudy day though, was the fact that Jun Tanaka was doing several cooking demos at ToD. There was a swarm of other celebrity chefs too, ranging from Tom Aikens through Reza Mohammed to Jenny Morris, and many many more, but Jun Tanaka was the one who got me all starry eyed and kept me seated throughout his demo while my sister kept getting up to leave (and eventually not come back), so she could snapchat and groove to the covers of all her favorite songs being covered by the live band. I even got Jun (yes, we’re on first name terms now) to sign my cookbook Simple to Sensational. Yay!

Dubai’s best restaurants had set up stalls, and were serving up tapas sized portions of their most popular items at really reasonable prices, allowing us to sample bits and pieces from everywhere! Almost every restaurant stall was SO crowded, it seemed as if this is the only chance people will get to eat here and these restaurants aren’t even from Dubai.

The concert was fun. I got myself a pistachio fondant cake from Bertin and some cardamom tea from the Ahmed Tea stall and sat myself down on a beanbag, Snapchatting all the crazies around me, haha.

We didn’t want to leave, ever, but by 11:30 in the night, we realized we should get going, because not only was the elevator to my 5th floor apartment out of order, but so was the light in the staircase- and we had just finished binging on Netflix’s Scream- so  yeah. But then, on our way to the cab, we saw a convoy of Harley Davidsons gathering to race, and it included a couple of biker chicks that my sister and I were majorly crushing on. So naturally we had to googly-eyed stare for a while, before finally heading home.

Till next year, Taste of Dubai! xx